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Old 19-09-2016, 09:32   #1
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Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

The wife, the 12 year old and I will be moving in the next year to expand our sailing experience. The Mrs. and I are in our late 40s. We have extensive sailing/racing experience but only on lakes/dingies big and small. We have very limited keel boat experience. Our options are limited to continental USA.

The plan is to get a couple of jobs (again), buy a house (again), then a coastal weekender sailboat and spend the next 5 years enjoying it. Eventually we will cruise full time. (Going now is not an option)

For the sake of discussion let's limit the options to Chicago, Houston, Tampa Bay area, or the coast of North Carolina. I have some experience in all these areas. I can think of a few +/- for each location. I am interested in the sailing community's thoughts.

Chicago- Love the idea of sailing the Great lakes. But, why move to sail to a place where sailing is only an option 6 months out of the year?

Houston, Tampa, NC- Would you buy a waterfront house in a place where the water front will advance (potentially a lot) over the next 50 years?

Where would you move to and why?


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Old 19-09-2016, 09:49   #2
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

No doubt, NC or Tampa. Better weather, better cruising.
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Old 19-09-2016, 09:50   #3
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Houston and Tampa - pretty much year round sailing but both hot as the dickens in the summer.

NC - not nearly as much winter as Chicago but cold enough several months of the year. Summer usually a bit more pleasant than FL or TX.

Tampa - Tampa Bay which could keep you busy exploring for a while a while and somewhat protected. Then lots of coastal cruising with the option to expand horizons to the Keys and Dry Tortugas.

Houston - Don't know the cruising in that area. Have to ask a local.

NC - Lots and lots of places to go.

Waterfront property. Be prepared to be flooded if a hurricane comes by and that chance includes the entire Gulf and East coast USA. Also bring your big wallet if you're buying anything close to any kind of water, beach front, water front, canal front, ICW, even marsh land frontage.
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Old 19-09-2016, 10:01   #4
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Houston the most uncomfortable, especially summer, Tampa, not much different, North Carolina would be more pleasant, still gets pretty hot though...

If it were my choice? Pacific Northwest!





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Old 19-09-2016, 10:21   #5
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Tampa Bay for sure. Lots of places to sail to year round and thw water is warm enough to swim in as long as you don't mind all the blind mullets.
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Old 19-09-2016, 10:42   #6
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

We looked at the Tampa area. The cost of living is lower than where we are in the Denver area. We found costs for houses etc to be quite affordable.
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Old 19-09-2016, 10:47   #7
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meatservo View Post
Houston the most uncomfortable, especially summer, Tampa, not much different, North Carolina would be more pleasant, still gets pretty hot though...

If it were my choice? Pacific Northwest!

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A second vote for that!
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Old 19-09-2016, 10:59   #8
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

I have lived on Galveston bay for 25 years. Yes it is hot here in the summer but not any worse than Florida. The Clear Lake area has LOTS of boats and great support services (yards, sail makers, etc). The real beauty of the Houston area is that it is cheap! Where else can you buy a waterfront home for $500,000 +/-, 45 minutes from the 4th largest city in the US. Slips are reasonable and you can sail here year around.
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Old 19-09-2016, 11:05   #9
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Good thoughts! What about boat buying and sailing opportunities? Why the PNW? What is the sailing season like there?

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Old 19-09-2016, 11:06   #10
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Definitely not the Salish Sea and inside to Alaska Too many secluded anchorages and no challenges to fishing/foraging .Tides are scary and a too steep learning curve avoiding rocks covered in oysters. Most towns have livaboard marinas Which a plus as who would want to row ashore in the rain
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Old 19-09-2016, 11:29   #11
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

http://www.forkandbottle.com/books/c...#chcompanionWe moved from Austin, TX to Oriental ("The Sailing Capital of North Carolina) over the last two years, and have been full-time since the spring.

Positives:
- Great community of sailors: competitive but everyone wants everyone else to get better
- relaxed, 900 permanent residents, there are two stoplights in the entire county
- sailing on the Neuse River/Pamlico Sound is a lot of fun, and runs from April through December. Two good boatyards in town, about 8 boats per permanent resident. (Do the math. If you're in North Carolina, this is a great place to keep your boat.) Active racing community.
- lots of live music for a town this size
- Lots of places to cruise to from here, ICW goes right by on it's way to Morehead City and Beaufort.
- Real estate is super reasonable for waterfront property.

Cautions:
- we are still working, but both in jobs we can do from our home offices. Not a lot of industry here
- we waited until our kids were off to college
- if you want symphonies/ethnic restaurants/opera/real theater, Raleigh/Durham is two hours away
- It's not as hot as Austin, or as humid as Houston, but it is more humid than we expected (July-August)
- Yes, storms come through here -- trees shelter us from the wind but a long-lingering storm to the East can raise water levels along the Neuse dramatically. Most houses are up 9+ feet for a reason. The standing examples were named Irene and Isabelle. Worry about it every five years or so.

It all depends what you're looking for, but we love it!

John

p.s. I initially wanted to move to Bellingham or the San Juans, but my wife couldn't stand the weather. Our concerns with Houston/Clear Lake (where I have family) were that it was a day's cruise from the Gulf, and where do you sail to from there besides Galveston?

p.p.s. I believe in global warming, but I don't think it's going to drive us out of here in my lifetime.
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Old 19-09-2016, 11:43   #12
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

That is very helpful! Thks

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Old 19-09-2016, 11:51   #13
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

Chicago is expensive. San Diego is expensive. The sailing season is year round in San Diego so why not consider it? In the Gulf side of florida I've been told that the summers are hot and muggy and not much wind (from a friend in pensacola). San Diego has consistent westerlies and year round sailing. Also, not sailing related; Don't buy property without experiencing all 4 seasons. If you wan't to cruise in 5 years then I wouldn't buy property at all.
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Old 19-09-2016, 12:00   #14
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

If you want to cruise the Pacific - Oregon/Washington. If you want to cruise the Caribbean/Med - North Carolina.
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Old 19-09-2016, 13:23   #15
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Re: Opinions on relocation for sailing purposes.

If the move is aimed at being exposed to LOTS of sailing activity, one should consider the SF By area. Year round intensive racing at levels from casual beer can to serious semi-pro. A wide variety of sailing conditions with very consistent F6+ in the summer months, strong tidal currents and enough commercial traffic to encourage your learning COLREGS! Laid back summer cruising to the Delta, and several useful oceanic destinations close enough for weekend visits.

Downside is high cost of living, very high population density and California crazyness.

But great sailing...

Jim
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