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Old 22-12-2012, 14:46   #1
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Thumbs up Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Obviously I'm new here, and have been doing google searchs where as most of the questions i was asking google directed me here. A light came on upstairs and said "make it easy, join the forum" so here I am.

I'm considering taking my semi retirement into full time retirement I currently own a Recreational RV Park/Campground on a small lake. When i either find managers to run this place or otherwise free myself up, I plan to buy a Sail boat and at least winter down south. It started out wanting to float the Mississippi, and progressed to living abroad in the winter months (Kuwait, Ecuador and South Sinai seem real appealing to me). And then i figured, heck, lets make it a sail boat and do Kuwait, Ecuador and a few other places i'm fond of, and heck why come home accept for a few months here n there, you know a snowmobile ride, deer hunting, the important things in life.

I don't have a sail boat yet, I don't have sailing experience, but i do have initiative and a goal in mind with a lot of water experience. I grew up fishing Lake Michigan and Superior and their tributaries. Skippered a 42 Ft Trojan in Southern CA (out of the LA Harbor). Scuba dived the Red Sea and the coast of Grenada, Worked at Marina Shipyard in Long Beach (played a part in building America's cup boat for us in 86).

What i do need is constructive Criticism and knowledge of those of you that have experienced life abroad based off a boat. I'd love to hunt in some of the countries that i travel too also. I'm almost thinking initially or even in the long term if what i buy is big enough having an experienced couple join the fun and sail with us.

I do know that I'd be plumb stupid to head out without some experience on my side, despite all of my worldly and even water related experiences.

I'm also trying to figure out what type of dingy I'll want, I like the idea of a Boston whaler or inflatable catamaran but then thinking, what about a road legal 4X4 golf cart (modified of course) for inland fuel efficient transportation, and how to carry it and dispatch it etc. Oh so many things that i don't have the answers for or enough knowledge/experience with.

One of my favorite statements "Guidance requested"

Thanks and I"m sure it'll be a pleasure getting to know ya'll.

Kevin
Putman Lake Campground
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Old 22-12-2012, 15:42   #2
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Welcome, Kampaholic. Greetings from Ann Arbor. My wife and I are getting ready to go back to the cruising life after a 26 year hiatus. My guess is you'll love it, especially if you love camping already. My advice is to get all of the experience you can before you buy a boat. Chartering on the Great Lakes, in the Chesapeake, or in the Bahamas would be a good way to start, perhaps at first with a professional crew, and then later on your own. Fair winds!
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Old 22-12-2012, 16:16   #3
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Hi Kevin,
What I really want to know is "Where is the Snow?" We snowmobile from Hamlin Lake over to Baldwin. Bummer as I just bought a new Skidoo 800R.

Anyway, you have a lot of plans and IMO, they are going to be tough to put together. I'd start small, like take an ASA sailing class at Baybreeze in Traverse City. You can charter up to the North Channel. After you get an idea what sailing is actually like, do one of two things. One, charter a small boat in the off season for three weeks in the Caribbean and see how you like it, or two, offer to be crew on a transatlantic delivery. You will most likely need to pay for your airfare and incidentials, but it will give you a tremendous amount of experience with passage making.

I love the Great Lakes but the Ocean is really another animal all together.
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Old 22-12-2012, 23:33   #4
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Thank you that's very solid advice. I've spent enough time on the water to know how much I"ll love it. And have dwelled on it most of my adult life, ever since i first got over seas and started flying over the waters, etc. Of course in my travels, (younger years) whenever i could find a boat or scuba gear i was on it.

What boat are ya'll looking at and where are you hoping to float to?

I've been eyeballing 40ft Cat's and up to 60ft single hull boats, It seems the custom builds have my eye the most. I realize I need some practice before buying, but just like a car, i start looking at least a year in advance so i know all i need to know before buying. With all my looking It's coming back to me.

How would i go about finding a professional crew to start out with?

Kevin

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Welcome, Kampaholic. Greetings from Ann Arbor. My wife and I are getting ready to go back to the cruising life after a 26 year hiatus. My guess is you'll love it, especially if you love camping already. My advice is to get all of the experience you can before you buy a boat. Chartering on the Great Lakes, in the Chesapeake, or in the Bahamas would be a good way to start, perhaps at first with a professional crew, and then later on your own. Fair winds!
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Old 23-12-2012, 04:59   #5
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Kevin.
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Old 23-12-2012, 15:10   #6
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Palarran,


That's a very good question!! Last year we had 3 ridable days here. the first was for those that don't respect their sleds (no base) the second we only got in 80 miles but never saw another rider, it was spectacular and well groomed (minus being pulled over 3 times to "check registration". The third time I was too busy cleaning up storm damage and getting our mile of roads in here opened for the customers (we're open all year).

Rumor has it I"ll be grooming this year so I should have decent reports.

