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post #11 of 12 Old 05-03-2006
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I'd agree that a sailing club may be the best way to start. Mooching rides on other people's boats are a good idea too. Boat ownership, especially of a larger boat that requires a marina slip or mooring, is a pretty big committment. It might be wise to see if the bug's bite is permanent or not, before you jump into buying a boat of your own.
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post #12 of 12 Old 05-04-2006
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Alan, this time of year many yacht clubs have pre-season seminars open to the public, on a wide variety of topics. Part of the goal is to get new blood to show up and meet the members and club, so don't be shy about asking around to see what there is. You may find that by visiting the clubs--and local boatyards--and just asking around, you'll find boat owners who need crew and are willing to take you out. Sometimes things click and you wind up being regular crew, or joining a club, and voila, you can be sailing without owning a boat. That's a good way to experience difference boats and get a better feeling for what you will like.
And, this time of year? A lot of the racers are looking for potential crew, and anyone who volunteers to lend a hand with bottom prep (painting and sanding) is going to be VALUED as potential crew once they get in the water.
Even if you have no interest in racing, what you learn from it can be of great value in cruising.
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