Just the FAQs

GENERAL

Q1: Where are you and can I charter the boats for a private or business gathering?
Q2: What is your cancellation policy for scheduled cruises?

SHORT SAILS IN PORTLAND

Q3: How many people does the boat hold?
Q4: Can I bring kids?
Q5: When should I arrive at the dock?
Q6. What is the reservation process?

CHARTERS

Q7: Are private accommodations available?
Q8: What other kinds of accommodations are onboard?
Q9: What kind of food will we eat while on a charter?
Q10: What is a participatory charter?
Q11: Do I have to sign up with a group?
Q12: How does weather affect a charter itinerary?
Q13: What activities are available onboard the Scovare?
Q14: When we are anchored or in harbor, what are my options?
Q15. What is the reservation process for charters?

PASSAGES

Q16: How much experience do I need before joining a passage crew?
Q17: What will my day be like on a passage?
Q18: What will we eat on the 3 week trip across the Pacific Ocean?
Q19: Where will I sleep?
Q20: How is travel to and from the boat handled?
Q21: What makes an ideal crew member?
Q22: What if I take medication or have other ongoing medical needs?
Q23. What is the application process for passages?

GENERAL

Q1: Where are you and can I charter the boats for a private or business gathering?
A1: Please note your confirmation email for departure dock location. Most summer cruises depart from the Willamette Park Launch Ramp Dock located 2 blocks southeast of 6500 SW Macadam Ave, in the middle of the park. We pick up on the long left side dock. (NOT the Sailing Club). We have four boats ranging in size from 21' to 50' that can accommodate from 6 to 12 guests each. We can provide a custom cruise, party, or team building event for up to 24 people on multiple boats for one hour to one year in length. Let us know what type of sailing event you would like to have!!!

Q2: What is your cancellation policy for scheduled cruises?
A2: We require 48 hour notice of cancellation as any less than that would not give us enough time to fill the seat. If you must cancel with less than 48 hours' notice, there is a $30 per person re-booking fee for tours and a 50% cancellation fee for private charters. We rarely cancel for weather, but please call if you are concerned, since we do cancel if thunderstorms are in the forecast.

SHORT SAILS IN PORTLAND

Q3: How many people does the boat hold?
A3: The boat can accommodate up to six people, plus your Captain. If you have a larger group that you want to accommodate, just let us know and we can add boats and sail groups to accommodate up to 24 people together.

Q4: Can I bring kids?
A4: Yes, of course, provided they are accompanied by a responsible adult who oversees their movement on the boats. Children 10 and younger are half priced.

Q5: When should I arrive at the dock?
A5: It's best to arrive at the dock 10 minutes early so you don't miss the boat or keep other people waiting. The boat leaves within 5 minutes of start time to be able to complete the tour in time for the next group. Our boats are out on tour most of the time, and the park only allows us a short time at the dock... so please don't be surprised if it is not at the dock if you are early. The boat will arrive about the time of your cruise.

Q6. What is the reservation process?
A6: The best way to book a cruise is to click the "Schedule Now" button on our home page but you can also email is at info@sailscovare.com with the date and time you would like to sail, and include your purchase certificate number or PayPal receipt number. Reservations and full payment must be completed at least 24 hours prior to departure in order to confirm a spot on a cruise. Shorter notice is acceptable on a space-available basis. We do not offer refunds, but will make every effort to reschedule you on another cruise if 48 hours' notice is given.

CHARTERS

Q7: Are private accommodations available on overnight voyages?
A7: Yes, Scovare 2 has two private cabins, and Gallant has 4 private cabins. Our other boats can be chartered for overnight camp sails on local islands.

Q8: What other kinds of accommodations are onboard?
A8: We have a complete and fully stocked galley. Guest will have many snack options in addition to the meals served on board. The "Head" is our onboard bathroom and is complete with hot pressure water for the shower, toilet and vanity on the two larger boats.

Q9: What kind of food will we eat while on a charter?
A9: Grilled steak and salmon for dinners, sandwiches for lunches and hearty breakfasts are the norm. During a 6-day itinerary, there are two suppers designated as onshore meals that are the responsibility of the guests. Our Captains and crew will assist you with recommendations and reservations if you would like.

Q10: What is a participatory charter?
A10: On participatory charters each guest is assigned meals to prepare for the group, assists with sailing the vessel, and learns sailing techniques from a licensed Captain who is also a certified sailing instructor. If you are interested in becoming ASA Certified in order to do bareboat charters, please let us know at the time of your booking.

Q11: Do I have to sign up with a group?
A11: No, we offer participatory charters as shared experiences. This is a great way to meet new friends. You can also sign up for a private charter with your own group of 2 or more.

