Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
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Umm... I don't think this is such a good idea for your first major voyage for several reasons.
First, you don't know how you will react to being on a larger boat on the ocean. Being on a Sunfish on a lake is not like being in 8-10' seas on the ocean—nothing at all like it.
Second, a Catalina 30, while a nice boat and all, isn't really a good boat for a relatively difficult sail up the west coast of the USA.
Third, if the weather goes to hell, you're basically up against a really large stretch of very inhospitable shoreline with very few places that you can hide.
Fourth, Giu's point about how much distance the boat will go is a very valid one. Say it can motor at 6 knots... since motoring at hull speed would burn through fuel pretty quickly. I doubt that you'll be motoring 24x7 and any headwind or adverse current is going to reduce the distance you can travel in a day. You'd be very lucky to make 100 nm per day.
Finally, the Coast Pilot for the area says that in July, August and September, the average wind speeds is 9-11 knots, with the bulk of the winds out of the NW or WNW. If it is WNW, then, not a big deal, as you can sail on a close reach... but if it is out of the NW, then you'll be beating most of the way... which will almost double the distance you have to travel. (Yes, I know you technically wouldn't double the distance, but given everything overall... it's not too far off the mark to say that.)
One other question—how well is this boat equipped? Does it have an EPIRB, a liferaft, an SSB-radio, a satellite phone, a wind vane, an autopilot, a backup autopilot???
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.
—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)
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