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post #7 of Old 02-08-2008
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Pick up crew

Offshore sailing in small yachts (i.e. 30'-60' and bigger) and schedules don't mix. Having sailed from Seattle to Australia via West Coast USA, Mexico and the South Pacific & New Zealand on my 40' sloop utilizing unpaid crew I can tell you I wouldn't consider anyone not interested in a 90 day commitment.

Remember why the skipper wants crew. So he can make safe passages by having an appropriate number of crew aboard to cook and stand watches. Inexperienced crew take many weeks of training to develop into effective watch keepers and all that training takes extra effort by the skipper. The skipper needs a good return on investment your interest in set dates and short time periods would not appeal to a legitimate skipper who has so many interested crew options. Type "yacht crew" in to google to see what I mean.

Most skippers willing to take crew on short trips probably won't have time or interest in training crew for such short periods. Thus what is gained? As a counter point it is enlightening to get out in the big blue as it's nothing like the protected waters of the Puget Sound and even if the skipper isn't a good coach or mentor then at least you know what it's like to sail multiple days consecutively and experience real ocean conditions.

I would suggest that you take an offshore sailing class that is "scheduled" for a set period of time. This is the only real way of gaining safe and effective learning time offshore when you have a shortage of time.

Even the Ha Ha requires more than 2 weeks and isn't especially flush with experienced skippers.

Good people like John & Amanda Neil have provided training to countless successful now world cruisers over the past 20+ years look them up.
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