Originally Posted by IrishSkipper
I'm an experienced motorboater but relatively new to sailing. I want to buy a boat large enough for a family of 4 for a week, but small enough for me to sail single-handed as well on inland lakes with up to force 3/4 winds. Would a 30-footer (around 3.5 tonnes) be reasonable?
Large enough for a family of four - four people and their gear can fit into most 30's, whether that is large enough really depends on your comfort expectations. My opinion is 30' gets sort of tight even if two are children, you should spend a night ot two on similar size boats to decide what your comfort expectations are.
As to single-handing, I think that is more a factor of gear setup than of boat size. If all lines are lead to the cockpit, you have at least jib furling and you have adequately sized self-tailing primaries, a single person can handle most any size boat. If the primaries and mainsheet are located so the helmsperson can reach them from the steering location, that takes the sweat out of it. I single-hand my 36' all the time.