How many young people (say 35 or under)out there - Page 11 - SailNet Community

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  #101  
Old 06-18-2009
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I am 32 and solo sailing around world

Currently in EAst Coast US. Most people I meet are old Geezers.
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  #102  
Old 06-18-2009
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I'm on a Boat... Or will be soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by night0wl View Post
I'm 29 and my wife is 26 and we just bought a 2008 Beneteau 343 in December '08. I took an intro to sailing course as a work diversion about 5 years ago and was hooked at the feeling of wind powering movement over water. When we moved down to S. Florida, we bought a house with a dock behind it...and now we have a boat to fill it.

This was our first big boat, and suffice it to say we are a bit overwhelmed by it right now. Just getting familiar with all the systems and maintenance...its very overwhelming. But eventually, we'll master it and get out there more. Hopefully, I will be able to take a couple month sabatical and just get out there soon.
Similar situations we are in. I'm 28 and my wife is 26 and we are also looking to get a boat. Where are you located in S. Florida. My inlaws have a place with a canal dock in Lighthouse Point and we're looking to get a boat. Would like to take 6 months off from work to do some Caribbean sailing similar to yourself.

I've been looking at the 343s and 373s. Do you have any lessons learned you might be able to share? Any expenses turning out to be much higher than forecasted?

Regards,

Gene Nix
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  #103  
Old 06-19-2009
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I've been enjoying and pondering this thread, and while I think that there are a lot of good reasons given why there are fewer "younger" sailors (and while I'm not quite 40, that still makes me generally a younger sailor).

I wholly agree about the economics of it--time and money are both scarce for those of us who chose a "conventional" path (job+family) during the post-educational period.

But another factor that I think gets ignored is the demographics of the areas where people live and sail. In my harbor (Belmont, four miles north of the Chicago Loop/Central Business District) there are lots of younger boaters, both sail and power.

Conversely, when I've been up to the harbors in the northern suburbs, the docks and clubhouses are filled with more traditional "old salts." And I won't even begin to discuss places like Florida.

While this might seem hopeful, I think this may be anomalous for a few reasons. First, the Near North Side where I live is also "the" area for younger people to live (they just have to tolerate me ). Second, it's an extremely dense urban area. As a result, there's a much lower rate of car ownership here than in most places--my family does not own a car and we get along just fine--which frees up a lot of cash for expensive hobbies. Third, there's a lot more free time since many more of the people tend to be in the pre-family stage of their lives. And, finally, a lot of the people here, growing up and living by the lake, either had exposure to sailing or the dream of sailing after watching the sails out on the lake their whole lives.

Normally, I'd agree that many people 30's and younger have never been exposed to sailing, have no idea if they like it or not, or how much it does or doesn't cost. For example, when people ask me how much my mooring is, I tell them the price per season and their response is almost universally, "Per month!?" Throw in the seemingly abstract artistry of it all--the terminology, the mystery of sail trim, and the latency & patience inherent in maneuvering something that weighs several thousand pounds, and it overwhelms people so that they don't even know where to start.

Now, though, I think the challenge becomes looking at what can be done about it--this is as much a campaign to correct misperceptions (e.g. costs, "sailing is for old people," "all sailors are racers," etc.) as getting people's attention and awareness.

One final observation: On any given weekend, 90%+ of the boats out on Lake Michigan are sailboats (I've counted). Head into the anchorages, however, and it's inverted, with the vast majority of boats being powerboats rafted up into big floating parties. Powerboaters seem to buy boats because they want a floating condo or a status symbol; sailors buy boats because they love to sail.

