Re: Halyards to cockpit?
Try it out. You need to see how well the boat tracks if you step away from the helm. With a skeg hung rudder and a long keel with a high B/D I won't be surprised if your Watkins tracks very straight even if no one is on the helm. I sometimes sail with a Yankee 30 that tracks so straight that the owner often does headsail changes at the mast with no autopilot or even lashing the tiller.
If so then just leave them at the mast and go sailing.
If not then decide if you'd prefer to spend $500 on hardware or on an autopilot.
If you are nervous about it the first time then find some crew to have on the boat who can help if things go south.
1986 Pearson 28-2 "Elena"