Sail Alaska

/Sail Alaska
Sail Alaska2018-12-18T23:16:54+00:00

Welcome to Sail Alaska!

Sail Alaska is a 2,500 mile, 12-week cruising educational program for boaters of all levels of experience with both sail and power. The trip is designed to give captain and crew a taste of long-distance cruising and the basics of self-sufficiency in a very real environment, surrounded by like-minded people to share with and learn from.

Sail Alaska attendees benefit from the guidance of Jim Rard, owner of Marine Servicenter, located in Anacortes and Seattle, Washington. Rard brings humor, charm, 50 years and hundreds of thousands of miles of boating experience. Working alongside mechanics and electricians from the boat yard, participants acquire hands- on experience on boat systems and preparation, but most importantly….what to do if things don’t go as planned.

Each night, there will be a briefing on what to expect the next day with time for discussion and questions. Attendees of “Sail Alaska,” also receive instruction on navigating the extreme tides, strong currents, and other challenges presented by Alaska’s coastal waters, as well as how to use currents and back eddies to make the cruise easier and safer. Of course, among all the learning there will be plenty of time to relax, go hiking, kayaking, fishing and experience spectacular Alaska! Friendships will be made and many stories shared around the campfire.

At the end of the tour, boaters will know where and how to anchor, how to decide what time of day passages should be avoided or traversed, and lessons not offered by the average boating course (how to avoid grizzly bears, build a pizza oven out of shore rock, and the basics of catching and smoking salmon). They will also have a great story to tell about their trip of a lifetime from Anacortes to Alaska and back!

Sail Alaska Team

Jim Rard


Additional Information / Bio

Amy Jamison

Marketing / Brokers’ Assistant

Additional Information / Bio

Sail Alaska Blog

Jim Rard’s Seminar Schedule for the 2019 Seattle Boat Show

                Seminar Schedule Have you been waiting to hear when Jim Rard's seminars will be at the 2019 Seattle Boat Show? Time Title Presenter Stage   Tuesday, January 29th 2:00 PM Safety in Numbers: The Value of Group Cruising Joe Cline, Jim Rard & Chuck Skewes Stage #2 North Hall   5:00 PM Getting the Most Out of Your Alaska Adventure Jim Rard Stage #2 North Hall   Tuesday, January 29th, 5:00 PMTips on what to bring, places to visit, provisioning the boat, how to deal with 20 foot tides, where the [...]

That’s a Wrap on 2018 Sail Alaska

2018 SAIL ALASKA   2018 Sail Alaska has come to an end, as all boats in the fleet, are in their home anchorage or on their next adventure. We had a great group this year! Thank you to all the participants and thank you for the camping chairs for potlucks! They’re already getting put to use! Now on to planning 2019 Sail Alaska! Want to Learn More About Sail Alaska? Stay tuned for photos and videos -coming soon!

07/11/2018 Update: 2018 Sail Alaska

Update from Jim Rard 2018 Sail Alaska Wednesday Morning -07/11/2018: The 2018 Fleet spent the night on Dundas Island. They've been catching fish and kayaked in the lagoon at Kumealon Inlet as well as played in the waterfall. They left Dundas Island at 6:00am.  They are currently crossing Dickson Entrance and have arrived in Alaska. All who have sails, are sailing as the wind is westerly at 10 knots. The weather is in the high 50s to low 60s with low clouds.  The Fleet is expected to arrive in Ketchikan around 4:30pm tonight. Cell service should be good there.

07/10/2018 Update: 2018 Sail Alaska

Update from Jim Rard 2018 Sail Alaska Tuesday Morning -07/10/2018: The fleet is coming up on Prince Rupert! Jim says the fleet has had to do a fair amount of motoring and not much sailing as the winds have not been in their favor recently. Everyone is having a great time! Some of the wildlife they've seen in recent days are eagles and whales. The bears aren't yet out in mass on the beaches, as the main salmon runs are a little late coming in this year. As soon as the main salmon runs hit, the bears will start coming [...]

07/07/2018 Update: 2018 Sail Alaska

Update from Jim Rard 2018 Sail Alaska               Saturday -07/07/2018: Everyone has been catching fish, spent the night at the hot springs last night. The weather has been party cloudy with some sun.  We haven't been able to do much sailing yet, finally have the wind behind us today. #MarineServicenter #SailAlaska

Sunrise at Campbell River, getting an early start for Seymour Narrows

From Jim Rard update: 7/01/2018  We are on Calvert Island and going hiking tomorrow. The weather is starting to clear up and the sun is out today..  We'll be at Shearwater on Tuesday. Should have good internet for more updates.


Sunday June 24th, 2018  Jim Rard navigates Ruby Slippers out of Cap Sante Marina -in Anacortes, WA. He's followed by numerous other boats, some of which are participating in this year's Sail Alaska adventure and some of which will be turning back after Booker Lagoon. By the time Ruby Slippers returns to her home in Anacortes, WA, it will have been 12 weeks and she'll have cruised over 2,500 nautical miles. Music by: Brooks Williams