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Gretting's, First post but been dreaming for some time now..

Anyways... I plan on having a few toys paid off in the next couple years and have always wanted to get into sailing...only problem is I live in Arizona. I understand I could sail in a lake but I have always loved the ocean. So this is my plan and let me know how doable this is.

I would love to own a sailboat and have it in San Diego. San Diego is about 6-7 hour drive. Unfortunatley I am stuck in Arizona and can not move closer for some time. Is it common to own/operate a boat that is so far away? I plan on doing all the maintenance my self but am not sure on how much time I will need to plan on driving down for maintenance.

If it help's the boat will be 28-32 foot and would have to stay put in Cali.
 

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I wouldn't advise it. I drive 6.5 hours to my boat and it is doable for me but that is because I am retired. I held off buying a boat until I was retired because I felt it would be really hard to enjoy it on such a tight schedule. Now I can go whenever I want and stay as long as I want. You need to be back to work on Monday.
You should spend a few more years dreaming and chartering.
 

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Daniel - Norsea 27
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There's a lot of people who have boats in the tropics in the South but live up North. It's doable. Maintenance depends on what it is you're willing to take on for the time you have.

I live in TN but my boat is in KY. Other than marina fees, I'd have to pay a property tax for KY. It's only an hour away so it works out pretty good for me. My boat was previously in CA and they required a Use Tax (basically for using it in CA waters).

It all depends on how much time you are able to devote to the travel and to maintaining it but it is doable if you really want to do it.
 

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Sea Sprite 23 #110 (20)
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If you are just getting into sailing.. there are some very nice "maxi-trailerable" boats.. 28 feet is about the cut off. I would look into something you could keep and move with a truck and a trailer and then you could either sail on the lake, or if you get a couple of days, drag it to the coast for some coastal sailing
 

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I should think having a private jet would simplify the traveling quite a bit. Have you considered a cheap Lear Jet or 707?
Seriously; we know a lot of "commuter cruisers" and their biggest complaint, when they do get down here to sail, is that they can spend anywhere from a week to 6 or more, just getting systems back up and running after sitting unattended. They have about twice as many breakdowns as those of us who use our boats 12 months a year.
Isn't there somewhere in the gulf that's closer, even if it is Mexico?
Also, if you keep your boat in California, they are going to charge you taxes, just like Fla does.
 

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First to the OP... I am afraid that this sounds to me like a plan for neglecting a boat. You are probably going to get very tired of spending all the time to drive to the boat, and then all the time to take care of routine maintenance issues, and then just a tiny bit of time to sail it, and then once again all the time to drive back home. What will happen (I'm guessing) is that you'll find these to be long, tiring, and not very fun trips. Because of that you will do it less and less often. Eventually you will realize that it has been more than a year since you've been over to the boat and that you don't even have a clue what condition it is in any more.

I hope I'm wrong, and that you will actually go and use the boat often enough to make this worthwhile, but I have to say that if you do you will be a very extraordinary exception to the rule.

For the fellow who asked what it will cost him to sell his boat in Florida... It depends. Maybe nothing. When you sell a boat it is the buyer who pays the sales tax, not the seller. BUT, you may have to register it and pay sales tax depending on other circumstances. The best advice for you would be to get some recommendations, find a reputable broker, and talk to him/her about the best way to sell your boat.
 

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Denver, You might be wrong. My first boat was a 28' Irwin. I lived in Tallahassee and drove every weekend to St. Augustine (210 miles one way) to sail for the weekend, every weekend. sometimes just for saturday and then come back and have open house on one of my spec homes. That was in 1986 and I had a passion for sailing. Moved to SA and moved up to a J-30. Now I live in Brazil and just bought my new vessel in KK Malaysia. It is currently 10;30 am here and 9;30 pm there in KK. Now tell me if I don't have a passion for sailing or just plain crazy? My new ride.

 

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I would take a 26-30 foot boat on a lake in Arizona over a 6-7 hour drive to San Diego in a heartbeat.

You must have lakes that are as big as the bay in San Diego, and as a new sailor are you really going to head offshore? Personally, the sailing out of San Diego looks kind of limited and boring to me, unless you're heading south to Mexico.
 

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I live in Henderson, NV and my boat resides in Marina Del Rey, CA. It's a 4+ hour drive in non-traffic hours. The only reason I have a boat there is because I took a job that gets me to L.A. about 120 days a year. Yes, there is a use tax, property tax, etc. Lake Mead is 45 minutes from my door and I have never sailed there, simply because i wasn't a 'boat person' before I became one. So, for you to do this from Arizona to San Diego is not uncommon, but it helps to have a non-sailing reason to go there enough times to justify the cost. What condition your boat is in will dictate that. I spent the first two + years in rigorous maintenance and restoration to make it good enough to live aboard and race/cruise regularly.
One friend of mine here in Las Vegas bought his boat here and trailered it to MDR and never paid the CA taxes or reg fees. I would suggest finding something local to gain experience, take formal classes (ASA 101) and charter in SD from time to time. Otherwise you will need to block out huge amounts of time for non-sailing in SD to maintain your boat.
 

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Corsair 24
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any experience from people living in southern states(georgia, alabama) but the boat in florida panhandle like panama city, destin, etc?

thanks
 

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Velton, my wife and I drove 4 hrs each way to our boat almost every weekend for 5 years before we relocated. There are boat owners in our marina that live in places like Kansas, Kentucky, Virginia, and Michigan with their boat in NC. None of these boats are neglected. Where there is a will, there is a way.
 

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I too am a doubter in terms of how much actual sailing you would get to do. I would encourage you to not overlook Lake sailing too quickly. It can be a great way to start. The ocean might work better as a future goal...
 

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Daniel - Norsea 27
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Velton, my wife and I drove 4 hrs each way to our boat almost every weekend for 5 years before we relocated. There are boat owners in our marina that live in places like Kansas, Kentucky, Virginia, and Michigan with their boat in NC. None of these boats are neglected. Where there is a will, there is a way.
Same thing here. Walking through the marina parking lot looking at license plates, I see, Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio, Missouri as well as the local Kentucky. Talked to a guy this past weekend saying he lived in St. Louis but drives the 3hrs to visit his trawler that he built with his father 40yrs ago. Said he's been in the same slip for 15yrs.
 

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Sistership owners live in Michigan and home port out of Barrington R.I. Although young they are both retired. Live on the boat in N.E.s summers. If working as said this is a very hard thing to do. Even doing something like getting a Bristol Channel Cutter on a trailer (Its a very stong little boat at 28') which could be trailered with a 2500 pick up would make more sense. Trailer it down and have yard splash it. Cruise for a week or three. Then bring it home. Safe at home and you could keep all that lovely varnish up. When you have the time its a boat that will go anywhere. Its a cult boat so you could sell it and move up.
 

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From my personal experience of having a boat in Orient Point Long Island and living 50 miles west of there I came to hate the travel time so much I gave UP until I was able to keep the boat in Northport


This allows after work sailing and IMHP much peace of mind and I actually enjoy going out to the boat on a hot Thursday night and cleaning the bottom at a leisurely pace while watching a nice sunset :)
 

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I'm glad that others have had, and see, success with keeping a boat from far away. What I see when I walk around the marinas here in Florida, though, is at least 3 or 4 neglected-looking boats for every one that appears well-kept. In certain marinas I'd guess the ratio is more like 7 or 8 to one.

I'm sure that every one of those 3 or 4 (or 7 or 8) are owned by people who swore to themselves that they were going to spend every weekend on the boat. If you can do it, great. More power to you. But I think this is a case where you need to be brutally honest with yourself about the realities versus the dreams.
 
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