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Old 13-02-2018, 19:48   #31
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

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Originally Posted by 406Columbia View Post
THIS I BELIEVE WITH MY WHOLE HEART! I have found this to be true in the military, your body can go far further than your mind. If you learn to make your mind and emotions comply, you can accomplish almost anything. We are "nuts" according to our friends and most family. But they said the same when we moved from southern Ca to rural Montana and bought thirty mountain acres.

Before we moved I had never towed a trailer, run a chainsaw, split wood, serviced a generator, killed and processed a deer, run an excavator, done plumbing, roofing, worked on house electric systems, etc. But yet after four years we now heat our house almost exclusively off our own wood, stock our freezers with our own meet. We work our land with skids, excavators and dozers. We have cleared out acres of land for new buildings, learned how to run our snow plows, recover vehicles off the roads and hills (not ours lol), etc.

So what I'm getting at is were up for the challenge but realistically we have a lot to learn about sailing and I'm not to proud to ask for advise and learn from others who have lived the way were looking at.

So again keep the input and advise coming please, were keen on being together and we love adventure. I wont get to the end of my life and think "I wish I had made more money, bought more material things" but I will likely reflect upon the time with my family and this may be a great opportunity to embark on a new adventure together.

Thanks again everyone
The above tells me that you are VERY MUCH different then the two young folds that you referred to in your original post, and that you should have no trouble at all with your venture.
Once you learn to handle the boat safely you could easily launch somewhere in the Chesapeake (for instance) and take the ICW south from Norfolk as far down as you wish in a couple of weeks. Rent a car to be back to your car and trailer, go back to the boat and still be back to the ranch in under two months easy. Many other choices of inland trips to get the hang of everything. After that Gulf of Mexico sailing maybe? A trip from Texas to somewhere in Mexico and back perhaps? Two months is quite a bit of time.
Wherever your imagination will take you the boat will too!

Al, S/V Finlandia
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Old 13-02-2018, 20:20   #32
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

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The above tells me that you are VERY MUCH different then the two young folds that you referred to in your original post, and that you should have no trouble at all with your venture.
Once you learn to handle the boat safely you could easily launch somewhere in the Chesapeake (for instance) and take the ICW south from Norfolk as far down as you wish in a couple of weeks. Rent a car to be back to your car and trailer, go back to the boat and still be back to the ranch in under two months easy. Many other choices of inland trips to get the hang of everything. After that Gulf of Mexico sailing maybe? A trip from Texas to somewhere in Mexico and back perhaps? Two months is quite a bit of time.
Wherever your imagination will take you the boat will too!

Al, S/V Finlandia
That sounds like a great plan also, offering varied sailing and manageable legs to travel starting out.

THANKS AGAIN EVERYONE FOR THE ADVICE AND ENCOURAGEMENT.
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Old 13-02-2018, 23:40   #33
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Just remember to keep your ego in your back pocket and let the wife and kids have a go on the tiller. I am always amazed that a lot of guys do not let the “Mrs” dock the boat. Instead she is expected to do the harder job of fending off and tieing up or even worse just being a passenger!
Remember for the kids life jackets crutch strap and handle on the collar is essential. Get the best life jackets you can, our kids lived in theirs when they were younger.
Enjoy your adventure
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Old 14-02-2018, 00:23   #34
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Noted. Any suggestion on a good place to buy pfd's other than west marine?
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Old 14-02-2018, 00:34   #35
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Since you have the boat and a trailer, go for it but really keep an eye on costs. You can very quickly dump more money into a restoration than the boat is worth in perfect condition.

Also, go now. Smaller the kids, the easier they will adapt to the tiny space. By the time the little one gets to 10, you are likely going to have outgrown the boat if you are talking about months at a time (possible but challenging for most).
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Old 14-02-2018, 00:58   #36
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

waterskis.com has the lifejackets my kids like. The Akemi lifejacket is good for the toddler and the Hyperlite is good for the boy. They are made out of wetsuit material and are snug fitting. Perfect for swimming in and wearing around the yacht. The wife and I have this type of lifejacket as well. They have kept me afloat while semi conscious after a bad water ski fall!
Cheers
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Old 14-02-2018, 03:36   #37
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

I will keep an eye on the costs for sure. the boat is already in nice shape, just needs the rigging looked at and new top paint and a few wood trim issues. But were not going crazy with electronics and all that stuff right now just thinking safety stuff first.

I am going to visit waterskis.com right now, appreciate all the input everyone. My wife and I are getting lots of great ideas and when I get around to picking up the boat I will start posting some photos for sure.
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Old 14-02-2018, 07:34   #38
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

As someone who lived in the prairies and had a boat in so-cal, I'd say you're in a good spot. Leave the boat in San Diego (arguably the best place to get boat work done) and use it to get away from the Montana winters. A few trips to Catalina and the channel islands or Ensenada, once your family gets their sea legs, will give you a feel for the cruising lifestyle. Keep it simple to start and see where you end up.

