Sailing Program

DescriptionProgram PoliciesCruisesBoatsLeaders



Through this program, you will cruise the Channel Islands--sailing hands-on in blue water from the mainland to the islands. You will also be given opportunities to do such things as dinghy, explore (possibly sea caves), snorkel, swim, possibly scuba, and hike.

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Program Policies

Sailing Safety Procedures
Scuba Safety Procedures
Reservations & Cancellation Refund Policy


Sailing Safety Procedures

Skipper RequirementsGuidelines


Skipper Requirements

Sierra Club skippers must have completed the following:

  1. All requirements of the leadership training course (o level rating) including first aid and provisional leader trip.
  2. A minimum of two to three sierra club sailing outings after notifying the chair of intention to become a skipper.
  3. Demonstrate to sailing chair or skipper designated by the chair, leadership ability on sailing vessel including a two or three day outing to channel islands; shall attend to the safety and recreation of his crew throughout the outing.
  4. Demonstrate to sailing chairman or designated skipper, ability required of skippers including but not limited to the following; rules of the road, marine radio procedure, motoring, docking, man-overboard procedure, marlinspike (knots), anchoring, picking up a mooring, points of sail, reefing, and hard weather procedures.
  5. Requirements of a charter organization such as marina sailing association.
  6. Demonstrate ability to navigate between coastal ports and the channel islands including dead reckoning, etc..
  7. Made a commitment of a minimum of six days of sailing activity during first year; may be day sails, teaching, or cruising.

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  1. All rules and guidelines applying otherwise to sierra club outings shall apply to sailing. The leader-skipper shall be recognized as having final word while on the water. If there is a disagreement it shall be settled after the cruise. Safety issues may be presented to the section or chapter safety chair; interpersonal issues to the ombudsman committee.
  2. Sailing cruises and skipper's shall have a "t" level rating as the "skipper-leader" and certain participants are required to have technical knowledge, training, and equipment.
  3. Each outing shall include only one "trip leader" who will be an "o-t" rated leader. The "trip leader" is responsible for all decisions before leaving home port and after returning to home port. Once the vessels leave the dock each "skipper-leader" becomes totally responsible for the vessel and group. The "trip leader" may only make recommendations to other skippers once their vessels are on the water.
  4. Each skipper is responsible to designate the "1st mate" who will be able to return the vessel and the crew to a safe anchorage or port in an emergency. The "1st mate" is not required to be a sierra leader (i.e., Each vessel is only required to have one "o" rated leader).
  5. Sailing safety devices and procedures shall be reviewed with the crew prior to departure.
  6. The sailing committee shall consist of the sierra singles skippers . The sailing chair of the section shall be responsible for management of the sailing committee and activities. This shall include:

    1. Administration and review of procedures and training of skippers.
    2. Management of sailing outings; review and coordination of outings.
    3. Representation of the sailing committee and participants to the management committee and chapter.

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Scuba Safety Procedures

  1. All participants and leaders wishing to scuba dive shall be certified by national association of underwater instructors (naui) or pacific association of diving instructors (padi).
  2. All participants and leaders shall utilize the buddy system and wear a buoyancy compensator.
  3. All rules and guidelines applying otherwise to sierra club outings and sierra singles sailing cruises shall apply to scuba diving. The sierra club leader of the dive shall be recognized as having final word.
  4. All divers will be limited to a maximum of two tanks per cruise and shall not dive below a depth of 80 feet.
  5. Diving shall be a privilege okayed by the participant's skipper who will require presentation of a certification. The skipper must be notified prior to leaving port. The skipper may refuse to accept tanks or diving.

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Reservations & Cancellation Refund Policy

Please send $45/day (+$5/trip non-mem) to the reservationist unless otherwise stated in the write-up. Make your check payable to the Sierra Club. Also send one large self-addressed stamped envelopes (#10 business-sized), your day & night phones, and your sailing experience (even if none). Food expense is additional and will be shared.

If you cancel less than 14 days prior to the date of the trip, there will be no refund without replacement; if you are replaced, 90% will be refunded.

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Cruises are listed along with other sections activities on our events page.


Primary Charter Boats
Catalina 30
Catalina 36
O'Day 30
O'Day 39

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Gary Vidor
1313 Foothill Blvd. #10
La Canada, CA 91011
(818) 957-2989
George Najemnik
23942 Ingomar St.
West Hills, CA 91304
(818) 340-2218
Hank Feldman
17201 Orozco St.
Granada Hills, CA 91344
(818) 368-8810
(818) 368-8810 (fax)

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