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Old 24-01-2011, 22:38   #1
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Challenges of Living Off the Hook

Reading the "Marinas Hate Livaboards" thread got me thinking. (remember take everything I say or ask with a big grain of ignorance). What are the challenges of living outside a Marina? And is there and option of having a private dock? (I would imagine this would be rather expensive).

I just like the idea of being able to move when ever I want, but I guess that's the dream.
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Old 24-01-2011, 22:57   #2
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I find getting from the bar to the boat is quite a challenge sometimes.......
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Old 24-01-2011, 23:01   #3
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I'm sure it's different in different locals. In BC you could apply for a foreshore lease. If you don't own the property you have to get signoff from whoever does. Fairly difficult to get a lease I understand. Mooring balls are possible and managed by a different branch of gov't.

When I gave up my dock lines for good I was spendng the summer cruising and thought I'd just continue doing that but in the end, faced with winter winds that get pretty stiff I decided to put in moorage. I'm on land now so it it seems like a specially good choice given the piece of mind it gives.

The challenges I found with full time anchoring and with a mooring ball is in provisioning and repairs. It doesn't help that I live on a small island either. When I was on the dock if I needed a part I jumped in the truck and zipped to the chandlers. Now I row to shore, get in the truck, catch a ferry, then reverse the whole thing. So, if I don't have a part it gets done the next day. Of course a big part of that is the small island things
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Old 25-01-2011, 00:59   #4
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My boat is always on a mooring ball, as is all 12 boats in our yacht Club. We usually have 1 liveaboard at any time and the challenges/experiences are quite broad. From my own perspective, I live in a house but I love the feel of having my boat swinging with the current out in the middle. It's like what cruising is all about and I havent even cast off. Me and kids go 'camping' onthe boat wen we dont have time to go cruising. having a good dingy or tender is important becasue you will be hauling groceries, supplies people etc. thru all weather and winds every day.

In my neck of the woods, the winter is a bitter place to be living on the hook, winds are up and is quite dangerous. the boat is cold and self sustained heating my be challenging to retain a comfortable level. Dry or electric heat would be ideal.

The motion of the boat on a hook is much greater in the wind than when sailing so can be uncomfortable or full of anxiety while waiting out winter storms aboard. WHether anchor or mooring, there are points of failure and you need to be continually diligent of this. As the mooring field captain of our YC I am a watch dog and make a lot of 'saves' just through continued observation.

In order to be environmentally responsible, the septic may prove challenging unless you cruise all the time and its convenient to hit the pump station often.

In alot of places, a permanent mooring system is illegal. An anchor is not, you can set up a two anchor system but make sure its retrievable at a moments notice.

Liveaboard hardly ever sail. This thought needs to regulate how you manage your boat as your house. Private docks are very expensive, our YC is adjacent to a public dock that we have acces to and without the dock would make a lonely and miserable experience. WHatever you plan to do, try it out first by 'camping' for a week on your anchor and see how it goes.
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Old 25-01-2011, 01:35   #5
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G'day, Lexam. We have a 4 ton mooring that we use as one of our bases. It offers good shelter from our storm systems that come from the northwest through the east to south when we are in the area. It also provides an option if we would need to leave the boat in a "hurry" for whatever reason. We also are members of a yacht club in another location that has a nice breakwater that we can tie to during the day. We can keep a car there, get rid of garbage, get fuel, do laundry, amongst other things. The rest of the time we are out living on the hook. Having lots of storage and a large watermaker keeps the trips ashore to a minimum. Hope that helps. Cheers.
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Old 25-01-2011, 01:58   #6
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both my boats are moored. i used to commute to lost angeles to work-- 130 miles-- to the hospital i slaved in-- i preferred it to living in houses and to apartments. i like living freer than that. i carry provisions in my kayak and in walker bay. i also have a roll up....but i prefer the kayak. i plan for stormy weather by buying in advance as i am able... i havent fridge..havent used one regularly for ,,,,,since 1995.
wouldlike to add a watermaker to my formosa..... eventually....right now i get water in jerry jugs-- is major pain.....but whose end is in sight.... .......
i have lived outside marinas since 1995. isnt half bad--is tougher, but is ok. neighbors???/ not on top of ye. unless of course ye WANT them there..........
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Old 25-01-2011, 03:49   #7
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Here in Annapolis we have many sailors that live permanently on the hook in our two main creeks. The city provides dinghy space for them at the end of several streets, so they can easily get to land to go to work, shop, barhop, dogwalk or whatever. There's also water taxi service in season.