Q12: How does weather affect a charter itinerary?
A12: Weather is always a big part of any sailing experience. Wind is what we use to power our vessel. While we have the ability to motor anywhere and have the advantage of a comfortable wheelhouse in the foulest of storms, this is not always the most pleasant experience. Therefore our Captains reserve the right to alter any itinerary to ensure the best and safest experience while you're aboard the Scovare. If ternaries need to be changed, the captain will discuss the possible options with you; and together with our guests we will decide on our new destinations or activities.

Q13: What activities are available onboard Gallant?
A13: We have a 14' sailing dinghy, and access to remote beaches for a romantic stroll or to search for treasures. You can relax on deck in a hammock, or swim from the aft deck. We also have a selection of board games, cards and other entertainment such as a DVD player, plus a limited DVD library.

Q14: When we are anchored or in harbors, what are my options?
A14: Many itineraries have time for exploring the area. There are a multitude of activities available ashore. Your captain will be able to make recommendations for shopping, eating, and other entertainment in each town.

Q15. What is the reservation process for charters?
A15: Reservation forms and a 50% deposit are due at the time of booking in order to hold a spot; the balance is due one month before sailing. If you have booked a shorter notice cruise than one month, then the full fare is due upon reservation confirmation. Refunds minus 25% of the fare are given up to 6 weeks before our scheduled sailing date. This refund will be given after 6 weeks IF we are able to rebook your cruise dates with another party.

PASSAGES

Q16: How much experience do I need before joining a passage crew?
A16: No previous experience is required, however we would like crew to have either experienced at least one overnight sail on a boat less than 100 feet, and to have previously day-sailed. If you are interested in a passage and have no experience onboard, or would like additional experience, we recommend that you sign up for one of our 3-, 6-, or 12-day exploration charters... or create your own overnight experience aboard the Scovare. This will allow you to get to know the vessel and her Captains before you embark on an ocean passage.

Q17: What will my day be like on a passage?
A17: Please go to a "typical day on a passage" on this site for a full description.

Q18: What will we eat on the 3 week trip across the Pacific Ocean?
A18: The crew and captain all take turns at making us delicious, healthy fair. Breakfast might include eggs, tofu sausages, toast, bagels, fruit, french toast, pancakes, hot and cold cereals creatively combined to get each morning off to a GREAT start. Lunches and dinners vary with dishes such as curried chicken/fish, vegetables over rice, Italian dishes like pasta, Chicken Picata, or Veal Marsala. Sandwiches are an easy solution for those rougher days or when we're having too much fun for a sit-down meal. Each passage is different as we add new recipes to our favorite meals recipe box. Bring your favorite casserole, pasta or other recipe to add to the fun!

Q19: Where will I sleep?
A19: Each crew member has an assigned bunk and a cabinet for stowage of personal gear. Bunks are all located in the large and comfortable main cabin. Berth sizes range from 27"x80" to our smallest berth at 22"x72". We have one 60"x80" double berth available. All crew members share community spaces.

Q20: How is travel to and from the boat handled?
A20: We recommend that you book tickets following a passage that can be changed as passages do not always take as long, nor finish as early as our itinerary states. Time to cross is dependent on weather, currents and circumstances. We also recommend that you take a few extra days upon arrival to readjust to life on land and to explore the beauty of our destination. Please call us for recommendations on travel agents who can ably assist you in making these arrangements.

Q21: What makes an ideal crew member?
A21: We try to select passage crew members who have a desire to realize a sailing dream, want to participate, and are capable of working together in a close team-oriented environment to make the passage a success for all aboard. Crew members must be physically fit enough to step up 18 inches, be able to carry the equivalent of 50 lbs, and possess the ability to make quick assessments and decisions to maintain the safety of the boat and all her crew. It is important that all crew members are able to hear and see possible hazards both onboard and in the surrounding waters. Scovare is a smoke-free boat.

Q22: What if I take medication or have other on going medical needs?
A22: You should bring a one-month supply of any medication prescription or over-the-counter medication that you regularly take. We have a limited supply of ibuprofen, aspirin, acetaminophen, anti-diarrheal medication and other things in our first aid kit for minor problems that might occur during the passage. While our Captains are experienced in first aid and emergency medical care, we do not have access to doctors or hospitals while crossing. If you are diabetic, have seizure disorders, or need other ongoing medical care, we will require written approval from your physician, and you must be able to self-regulate and administer any medications required during a one-month period.

Q23. What is the application process for passages?
A23: A signed and notarized application, medical and liability release form, plus the signed ships' articles, along with a $500 deposit are required to reserve a spot on a passage. A confirmation letter will be sent after your application is reviewed. If you are not selected then your deposit will be returned within 30 days. 50% of the passage fare is due two weeks after we send the confirmation letter and the balance is due two months before the sailing date. In the case of short notice passage application (less than three months from sailing date) the full fare is due two weeks after the date on your confirmation letter. Refunds minus the $500 deposit will be given 5 months or more before sailing date. Less than five months prior to sailing date this refund will be given IF we are able to rebook another person in your slot.