Cruise & Learn - Desolation Sound and Discovery Islands Mileage Builder

2020 Dates:  FULL /

Desolation Sound and the Discovery Islands are approximately 100 miles north of the City of Vancouver. Bordered by Vancouver Island and the BC Mainland, it's best described as a massive wilderness area, rich in coastal wildlife, mountains and pristene secluded anchorages. Minimal development creates a true feeling of experiencing unspoiled wilderness. The protected sound and numerous wide channels among the many islands provide for exceptional sailing late June to early September. Excellent swimming, snorkeling, hiking and kayaking can be part of the experience. 

Desolation Sound Sailing Highlights:

  • Iconic sailing destination learn-to-sail on a deluxe performance cruising yacht 
  • Exceptional light and moderate wind sailing, pristine protected anchorages and remote quaint ports-of-call
  • Rich abundance of wildlife on the Desolation Sound Sailing including seals, sea lions, otters, eagles, Orca, Gray and Humpback whales and three species of dolphins
  • Earn your NauticEd International recognized qualifications for proof of competency and Bareboat Chartering internationally
  • Swimming, kayaking and snorkeling in fresh water mountain lakes and 23 degree C (80 degree F) ocean salt water

Desolation Sound Sailing Cruise & Learn includes enrolment in two or three courses per 7-day session. Select from:

  •  Qualified Crew Rank (Beginner)
  •  Day Skipper Rank(Intermediate)
  •  Bareboat Charter Master Rank(Intermediate)
  •  Coastal Navigation (Intermediate)
  •  Advanced Coastal Cruising Skipper (Advanced)
  •  Captain Rank
  •  VHF Radio Operators Course (ROC-M ) License
  •  VSC506  Spinnaker Fundamentals and/or Docking emdorsements

Desolation Sound Cruising Ports-of-call include:

  • Gibsons
  • Smugglers Cove
  • Secret Cove
  • Pender Harbor
  • Powell River
  • Lund
  • Prixdeau Haven
  • Refuge Cove

  • Octopus Island
  • Stuart Is.
  • Bute Inlet
  • Von Dunops Inlet
  • Squirrel Cove
  • Grace Harbor
  • Hornby Is
  • Ballenas Islands
  • Gibsons
  • Vancouver

Your Skipper and Instructor is:

Carl Richardson, Chief Instructor, Vancouver Sailing Club
" Sailing is all about discovering the power of the wind, exploring the coast and having fun on the water. With over 42,000 NM logged under sail and a full- time professional sailing Instructor for the past 14 years, I have had the privilege to assess, instruct, examine and certify more than 1650 students on cruising keelboats 24-52 feet and cruising catamarans 38-48 feet. My lesson plans use proven teaching methods that assist my students in acquiring  sailing knowledge, seamanship, operational vigilance and practical boat-handling for all conditions. My favourite C&L destinations are BC's West Coast , Inside Passage including Howe Sound, Gulf Islands, Desolation Sound Cruising and the Discovery Islands. I also have enjoyed Instructing Cruise & Learn adventures in Greece, British Virgin Islands (BVI), the Grenadines, Antigua and the Turks & Caicos Islands- 67 weeks in the past 12 years. My international cruising and racing plans for 2018 will take me to Shanghai China, the BVI, Grenadines, Nova Scotia, Chicago and Toronto."
Instructor Credentials- RYA Yachtmaster Cruising Instructor, RYA Professional Practices & Responsibilities, NauticEd  Captain Rank Instructor and SPC Examiner, Industry Canada CCG ROCM VHF Radio Instructor & Examiner, ASA206 Advanced Coastal Cruising and ASA214 Cruising Catamaran Instructor. 
Professional Sailing Certifications- RYA Yachtmaster Offshore (MCA), NauticEd  Captain Rank Level 5, ASA Advanced Coastal Cruising, Marine CPR AED First Aid, Industry Canada (CCG) SVOP, TC Marine Emergencies ME3, ISAF (WorldSAILING) Safety at Sea.

Student Testimonials

Enrolment per person is $1995

C&L includes:

  • 7-days of certified Desolation Sound sailing instruction aboard a 2011 Beneteau 36 sloop equipped for coastal cruising with spinnaker
  • Fresh linens, sleeping bag and towels
  • all safety gear 
  • On a second  optional week we visit 6 additional stunning anchorages and ports
  • Mediterranean Anchoring and Spinnaker Endorsements are included
  • All aboard meals, snacks, non-alcoholic beverages
  • Use of 2 Kayaks, fishing gear and Dinghy with outboard


There are many spectacular routes through Desolation Sound's Cruising maze of channels, bays and  islands. Broad reach 30 miles up the mountain clad fiords of Toba and Bute Inlets. Circumnavigate Redondo East and West Islands from Grace Harbor or Prideau Haven and anchor in Squirrel Cove or Harriot Bay. Our Beneteau First sailboats are optimized for all weather conditions and winds. This Desolation Sound Sailing trip will truly be one to remember for a life time.

Summer sun and tides meet to create warm water 23+ degrees Celsius - perfect for swimming and snorkeling after your afternoon Desolation Sound cruising adventure.

Does this sound like the Desolation Sound sailing holiday you always imagined? CONTACT US or register for this Desolation Sound Cruise & Learn sailing adventure today!

VSC Adventure Wilderness Sailing + Fun + Value



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