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On the Distant Dream?

Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
Certainly the idea of “getting away” to some distant or exotic locale is appealing. I’ve noticed that the idea of it appears to be the motivation behind interest in sailboat purchases among first-time buyers especially. It leads to many questions about “blue-water” capability, and the kind of boat that could safely go here or there, and so forth. By contrast, we see little apparent interest in learning much about local cruising areas. Here in CA folks dream about cruising in Mexico on their first boat; on the east coast it’s the Bahamas or the Caribbean. These notions arise, apparently, before new owners, or future new owners, have spent even one night at anchor in a local site on their own boat.:doh: Is there no time anymore for systematic learning and acquisition of experience? Has cruising been so formalized that it’s no big deal to buy one’s first boat then take off on an long cruise to a distant locale within a few months? How many of these attempts actually succeed?
 
Feb 14, 2014
5,708
Hunter 430 Waveland, MS
long cruise to a distant locale within a few months? How many of these actually succeed?
We all have dreams of Oceans Adventures and at minimum different locations to explore.
The Oceans have begged exploration, since the Vikings. Hollywood has helped visualize that.

Timing is everything and of course the Will to push ourselves and our pocketbooks.
Jim...
 
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Jul 7, 2004
8,012
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
It's the "sound bite" culture we live in today. Not to mention media tends to romanticize ideas like this.
 
May 1, 2011
2,316
Pearson 37 Lusby MD
Excellent points, @Kings Gambit ! I was exposed to large boats a couple of lifetimes ago as a Midshipman at the Naval Academy. My first "extended" big boat experience was on Nicholson 55s while on exchange with the Royal Navy - 2 x 2-week cruises that originated on the left coast of UK and ended up on the east coast. When I returned to Annapolis to teach, I was given the opportunity to earn an offshore skipper D qualification. Then back to UK for another exchange posting and the longest sailing trip I've ever taken: Vilamora Portugal to Gosport England, about 1500 NM with winds on the nose the entire trip. Since I got my boat in 2008, I've not anchored, but I did three DELMARVAs with the Boy Scouts.
 
Feb 14, 2014
5,708
Hunter 430 Waveland, MS
media tends to romanticize ideas like this.
:plus::plus:

When you see movies or scenes of an ocean side, do you see a Sailboat or Power boat in the background?

Ans: Sailboat with sails up and normally on calm clear days.

When you see a harbor, you notice the Masts, not the power boat sizes.
Jim...
 

capta

.
Jun 4, 2009
4,306
Pearson 530 Admiralty Bay, Bequia SVG
[ By contrast, we see little apparent interest in learning much about local cruising areas. Here in CA folks dream about cruising in Mexico on their first boat; . These notions arise, apparently, before new owners, or future new owners, have spent even one night at anchor in a local site on their own boat.:doh: Is there no time anymore for systematic learning and acquisition of experience? [/QUOTE]
I grew up on Frisco Bay and other than up the rivers (pretty hard to sail) and a few places outside like Tomales and Pt Reyes, that coast isn't exactly conducive to pleasant cruising. Great place to sail in preparation for cruising, but pleasant, far from it.
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
I can understand that where there are few places to anchor it might generate the wanderlust. But what I’m thinking about are folks who might not have done any of it. There are still many worthy places much closer to SFB than the Sea of Cortez! In southwest FL I wanted to explore all of the many little anchorages within, say, 100 n.mi. of the marina, not head straight-a-way to the Florida Keys. Here, I wanted to explore the offshore islands which we’ve done (although not all of ‘em so far). I’ve yet to aspire to sail the boat to Puerto Vallarta, yet many do. Lying anchored in Cochas Prietos and other places at Santa Cruz Island, there is plenty of the cruising life to experience. And, it’s mostly free!
 
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Nov 8, 2010
11,385
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
With everything from SUVs to boats, marketers sell the DREAM to sell the product. Nothing new here and nothing wrong with that at all, let's not forget that these boats have to be sold from new for the builder to survive.

Back in the 70s when I learned to sail, the Baba 30 and the Westsail 32 were sold as 'ocean boats', and indeed they were capable of it. Most of the new owners never were, and happily never attempted it. But that's how they were sold.

westsail32.jpg


Nowadays actually just the opposite. Most new boats are sold as weekenders for couples with rare spare time.

Oceanis-46.1-3-uai-1066x599.png
 
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Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
After we bought the Bavaria with its two heads and two nice cabins, and although an “owner’s version”, I belatedly realized that the boat had been designed with the charter-boat market in mind. It was designed to take two couples (in comfort) to the island(s) for the weekend. A coastal weekend cruiser. At that it excels, and that is how we use it. Compare it to, say, a Tartan —00 model series of similar size and you see immediately that the Tartan is a bonafide distance cruiser for one couple. Not unlike an Island Packet in that respect. One head, better storage, etc. Not that the Bavaria cannot go “the distance”, it’s just that that is not its intended principal use.
 
