Your Cruising Sailboat on the Salish Sea

World-Class Skills for a World-Class Yacht on the World’s Greatest Cruising Grounds

No matter your background, you can train to the high standards of the Ardenna Flagship Program, then enjoy cruising her on your own or with other graduates throughout the Salish Sea.

Ardenna is a coveted Sabre 402 - with quality and maintenance well above the standard of charter boats.  Exclusive to Ardenna Flagship Program Graduates, this is your cruising sailboat on the Salish Sea once you have completed one or both training levels.  No initiation fees or dues; just pay one flat low daily rate for your use.

Two training levels prepare you for safe, skilled and confident cruising on the Salish Sea and beyond:

  • Basic Cruising Level:  Transition from day sailing to short 1-3 day cruises on Ardenna in the San Juan Islands.  Results in the US Sailing Basic Cruising Certificate, plus permission to sail Ardenna independently.
  • Bareboat Cruising Level:  Prepares you for more extended cruising in the Salish Sea and beyond.  Cruise Ardenna independently for a full week or longer whenever you want.  Your Bareboat Cruising Certificate will also qualify you to charter cruising sailboats anywhere in the world.

Ardenna Flagship Program: Basic Cruising Level

BC Session 1: Cruising Sailboat Foundations

Four days of in-depth knowledge & skill development which lay the foundation for operating a larger cruising sailboat.  Includes:

  • Cruising Sailboat Systems
  • Maneuvering & Docking the Cruising Sailboat
  • Sailing the Cruising Sailboat

Session 1 Prerequisites:

  • Sailing Essentials (Basic Keelboat) Certificate or equivalent training 
  • Ample sailing practice with the core sailing skills

Session 1 Permissions:

After completing Session 1, you will have some time in which to practice these skills before you embark on Session 2.  During this gap you can:

  • Stay overnight on Ardenna, dockside
  • Further your study & exploration of the systems, dockside
  • Join other classmates in docking practice sessions in Cap Sante Marina.

BC Session 2: Cruising the Salish Sea Under Sail

Five days of cruising and training in one of the world's most spectacular, yet challenging, cruising grounds.  We will be immersed, island-to-island in the San Juan Islands while you enjoy rigorous training in:

  • Navigation & piloting through the islands under sail and power
  • Adapting cruise plans for tides & currents
  • Docking in an unfamiliar marina
  • Selecting, evaluating, and anchoring over night safely in a bay
  • Picking up and over-nighting on a mooring ball
  • Deepen your understanding and application of sail theory and sail trim for safe and efficient sailing while cruising
  • Heavy weather sailing tactics
  • VHF communications training
  • Emergency preparedness & procedures
  • Crew overboard recovery training

Session 2 Prerequisites:

  • Ardenna BC Program Session 1 completion 
  • Navigation Essentials class or equivalent

Ardenna Flagship Program Basic Cruising Completion Permissions:

  • Sail Ardenna independently for 1-3 day cruises on the Salish Sea.
  • At least two Ardenna BC level graduates, and bring up to two guests.
  • Sail with up to 6 Shearwater University graduates from any class.

Ardenna Flagship Program: Bareboat Cruising Level

One continuous week immersed in cruising the Salish Sea, including the San Juan Islands and the Canadian Gulf Islands.  Having built skills and experience through the Basic Cruising level program, you are ready for this final horizon.

  • Seven full days of cruising and training in the heart of the Salish Sea.
  • Apply your Coastal Navigation skills skills to the very real challenges of the Salish Sea.
  • Advanced sailing, piloting and mooring skills to prepare you for extended cruising in the Salish Sea, Inside Passage, and cruising grounds around the world.

Ardenna Flagship Program Bareboat Cruising Class Prerequisites:

  • Ardenna BC Program completion 
  • Cruising experience aboard Ardenna sufficient to prepare you for the advanced level of extended cruising
  • Coastal Navigation Certificate or equivalent training

Ardenna Flagship Program Bareboat Cruising Completion Permissions:

  • Ardenna is now your cruising sailboat for all the horizons of the Salish Sea and beyond.
  • Enjoy week long cruises or more.
  • At least two AFP-BBC graduates must be on board, and bring up to two guests
  • Up to six Shearwater University Graduates from any class

Ardenna Flagship Program Rentals!

Ardenna is your cruising sailboat on the Salish Sea and beyond!  

Your independent cruises aboard Ardenna will be in accordance to your program certification level and through mutual consultation on your readiness.  

Individuals and couples are encouraged to join with others in the Ardenna Graduate Community to share skills, crewing, and expenses for cruises, especially as you are gaining experience and expanding your skills. 

Rental Basics:

  • There are no initiation fees, dues or other overhead costs for graduate rentals.  It's pay as you go.
  • Each individual graduate participating in rentals must have a damage deposit on file for the duration of their rental program participation.  This deposit will be equal to 1/2 of the current insurance deductible for the boat.
  • At a minimum there must be two Ardenna Flagship Program graduates on board for each rental, with qualifications equalling or exceeding the certificatoin reqiurements for the type of cruise. 
  • Up to 2 guests may be included on the rental cruise.
  • Up to 6 Ardenna Flagship Program members may be aboard for a cruise, so long as at least 2 of them are qualified for the cruise type.
  • An Ardenna Flagship program rental contract is required on file prior to rental for each graduate.

Division of Labor:

  • Shearwater University commits to maintaining Ardenna in top functional and aesthetic condition for all of her systems.
  • Shearwater University will pay for all moorage, insurance premiums and routine maintenance for outstanding performance of the vessel.
  • Ardenna Flagship Program members rent Ardenna "as if she were your own".  That means treating her with TLC during your cruise, bringing your own provisions, linens, and other cruising luxuries, and cleaning her thoroughly after your cruise (including pump-out and fuel-up).

Ardenna Flagship Rental Fees:

This program is simple an affordable.  it is pay-as-you-go and first-come-first-served.  Everyone must watch out for Ardenna's well-being, and report any damage or maintenance fees.  There is a a"code of trust",  without which this program breaks down.

Daily Rental Fee:  $450 per day (plus tax)

That's it.  For a day or a week or more.