"...I would not purchase a boat until I made this trip."
Russ and Jennifer
"Jennifer and I just completed our 5-day Taste of the Loop with Scott and Karen DeVoll at Capable Cruising out of Fort Myers Florida, and it was such an enjoyable trip. We learned so many things that helped us determine if the Great Loop was for us or not. If you are considering doing the Loop and have not purchased a boat yet, this trip will be invaluable for you, and I would not purchase a boat until I made this trip. You learn if the Great Loop is really for you and as a plus, they will discuss the boat buy process and give some pointers on purchasing a boat. The places we stayed, not all were in marinas, gave us a great overview and we are convinced the Great Loop is for us. And a plus, Karen had great meals that Jennifer and I both really enjoyed. If you are thinking about the Great Loop make sure you contact them, their website is capablecruising.com or you can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org"
"... they do it all and more"
Scott and Katy
"Our week with Captains Scott and Karen DeVoll gave us the confidence, knowledge, and eagerness to start the next chapter of our boating future. Karen and Scott are a consummate team, thorough in everything from hospitality to preparedness to full boat operations. They tailor their "Taste of the Loop" experience to each client team, adjusting training, excursions, and involvement as requested. Comfortable accommodations, great food, after dinner card games, shell collecting, knot tying, bird watching, island hopping, hands-on engine room tours, small space storage strategies, breakfast burritos on the bow of the boat, seafood market safaris, boat buying counseling, navigation app lessons....they do it all and more. Whether you want to do The Great Loop, become more confident boaters, or just enjoy guided exploration of southwest Florida, Capable Cruising will get you underway!"
"... the wisest money we have spent to prepare for the Loop, and we'd do it again."
Mike and Carolyn
"After we bought Terrapin, our DeFever 44, we made another smart decision: we hired Scott and Karen DeVoll of Capable Cruising to teach us how to handle her and perform basic daily and ongoing maintenance functions. During our five days’ training we learned all that and more, yet we joke that we would have like another day because they were so knowledgeable."
"From teaching us how to dock and undock to tying different knots for different purposes, Scott and Karen were professional and personable. When one of our engines leaked oil, Scott calmly and knowledgeably walked us through the problem and offered a temporary fix until we reached shore. Karen’s commitment to logging the details of our training travels means that our own log entries are natural and accurate."
"The day after we dropped Scott and Karen at the airport, we took Terrapin out. All by ourselves. We knew we had to do it, but we were apprehensive. What would it be like with just the two of us? We undocked, navigated through the marina and out to the lake, dropped our anchor, had lunch, pulled up the anchor, navigated back through the marina to our slip, and docked. All by ourselves. That would have been impossible without the excellent training provided by Capable Cruising. We believe that we gained in a week skills and information that would have take months had we not hired Scott and Karen. The investment in ourselves and our trip was the wisest money we have spent to prepare for the Loop, and we’d do it again."
"...get off the fence and jump into this adventure!"
Jim and Jo
"Taste of the Loop is absolutely the best experience available for Planning Loopers or for new or novice boat owners. A person can learn as much about cruising as you care to with safety, mechanical, navigation, and so many boating elements...or you can relax and enjoy the peaceful calm that is associated with the cruising lifestyle. Can't say enough about our trip with Capt. Scott and First Mate Karen. We urge you to get off the fence and jump into this adventure!"
"Adventures abounded as we explored..."
Mark and Wendy
"Scott and Karen went above and beyond to provide a professional and friendly experience aboard their boat. My husband and I were hoping to learn the basics about boating and anchoring out during our 7 day stay. Karen’s meals were fabulous. Their instruction was thorough but not overwhelming. Adventures abounded as we explored the area by dingy and enjoyed nearby state parks. We came away having made new friends and encouraged to pursue our boating dreams."
"I am a reluctant cruiser. Well I was until I did the Taste of the Loop..."
Wes and Leanne Higdon
Hello, my name is Leanne. I am a reluctant cruiser. Well I was until I did the Taste of the Loop with Capable Cruising. While my husband, Wes was confident that we could do it, his over confidence made me that much more nervous. I learned so much. Karen shared her amazing system for planning and provisioning for a trip. Do not get overwhelmed with the whole loop, just plan a day at a time. We did daily checks, learned safety procedures, tied knots, learned how to use the VHF radio. Scott let me drive the boat, used the auto pilot, learned how to read the chart while navigating. You are not driving 70 mph; you are only moving 8 – 10 mph so things come at you slower. Relax you have time to figure it out. We went though a lock, anchored out, stayed at a marina and most of all had fun. Karen is a great cook and our meals were delicious. Scott and Karen have a wealth of knowledge. When we were having docktails, we were still learning. This was a great experience and I am sure our loop will be wonderful.
