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Private Lessons

$60/hour, +$40/hour/additional student

Enjoy a customized lesson to fit your needs. Private lessons are a great way to enhance your kayaking skills and enjoy one-on-one instruction. Our private lessons are tailored to your comfort, experience level, and desired learning objectives. Lessons can include kayaking fundamentals, technique, and performance skills, wet exits and recoveries, youth safety for sit-on-top kayaks, or whatever your specific needs require.

See our Private Lessons page for more details and to schedule your private lesson.

Sea Kayaking Basics

$65/person, 3 hour class

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Learn How to Do a Wet Exit!

Don't know what a Wet Exit is? Maybe your friend's explanation makes you nervous? This class is designed to introduce the basic skills required to safely Sea Kayak by yourself. Students will learn about: necessary equipment, paddle strokes, basic boat exit and entry maneuvers (i.e Wet Exits), cold water safety, and on-water safety communication.

Completing this class gives you the skills needed to rent our Sea Kayaks! Getting wet is mandatory to pass the WetExit Quiz.

Prerequisites

  • None!

This course is designed as a prerequisite to our Rescues & Recoveries class. These two are offered in succession on Saturdays for a full day of kayak skill growth!

If you don't want to get wet, rent a Sit-on-top Kayak from us or take our Coastal Explorer Tour!

If you complete both classes or you are an experienced paddler looking for even more growth, take a Private Lesson with us!

Rescues & Recoveries

$79/person, 3 hour class

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Get In, Get Out, Get Good!

This class will start with a WetExit Quiz! This allows us to get on the water ASAP. We will practice skills you already know and introduce many more. Hope you're ready to get wet!

Class Content Includes:

  • Proper Wet-Exit Techniques and Tips (Briefly)
  • Paddle Float Self-Rescue
  • Cowboy Self-Rescue
  • Assisted T-Rescue
  • Bracing Techniques
  • Edging Techniques
  • And Possibly More! (Time and skill level dependent)

Prerequisites
This class is designed to be taken after you complete our

  • Sea Kayak Basics class

or if you have Sea Kayak experience and feel confident you can pass our

  • WetExit Quiz!

If you complete both classes or you are an experienced paddler looking for even more growth, take a Private Lesson with us!

If you're unsure of your WetExit skills, we offer our Sea Kayak Basics class before this one on Saturdays for a full day of skill growth!

Race Prep & Safety Course for Ski to Sea

$45/person, 3 hour class, maximum 10 participants

Learn more about Ski to Sea rentals!

Prepare for the Ski to Sea kayak leg through our Race Prep & Safety course. This course provides participants with the basic safety skills needed to recover themselves and their boat from a capsize in deep water. The class covers wet exit and self recovery technique (no rolling techniques are covered as this class is only intended for beginners or as a refresher), basic cold-water safety knowledge, paddling techniques and tips, quick launching, and discussion of the Ski to Sea race course (both long and short courses). Included in the price of the class are three 1-hour kayak rental vouchers for use for class participants who would like to practice prior to the race on May 26th.

Planning & Preparation

Though you may not be going in the water every class, please plan on it. The Community Boating Center will provide: kayaks, paddles, spray skirts, pumps, paddle floats, PFDs (life jackets), paddle jackets and wetsuits. If you already own a sea kayak (not a sit on top), you are welcome to use your own equipment but it must be checked by your instructor before getting on the water.

These are rain or shine classes! The only time a class will be rescheduled is in the case of heavy wind, extreme weather or lightning.

You need to bring:

  • Swimsuit
  • Sunscreen
  • 1 hat for sun shade, 1 hat for warmth (optional)
  • Footwear that can get wet. Open-toe sandals are not recommended! Closed-toe sandals, old tennis/running shoes, “pool shoes,” etc. work well. (We will not send you home if you have open-toe sandles, but in doing so you assume any risk of related injury)
  • Water & snacks
  • Towel
  • Warm clothes to drive home in
  • Glasses strap
  • Extra layers just in case (e.g. long underwear, medium weight fleece, etc. to wear under your wetsuit - NO COTTON!)
  • Optional items you might consider could include: nose clip, paddle gloves

Textbook: Our textbook "Sea Kayaking Illustrated" is a highly informative and entertaining sea kayaking instructional book. We don't require students to purchase it, but if you want to supplement classroom instruction with a great textbook on the topic we recommend this one. You can find it at local bookstores or online retailers.

Class Location: This class will take place at The Community Boating Center at 555 Harris Avenue, Bellingham, WA 98225 (Google Maps). The Boating Center is located immediately next to the public boat launch in Fairhaven. Parking can be found next to the railroad tracks in front of the Boating Center or along Harris Avenue if no other spaces are available. Please do not park in the Port of Bellingham's trailer parking lot as this requires a paid launch permit.

For more information, visit our What to Expect page.