Join Date: May 2008
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Catalina 22, 26, or ? newbie looking for opinions.
OK I'm new to the monohull world, but I've sailed Hobies for about 6 years now with moderate success (wrecked them twice, managed not to drown LOL). I've got the basics down and feel confident enough to tackle the real thing. Before you send my basic description to the Coast Guard, I'll be taking the San Diego sailing course hopefully within the next 12 months and before I go anywhere to far.
Mainly looking at sailing the Sea of Cortez around Puerto Penasco, most trips would be within sight of shore, maybe a trip to Bird Island which is roughly a full day sail round trip. POSSIBLY doing San Felipe when my skills improve.
I'm looking at a couple of Catalina's, two 1972 22' swing keels that look promising, and one 1974 26' fixed keel that is nice but twice the price mostly due to the trailer that is adjustable to hold a 30' boat. A 22' Macgregor just popped up on the radar too and it's only $2k very negotiable but I've heard negative things on the Macgregor. Waiting on what year it is. One Catalina 22 says it's all set up for single handling which would be important.
Towing capacity is not an issue as I have a diesel F250 set up for 18,000lbs. I need to tow as I had bad experiences storing in Mexico and don't mind driving it back and forth.
One key thing is that it's important my girlfriend has a good experience. She's tough, but basically scared of the ocean so something more stable would be better. I'm wondering how the swing keel will feel vs. the fixed, and the water ballasted Macgregor vs. both. If she bolts my sailing career is going to be all solo which may not be a bad thing LOL.
So any and all opinions are welcome. Anything to watch out for with the Catalina's? I'll probably have the 1974 surveyed before I buy it. I'm familiar with fiberglass so I could spot most defects myself, and I learned a lot with the Hobies. This boat would only need to serve my needs for a couple of years and I plan to step up to newer/better, eventually looking to retire and sail away but I have a dozen years to go before that is feasible.
Thanks in advance and "Howdy"!