Also agree with Ann, that third kid is exponentially harder than the second. Watch out for births in berths. ;^)

Advice worth price paid.

goat
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Old 14-02-2018, 12:48   #39
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Just pretend that your 3rd child's name is "Columbia".

Aarrrgh!
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Old 14-02-2018, 12:50   #40
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

hahahaha already do
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Old 15-02-2018, 00:59   #41
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Yes!

Me and three others on a 28'er, no not me, i had one that size, singlehanded a lot, but i felt it was too small and I wanted more amenities and waterline.

But as a trailer sailer, that is a great size and at 2 month stints tolerable.

What makes any boat feel bigger are water toys at anchor to sprawl out on. Think inflatables like kayaks and sups and even pool floats are fun and useful. Hobie has some of the best products around, if budget permits. Snorkel and fins plus fishing gear don't take too much room up either.

For me a sailing dinghy is a must but I don't think that would be practical for a 4 man crew. It's my favorite thing to do at anchor, or at the dock.

I think trailer sailing is going to increase as a hybrid cruising sailer for commuter cruisers who can work remotely periodically or have work where they are on and off for months at a time and want a more cost effective way to cruise different regions faster. Such as, drive to FL for Bahamas cruising after you did SOC,MX all within a year. Whereas most would take twice that and a lot more money on a bigger boat and bluewater gear down CA thru the canal and up and over. We're currently working towards that kinda cruising with a camper van conversion to tow around a sweet, fun small trimaran. Leave the boat/trailer there, then drive back or just tow it back too. This is also a good option for people who need regular healthcare through their US insurer.

Our first big trip to come - Baja.

And here's why. Go check out the Sea of Cortez cruising guide by Breeding and Banser. Flip through that and I can almost guarantee you will be wanting to go get your tip and visa the next day. I say SOC for your endeavour because: it's warm water (spring-fall), it's often light air (big northerlies in the winter tho and summer hurricanes can happen) but not as challenging as an ocean, there is SO much amazing marinelife (whale sharks, fishing, dolphins, birds, even snorkeling with curious sea lion pups!) after all Jacque Cousteau called it The World's Aquarium, tons of coastal and shoreside anchorages with places to go hiking, Mexican people are so nice and lots of cruisers too.

Then you could slip (or dry storage on the trailer) in La Paz and drive back after those two months, or fly back. Or if you decide the 29 is too small, sell it there (or trailer back and sell here) and go buy a bigger cruising boat back in La Paz (my observation is there are better deals in MX than Cali - especially San Carlos, go walk their yards, you'll see why
...where some dreams go to die :/ ). The only issue with driving a 30' trailer down in Baja is it can be a white knuckle situation often with little to no shoulder and winding roads. I did it in a small car just to San Felipe, after that is gets rougher (pot holes galore) and winding and less to no shoulder with semi ttucks sometimes going over the line. However, you could start on the mainland, like to San Carlos or down to PV sail around there and next time over to the SOC La Paz - Mulege.

The other cool thing about MX and trailer sailing are the ferries, that go between Baja and mainland. Flights are cheap back to cali. I did SW roundtrip rom Oakland to PV for under $300 last yr. Oh and boat storage on your own trailer is crazy cheap in San Carlos. Which is just a few hours from Phoenix.

Ps- check out consignment chandleries for used equipment and gear. If not in person some have ebay stores. Avoid west marine unless you like to pour money down the drain and sometimes on cheap crap too.
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Old 15-02-2018, 03:47   #42
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

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Originally Posted by sailorcherry View Post
Yes!

Me and three others on a 28'er, no not me, i had one that size, singlehanded a lot, but i felt it was too small and I wanted more amenities and waterline.

But as a trailer sailer, that is a great size and at 2 month stints tolerable.

What makes any boat feel bigger are water toys at anchor to sprawl out on. Think inflatables like kayaks and sups and even pool floats are fun and useful. Hobie has some of the best products around, if budget permits. Snorkel and fins plus fishing gear don't take too much room up either.

For me a sailing dinghy is a must but I don't think that would be practical for a 4 man crew. It's my favorite thing to do at anchor, or at the dock.

I think trailer sailing is going to increase as a hybrid cruising sailer for commuter cruisers who can work remotely periodically or have work where they are on and off for months at a time and want a more cost effective way to cruise different regions faster. Such as, drive to FL for Bahamas cruising after you did SOC,MX all within a year. Whereas most would take twice that and a lot more money on a bigger boat and bluewater gear down CA thru the canal and up and over. We're currently working towards that kinda cruising with a camper van conversion to tow around a sweet, fun small trimaran. Leave the boat/trailer there, then drive back or just tow it back too. This is also a good option for people who need regular healthcare through their US insurer.

