Sailing Classes and Instruction in Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands

Beginner and Intermediate Sailing Classes in Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands.

Yacht Delivery and Skipper Assistance and Instruction

Sailing Fun in the Sun!

Sailing Classes Cover the Following Topics

1. Safety
2. Equipment for safety
3. About the Boat
4. Find the wind: sail zone--points of sail
5. Getting Underway
6. Steering
7. Trimming sails
8. Stopping by luffing sails head-to-wind
9. Stopping in safety position
10. Capsizing and Righting the boat (only for dinghy sailing)
11. Tacking & jibing
12. Docking



Private lessons for Cruising and Dinghy

Private lessons may include:  an introduction to sailing, pre-departure checklist, how to manage your sail more efficiently, how to make your boat go faster, helmsmanship skills and more.  We can offer a customized curriculum suited to your needs.  Want to learn Navigation or Rules of the Road?  Want to replace your running rigging or learn to splice?  We can do all that too.

A private lesson is ideal for families wanting to experience sailing or powerboating. A private lesson can have as many people as the boat will accommodate.  If you have a boat I will come show you how to sail it.

Private lessons are $250 per day (or $45 per hour).  Your boat.


Learn to Cruise With Your Boat.
Are you intimidated taking your own boat out to sea? Would you like to learn to cruise confidently while sailing north along the Inside Passage? I am an experienced teacher and licensed Captain. I can instruct you in all the necessary skills, including navigation, voyage planning, boat handling, sail handling, anchoring, knots and splicing, safety and emergency considerations and more. We will go from stem to stern, inspecting and preparing your vessel for safe cruising. I helped a new boat owner sail his 42' Catalina to San Francisco because he was not confident in his skills. After this he went on to Mexico and a life of cruising. For another, I created a custom curriculum to focus on the specific skills he wanted in order to graduate from small boat sailor to skippering his own cruising sailboat. So if you already know how to sail, we do not have to cover topics you don't need.


Sail North! Learn and Cruise With Your Boat

Hire me and we will sail north for five to ten days together. Or any number of days you feel necessary for becoming familiar and confident with your boat and your skills. Consider me to get you as far as Desolation Sound, BC and then continue on your own.

$250 per day plus expenses. (price can drop depending on number of days)(I have all the needed charts). Please inquire and I will send resume and letters of reference.

Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Phone:  (234) 208-6739

Heavy Weather Class

These sailors went from very nervous... calm and confident.

Hey Don

We had a great day and are still talking about it.
My wife and I have been struggling to reach a higher level of sailing expertise and have not been able to do this on our own. In light winds we are fine but have grown weary of motoring everywhere and panicking when the winds pipe up. In essence we wanted to do more sailing on our sailboat.
We called Don Langlois at Ridge Explorations and scheduled a private lesson aboard our 30 foot Ericison. In short it proved to be a game changing experience for us both.
We left Des Moines on a crisp late October morning and immediately encountered sustained winds of 15 knots, gusting to 20 knots, exactly the conditions we dreaded on our own. Don took control of the situation, and with a quiet air of confidence and professionalism, guided us through all phases of heavy weather sailing. Panic was replaced by exhilaration and confidence replaced fumbling about. We did this all on our own boat with our own equipment.
Today I am a much more proficient sailor and am able to react confidently to adverse conditions that use to scare me. I can use and enjoy my boat more often in all conditions and have more fun.
Thank you Ridge Explorations for this renewed confidence !!

Rick Horton

Enumclaw, WA

Another satified student tells his story...

Dear Don,

I am writing to thank you again for your patience, experience and valuable insights during our 4 day "custom cruising course" in July. My daughter and I learned a lot and gained confidence in our boat and our skills. We went sailing yesterday and she was amazing - hanking on the jib, managing docklines and jib sheets, steering to the compass, taking bearings, and generally acting as the most qualified 10 year old first mate on the water!

As you know, we purchased our first keelboat after years of dinghy sailing, and needed help becoming familiar with systems and procedures on a bigger boat. Rather than enroll in a sailing school, we wanted to spend time specifically focused on managing our boat, and on filling the gaps in our knowledge.

The itinerary you put together for us met our needs perfectly. Of course the basic sailing drills were useful, but we also got comfortable with reefing, anchoring, basic navigation, and the other skills that we need to develop for safe cruising.

Thanks, Don - we learned a lot and had a great time sailing with you.


Nat & Hana Burgess, Lopez Island, WA



This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Here's to a great summer season!

Don Langlois

American  Avalanche Association AIARE logo_caa2 Association  of Canadian Mountain Guides Canadian  Ski Guide Association
Professional Member of AAA and Affiliate Member of CAA, ACMG, and CSGA
Avalanche classes based on American Avalanche Association education guidelines