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On the Distant Dream?

Nov 8, 2010
11,385
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
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!!
Our how about this related geographical oddity....

The ENTIRE continent of South America is EAST of Fort Lauderdale Florida. EAST.
 
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Aug 2, 2005
1,126
Pearson 33-2 & Typhoon 18 Seneca Lake
@Jackdaw , I just noticed that the B46 above is at anchor - what's the guy hanging onto the helm for? :what:

He is "hove short" on his anchor chain and retrieving the anchor with the windlass control on the wheel pedestal. There is an entire series of Civil War books dealing with the waters of SW Florida. In that series the term "hove short" is used at least once in each book. Sorry, I could not remember the name of the series of books nor the author's name.
Or.....
He is dropping the anchor from that same position and preparing to motor astern to set it.

But we digress from the OP's questions.......

My wife and I will be forever grateful to the members of the Caloosahatchee Marching and Chowder Society of Cape Coral, Florida for the cruises they organized for members who had varying degrees of sailing skills and varying degrees of knowledge of the SW Florida coastline. Those cruises were exactly the type of activity that allowed new sailors and sailors who were new to the area to learn those anchorages and destinations that improved cruising enjoyment. Furthermore, there were always helpful members nearby to assist as needed.
 
Dec 28, 2015
1,357
Laser, Hunter H30 Cherubini Tacoma
Sure. All you need is a Youtube and a Patreon account, and you can pimp your girlfriend for tips. Living the dream!

'We're a little low on cash honey, show a bit more boob'.
And it goes farther than that but you have to pay.
 
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Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
Our how about this related geographical oddity....

The ENTIRE continent of South America is EAST of Fort Lauderdale Florida. EAST.
Having lived in St. Petersburg, FL we’ve more or less known that. The bearing to the canal is right about 180 deg T, 1000 n.mi. “Distant.” Every “Dreamer’s” gateway to the south Pacific, etc. Some do make it, others not. We had one couple, friends, who made it to Balboa in their Cascade 38 which they had brought to FL from Oregon. But they returned home to St. Pete after a couple of months. “We need more fiberglass under us, and more books.” A year or so later they took off again in a Moody, I think 40 ft, and went on to visit the Galapagos and the South Pacific archipelagos.:)
 
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Nov 21, 2007
519
Beneteau Oceanis 34 Kingston, WA
Occasionally, first experiences can set the ambitions bar pretty high. The first night that I ever spent on a boat was onboard a Gulet somewhere along the Turquoise Coast of Turkey. It was a fabulous trip filled with great people, scenery, and personal accomplishments. But it was another twenty years before my wife and I learned to sail. We knew that we wanted to sail someday, but didn't begin until several years after we had moved to the PNW. We could have chosen the eastern shore of Lake Michigan as our base, but I think we made the right choice. We've been able to gradually but continuously learn and improve our skills as we moved from sailing club classes and daysails, to our first boat, to a larger boat. All the while exploring a great region and loving our time on our boat. We're probably over 40 nights onboard this year, and may get in a few more.
That Turkey trip was a long time before YouTube and a long time before this magazine cover. The second photo was on one of our 'regional' cruises two years ago.
IMG_1908.jpg Watmough Bay - 2 (1).jpg
 
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Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
My wife and I will be forever grateful to the members of the Caloosahatchee Marching and Chowder Society of Cape Coral, Florida for the cruises they organized for members who had varying degrees of sailing skills and varying degrees of knowledge of the SW Florida coastline. Those cruises were exactly the type of activity that allowed new sailors and sailors who were new to the area to learn those anchorages and destinations that improved cruising enjoyment. Furthermore, there were always helpful members nearby to assist as needed.
The southwestern coast of FL is a relatively unheralded cruising venue with very much to offer. Many pristine, sheltered areas in which to anchor at shallow depths, 20 ft or less. Many stops along the ICW where you can drive the dink, even the yacht, up to a dock and go ashore right there for lunch or dinner. We liked “Sea critters”; smoked amberjack, smoked mullet dip, kingfish, Spanish mackerel, gag (grouper), red grouper, snappers, & sometimes cobia. Warmish periods occur through the season (winter), although cold fronts with rain (in fall) “march through” biweekly. You can sail (although not tack) in the ICW, as well as along the coastline.

