Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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My sense of the Cascade is that they were an older, simpler, cruder design. While they seem to have a strong following, the couple that I have come across have been strangely 'customized' in ways that seemingly make little sense (big doghouses, and crude bowsprits).
These were a decent design for thier day, but thier day was 40 plus years ago. A huge amount has been learned about designing seaworthy, seakindly, well mannered, designs in the period since.
When I look at the design, they are a pretty typical mid-1960's early fin keel design. This was after all the design era that gave fin keel/spade rudders a bad name.
In any event, a number of these have allegedly been used for distance voyaging. In my mind this is a poster child for the issue of whether a boat that has done a circumnavigation is a good choice for someone else looking to make a distance voyage. The answer is a resounding "not necessarily".
In reality a very knowledgable, lucky, and skilled sailor can get by, voyaging all over the place, with a less than ideal boat. It has happened and continues to happen. But for us mere mortals, the decisions come down to how much risk are we willing to take. And at this point it is not all that cut and dry.
Obviously, for some folks there are the bulletproof, go-anywhere cruisers out there. They are mostly too expensive and carry other big compromises that place them out of bounds for most folks. At the other end of the spectrum there are the 'go with what ya have' crowd.
For most of us the answer is to find a solid mddle ground and I am not sure that a 30 plus year old boat from a forty year old design, mediocre coastal/racer-cruiser is close enough to a reasonable middle ground for someone aspiring to a circumnavigation with six people.
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay