Re: Minimum extended cruising requirements.
You're right, CA- Westsails are a good big water heavy weather boat. If one's intent is to work down the east coast and then the Bahamas and the caribbean, as the OP has stated, then there's lots of duck-out points, so I'd put less of a premium on weather ability and more on comfort and speed.
A slow cat is going to be at least 1.5 times as fast as a West Sail, and IMO is more welcoming to newbies- less heel, easier to work on deck, etc.
I am surprised at how civil this thread has remained.
It's 5 o'clock somewhere:
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