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Old 05-17-2011
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Small centerboard boat for river + bay sailing?

I am wondering if anyone has any experience trying to use a small sailboat on a river? This is alien territory for me as I have a keelboat that I sail in the Pacific. But, am looking at a property that is only accessible by river. Most of my future neighbors access with a fishing skiff and an outboard but I thought maybe I could get a little Venture 17 or something. Anyone have any experience maneuvering a small sailboat in shallow-ish water (3-feet or so?). I'm hoping for a sailboat that is rigorous enough that I could then sail it out on a bay--not in serious weather but something safe enough to get me to land if a wind picked up. Thanks in advance to anyone with guidance.
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Old 05-17-2011
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Welcome to sailnut.
Sure, you can use a small sailboat on a river.
Our boat club is on the Hudson River and there are fleets of Lasers, Sunfish, Lightnings, Flying Scots etc. that race on the river which flows both ways (it's tidal). The Hudson is quite a bit deeper then 3' though.
Any small sailboat (dinghy) with a center board should work out if there is some wind. Prudence would dictate bringing along some paddles and a small anchor if you get becalmed and there is any current.
I was amazed at how little breeze a Lightning sailboat needed to make some kind of headway.
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Old 06-08-2011
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If you are in Los Angeles try picking up a used Lido 14 - there are thousands of these dinghies around the area.

Try the Lido 14 class or even drains list
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Old 06-09-2011
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Sounds like a great place for a Hobbie or something similar. Nothing like screaming across a couple feet of water.
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