Sail Sand Point

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skills test

Skills Proficiency Test

Skills tests are WALK-UP ONLY, with the exception of the keelboat skills check.

New sailors at Sail Sand Point must pass a Skills Proficiency Test before using sailboats. Skills tests are walk-up only with an Open Boating Instructor. 

Skills tests are conducted based on instructor availability and may sometimes be limited due to the volume of skills tests currently being performed and the weather. Please plan accordingly and call ahead to check if skills tests are being offered and if we have the right boat available. 206-525-8782 ext. 101

Upon passing a skills test sailors are checked out at the wind speed when they take the test, and anything lighter. You can further upgrade your skills test by sailing in higher winds under an Open Boating Instructor’s supervision.

Sailing Skills Test Steps

  1. Rig the boat without assistance.
  2. Leave the dock/beach safely.
  3. Sail upwind (with 2-3 tacks).
  4. Sail downwind (with 2-3 gybes).
  5. Capsize and recovery* (no dry capsizing).
  6. Return to the dock safely.

*Hobie Waves do not require a capsize and recovery in under 10 knots.

Keelboat Skills Test Steps

  1. Request a skills test using this form 2-3 weeks ahead of desired skills check date* 
  2. Rig boat on mooring
  3. Sail off mooring
  4. Sail upwind (2-3 tacks)
  5. Sail downwind (2-3 gybes)
  6. Heave to/PIW recovery
  7. Land on mooring under sail
  8. Derig on mooring

*Please allow 2-3 weeks to schedule this skills checkout

Windsurfing Skills Test Steps

  1. Select appropriate sail and board for skill level, wind conditions, and body weight.
  2. Appropriately carry equipment to carpet or beach.
  3. Set up the rig, attach to board, get it in the water appropriately without damaging equipment.
  4. Demonstrate ability to stabilize sail on back of board, out of the water, and paddle upwind 25 yards.
  5. Up haul, sail away from beach, heading upwind.
  6. Tack 2-3 times. Falling or dropping sail is okay, so long as you can successfully reverse course and overall gain ground to windward.
  7. Demonstrate sailing upwind on both tacks. (+-50 yards of each tack).
  8. Sail off the wind on both tacks.
  9. Jibing is not required.
  10. Return to beach and stow rig on beach (or carpet).

Some common clarifications:

  • Only the skipper needs to pass the skills test (not crew).
  • You need a new skills test for each type of sailboat you want to rent.
  • Skills upgrades can be taken during available Open Boating sessions, based on staff availability.
  • New skills tests can be requested either over the phone or in person upon arrival. 206-525-8782 ext. 101
  • Skills tests are for 5 knot increments of wind speed up to 20 knots.
  • In order to take the boat out in stronger winds, sailors must complete the skills test again including the capsize portion.
  • Skills tests are FREE.
  • Participants under the age of 14 must have a parent or guardian present to participate in Open Boating, the parent or guardian can be on the same watercraft as the child, a different watercraft on the water, or on land.