Re: Single-handed Sailing, So. Calif.
Seojoe, What boat is that? She looks beautiful!
When I first got back into sailing and purchased my Catalina 27 a couple of years ago, I soon realized how impractical it was going to get people to find the time, between work and families, to come with me. And then on those days that they did, I often found that between cell phone calls, return deadlines, etc, I began to realize I enjoyed going out by myself more than not.
Unfortunately, at least on my boat, an autopilot is pretty much essential if you are going to single hand. It can be done without it, but you'll find that its easier turn "otto" on and go on deck to free a sheet that got caught on a hatch or whatever than to stop, heave to, fix the problem and then accelerate again. I also hit the auto tack buttons to tack, and have plenty of time to throw off the old sheet, haul in the new and then re-trim the main while the wheel handles itself. And finally, its just really nice to get the sails trimmed, a course set, and let "otto" do his thing while you walk around, grab a drink, take a leak, fish, or do what ever.
Perhaps if my friends were experienced sailors, I might enjoy their company more. But for now, its me and otto.