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Jun 8, 2004
2,563
Catalina 320 Dana Point
The Bene 46 is today's Westie 32, that's inflation for you. When the Cal 20 was introduced we thought "There's a boat to go anywhere", now it looks like a decked over dinghy. Saw the Cal 40 indoors at the LB Arena and it seemed huge, had a tiny etched glass door that said "Engine Room", that's luxury and room for a dozen, we thought.
Probably only those of us near the ocean were even exposed to the dream of local cruising and compared to a Lido 14 in the Catalina Channel the Westie was an Ocean Liner. Now everyone everywhere thinks it's all sunny skies and no worries. And if you leave San Francisco and just don't run into anything you'll end up in Mexico eventually regardless of ability.
 
Feb 14, 2014
5,708
Hunter 430 Waveland, MS
the Westsail 32 were sold as 'ocean boats', and indeed they were capable of it.
My old boss had one.
He sailed from Gulfport, MS to the Dry Tortuga's by dead reckoning in 3 days, with 3 other crew members, his wife and another couple.
The other couple left him at the Tortuga's and called him "Captain Bligh", and they never spoke to him again.

Captain Bligh even stored fresh eggs covered in Vaseline.:facepalm:

High Seas Adventure gone sour...
Jim...
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
It's the "sound bite" culture we live in today. Not to mention media tends to romanticize ideas like this.
Certainly advertisers and Hollywood do; I don’t know about other media. But yeah, if you just recall the one silly scene from Shawshank where Andy is on the beach in the middle of absolutely nowhere sanding the bottom of an old (worthless) wooden boat (how did it get there?), fixing it up, etc, to start a fishing business? As if something like that could actually succeed:doh:! Now, that is a dream!
 
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Rick D

.
Jun 14, 2008
7,005
Hunter Legend 40.5 Shoreline Marina Long Beach CA
A friend of mine, to whom I was introduced when he hit my boat after his transmission linkage came adrift, did it the right way IMHO. For his first boat, he purchased a 42' ketch. He spent two years learning its systems, making repairs and modifications based upon his research, and practicing. When it came time for casting off, he spent six months anchored around SoCal's Channel Islands for preparation. I sailed with him on his first leg to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. He ultimately sailed to the British Isles. He was a recovering alcoholic, and the boat was an excellent diversion.
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
The Bene 46 is today's Westie 32, that's inflation for you. When the Cal 20 was introduced we thought "There's a boat to go anywhere", now it looks like a decked over dinghy. Saw the Cal 40 indoors at the LB Arena and it seemed huge, had a tiny etched glass door that said "Engine Room", that's luxury and room for a dozen, we thought.
Probably only those of us near the ocean were even exposed to the dream of local cruising and compared to a Lido 14 in the Catalina Channel the Westie was an Ocean Liner. Now everyone everywhere thinks it's all sunny skies and no worries. And if you leave San Francisco and just don't run into anything you'll end up in Mexico eventually regardless of ability.
Well, you might have to make a left turn at some point;). What would hearten me is for somebody to write to the forum. “Hi. My wife and I are relocating to Tampa (or Clearwater, or Ft Meyers) and want to get into sailing, and are looking for our first boat. We’ve both just finished a basic sailing course. We’re interested in exploring, gunkholing, the southwest coast for a couple of years. We’re thinking in the 30 to 32 ft range. What might be a good boat for that? What are some of the local places we could explore; how extensive are the cruising grounds?” (Or similar.) Of course, they get the mostly the same answers as everyone else gets, likely: Hunter, Catalina, Beneteau, etc., for the newer boats, but it’s an interesting question.
 
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Jun 8, 2004
2,563
Catalina 320 Dana Point
Well, you might have to make a left turn at some point;)
Almost no realizes it's as much east as south. There was that guy who left from Dana in a old Cat30 to San Diego and never showed up. Few months later boat made it to Hawaii alone with cases of Cigarettes, beer and canned food aboard. He took off during the Santa Anas so with or without a novice pilot it was off on the "Coconut Milk Run".
Mystery at sea: Boat found without sailor on board | ABC7 Los Angeles | abc7.com
 
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Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
Almost no realizes it's as much east as south. There was that guy who left from Dana in a old Cat30 to San Diego and never showed up. Few months later boat made it to Hawaii alone with cases of Cigarettes, beer and canned food aboard. He took off during the Santa Anas so with or without a novice pilot it was off on the "Coconut Milk Run".
Mystery at sea: Boat found without sailor on board | ABC7 Los Angeles | abc7.com
I remember that. I think I got the first “smack” of the “eastness” when a friend of mine set his boat (Olson 30) from Long Beach to San Francisco to enter the single-handed Transpacific. I wondered why start from there (not here)? “It’s closer to Hawaii.” Then much later when we had the boat in Ventura, I was planning (chart) to meet friends at Santa Barbara Island when I “discovered” it lay SSE of me, nearly the same distance as it is from San Pedro. But from San Pedro it is 46 n.mi. WSW!!
 
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