Originally Posted by Breezman
Hi Dave ,Thanks for the reply.
I am in MDR and i am learning at the moment on a 22 mono and work my way up to 40 before i switch to a cat.
I have a wife and two little girls and will not take them out before i am 100%
confident in my ability to handle the task at hand for their safty and my peace of mind.
Welcome, I live in Marina del Rey (California), you are on the right track, just learn what you can, then move on to a better instructor. Beginning classes
are often taught by whoever they can get and often aren't the brightest folks around. But by learning in a smaller boat, you will develop a "feel" for the boat and the wind. This is crucial as people who learn on big 30+ foot cruising boats really struggle with it. The more time in a small boat, the better.
Too often people are in too much in a hurry to get a big heavy cruising boat that they can take all their friends on that they skip past the "sailing" part and go right to the "cruising" part.
Also look into classes
at UCLA here in the marina, I'm not sure the model, but I think they have 16-18' coronados, I think they also have Hobie cat
The good thing about these small boat group classes is that you make friends with the other people in your classes and inevitably, a little "race" breaks out. There is nothing that will teach you faster than your buddy go screaming by in the same wind you have.
In the 80's when I first started to get serious, I drove to Newport Beach
every weekend and took every class that Orange Coast College had. They have a great boat called the Shields, 3 crew, 30' very long narrow open cockpit
boat with spinnaker
. Looks like a Soling or Etchells.
Another good part about these classes with small boats, is that you get used to coming to the dock
without a motor
. It will force you to really pay attention to the wind, current
, momentum, etc or you will end up in a bad place with no sails
up. It can be nerve racking at first, but builds confidence fast.
To your original question, as the others have said, your instructor doesn't really understand. Even if the particular cat you end up with doesn't sail upwind as well as a mono, most of the time you are not going hard upwind of Marina del Rey! Catalina
is a reach from here. A nice day sail to Santa Monica, Malibu , or Paradise Cove is often a reach the other direction, but it's a daysail, so what do you care if you have to tack out and back. If you want to go all the way to the channel islands or Santa Barbara island, you may have to tack, but as long as the breeze is nice, the boat is flat so your wife and kids
are comfortable, it's about the journey anyway.
I started the same way, took classes. started chartering doing daysails, then worked my way to Catalina
for a weekend a few times, then bigger boats, other islands, started racing
, then chartering in the Carribean, Australia
, San Juans. It's all good. There is a lot to know about anchoring
, and on and on. But I learned the most about "sailing" back in those small boats.