If you want to take an American Sailing Association (ASA) training program anytime soon, but can’t or you just want to update your sailing library with the most up-to-date reference books, then you’ll want to pick up the Coastal Cruising Made Easy recently released by the ASA.
The book is the official course book for its Basic Coastal Cruising course (ASA 103), which is the second level in ASA ’s keelboat course progression. The new book builds upon the information presented in Sailing Made Easy, the textbook for ASA’s Basic Keelboat Sailing course (ASA 101). The highly visual, easy-to-read teaching tool is also appropriate for anyone with a basic working knowledge of sailing who seeks to day sail a bit farther from familiar waters.
As with Sailing Made Easy, Coastal Cruising Made Easy was written by a team of expert sailing instructors with more than 150 years of combined sailing experience. It was co-edited by Peter Isler, world famous America’s Cup winning navigator and commentator, Jeremy McGeary, a 30-year veteran sailing writer and editor, and Lenny Shabes, ASA’s founder and current chairman of the board. In addition to greatly raising the bar on the quality of illustrations, photos and text, the new manual is organized in a manner that allows students to easily master the concepts. Unlike most sailing books, the material in Coastal Cruising Made Easy is presented in the order in which it is typically taught on the water.
“A good sailor must have an understanding of the water, wind, tides, currents and weather,” said Charlie Nobles, executive director of ASA. “In addition to helping sailors master this broad skill set, Coastal Cruising Made Easy serves as the foundation of knowledge for subsequent ASA courses and their textbooks.” Nobles also pointed out that ASA conducted a top-to-bottom review of its 30-year-old set of standards for teaching sailing and updated them as part of the process used to create its latest textbook.
Coast Cruising Made Easy is the second of two books to replace a single book in use since 1984, which covered instruction for both the ASA 101 and 103 course levels. As a stand-alone book, it offers a more focused text for ASA’s Basic Coastal Cruising course. Updated content reflects the changes in equipment used on today’s teaching boats. For example, more of today’s boats at this instruction level are equipped with inboard engines and roller furling headsails. In the past, the boats used had outboard engines with pull-start motors and hank-on headsails.
Published in full color and containing world-class sailing photography from destination and adventure photographer Billy Black, Coastal Cruising Made Easy is also an attractive “coffee table” book. Other features include a water-resistant cover, an extensive glossary of sailing terms, and an easy-to-follow layout of two-page “spreads” throughout the book that allows for each topic to be covered in its entirety.
Coastal Cruising Made Easy is for purchase at www.asa.com or by calling the association at 310-822-7171. The retail price is $27.95, with discounts given to ASA members, instructors and schools.