Gosh, this thread has drifted a long way from a discussion of the effects of stern configuration upon sailing characteristics, but there was yet another quotation of the old saw "Gentlemen never sail to windward". Well, I suppose that may be true, and perhaps it should be amended to add " they hire delivery
crews to get their boats to windward destinations". Life and one's cruising desires sometimes puts you to leeward of a place you want or need to reach.
Ann and I have no interest in hiring crew, nor could we afford to do so. Consequently I've been damn glad that when the dread windward passage
has hove up, we've been in yachts that do really well on the wind
. What ones come to mind? Well BC (before cruising) we often sailed from San Francisco
down to the Channel Islands for a holiday cruise
. The return bash up the California
coast is all to windward, and not very nice at times. Then we did a quick trip to Hawaii
... nice downwind slide, but the trip back (to return to w#%k) has large windward legs, and they had to be done. And then we finally got away to cruise
endlessly... but we ran out of money
in French Polynesia
and had to get back to earn some freedom chips. 6000+ miles to windward, mate!
Now we're long term cruisers, and we usually spend the cyclone season in Oz. But then we long for the islands, and New Caledonia
are only 800 to 1000 miles away... upwind in the SE trades. Done that trip over 10 times now, and we've blessed our unsuitable, non-traditional yachts on each one of them.
I suppose that this all goes to prove that I'm not a gentleman! But I think that advising wannabe cruisers that windward ability isn't important in a cruising boat does them a big disservice.
Finally, I can't help but mention one undiscussed advantage of a sugarscoop stern in a cruising boat: in the awful event of a MOB
, getting an uncooperative body out of the water
and onto the scoop is one hell of a lot easier than rigging
and then utilizing a Lifesling or whatever to drag it over the topsides amidships. The adverts for these devices never seem to recognize the difficulties introduced by the (now sail-less) boat rolling wildly as the victim bashes against the hull
I won't stoop to arguing aesthetics 'cause they are personal, but worrying about invaders using the scoop seems silly to me. A conventional transom stern didn't help poor Malcolm on Mr. Bean in Thailand
recently... the invaders climbed from the water
over the sides on their way to murder him.
OK, enough ranting... cheers to all, no matter what the shape of their bums!