Practical Small Boast Captain's Course (Boat Boss - Off the Dock) - May 2024

The Boat Boss course offers intensive practical training for aspiring small vessel captains. With a focus on real-world scenarios, this challenging four-day program complements theoretical knowledge gained in the SVOP course.


May 13 - 16, 2024


Datum Marine Services


Classroom Location:
601 Gibson St, BC, V0R2Z0


Datum Marine is a Transport Canada-approved captain’s school that has been running academic and practical marine training in Clayoquot Sound for 25 years.

The course starts with a quick refresh in the classroom on the 1st morning followed by 4-days on small boats in Clayoquot Sound.

It’s all well and good to get a piece of paper saying you’re a captain. You learned a lot of theory, enjoyed the class, and passed a multiple-choice exam, and now you are expected to be professionally responsible for an expensive boat and 12 lives! What could possibly go wrong? How do you actually learn how to dock a boat, judge the waves, feel the wind on your face, or navigate the route without (as we say in class)  “hitting the rocky bits or the sandy bits”

The answer is easy, but the training is challenging. Take the 4-day Boat Boss course in Tofino, and get a feel for open ocean waves, tricky sandbars, lots of other small boat traffic, strong currents, and west coast weather.

100% attendance: As you’ve already seen in our SVOP courses, the lessons build on each other. This is not a holiday, it’s a challenging course meant to push your excellence and show you what you’re capable of over an exhausting 8-hour day in an open speedboat. Oh—and there’s a night run, where you learn to navigate in the dark by the lighthouses and lights. It’s the best way to develop muscle memory so you know what to do when the waters throw unexpected challenges at you.

Search and Rescue perspective: It may seem hardcore, but after you take your training with Datum Marine, you’ll feel so much pride in your accomplishment, precisely because of the challenge. They take a SAR perspective where they show students how to behave in emergencies, to recognize things that commonly go wrong, how to best assist others, and how people before us have been seriously injured or killed. They also play games, run races, and do team-building exercises between the boats in their fleet. Every single minute you spend with them in Boat Boss is geared towards developing your mind and body to know how to react and what to do when the situation becomes uncertain or overwhelming. As they say in class… You got this, Captain!

No Transport Canada here: Although industry respected, many insurance providers are requiring Datum Marine's practical training, and although they're the main “go-to” school to certify many government and local organizations, Transport Canada has no approval process for this class. That means that Datum Marine has had the freedom to develop their most relevant course using best practices that they’ve developed after running hundreds of these courses since 1999. Their final evaluation is purely based on you showing your best practice, solving problems, and finding solutions in the face of uncertainty, with a timer applied to replicate real-world pressure.

You’ll come out with a certificate of completion where they’ve proved all the work you’ve done, and how far you’ve come to grow into being a professional, safe, and confident Boat Boss captain.

Photo Credits: Datum Marine


You must already have your SVOP certificate (from any training provider or school).

Course fee:

$1700 + GST

How to register:

Register now with the link below!