Offshore Sailing School Apostle Islands Cruise
SOLD OUT - JOIN OUR WAITLIST - OR COME ABOARD FOR GRENADA FLOTILLA!
Apostle Islands: July 27 - August 2, 2014
This fabulous summer bareboat cruise is in one of the most pristine cruising grounds in the United States, where you will sail on chartered yachts from Superior Yacht Charters. The yachts we have reserved for this wonderful flotilla cruise are a Jeanneau 40, 42, 44 and 49 with a total of 12 cabins available. Boat assignments will be made by our Director of Operations, Kevin Wensley. Your cruise leader, Joelle Petersen, will sail aboard the Jeanneau 49.
About the Islands
We will sail in an area comprising 22 islands, 21 of which are in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Madeline Island, the only year round inhabited island, is not part of the park. The beauty of these islands, which cover more than 720 square miles on the southern shore of Lake Superior, is that they are "remote" with crystal clear, deep water sailing between anchorages. The north end shoreline topography is littered with caves and sandstone bluffs. The southern ends of many of the islands are gentle sand spits, with excellent anchorages. Nighttime starts with incredible sunsets, then spectacular displays fill the sky - including the possiblity of seeing the Aurora Borealis, aka the Northern Lights!
We start in Bayfield
The cruise starts with your first evening aboard on July 27, and ends midday on August 2. The boats are located at Pike's Bay Marina, directly adjacent to Port Superior Marina in Bayfield, WI. The closest major airport is in Duluth, MN, approximately 1.5 hour drive to Bayfield. A second option is the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport, approximately 4.5 hours drive to Bayfield. To view our itinerary, click here.
Miles of beaches and great sailing
"Anchoring is a pleasure," says our host Superior Charters, with many comfortable sites in remote nooks or large bays. The bottom is sandy, good holding ground, easily visible in clear water. There are Park Service dinghy docks on some islands, where we can tie up for a hike or sunbathing on the beach. Soft sandy beaches creep slowly to wooded areas. Some beaches are littered with driftwood, and "rock pickers" can find Lake Superior ages and other treasures on several islands.
Intricate sea caves, lighthouses and fish camps
Intricate cave-like formations and arches are carved in the sandstone shores. A visit to these caves by dinghy reveals large areas under striated cliffs, with awesome orerhanging arches leading from one "room" to another. Equally dramatic formations can be seen below in Lake Superior's crystal clear waters. There are six lighthouse complexes, carefully restored and maintained for exploring and climbs to the top. A fish camp at Manitou Island gives you a glimpse of how commercial fishermen once lived and worked here, with cabins restocked and filled with actual items used in the past. The Hokenson Fishery at Little Sand Bay is full of well-preserved relics.
Hiking and wildlife
There are over 50 miles of maintained trails for all levels of hiking enthusiasts. After an exhilarating sail, we can dinghy ashore to watch wildlife in forested areas, stroll a beach, or hike up rugged terrain for more sea caves and splendid vistas. Bald eagles nest here, great blue herons live in marshy areas. There is an abundance of white tailed deer, red fox and, occasionally, black bear.
A little history
Over 3000 years ago, Woodland Indians inhabited these lands, with the Anishinabe (Ojibwe) migrating to them in the late 1400's. When French missionaries arrived during the 1600's, they "erroneously" named the islands in honor of the twelve Apostles. In the 1700's, a mineral surveyor renamed the islands the Federation Islands after the existing states at that time. Not widely accepted by locals, the islands reverted back to a combination of current local and Anishinabe names. In the 1800's, white men came to log, fish and quarry sandstone. The picturesque town of Bayfield was established in 1856. During sailing season, naturalists and park rangers live on several of the islands, providing nature walks, lighthouse tours and lectures.
The winds are variable, providing excellent sailing which can go from exciting to relaxing in short time. Summer weather is comfortable with an average of 75 degrees during the day and upper 50's at night. Pack your duffle with sailing gear you can layer - including rain gear, a warm jacket, a swimsuit and lighter attire.
Costs Per Person
- Single in a private cabin - $2695
- Double (two sailors sharing a cabin) - $1995
- Your cabin - private or shared on one of the Jeanneau yachts
- Provisioning including all breakfasts, lunches, snacks and five dinners
- Welcome get-acquainted party
- Fuel and ice
- Signature Offshore Cruising Club Apostle Islands cap and polo shirt
- Transportation and transfers from Bayfield to boats
- Any meals and beverages ashore, including one dinner during the cruise
- Beverages other than water and juice (placed aboard with provisions)
- Mooring and docking fees, if any
- Ice or other commodities bought during the cruise
- Refundable security deposit of $150, due with final payment, refunded if no damage or loss to any of the boats in fleet
Payment and Other Terms
- $150 security deposit per person is also due with reservation
- No refunds
- Please protect yourself with travel insurance for any unforeseen changes in your plans
You must be an Offshore Sailing School graduate, with US Sailing or Colgate Sailing Certification at the (minimum) Basic Keelboat/Day Sailing level. If you are not yet a grad, there's plenty of time to sign up for a 3-day or 5-day course.