Our first big trip to come - Baja.

And here's why. Go check out the Sea of Cortez cruising guide by Breeding and Banser. Flip through that and I can almost guarantee you will be wanting to go get your tip and visa the next day. I say SOC for your endeavour because: it's warm water (spring-fall), it's often light air (big northerlies in the winter tho and summer hurricanes can happen) but not as challenging as an ocean, there is SO much amazing marinelife (whale sharks, fishing, dolphins, birds, even snorkeling with curious sea lion pups!) after all Jacque Cousteau called it The World's Aquarium, tons of coastal and shoreside anchorages with places to go hiking, Mexican people are so nice and lots of cruisers too.

Then you could slip (or dry storage on the trailer) in La Paz and drive back after those two months, or fly back. Or if you decide the 29 is too small, sell it there (or trailer back and sell here) and go buy a bigger cruising boat back in La Paz (my observation is there are better deals in MX than Cali - especially San Carlos, go walk their yards, you'll see why
...where some dreams go to die :/ ). The only issue with driving a 30' trailer down in Baja is it can be a white knuckle situation often with little to no shoulder and winding roads. I did it in a small car just to San Felipe, after that is gets rougher (pot holes galore) and winding and less to no shoulder with semi ttucks sometimes going over the line. However, you could start on the mainland, like to San Carlos or down to PV sail around there and next time over to the SOC La Paz - Mulege.

The other cool thing about MX and trailer sailing are the ferries, that go between Baja and mainland. Flights are cheap back to cali. I did SW roundtrip rom Oakland to PV for under $300 last yr. Oh and boat storage on your own trailer is crazy cheap in San Carlos. Which is just a few hours from Phoenix.

Ps- check out consignment chandleries for used equipment and gear. If not in person some have ebay stores. Avoid west marine unless you like to pour money down the drain and sometimes on cheap crap too.
Hadn't given Mexico to much thought but will certainly look into it. A few great other places to splash the boat have been suggested here too. I guess there really is no reason we wouldn't be able to hit several if not all of them since we can tow the boat anywhere we want to for the most part.

Now I almost wish it had a tabernacle mast to make raising and lowering it a simple affair for the wife and I rather than something requiring a crane. Anyone here ever use a tabernacle set up? I assume you can add them after market but haven't ever seen one in person, seems like a great idea for a trailer sailor though.

Thank again everyone.
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Old 15-02-2018, 03:50   #43
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

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Originally Posted by goat View Post
As someone who lived in the prairies and had a boat in so-cal, I'd say you're in a good spot. Leave the boat in San Diego (arguably the best place to get boat work done) and use it to get away from the Montana winters. A few trips to Catalina and the channel islands or Ensenada, once your family gets their sea legs, will give you a feel for the cruising lifestyle. Keep it simple to start and see where you end up.

Also agree with Ann, that third kid is exponentially harder than the second. Watch out for births in berths. ;^)

Advice worth price paid.

goat
Yeah were not rushing to have number three believe me, hahaha. San Diego is an awfully nice place to say the least, with great weather. Maybe after the boat is squared away it will be a good spot to adventure from while we continue to learn. As a few have mentioned we can always venture north to SF to get some more challenging conditions and have plenty of family there too.

Getting away from the heavy winters certainly is appealing. We average maybe 15 feet of snow at our place right now and at a certain point cold beers, warm sun, carne asada and surfing calls your name!
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Old 15-02-2018, 06:06   #44
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

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Originally Posted by 406Columbia View Post
Noted. Any suggestion on a good place to buy pfd's other than west marine?
Defender has reasonably priced new equipment as does landfall navigation. You may also want to try to find a marine consignment shop. My home area is the Chesapeake Bay and we have a marine consignment shop where things are 1/8 of the cost that they would be retail. Essentially, when people upgrade they put their older or less used equipment in the consignment shop for sale at a pittance of the original cost.

I did a quick web search for sand Diego and came up with San Diego Marine Exchange, downwind marine, and Sea Chest.

The one in my neighborhood is www.RockHallmarine.com.

Good luck.
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Old 15-02-2018, 07:27   #45
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Re: Crusing in a small boat, 2 months at a time?

Presuming this is an old boat, get a good, thorough survey before you risk your family's lives in a bargain-basement vessel. Especially, pay attention to the keel bolts. See the recent story about a couple who bought a boat just like yours, ran aground near St. Petersburg, Fl., and lost their keel in soft sand. See also the story about the guy who took his teen-age kids out on his old sailboat in the Gulf and sank, drowning everyone. Not trying to rain on your parade, but there are many old, neglected sailboats originally built to a price point that are dangerous. Make sure yours isn't one of them.
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