I've anchored out in many other locales on the east coast that have provided easy access. Just have to find them.
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Old 25-01-2011, 04:12   #8
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The liveaboards in our club currently are all marina-cuffed. But we had until recently a pair who lived on their mooring for a couple of decades. He built the boat from scratch - a Hartley ferro, see it here. She would take him ashore by dinghy every morning for work and pick him up every night.

There are many pods of dolphins in the anchorage (the mangroves are fish breeding grounds and the dolphins come in to feed) and they (the liveaboards) insisted (to rolling eyes) at the bar that on windy days one particular dolphin often gave them a helpful push along in their tender.

Coin-wise, it's of course a very smart move.
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Old 25-01-2011, 06:06   #9
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We usually spend a few months including the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays at a marina near our children and, for the rest of the year, we cruise from Maine to the Bahamas and the Florida Keys. We do ocassionally rent a slip while cruising, but most of the time we are on the hook. For those that are retired and fulltime cruising, it's far easier to allow for the time required to dinghy bicycles ashore for provisioning. I see that it would be harsh in some climates, especially for a daily commute to work, but without time committments, living "on the hook" is easy.
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Old 25-01-2011, 07:13   #10
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I think transporting water a challange if you can pull into a dock every couple weeks that solved that issue and if there is no pump out boat avalible you will need to do that anyhow
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Old 25-01-2011, 07:29   #11
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On The Hook

Might be better to be "On the hook" as you will then be anchored.
Off the hook you are floating,drifting or sailing
With 9ft Carib and 15hp motor, is nice way to live. Good transport for all weathers ashore,transporting groceries,cooking gas etc
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Old 25-01-2011, 07:41   #12
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lexam, Your biggest challenges will be, filling the water tanks, you will either need to bring the boat to a dock or fill them by shuttling jerry jugs. keeping an automobile will require a place to park it and if you are simply anchored and not on a mooring that provides parking space, this will be an issue. Provisioning will present the same challenges as water. Dealing with going back and forth to shore during bad weather, especially if you are working. Fueling the boat or generator will require going to a dock or jerry jugs. Pets and all of their issues, especially in bad weather, they will still need to go ashore. Having friends and family visit who are not familiar with boating and having to get them to and from shore in the dinghy. Bad weather and all night anchor watches. Dealing with other boats dragging down on you in bad weather. A safe secure place to tie the dinghy while you are ashore. These are just a few off the top of my head, but other than this, it is a fantastic lifestyle. Chuck
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Old 25-01-2011, 08:49   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lexam View Post
Reading the "Marinas Hate Livaboards" thread got me thinking. (remember take everything I say or ask with a big grain of ignorance). What are the challenges of living outside a Marina? And is there and option of having a private dock? (I would imagine this would be rather expensive).

I just like the idea of being able to move when ever I want, but I guess that's the dream.
Expensive is relative. I have a friend who has a private dock behind his $2m condo. He invited me to park my boat there. Can't sleep on the boat, but I can tie up there.
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Old 25-01-2011, 09:00   #14
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semantics

Quote:
Originally Posted by Springbok View Post
Might be better to be "On the hook" as you will then be anchored
exactly what I was thinking too.... perhaps the OP meant "off the grid", and to live off the grid by living "on the hook".

If you're not "on the dole", your phone won't "ring off the hook" and you can live "off the grid" by keeping your boat "on the hook"; i.e. at anchor.

BTW, what do people who live off the grid do on their day off?

If you set your alarm clock to go off at 6am, how come you turn if off again to make it stop ringing?
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Old 25-01-2011, 09:07   #15
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Off the hook

This could refer to fishing? Again depends where you are and your expertise re fishing. Must also be pan-fish not trophy-fish. If you are a fish would have to take the bait but stay off the barb Life is so complicated. Better to be on the hook ie anchored or caught
Clyde
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