Originally Posted by jswwrites
Is far as the kids go, I would agree with cruisingdad that they definitely need a space of their own for any lengthy cruise (lengthy being 2 weeks or more, esp since they are different sexes).
Good luck! I've enjoyed reading about your dreams. I spent 6 weeks on the Newport 33 my grandmother recently gave me back in 1985, and it was still one of the best times I can remember.
I've also been thinking about the advice for separate spaces, and also the drawbacks of canoe sterns in terms of space. For example, all of us like to bicycle, and we currently have a small fleet of well-made bikes to ride. For cruising, I'd like to have four Bike Friday travel bikes, but even folded up they'll need space.
At the moment, I'm also thinking that a newer boat, perhaps one after 1988 with vinylester resins, might be a better investment if we're going to own for 10 years. That criteria knocks out a lot of fine boats, and we might change our mind and still go with a late seventies or early eighties boat, but for now we're researching Island Packet 38s and Caliber 38s that are in the $130-150k asking price range. This is a lot more than the $50k Ingrids and Cascade 42s we looked at, but possibly a good move even if the cruising kitty is altered.
One thng is for certain-- we like cruising. We just got back from another excellent weekend cruise (pictures here
), and even my 7 year-old daughter is enjoying every trip more and more.
At the docks on Saturday night, we joined some local yachties for cookies in a warm Ericson 32 cabin, and we heard stories of coastal cruising. They took the E-32 off-shore to Puget Sound for eight weeks, for example. The rest of the year, they sail and cruise locally at Portland, Oregon. The three couples we met all had newer ('89 and younger) boats in the 32-34 foot range, which is about right for the hop off the coast in summer to cruise the San Juans, Desolation Sound, or even the inside passage to Alaska.
In retrospect, their plans aren't bad. The boats aren't cheap, but they still have their jobs for income. They take longer breaks in the summers to cruise, but they have the rest of the year with affordable moorage rates and opportunities to sail.
As I was thinking of our "big trip plans," I wondered if it wouldn't be bad to follow their pattern if we can't make the big break. For example, if we go for a multi-year cruise in few years, we'd almost certainly have to restart our careers when we got back. If we summer cruised with the kids for another decade, we'd have most of our financial commitments done, solid college accounts for the kids (started them years ago), and we could pick a boat that was more for mom and dad and occasional kids, instead of a true family ark. You know, something simple like a 2006 Hallberg Rassy 342...
Anyway, it was fun to hear how others cruise part-year. The risks in waiting may outweigh the benefits, but its an alternative we'll always have. My wife is refreshing her Spanish, and she'd like to help with schools in Mexico when we cruise (following up on a Cruisng World article we just read). If we did wait, I'd want to upsize from our '27 in a few years to something in the 32-34 foot range, but that would be a big decision. For now, we're weighing and chasing options, and studying for our next ASA certifications next year.
Bailiwick, a C&C 27