Solent (Inshore) Cruising
Many of our skippers like to cruise in the sheltered Solent water, where there are many excellent locations to explore in this sheltered sea area. You can take a berth on these trips.
Sailing trips to the Isle of Wight are popular; a short hop to Cowes or heading further west to Yarmouth. On the mainland there are many rivers to explore under sail, such as Beaulieu, the Hamble, and the Itchen as well as Portsmouth, Langstone and Chichester harbours.
Our more experienced skippers extend their cruising to the whole of the South Coast in the area from North Foreland (in Kent) to Lands End, making destinations such as Weymouth feasible in a long weekend. Sailing east you can reach Brighton marina, Shoreham harbour or Eastbourne marina with the right wind and tide combinations.
A cross-channel sailing trip is a popular offshore passage under sail and is limited only by our insurance area (roughly Brest to the Elbe).
Crossing the English Channel can be done in a long weekend but it is more relaxing and fun to spend further time in French restaurants and harbours. Popular offshore destinations include France (Calais, Le Havre, Honfleur etc.) the Channel Islands and the Isles of Scilly.
Our offshore skippers are also invaluable in undertaking the delivery passages for the summer cruise.
The summer cruise in 2021 is staying in England, but still visiting favourite sailing areas such as Plymouth, Falmouth, Suffolk and Thames Estuary.
Previous destinations have included Around Britain, Brittany, The Mediterranean, Holland and the Low Countries etc.
Round the Island
There is keen competition between our two yachts in the annual Round the Island Race.
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Berths for our club members to take part are also particularly popular. The skippers for these races are our most experienced people to make the day as safe and enjoyable as it can possibly be.
JOG and RORC Racing Series
In 2021 we are building our racing team in the JOG series of more local races.
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We are relaxed and constructive in our approach to racing, so enjoying it takes priority.
We have previously competed in the annual series of offshore races organised by RORC (the Royal Offshore Racing Club). We were respectably placed in our class.
Boathandling is an informal two day course intended to improve club members' skills and confidence.
This includes manoeuvring our yachts in under engine in close quarters, in and around marinas and essential sailing skills such as man-overboard.
This will give you plenty of opportunity to practice getting on to and off of berths, going ahead and astern, with and against the current, and with the wind coming from any direction.
Competent Crew/Day Skipper
This course is for beginners and those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers. Experience living on board and really get to know the boat. Virtually all the course is hands on. You are the crew - without you the sails won't go up and the boat won't be steered.By the end of the course you should be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day duties on board. You should also have visited some interesting places and had an enjoyable holiday.
A course for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills. Learn to skipper a short passage with the instructor on hand to give advice and encouragement and ensure your safety. Experience being in charge, taking credit when it all goes well and being responsible when it doesn't.
Shore Based Courses
As well as in-house RYA practical training we have close ties with two commercial RYA schools, City Sailing and Emsworth School of Navigation who both offer preferential pricing on shore based courses to our club members. These schools offer a full range of RYA skills courses such as:
- RYA First Aid
- RYA Sea Survival
- RYA GMDSS VHF Radio
- RYA Diesel Engine
Sail trimming is another popular course. During this two day course you will learn about the sail suites carried by each of our yachts; head sails, main sails, storm sails, spinnakers and cruising chutes and when to use them. Which you actually get to use will depend upon the wind conditions, but in every case you will be taught the tips and tricks to get the maximum performance from them.
We run weekend courses to enable you to learn to "fly the kite" for racing or cruising.
These courses are always popular and fully booked, but give all participants plenty of opportunity to practice each role.
Yachtmaster Coastal/Offshore Prep Week
An RYA Yachtmaster™ Certificate of Competence is often the ultimate aim of aspiring skippers. It is a well known, highly respected qualification worldwide, proving your experience and competence as a skipper.
To become a YachtmasterTM a candidate must complete an examination conducted by an RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Examiner, but before doing so they must have completed sufficient qualifying passages and have developed appropriate skills and experience, often building on their RYA training courses. Our Chief Instructor can advise you further on exam entry requirements.
Our approach at PYC is to offer a five-day preparation course running from Monday to Friday. This coaching allows you to practice the kind of skills an examiner is likely to expect; mooring, boathandling, anchoring, picking up buoys, passage planning etc. On the Friday evening the instructor gets off the boat, the examiner gets on and the exam begins!
As you will have been training all week with the same people, we expect that if you attend the course you also stay to crew through the exam, even if you are not being examined yourself.
These courses are currently on hold during the COVID pandemic.