If you love sailing, you still buy a cat, just not a slow one. And then you choose where to sit for maximum spray IF that is what you want!
With our daggerboards down, everything sheeted in tight, we still hammer along nicely to windward in our fully loaded cruising cat. We have had visitors onboard who have loved to sit up on the tramps with their kids
during a beat directly into the trades around the Marquesas
. They spent their time screaming and yelling with excitement and joy as they got swept by waves and spray. 15 knots of true wind
, 2 - 4 m waves, 8 - 11 knots boat speed. In the meantime, I stayed further back out of the spray. People are different, even on the same boat.
But doing thousands of miles per year means you usually find a protected spot to read a book or do some maintenence. A weekend out on the bay means you usually chase a little spray to have a good memory when you are back in your cubicle on Monday morning. I can understand both points of view.
But if you love sailing and spray while cruising, you still buy a cat, just buy a fast one and sacrifice a few living comforts because you don't have a big ice maker. More hulls doesn't mean you have to forget about sailing. Now you can really sail fast. Just hunt down the best spot to get your face wet because it may not be obvious. Apart from the tramps, hanging off the sugar scoop sterns, steering
with the emergency
tiller and dipping your head
in the sea seems to work ok, also.
From someone who has cruised for years in both monos and cats, steel
and plastic, there are pros and cons to all. For a standard RTW via the trades, I reckon the cats are better overall - whether you are an adrenalin-hunting purist sailor with spray in your grey beard on a go-fast, knife-hulled cat or a comfortable family
watching a DVD
and sipping a rumbo with ice on a fat, slow, ex-charter cat.
You want to go to the high latitudes, get a steel
If you mix your pros and cons the wrong way, get a steel cat or a plastic mono.
In the 80s, there seemed to be more steel boats out there and almost no cruising cats. No hard figures to justify the steel observation, just my rather vague memory. Nowadays, there are definitely more cruising cats, without a doubt. And steel seems to have dropped away in terms of the cruising monos. Not sure why...
Of course, you think differently because you got brainwashed somewhat differently to me and read the wrong magazines from the wrong armchair and your parents didn't show you the light. Haha!