Catalina 22 vs 250

Feb 20, 2016
Catalina 22 Palm Harbor
I'll try to make this a simple question:
I have been looking for a Catalina 22, 25 or 250 for the last year, now.. The decision as to which way to proceed really has to do with tide depth access to the Gulf from our home Mooring location in Palm Harbor, FL. Low tide extremes to get to boat channels are no less than 32". The Cat 25 and 250 WK Draft Depth is 32". the Cat 250 WB is 20" and the Cat22 is 24". I'd settle for a 1990-1995 Cat 22, but can not find a boat that fits our need to not become a rebuild project. The Cat 250 WB is the only other option. Both the 22 and 250 can make the Tide issue and beaching along with anchoring at sandbars for bottom cleaning. We are not trailer sailors, but live in an area where shallow draft boats are a must, thus answering my question as to why there are not many sailboats in our Home Area.
There is little to no issue with the here is the question:
The 250 WB draft works. Can the 5" reduction in Cabin height become an issue for a guy 6'3"?. I'd prefer the 250 because I am familiar with the roominess. The water ballast is a major concern. I have read too many times that the boat is not as Tender due to the ballast. It will not be on a trailer, so emptying the ballast while we are at a mooring is not practical. Can the ballast be electrically pumped at mooring as if it were a bilge? I have read enough articles to keep me away from ballasts boats that result in emptying while not underway and moored, leaks in the ballast, conditioning the water smell when it can not be dumped into the Gulf. That 20" Draft and the design of the 250 really makes it a sweet boat...........if only I had a better comfort level with ballast boats. Catalina recommends ballast boats on trailers, that is why they call the 250 WK and WB Trailer boats, also considering their weight hauling ability.
Any recommendations would be well received. Cat 250s are easier to find newer than Cat 22's
Jul 7, 2004
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
Are you hell bent on a Catalina? Have you considered a Hunter 26 or 260? If I had a large budget and wanted a trailerable boat, I'd be looking for a Seaward 26RK.
If you are concerned about ceiling height, forget the C22 and go for the C250. Nothing wrong with water ballast. I sailed a MacGregor 26S for 10 years.

Feb 26, 2004
Catalina 34 224 Maple Bay, BC, Canada
@John Marrone ,

You might want to ask your question directly to people who know the boat you are considering:

We had a C22 for five years and a C25 fixed keel from '87-'98, traditional interior. The C25 had a pop top and great room down below. I'm 5-10. Even with that, it took me a few years to get over "The C25 Stoop." :)
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