Coastal Navigation Clinics

Three hands-on Practical Navigation clinics

Practical Navigation Clinics teach the physical art of navigation while incorporating veteran navigators' tricks and techniques.  Navigation is fairly easy to learn, but often more difficult to really plan and do while sailing - these clinics blend online knowledge training with practical clinics that include knowledge Q&A, practical instruction and hands-on practice.

Coastal Navigation teaches you how to plan a trip, plot highly efficient courses, and avoid the multitude of hazards using a variety of tools and knowledge. When sailors learn to use currents, tides and weather to their advantage then cruising truly becomes an art. "Wind and Waves favor the ablest navigator..."

Each clinic builds upon NauticEd's online Coastal Navigation course modules. Simply, learn online at your own pace and then get hands-on training.

Attend all or any clinics to learn and refresh navigational skills and pro tricks!

Clinic 1: The Basics, Navigation Tools, and Taking Bearings

Price: $100 per student, approx. 4 hours

Review the basics and become competent in taking and plotting bearings.  The clinic includes into plotting GPS, two and three point, running fixes.  Figuring out "Where am I?" with navigation tools and then getting from "here" to "there" is key to becoming a competent navigator!

In the Clinic: Atons, tools, taking and plotting fixes See Practical exercises

  • Aton Recognition (both regions)
  • The compass and manipulating True North to Compass Card
  • Taking a fix – Practical
  • Tricks on Plotting LOPs
  • Plotting Fixes:
    • Two point
    • Three point
    • Estimated
    • GPS
    • Running
    • Dips
    • DRs
  • Use of Constant bearing
  • ETA Calculations

Online: Navigation Basics and Techniques See online topics

Module 1: Navigation Introduction

  • Tools
  • History
  • Units
  • Lat and Long
  • ATONS (Need to do both regions)
  • ATON Lights
  • Chart Familiarization
    • Scale
    • Positioning
    • Updating
    • Symbols
    • Depth
    • Compass Rose (inc. variation)

Module 2: Navigation Techniques

  • Fixes
  • Dead Reckoning
  • Symbols Used by Navigators
  • Lines of Position
  • Position by LOP
  • What is Variation
  • What is Deviation
  • Conversion Between True and Compass
  • Distances
  • Adding and Subtracting Time
  • Course and Speed Calculations
  • Estimated Time of Arrival
  • 3 Bearing Fix
  • Running Fix
  • Collision Avoidance

Clinic 2: Tides & Currents

Price: $100 per student, approx. 4 hours

navigation tides and currentsKnowing how the water is flowing is critical: all of the planning for a voyage, making passages and even day sails are affected by water flow and depth.  This clinic will review tide and current prediction tables, and students will learn how to quantify currents and leeway to become competent with adjusting for these effects while plotting safe and concise courses.

In the Clinic: Tides, Currents and plotting/adjusting See Practical exercises

  • Predicting Tides
  • Predicting Current
  • Reading the Water
  • Safety and Safety gear
  • Weather and Waves
  • Waypoints
  • Leeway and Current
  • Determining
  • Plotting
  • Adjusting

Online: Currents & Tides and Passage Planning See online topics

Module 3: Currents and Tides

  • Understanding Tides
  • Tide Data
  • Predicting Tides
  • Predicting Tides at Subordinate Stations
  • Understanding Current
  • Predicting Current
  • Leeway and Current
  • Rate and Direction
  • Known Rate and Direction
  • Calculating Rate and Direction

Module 4: Passage Planning

  • Considerations
  • Weather Intensity
  • Wind direction(s)
  • Charts and Navigation
  • Almanacs, Local Marine Guides, Local Marina Guides
  • Tide
  • Current Flow
  • Depth
  • Waypoints
  • Crew experience
  • Traffic
  • Safety and Safety gear
  • Food, Water and Fuel

Clinic 3: Planning

Price: $50 per non-registered student - approx. 2 hours

Bareboat ASA104 NavigationPut all of the Navigation knowledge together, plot a short passage and build a trip planner. Careful and diligent planning makes for a safer and more enjoyable sail, and helps sailors quickly adapt to deviations arising from life and sailing's little quirks.  The students will execute a short virtual run along this plan to gain for a feel for the real world applications.

In the Clinic:

  • Actual Plotting a Short Trip - using all the techniques!
  • Hints and Tips On How to Be a Practical Navigator
  • Keys to Planning and Executing A Safe Comfortable Sail

Online: Module 5, Practical Exercises

Prices & Registration

Knowledge Prerequisite: NauticEd's Coastal Navigation (online) or equivalent knowledge training - online is purchased separately.... Note: the online course applies to all the clinics and is purchased separately to accommodate students who may already have NauticEd or equivalent training.

More about Coastal Navigation online

  • Extensive and essential knowledge for Coastal Navigation
  • This Sailing Course takes approximately 10 hours of total time to complete
  • Take as long as you need to complete
  • Return as many times as you like to review
  • Take the online test as many times as you like
  • Adds the Coastal Navigation Endorsement to your Sailing Certificate
  • Required for Bareboat Chartering
  • More information at NauticEd

NauticEd's Online Coastal Navigation: $39.00 per student. To purchase NauticEd's online Nav, <click here> and purchase from NauticEd. 

Coastal Navigation Boating CoursePrices:

- Clinic 1, The Basics, Navigation Tools, and Taking Bearings: $100 per student
- Clinic 2, Tides & Currents: $100 per student
- Clinic 3, Planning: $50 per student

*Note: online purchased separately

To Register: Select a date below, complete the form/payment, and we'll follow-up with you.  Certainly ask us questions!

Upcoming Nav Clinics

Contact us for upcoming dates



Need Help? Contact Island SailingAlternatively, you can contact Stephen Frankland directly at or (503) 285-7765 with questions, for more information or to sign-up!

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