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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in the midwest, and have access to a large lake (10,000 acres) about 10 miles from home. I'm a pretty new sailor -- I've had some lessons in Boston, at Community Boating, and a couple of vacations' worth of dinghy sailing on inland lakes. I'm thinking about buying a (very) small boat, just for day sailing. It would be easy enough to get a local mooring, but I would also want to trailer up to northern Michigan every summer, again, mostly for inland sailing, but possibly also on Grand Traverse Bay.

My question is about single-handed trailering: apologies if this is a really dumb question, but until now I have always had people around to help get the boat of the day rigged and launched, and trailers have just not come into it. Is it realistic to think I can trailer, rig, and launch, say, a 15-18 footer from a ramp on my own? I am a reasonably fit woman in my mid 30s, but I would not call myself an athlete. I might be able to call on friends to help occasionally, but there is no permanently dedicated tote-and-carry crew/s.o. that I can depend on.

Any advice welcome!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for the encouragement and advice! It's good to know that I am not starting out with impossible ambitions, and that when I do start shopping around, ease of rigging is going to be key. I'll be vacationing soon with people who have a little trailersailer, and I will definitely pay close attention to the process of getting it in and out of the water.

I'll have to look seriously at the Compac. It looks a little, um, chunky (How's that for a technical term?) at least compared with the boats that show up in my dreams -- but it sounds like they had someone like me in mind when they designed it. As for the Hobie Cat, I agree it has advantages, but I think I'm more of a monohull person at the moment - I don't really like sitting on a trampoline, and alas, I don't have any beach to beach it on...and speed is not really an issue, at least not yet!

USCGRET - tnx for the offer: I'll know who to call when I'm at the ramp, having trouble stepping the mast, with a dozen large and surly powerboaters in line behind me. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Good guess! Yes, I went to school out there. I was pretty poor: it's an expensive place to live, especially on a student budget. The one summer I had a little left over after paying rent I blew it on a CBI membership: best money I ever spent. The Mercuries are so beginner-friendly: I didn't realize this until I sailed some other small boats later on. And the people I learned from were just great -- there was an MIT prof (of astronomy, maybe? I can't remember) who was there all the time, and he was one of the best teachers I've ever met. CBI is a real treasure.

Yeah, that's a little gushy, but it's true. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 · (Edited)
A club is definitely the way to go -- the condo association wouldn't appreciate a boat in the parking lot. I don't think the clubs around here will put my boat in the water for me : they're all-volunteer, no paid staff, so unless there are people who just hang around waiting to haul other people's boats, it probably won't happen, not even if I call ahead and ask nicely.:D

The upside is that membership costs are pretty low, basically just to cover the expenses of a few slips and a small building. I could probably even get a mooring, and not worry about hauling for spring and fall.

I need the trailer for mid-May through mid-August though, when I go home. (Home is in Michigan...I just work here in south-central nowheresville.)

Oh. I just remembered that it's only September, and it's going to be eight long months without pine trees or proper lakes .. eight long months of torture-by-*******-accent and random people calling me "hon".... aaarggh....:( This is why I need a boat ASAP: in the middle of the fake lake (aka flood control pool) at least I won't be able to hear the locals talking.

Ahem. My apologies to any proud south-central nowheresvillians. I'm homesick...cut me some slack.


Thanks for the hint about the trailer extension -- I will definitely do that.
 
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