(905) 484-BOAT (2628) info@boaterskills.ca

We are Driver's Ed for boaters!

At BoaterSkills.ca, we are passionate about boating safety and education!

“We started BoaterSkills.ca in 2011 to help boaters become more competent and confident through a program that connects students with professional, highly experienced instructors.  We want to create a comfortable and safe learning environment where boaters can learn at their own pace."

- Capt. Craig Hamilton

Need to learn how to get out of a tight spot? Take a 3-hour private lesson with a BoaterSkills.ca instructor, or catch one of Craig’s Docking and Close Quarters Manoeuvring seminars at the annual Toronto Boat Show for tips on docking and close quarters maneuvering for power or sail.

BoaterSkills.ca Instructors

Craig Hamilton



Craig Hamilton

Powerboat & Sailing Instructor

An accomplished sailor and expert boat-handler, Craig has accumulated thousands of sea miles on the Atlantic, Pacific, and the Eastern Caribbean. Craig now spends his summers teaching power boaters and sailors of all ages across Ontario’s Great Lakes and Cottage Country.

Boating runs deep in Craig’s family. As a youngster, his family spent weekends at the cottage, boating and waterskiing on Lake Huron. Craig took his love of the water from above to below the surface and became a PADI Divemaster back in the early ’90s. This led to his first experience with teaching, where as a Divemaster, he spent weekends training Open Water and Advance divers in Tobermory, Ontario.

And that’s where the adventure began! As a Divemaster, Craig left a TV production career and headed to the Caribbean to crew on a liveaboard 65’ sailing trimaran in the BVIs. That one-time crew opportunity stretched into a 5-year stint skippering sailing charters in the Caribbean on four different yachts.

In 2000, Craig took a short break from the Caribbean and headed to Falmouth England to obtain his RYA Yachtmaster 200-ton license. This international license became Craig’s gateway towards many new and exciting adventures!

With his Yachtmaster ticket in hand, Craig headed back to chartering in the British Virgin Islands. At the end of his fifth season, he returned to Canada for a visit and found himself drawn back into television production and a eventually a position at The Weather Network as a Producer of the National show. Meteorology and boating – a perfect combination!

In 2011, Craig combined his two loves – sailing and teaching – and left TWN to launch BoaterSkills.ca, a Driver’s Ed program for boaters. Fast-forwarding to 2021 and BoaterSkills.ca is now celebrating its 10th Anniversary!

Joe Farish

Powerboat Instructor


Joe is a former Sergeant and Marine Instructor with the Ontario Provincial Police. During the final seven of his 31 years with the force, Joe was responsible for managing and conducting training operations for the O.P.P.’s Eastern Ontario Marine programs. Joe was also a Marine Operations Instructor at the Provincial Police Academy. 

In October 2010, Joe was awarded a Certificate of Bravery from the Commissioner of the OPP for a rescue on the St. Lawrence under extreme conditions.

Joe will be instructing BoaterSkills.ca power boat clinics at the eastern end of Lake Ontario, from Cobourg to Kingston and the surrounding waters. Please contact BoaterSkills.ca to arrange a private clinic on board your own boat and make this season a safe and fun-filled one on the water. And don’t forget – we come to you!

Ian Hughes

Powerboat Instructor


Ian is a former police sergeant with the Barrie Police Service and recently retired as the supervisor of the Traffic and Marine Units. Ian has performed police marine duties for numerous years with both Barrie and Toronto Police Services and is ready to teach on a wide range of vessels including sport boats, cruisers, personal watercraft and with trailering/launch techniques.

Ian will be instructing BoaterSkills.ca powerboat clinics north of the GTA from Lake Simcoe to Georgian Bay and surrounding waters. Please contact BoaterSkills.ca to arrange a private clinic on board your own boat and make this season a safe and fun-filled one on the water. And don’t forget – we come to you!

Peter Lee

Powerboat Instructor


Peter is a retired RCMP Corporal with an extensive marine background. His 25 years of service included instructing on the RCMP Small Vessel Operator Proficiency (SVOP) training program. He retired from the Shiprider Program, a border patrol partnership with the US Coast Guard and was designated as a US Customs and Border Protection officer.

Peter is also an active Transport Canada licensed marine captain. He possess a Master 500 Gross Tonnage, Near Coastal Certificate, as well as a Master Tug 3000 Gross Tonnage, Near Coastal, Class II, Certificate. He is currently pursuing his Master 3000 Gross Tonnage, Near Coastal Certificate. His professional marine experience includes passenger vessels, high speed catamarans, hydrofoils, and tugs.

Peter is available to teach on vessels up to 60 meters in length, with single or twin screw propulsion (inboard and stern drives), water jet propulsion, as well as Voith Schneider (cycloidal) propulsion.

Peter will be providing power boat clinics primarily in the western area of Lake Ontario. He will also be available for instruction in the Georgian Bay Area, as needed.

Mike Capaldi

Powerboat Instructor


Mike Capaldi is a soon-to-be-retired airline pilot whose 30-year aviation career includes time as a flight instructor – which is a terrific seguay into teaching boating! An avid lifelong recreational boater, Mike has spent many years operating a wide range of recreational and small commercial vessels on the waters of Georgian Bay, the Trent-Severn Waterway and Lake Ontario.

Mike holds Transport Canada SVOP and MED-A3 certificates and is a certified ABYC technician that has worked in the marine service industry since 2006.

We are pleased to welcome Mike to our staff of professional boating instructors!

Kurt Wege

Sailing Instructor


Kurt is a cruising sailboat sailor and instructor. He loves to sail to various destinations and anchorages, and as a result focuses on safe and thorough preparations, passage planning, passage making and most important of all – the skill and art of navigation. His passion for all things sailing is expressed in his wish to share his knowledge and experience through sail and navigation instruction. 

As a sailor, Kurt has sailed in all of the Great Lakes, Georgian Bay, the North Channel and the inside passage of the Strait of Georgia in British Columbia. 

Kurt has instructed mainly in the Toronto and Lake Ontario environs as well as the coastal and offshore waters of British Columbia, where he has been exposed to all things good and some less good, thereby gaining a valuable level of experience that can be applied anywhere. 

Kurt’s primary instruction focus will be on safety and preparation as conducted in courses that require good basic skills, expert knowledge and implementation of specialized navigation approaches including Celestial Navigation. He will also conduct various boat skills clinics to further safety, awareness, skill, competence and confidence.

We are pleased to welcome Kurt to our staff of professional boating instructors!

Have a question?


PO Box 48571
Long Branch
Etobicoke, ON M8W 4Y6

905 484 BOAT (2628)

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