"I would highly recommend their services to anyone new to cruising!"
"Karen and Scott helped me bring my new to me Mainship 390 from North Carolina back to Texas. Their knowledge and experience is extensive and their ability to pass that on to me was great. They were excellent coaches and provided me the confidence to captain my vessel by myself in just 3 weeks! We worked on all aspects of cruising together, boat handling, navigation, weather, and boat maintenance. As they had completed the loop in the same model boat as I had their excellent working knowledge of the boat handling and mechanical aspects was invaluable to me. In the three weeks we were together on board we traveled from The Pamlico River in North Carolina to Ft Myers Florida. They then delivered the boat to Mobile Alabama where I picked it up and continued the journey to Houston without them. They were able to bring me from absolute newbie to boating to the place where I completed the trip from Mobile to Houston as a confident captain!! I would highly recommend their services to anyone new to cruising!"
"...knowledgable experts at cruising a large boat..."
Rick and Leslie
"It is a pleasure to recommend Scott and Karen DeVoll of Capable Cruising to the community at large as knowledgeable experts at cruising a large boat along the Inland Waterway and Coastal Atlantic Ocean. My wife Leslie and I recently purchased a 43 foot Selene in Kent Island, Maryland and needed to get it from there to its current home in Hilton Head Island, SC. Scott and Karen were able to ready the boat and instruct/assist us in transiting down the Chesapeake Bay, Inland Waterway, and Atlantic Ocean over a period of nine days. The 20 year old boat had been stored on the dry for a year previous and was retrofitted with an unusual electrical system . This trip was a challenge for everyone involved. Along the way Scott and Karen maintained friendly and professional attitudes in the face of several mechanical and weather issues. Their management of sometimes complicated situations was reassuring and inspired us to do our best. During our time with them we were given the tools to continue to expand our skills in our continuing efforts to become Capable Cruisers ourselves."
"...real time learning experience..."
"I personally want to thank you both for the America’s Great Loop preparation/training on our 3900 Mainship Trawler. Your hands-on approach to navigation, marine communication, docking & anchoring afforded me a real time learning experience for the many aspects that must be mastered before taking on such a long journey. Additionally, I would like to thank you for rolling up your sleeves to show me how to repair and perform maintenance on the boat over the course of the two months we were together. That was particularly invaluable to a novice like me.
Finally, I would like to thank you for being there to share good food, conversation and of course nightly "docktails".
Wishing you both the best as you train the future Loopers and Boaters on our ever-changing seas."
"...years of experience and mountains of credentials..."
Melanie and Richard
"My wife and I hired Scott and Karen, with Capable Cruising, to help us get ready to take our new-to-us trawler on the Great Loop. They joined us in Chesapeake Bay, helped us get the boat ready and stayed with us in a marathon down-load of information/training through to the Dismal Swamp in VA.
Having a couple as trainers is incredibly important as they understand the nuances of that type of communication, and of various roles each person plays during a cruise. This immediately paid off by teaching us to set a united tone, as a team, of calm respect and support, which we have continued on our own. As one of my friends said, “wait, there’s no yelling?!”
Both Karen and Scott have years of experience and mountains of credentials, and there was never a time when we weren’t doing or learning something. From docking/anchoring, engine maintenance to how to provision the boat, it’s probably the most value we’ve ever had for the money spent. One of the things we most appreciated was their willingness to do the hard work right along with us. Our boat had not been inventoried or cleaned in a long time, and they were as stressed by that as we were and worked maybe even harder than we did to set that straight (shocking the fresh water tank, controlling smells from the blackwater tank, cleaning the engine room, explaining the best cleaning products to use, and organizing EVERYTHING).
It was an intense few days that have paid off every day since. There is not a time when we have a question that we don’t reach for some piece of knowledge one of them gave us. And we can literally reach out via mobile if it’s an emergency – which we have done.
Not only were they great trainers, we hope to be able to also call them friends – and we are looking forward to seeing them somewhere on the loop."
"Simply put, you inspire us."
Kim and Dave
Dear Karen and Scott,
Words fail. During the time we spent with you, we can honestly say, we learned as much about how to live our lives as we did about how to live on a boat. We cannot thank you enough for that. We have begun a daily practice of checking in with each other in the early morning, following your wonderful example. Plus, we had such a very good time with you two. George Bernard Shaw wrote, “how who can, does. He who can’t teaches.” Dave and I agree that you both exemplify great knowledge, skill and ability along with a wonderful way of teaching, providing great instruction and the opportunity to practice new skills.
Simply put, you inspire us. Karen, you thoughtfulness and attention to detail is something I aspire to. Scott, your depth of knowledge and expertise, are amazing.
With love and admiration
Kim and Dave