Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Houston, TX
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If you're still looking for a sailboat, seriously consider Catalina 22's, any keel configuration.
They're plentiful, not expensive, have good sailing characteristics, have a large enough cabin to get out of the weather (a significant detail on S.F. Bay), good repair/overhaul parts distributor thru Catalina Direct located closeby. AND a very strong owner's association with several available Lists, one on Sailnet.com. If you may be interested in racing, it's suitable for that with little additional cost. There's a large group of 22 sailors in the S.F.Bay area according to member lists I've seen.
There are numerous others of similar size that are great boats, too. I find that, for more than two people, I want a boat greater than 20'. It's hard to find comfortable cockpit space for the 3rd or 4th person & still handle the boat comfortably.
I've owned a number of sailboats ranging from 14' to 23', sailed on numerous friends' boats ranging to 46', and find sailing my 22 most satisfying. Others find their situations differ.
Take sailing lessons. It doesn't take long to get the theory down, then go sailing. Look for a racing boat that goes out a lot. They have some difficulty in finding regular crew that'll show up for races when scheduled & when they say they will. When I started sailing, I crewed for a friend at work for three years, and was consistently there- rain, shine, winter, summer. I don't think he'd say I was a great sailor, but he thought enough of me that I handled foredeck & spinnaker during that time. Maybe I was the only dumb enuf to do it, but I enjoyed the invaluable experience. I don't race now, but the lessons learned while racing made a much better sailor of me. There are many sailing clubs from S.F. to Sacramento (including small boat classes). Call some and ask about their crew's list.
You'll be better able to choose the size & type boat you are comfortable with if you are able to sail on a number of different boats & that's the easiest way to get a ride. First step- railmeat, then comes the fun!
Congratulations, Youlve made the first step in deciding you want to sail. Get out there & get wet!
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Catalina 22 #1651