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Old 11-12-2009, 15:24   #1
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For You Other Wannabes...

The wife and I just got off a 42 ft Leopard catamaran this afternoon. We spent the last seven days learning to sail in the USVI and BVI. I am writing this from a hotel room in St. Thomas. We went through an intensive week, picking up four ASA certifications and learning one heck of a lot about sailing. There were only the two of us and the captain/instructor on the boat, and sailing a 42 ft. cat shorthanded is intense. We had winds above 20 kts. all week, reaching 32 kts one afternoon in a squall. What a week!

This has been the most fun vacation I have ever had. I am recommending this to anyone else like me, who has long been interested in sailing things bigger than Hobie cats, but just never took that next step. Getting trained and certified is way different than just being a passenger on a sailboat. I have 8 blistered fingers that have taught me how a jib sheet can get seriously away from you in a heatbeat if you don't pay attention. I am bruised, sore, and can hardly walk. I loved every adrenaline soaked minute of it.

Really, GO for it. I am 59, wife just turned 50. We are SO glad we did this.
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Old 11-12-2009, 15:30   #2
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Congrats!! It is fun, isn't it. Wait until you get your Gemini, or are you going for a Leopard now.
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Old 11-12-2009, 15:32   #3
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Sounds nice. Love to be in BVI right now.
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Old 11-12-2009, 15:44   #4
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I understand your feeling completely. I think my avatar explains it well........i2f
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Old 11-12-2009, 17:27   #5
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Wooohoo! Sounds like a great week!
If your wife is still talking to you then you should become cruisers!
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Old 12-12-2009, 13:30   #6
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No Leopard, unless it was a lot smaller. One of the many, many things we learned was that this is too much boat for two of us to sail. At least, the way this one was set up. With two more winches mounted closer together, and a furling mainsail, and a working autopilot, maybe. But still, as much as we liked the boat, its not the one for us.
Sure was a hoot to learn on, though.
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Old 12-12-2009, 14:55   #7
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Why is this in the off-topic forum? This is so on-topic! Glad you enjoyed your sailing classes!
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Old 12-12-2009, 15:07   #8
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Oh we did enjoy this. Best vacation I think I ever had. And it was great to go through it as a couple. We both knew how to sail, of course, but we are talking hobie cats and I owned a sixteen foot AMF daysailor for years. But it was a big step up, getting into the world of self tailing winches, reefing lines, diesels, and all the rules and regs. We sure did have a heck of a good time, though. And learning with something this size should make sailing smaller boats easier, I think.

I can't say enough good about Tim McKenna of Fair Winds Sailing School, either. The guy was great. We met three of their other sailing instructors during the week, but can't really comment on anything but their choice of drinks.

Now I am looking around trying to find a company that will bareboat charter a Gemini or similar sized boat someplace fun to go. Now, after this ASA week, I have no doubt we could buy a boat in Florida and sail it home down the Bahamas.
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Old 12-12-2009, 15:22   #9
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Now I am looking around trying to find a company that will bareboat charter a Gemini or similar sized boat someplace fun to go. Now, after this ASA week, I have no doubt we could buy a boat in Florida and sail it home down the Bahamas.
We did US Sailing and ASA classes (including the Liveaboard class on a Manta 40 catamaran) and loved them. We had no significant sailing experience prior other than a few times sailing smaller boats (22' and less). Bought a Catalina 30, our first boat, and have been learning ever since -- anchoring, systems, docking (still the biggest challenge!), etc. We did a nine-day cruise around the Pamlico this fall and hope to get down to Fla. and the Bahamas eventually. You can definitely do it!

(BTW, we read your blog and are envious! Especially when it was 19 degrees this morning.... Your photos are gorgeous!)
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Old 14-12-2009, 06:17   #10
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It's what you get used to. Melanie & I sail our 46ftr. I went from a 30ft. mono, and Melanie only had 2 afternoon sails on the same mono before we jumped onto Imagine. The Gemini is the perfect boat for your area. I can only imagine her giving you endless pleasure.............i2f
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Old 14-12-2009, 07:05   #11
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Can you see Capt. Tim the ASA instructor whispering sweet nothings in my ear about sail trim, falling off, heading up, watching the luff, the tells on the leech...



As much as we like the Gemini, I have been looking harder at the Corsairs since yesterday. The F-27 and F 24's look to be just about ideal for here. A big part of our worries about owning a coastal cruiser here are where to keep it. Very few options. If I could keep it on a trailer...all those worries go away. We keep a Contender in the driveway now, and it's 36 ft long on the trailer. We plan to get rid of it, to buy a sailboat and probably a smaller power boat.

there are a lot of things we like about what we are reading on the Corsairs.
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