Thanks so much for your responses – very interesting indeed. I, like many of you, am in the 6’4” group – and carrying 220 pounds to boot. Squeezing in and out of tight spaces (especially engine-filled ones) is not something claustrophobics like myself care to do. I certainly understand the crosses of inadequate berth lengths, low ceilings, booms that go boom on your head
, and bedtime acrobatics. I always said I wanted to sleep with a gymnast - never once considering that might be me trying to squeeze into a berth with my right foot in my left ear and not being able to locate the left due to numbness from prayerfully temporary nerve damage!
It seems as if two fundamental groups exist – along with a noticeably unaccounted for middle ground of 33-39 footers among the responses. (Interestingly, this is consistent with personal observations I’ve made in a number of ports
throughout the years.)
As far as the 32-foot-and-below crowd, do you spend a great deal of time on your boat while on the hook or in port? Do you spend more time ashore once you’ve arrived at your destination
? Do you sail your vessels distances more than 100 miles often? How long are your typical forays? Based on the responses so far, it appears as if the 40-foot-and-above crowd spends more time aboard and travels more miles on their vessels – which may be a distinction among coastal cruisers. Is this a reasonable assertion?
Other compelling considerations are skinny water
and air draft. On many occasions I’ve coveted secretly that little cove or gunk hole as I sat on the outside looking in over a sandbar with a smidgeon less than four feet of water
keeping me “at bay.” I’ve rarely had to deal with air draft – or, at least not yet. In many ways though, I’m probably more like Scotty, ZeeHag, BobConnie
, et. al. because of seeing my nautical world through the lens of offshore
experience on the left coast, Australia
, and the Pacific. At 51, I also find it acutely difficult to give up accouterments like comfort, refrigeration
, space, sea keeping, lifestyle freedom, and the potential to go beyond the horizon if the mood should strike. On the other hand, I’m admittedly envious of the efficiency, adventure, affordability, and flexibility smaller vessels provide – except the fitting four persons into a 19-footer vessel thing! I'd love to see it, however! It might be fun!
While I don’t have a wife, the women I know being far too intelligent to marry a vinophile with author and photography
problems, I certainly wouldn’t sleep well knowing mine had a desire for a smaller, “cuter” vessel in which I couldn’t fit along with a penchant for expressing herself through hardware
as may be the case with BoxerOne! The wants, needs, and desires of the significant other is definitely a very real consideration.
That leaves us with the less-than-ubiquitous 33-39-foot crowd (SFX echo). Is this group less represented among coastal cruisers because these vessels are too drafty, inflexible, or dear for the 32-foot-and-below crowd and don’t provide enough comfort, space, storage
, or sea-kindly characteristics for the 40-foot-plus crowd? I’m surprised many vessels in the 33-39-foot crowd often cost as much or more as those in the 40-foot-and-over crowd. Kind of doesn’t make a great deal of sense in financial terms to me. Then again, who am I to suggest boat valuation has ever been logical?
Once again, thanks all for your input. You’ve all helped me develop a bit more clarity about this topic – I think!