||06-08-2013 10:27 AM
I would like some help in finding the right sailboat for a specific need. My wife and I have just started sailing the past 4 years. Started with a 14' Javelin Oday - moved up to a 1993 MacGregor 26S which was totaled when a micro-burst blew it off of its trailer in my backyard - moved up to a Flicka which was sailed from a slip in Michigan City, IN. Primary problem was that we were wanting to spend a night aboard once a week during the summer to maximize our sailing time (2 hour drive, one way from home to the slip). The V-berth was too cramped and it was too much like camping. Sold the Flicka and bought a 1996 Catalina 34 Mk II (wing keel), which we really enjoy. The 2 problems with this situation is that it is in a charter program, which is good for us at this time, but we're limited as to how much we can use it, plus our schedule doesn't allow us the time to sail very far from our slip. We love the C34 and would like to spend the next 5 years cruising the Great Lakes, time permitting, and then eventually do some coastal cruising on the eastern seaboard. But again, that is 5 years away, so we're still locked into a somewhat tight schedule for now. Since I have a reservoir near our house (has a marina but no lift) as well as other lakes closer than Lake Michigan, I would like to have an alternative sailboat that can be trailered, launched and recovered in a single day (no wanting to pay for a second slip), and has enough room to make us feel like we're cruising and not camping. Additionally, I would like the option of being able to trailer it 1,000 miles one way to Fla. 2-3 times a year. So in a nutshell, what I am wanting is a trailerable sailboat, with shallow draft, standing headroom, easy enough to rig, launch and recover from a lake ramp and yet strong enough to do some coastal cruising. This would also allow me to trailer it up toward the upper part of Lake Michigan (Mackinaw) and cruise that area without spending 5-6 days to get there. In other words, I want the best of both worlds - but I'm willing to get a second boat to do it. I've got a 3/4 ton pick up for hauling. Is there are good choice for a trailerable, easy to launch semi-coastal cruiser? The Seaward 24,25 seems to be close to what I am looking for, but I've never been on one. Choices @ $20K or less?