Originally Posted by Embracing Gravity
Thanks manatee! I'm watching his videos now, really enjoying the collection. In a way, he's indirectly convincing me that I might enjoy a smaller sailboat than I originally had in mind. His occasional cooking specials are grand, too.
My pleasure. The 'Egg Banjo' is a treat. I've dropped hints around the family that the complete set of his dvds would make a much-appreciated gift. As would the 'Minicruiser Madness' dvd from "Small Craft Advisor" magazine. I'm hoping for a sailing Christmas.
I have seen it said many times in many places that learning to sail is best done on a small boat. "Small" being somewhat nebulous in definition. I think 10-to-25 feet (3-to-8 meters) would be a fair range. Your mileage may vary.
I took my first sailing lessons through a local community-college, on a Pearson 23, which seemed quite large when I was in charge of her!
She was a fine learning platform, big enough for a jib and to have reef points, and a good, simple, solid little ship. I'm afraid she spoiled me though: I'll always be a tiller man. A wheel has too much 'stuff' between me and the water for my taste. I can feel the pulse of the sea better with a tiller.
Besides being trailerable and cheaper, the smaller boat, especially a centerboarder or leeboarder, will let you go many more places than the big fin keelers, as you can see from Mr. Winter's voyages. It's also easier to set up, launch, sail and maintain. You'll sail more often with a 'small' boat because there's less work and more fun in it.
We may have sailnetters who can point you toward local sources for lessons & learning opportunies. The boats I learned on belonged to a sailboat-rental outfit; they also gave private lessons - you may find something similar in your area.