I sometimes muse at folks who might just blow past, say, Pine Island Sound, to get to the keys, esp. Key West, from Tampa. Commercial, touristy, thus crowded and $$; difficult sailing, exposed anchorages along the south rim. Hot and humid. Beautiful, yes—the keys environs. Nice snorkeling, yes. But it’s like 180 n.mi. from Tampa Bay. Actually, it’s a long trip to Key West from just about anywhere in FL, even (but not as long) from Miami & Ft. Lauderdale :huh:, versus 40 n.mi. to Sarasota Bay and the lovely Otter Key, whence one can after a short dink ride, walk to St Armands Circle; a little further to the Mote Marine aquarium. See manatees!! So nice. Not distant, but near!
 
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TomY

Alden Forum Moderator
Jun 22, 2004
2,663
Alden 38' Challenger yawl Rockport Harbor
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?
I'm glad to hear of cruising interest from newbs. My observation over the last 3 or so decades is a decline in the 60's-70's notion of cruising. We used to have a vibrant cruising forum here, it was the whole forum 'back when'. That, and other 'cruising media', (magazines, cruising forums) have since shrunk.

The new direction I'm seeing are people buying old boats with an eye for housing, first. That's a thing for sure! Once they settle aboard, they have communities of 'liveaboards', groups online, Youtube 'sail the world while you make $$$' How-To vids. Once they figure out their new dwelling, then they turn to business of sailing.

Sailing is still with us but has shifted - or gone backwards - to a more historic time of a recreational pastime that includes racing, daysailing and the fore-runner of the 'sell up and sail away' cruising to Coastal Cruising. Sailing is strong here on the SBO, cruising in it's popular form of the past, is not.

What is left of the cruising community has many choices today for important info. We used to have a small but vibrant group of Maine sailers here (CSBB) that were a good source of info for those cruising the coast of Maine. Today we have a small number in comparison.

Youtube will connect you to Maine sailers via video blogs, Instagram has info. I belong to a private (only to keep out advertisers) Maine sailing and cruising FB group of 1500+ members(mostly familiar with cruising here).

All 2020 season, members could get up to date info on nearly any anchorage or harbor, even during Covid-19. What was closed, what was open, even the days lunch menu might be found on your phone as you headed into a harbor. The internet has become the 'The Cruising Guide", you just have to know what to find the info you need.

All the new sailboat designs that I study (a favorite pastime) have nearly all gone back to the future, the 50' Cruiser Racer,...Daysailer.

 
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Aug 2, 2005
1,126
Pearson 33-2 & Typhoon 18 Seneca Lake
Hello SBO Members,

In my earlier post in this discussion I mentioned a writer and a series of books related to Southwest Florida during the Civil War. Please pardon my loss of memory of the author's name and the book series at the time of that post. I have since recovered my faculties.

The author is Robert N. Macomber, who has recently been named the 2020 Florida Writer of the Year. The series of books is called the "Honor Series" and describes the exploits of Peter Wake, USN. The books are generally easy to read and describe sailing action along the Southwest coast of Florida and other locations.

My only reasons for mentioning the above information is this: He was a founding member of the CMCS club that I referenced in my post; I met Mr. Macomber at a book signing event and at a club meeting; and You might find these books interesting reading while at anchor or while huddled in your home during the approaching winter.

Respectfully, 31seahorse
 
May 25, 2012
3,844
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
the OP asked three questions.
here are my answers: #1. of course there is time, BUT, none is required to sail to distant shores.
#2. YES. and no real need to take months. a week should be plenty.
#3. almost all of them
:cool:
sailboats and sailing are really simple. just a fact!
maintaining all the dockside "condo style" gear is a pain and takes a lot of time, so throw all that stuff in the dumpster, in less you like fixing it.

all you have to do is untie the lines and shove off the dock. then hang on baby. modern boats are strong. modern sails are strong. modern nav gear is easy. modern food lasts a long time.
so why don't all those boats laying in all those marinas leave the docks very much at all? the owners do not want to go. they do not want to go.

many modern people love their dreams and know the reality is something totally different.

all i ever wanted to do was go to sea. thats what i did for my whole life.
there is a lot of talk about anchoring and docking and restaurants. that ain't got much to do with going to sea.

want a fun two week cruise from the west coast? leave the harbor and sail due west for a week and then sail due east for a week.
want a fun cruise from the east coast? go sail around Bermuda and back , don't stop in.

all easy peezeey!
 