Do others observe similar demographic skews one way or the other where they live?
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  #104  
Old 06-19-2009
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It's good to hear of all the young people onboard and sailing, but we don't see too many out on the water. My wife and I moved aboard in our early twenties and most of the others on boats were near our same age. Now we're in our early sixties and most of the others on boats are still near our same age. I think Jeff H's earlier post described the phenomenon well. Imagine the huge wave of fine boats that will be flooding the market when we old cruisers are looking for the assisted living marinas! 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
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  #105  
Old 06-19-2009
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I'm 27 now, and got into sailing about 4 years ago after visiting a friend of mine who had a Club 420. I bartered for a Sunfish the following summer, took a sailing class, and my wife and I recently upgraded to an 18' sailboat 30+ years older than we are. This is our first year having the boat at the harbor instead of trailering, and it's been nice but I do miss having the boat in the garage if I want to tinker with it. I don't miss the 3-4 hour rigging time before launch, though.

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  #106  
Old 06-20-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gene80 View Post
Similar situations we are in. I'm 28 and my wife is 26 and we are also looking to get a boat. Where are you located in S. Florida. My inlaws have a place with a canal dock in Lighthouse Point and we're looking to get a boat. Would like to take 6 months off from work to do some Caribbean sailing similar to yourself.

I've been looking at the 343s and 373s. Do you have any lessons learned you might be able to share? Any expenses turning out to be much higher than forecasted?

Regards,

Gene Nix
We are in Fort Lauderdale. Live in a neighborhood west of I-95, so the biggest "lesson learned" for us was to realize how few boats there are that have undera 55' mast! Its not so much a boat learning...but a house learning. In retrospect, I would have waited out a bit longer in the housing market and bought a house east of I-95 with no fixed bridges. Now, this 343 is pretty much limit of boat I can get without chopping masts down...although I hear that Valiant 40's can fit under at low tide.

As for the boat - I've learned that these Beneteaus are great boats for the money. Dollar for dollar, they have Catalina's beat...and I just wouldn't consider a Hunter. Interiors are a bit Euro and they do have quirks. But the hulls are solid and so are the systems. We love our 343...and we are still learning her quirks. They are light boats though, so be ready for a rocking ride and reef early is another learning.

As for expenses - well, my monthly diver costs were a bit unexpected. That and the fact that we're going through zincs like pez right now. There is some hot boat out there, and its going to get expensive to track it down in my canal. Another lesson is that outfitting a boat is freakin expensive!!!! The boat comes well equipped, but everything from sheets/pillows to scrubbing/cleaning materials to dinghys and boat hooks...its all adding up. I've only outfitted her out 25% and already spent about 10% of the boat purchase price in boat stuff. I'm a popular guy at West Marine...no that isn't a good thing :-( Try and work there before buying a boat!
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  #107  
Old 06-20-2009
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Night Owl, We get under I-95 to Marina Bay with our Morgan Ketch. This is one of the few remaining advantages of a split rig. 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
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  #108  
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Quote:
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Night Owl, We get under I-95 to Marina Bay with our Morgan Ketch. This is one of the few remaining advantages of a split rig. 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
I looked at a few ketch rigged boats - the Morgan was up there along with the Pearson 424 (it barely fits).

I think its going to be an Island Packet 40 (used) for us next time and then fix it up. The dream was that Valiant 42 ketch that was for sale a while back. Its either sold or off the market now. Thinking of calling up Valiant when we are ready to upgrade in 5-10 years :-)
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  #109  
Old 06-26-2009
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I'm 31 (getting ready to turn 32). I first moved aboard when I was 22 and lived on boats off and on totalling about 6 years...

I sold my last boat close to a year ago, and am missing it so much that I'm looking to buy another already. I don't think it's what you're talking about, but my kids (ages 8 and 10) have been aboard most of their lives... and are anxious to be back aboard.
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  #110  
Old 06-27-2009
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I'm 26, bought my first boat, a Mason 30 (steel) when I was 24. It took me 17 years to save the money.. and 17 years of pining for this vessel. After an extensive single-handed tour of the great lakes I only met one couple of a similar age. Everywhere I go people assume this is my fathers boat...
Perhaps as the interest of my generation in sailing dwindles prices will drop.. Therefore drawing interest?? If not... empty anchorages!! ..and no marine infrastructure i suppose

Swallows and Amazons Forever!!
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