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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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  #1  
Old 09-21-2006
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Circumnavigation

HI,

I am new to this forum. We are strongly considering circumnavigating in a years time. We have 3 children that would be with us. I would like some opinions on doing this with children ages 10, 5 & 3. Is this really any riskier than living where you are now?

Any info and insight would be appreciated. Some people namly our parents think we are crazy and are putting our kids in a bad situation.


Cheers!
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Old 09-21-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WannaSail14
HI,

I am new to this forum. We are strongly considering circumnavigating in a years time. We have 3 children that would be with us. I would like some opinions on doing this with children ages 10, 5 & 3. Is this really any riskier than living where you are now?

Any info and insight would be appreciated. Some people namly our parents think we are crazy and are putting our kids in a bad situation.


Cheers!
In addition to the implications of your WannaSail name, the red question above, reveals how little you know, and respect about the unforgiving oceans. You have much to learn grasshopper.
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sold the Nauticat
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Old 09-21-2006
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Okay I guess I should change my name. We have sailed.... Nothing huge, but we have some experience. I read so many articles of people just doing it though. My husband has interemediate sailing and we have chartered a boat 6 times. Here looking for information and to make a decision. I know the seas can be unforgiving but people seem to do it, so that is what I am here to find out about
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Old 09-21-2006
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There is a TV program, about 10-12 episodes that aired this past winter on various public/knowledge networks called "Ocean Wanderer" It chronicles the adventures of a Canadian family that did what you are envisioning, taking about 7 years all told to do the trip.
Their story was not without obstacles and problems, and it's enlightening to see what types of things can spoil the best laid plans. (starting with the boat they bought)

Anyway, it does sound like you may not have the background or experience to tackle something like this so soon... If that is not true, apologies for that.

Do you have a boat now? what type of sailing have you done? These questions and more need to be addressed before you go further.
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Old 09-21-2006
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Wanna,

I have not circumnavigated, but have cruised a bunch with kids. Before I (or we, including many others in this forum) could even begin to answer your question, we would need some information from you... like how much have you sailed? How many offshore runs have you made? How many of these included kids? Have you ever lived aboard with kids? Storms? Timeframe? Boat?

It might seem like a simple question you asked, but if you scroll back through previous threads, you might see it is pretty involved.

I will try and answer the best I can with your answers. Thanks.

- CD
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Old 09-21-2006
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I say go for it. Moreover, I say read some books on the topic and start planning.
Here is what I am looking forward to:

Reading this thread in a week and seeing all of the predictable members ragging on you about being inexperienced and reckless. Enjoy and be happy you asked the question! lol.
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Old 09-21-2006
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Wanna,
Check this site out: http://www.setsail.com/s_logs/martin/martin.html
The Martins have done this. Actually they had their 2 children while circumnavigating. They have written a couple books. I suspect most on this forum will try to deter you as has already been posted. Additionally, Cruising World Magazine recently had an article about an organization out of somewhere in Canada, that is all about getting people cruising. Check out thier website here: www.cruisingworld.com and do a search for cruiser's organizations. From these two, you should find a wealth of information on your specific ??'s.
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Since we don't live in or near a sailing community we do not hear about alot of adventures. We have read some literary literature about these families just doing it with no experience. Okay really our experince is limited. Sailed BVI and out to Anegada which is extremely simple 3 times. Sailed Belize. Sailed Vancouver Island and the islands and also sailed from Vancouver to the Victoria. Will be back in BVI this winter. Our kids have sailed with us for only 7 days once in BC and will again join us in the BVI's this winter. We do not own a boat, we are looking at them. My husband is a huge adventurer and wanted to take this on with our kids before they were to old. I guess the question is now is this really safe?

Thanks for you input so far and I look foward to more.
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Old 09-21-2006
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Riskier?

Not meaning to be flip, but if you aren't familiar with the potential pros and cons, "yes". On the other hand, if you (as a family) come up the learning curve and at least the adults develop some skills as sailors, I'd shout a resounding "NO!"

You don't find many drug dealers, junkies, drive-by shootings, computer porn or hackers, schoolyard bullies, hit-n-runs, home invasions, or many of the daily stresses and dangers of typical "land living" at sea. You are in a much smaller and sometimes more controllable environment, for much of the time. And that which you can't control--like the weather--you can reasonably predict and prepare for.

Each port will be different, and yes, there are still real pirates in known areas and other dangers which you probably would be safest to avoid. But on the whole? There are a great many things kids can learn sailing, among them responsibility, confidence, self-reliance, teamwork and trust.

Adventuring...implies some element of chance and risk. It can be a great adventure, but for this to be SAFE, both you and your husband should have the skills, training, experience to be able to handle a boat offshore by yourself for a weekend without feeling apprehension--even in reasonably bad weather. Spouses *often* gain that experience and confidence best when they can gain it without the other half being around, i.e. by taking a "Womanship" type sailing course, so the pressures of even the best husband simply aren't part of the learning process. (And besides, that means he'll have to practice dealing with "family stuff" while you're away "on the helm" and can't be disturbed.)

Someone once asked me if I wasn't afraid of the sea and I said no. Not afraid, because the sea doesn't have any reason to come after me. It's not the boogie man. On the other hand, I respect it greatly. I know it can and will take me--or anything else it wants--anytime it wants. So I try to be very careful around it, and make sure I don't give it an easy way to take me.

But some folks are outright afraid of it, sometimes for good reason, and for those folks, it will just never be a comfortable place to be.
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Old 09-21-2006
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There was a family of 5, mother, father and 3 sons who ranged in age from 3 to 8 when they started and they circumnavigated the world. They are from Ottawa, Ontario and they had virtually no sailing experience before they started. She wrote a book "The Voyage of the Northern Magic" chronicling there travels. ISBN 0-7710-8260-6.
Is it riskier? There are risks no matter what you do or were you are. I don't know where you live but I'll bet you know of someone who was murdered or killed in a car accident and I'll also bet you don't no anyone who was killed at sea.
It takes guts to sail around the world, but what an experience and what an accomplishment. No amount of money can buy that and nothing can detract from it. There are naysayers everywhere, but they'll only pull you down.
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