Cruise Boats

Members who are experienced keelboat sailors can be certified to use the DSSA’s larger  cruise boats with auxiliary motors. Cruise boats are available for day sailing in the Duluth Harbor and the near shore of Lake Superior.


For safety and liability reasons, members must be evaluated and certified by staff before they can reserve and sail a cruise boat. Because of the differences among our cruise boats, certification is boat specific, and members must be evaluated separately for each cruise boat they wish to sail.

Please contact us to set up a time for your evaluation and certification. To help us prepare for your evaluation, please send us a resume of your sailing experience. There is a template here.

The certification outing is free.


During your evaluation, staff will show you the ins and outs of the boat you wish to reserve and assess your sailing ability. To be certified, members must demonstrate competence in the areas outlined on the cruiseboat captain checklist.


  • Contact us to make a reservation and submit your float plan.
  • All guests must be members. Day memberships can be purchased for visiting guests.
  • Only certified captains may request reservations.
  • $30.00 for a 4 hour reservation.  After the 4 hours the rate is $5.00 an hour.

Boat Use Policy

By reserving a boat, the captain agrees to abide by and enforce the following policies:

  • Boats must be crewed by one certified captain and at least one deck hand. Staff have the final say in whether an individual has the experience or skills necessary to be a deck hand for a particular outing.
  • No cruise boat shall leave the mooring if winds greater than 20 knots for a following 12 hour period are forecast.
  • Crew or Captain must carry cell phone on board.
  • Nighttime operation is not permitted without special permission from the Board.
  • No person may operate any equipment under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Alcohol is not allowed on board.
  • Boat use is to be recorded in the on board log.
  • If fuel tanks are at half full or less, please report this to the staff and note in the log. Do not add fuel. This will be accomplished by staff.
  • The boat shall be clean, shipshape, and properly moored upon leaving it.
  • Incompetence or negligence in the use of equipment constitutes grounds for the Board to suspend any or all ratings of the member.
  • All government rules and regulations shall be observed by members.

If sailing on Lake Superior:  Cruising is limited to the near western area of Lake Superior as defined by the following chart.