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May 25, 2012
3,844
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
you can go from georgia to maine with a backpack and a stick, appalachian trail or you can go from georgia to maine in a provost bus. both will get you there.
sailing is about the same.
most boat owners simply don't want to go very far

Jon
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
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.
Sounds like a lot of fun, Rick.
 
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Jul 27, 2011
4,530
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
all i ever wanted to do was go to sea. thats what i did for my whole life.
there is a lot of talk about anchoring and docking and restaurants. that ain't got much to do with going to sea.

want a fun two week cruise from the west coast? leave the harbor and sail due west for a week and then sail due east for a week.
want a fun cruise from the east coast? go sail around Bermuda and back , don't stop in.
Being at sea for the sake of being out there I’m sure has its appeal. But I think that the “purpose” of a destination, near or far, is what makes it (recreational sailing) work for people. There’s a certain excitement entering a new harbor or anchorage area by sea. And what do sailors do, after all, when arriving at destination? Anchor the boat, or dock it, and go ashore for grub and :beer: and fellowship if available. I don’t see how anyone can hold that one has nothing to do with the other:doh:. Somehow, heading to sea for days only to turn around and return home would be missing an important component of the enjoyment of being out there, in my opinion.
 
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May 25, 2012
3,844
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
when working on the lakes, i had winters off, paid. :) went skiing a lot, mostly aspen, some jacksonhole. hit the lifts when they opened, skied till i dropped. lots of big time, world class non-skiing activities one might do there. wasn't interested, much. too tired from the steep and the deep all day long. i went to bang down those hills. i can eat and party here in toledo.
is the sturgis about the ride getting there or watching the drunks fall down? hell, some people trailer their bikes there.
is a drive across the continent more fun in a winnabago, a porsche 930, or a duesenberg? or is it about the parking spaces and greasy spoons?

ok, you get my drift :huh:

sailing is not motoring, is it? sailing is not being at anchor, is it? sitting on a sailboat at a dock, not sailing i think.

i love to sail. i love to push back at mother nature as she pushes me. i love the ride. it's all about the ride for me. to get my old duesenberg of a boat doing it's best i have to push him hard. thats how i get my best ride. "MORE SAIL". on a reach i can fly 5 sails. symmetrical spinnaker flying is my favorite.

day sailing, night sailing, hot temps, cool temps, we don't care, we sail to the weather patterns so to catch a ride. love the ride on a sailboat sailing.

there are many people that ski Buttermilk and have great fun. the green slopes and the blue slopes have the vast majority of the day's skiers on them. it's all good for sure. it's all great. if it makes you smile, then it is great.

i sail the 'Gitche Gumee', i sail the 'big sea water', i sail the winds that 'come rolling down the plain', i sail on a duesenberg of a sailing machine. a john alden, new england coastal cruiser, blue, with wood decks.

i can get to every harbor by car. nope, for me, and i am fully aware i'm the odd man (out), sailing is about the sailing. hence, i do not set my boat up like a cargo ship, a 'packet'.
not many like me it seems, but some. aug, sept, oct, sailing season here on the lakes. fewer and fewer around, sailing. the harbors are full of masts.

blowing stink with a good crew aboard, blowing light, with a good crew aboard, optimizing the sailing. oh, i am aware that being in the harbor is where most want to be. the companies design the boats for such. some reaching here, some reaching there, then park it. that's what the people want. not me, nope, not me.

it's all about the ride
for me.
:cool:
 
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May 25, 2012
3,844
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
just ramblings of an old man, nothing more.
if your boating makes you smile then it's all good.
 
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