I was going to buy a new sled, but thought.. na... it's not cost effective and my old sleds run great. (I am selling my 98 polaris touring sled though).
I'm assuming around the first of the year it'll be good. this last snow gave us 3" of base plus another 2" so keep fingers crossed we don't have a thaw.
Holy Cow on that 800!! I like my 500 class sleds. I stay in control and we have a blast. (I won't bring up the stories about out riding them big sleds) but then there's a few that know how to ride, so I"ll be quiet LOL. my 500 Doo with a long track did some damage to a lot of ego's LOL. I have been considering a new Doo, but who knows. hard to be on the water and ride,and without consistent good snow, it's hard to justify but i"m sure I"ll find a way to squeeze in some riding. It's truly exhilarating.

I looked Bay Breeze up, Nice layout for the learning curve, so i looked up more, I like that idea. Thank you for that advice.


I was thinking Ecuador or Belize for a training ground on the open water, or the Gulf Coast, I'd be most encouraged to learn in the toughest waters; nothing is nor will be final until it happens.



I just can't imagine a better way to camp than on a boat amidst several nations and the islands in between. Ground transportation and visa requirements are my concerns there. (obviously I'm in my earliest stages of planning determining budget, logistics and feasibility/restrictions (and even a gf to enjoy the cruise with).

How would i find information on a reliable transatlantic delivery gig? I looked up several and they all seem to want younger and experience with more vigor than i have to offer.

I agree about the Great lakes and the ocean being two different animals.

I love them both, but the great lakes just seem to restrictive to me I can't think of stretch along MI that i haven't been to over the years (via water or land). I have looked up at the water many a time in my learning process! Unfortunately my experience in the oceans and seas are much more limited than the great lakes. All of my experience physically on the water (other than docked) has been with power boats.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Palarran View Post
Hi Kevin,
What I really want to know is "Where is the Snow?" We snowmobile from Hamlin Lake over to Baldwin. Bummer as I just bought a new Skidoo 800R.

Anyway, you have a lot of plans and IMO, they are going to be tough to put together. I'd start small, like take an ASA sailing class at Baybreeze in Traverse City. You can charter up to the North Channel. After you get an idea what sailing is actually like, do one of two things. One, charter a small boat in the off season for three weeks in the Caribbean and see how you like it, or two, offer to be crew on a transatlantic delivery. You will most likely need to pay for your airfare and incidentials, but it will give you a tremendous amount of experience with passage making.

I love the Great Lakes but the Ocean is really another animal all together.
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Old 23-12-2012, 15:17   #7
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pirate Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Hi... Welcome to CF...
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Old 23-12-2012, 15:22   #8
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Thank you Gord.

Thank you for the greeting.

You hail from one of my favorite fishing holes that I've never made it too!

I"ve always wanted to go fishing up in Thunderbay. The furthest I've made it up your way is Wawa and surrounding tributories. (made the mistake of going Oct 31st one year, on motorcycle).

How's the smelt been doing up your way in the spring? Lake MI/Lake Huron side is all but done with the new limits it makes it restrictive and hard to find anyhow. Until then i could always load up but had to fish hard, unlike years before a phone call and load n go with a smile.

One of my earliest boating lessons was being stormed in with a 14 deep V up at the Red rock. We were stranded several days and the fish weren't biting (we were getting hungry) but we managed a couple of walleye and perch docking on and fishing off the ice bergs in the small bay. Ended up crawling the Coast amongst the rocks in heavy winds and serious fog to get home back. It was nip n tuck every bit of the way.

I do hope to fish up your way eventually and another trip to the Red Rock would be nice (that place is spectacular)

Kevin

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Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Kevin.
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Old 23-12-2012, 16:06   #9
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

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Hi... Welcome to CF...
Phil,

Thanks for the Welcome!.

It appears your one of the lucky few that gets paid to float!. I"m sure that's more than enjoyable despite you can't always lolly gag your way from island to island like others not on a specific deadline.

I can picture myself wanting to get to know you and learn from you.

Kevin
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Old 24-12-2012, 10:18   #10
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Aloha and welcome aboard!
Good to have you posting here and I'll second the suggestion of taking at least a basic sailing lesson just to get you into sail handling the right way. You probably know all you need about navigation and rules of the road as they apply to powerboats. Sailboats are a bit different.
kind regards,
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Old 25-12-2012, 19:08   #11
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Thank you John,

I'm already looking into that.

I have a lot to learn about the official rules of the road under power or sail. I've never had formal training other than the college of "get r done". and well at this point in life I'd rather do things the easy way, hence the term "retirement" and enjoy rather than trial and error and "OH Chit!!"

I'm also thinking i like the suggestion about after the lessons hopping a ride both routes across the Atlantic; or maybe a more challenging course.

I"d rather learn the hardest first then take a deep breath than be confronted with the unknown unexpectedly.

I would entertain recommendations of classes on blue water versus Lake Michigan with Bay Breeze. But then if we hit superior and Erie on a windy spring or fall day, that's some pretty solid training. Short and choppy versus long and rolling would have to take two different techniques, types of experience in rough situations.. I'd think... I'd love suggestions there.

Kevin


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Aloha and welcome aboard!
Good to have you posting here and I'll second the suggestion of taking at least a basic sailing lesson just to get you into sail handling the right way. You probably know all you need about navigation and rules of the road as they apply to powerboats. Sailboats are a bit different.
kind regards,
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Old 27-12-2012, 15:49   #12
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Good Afternoon Kamp . . it sounds as if you may have not actually tried sailing yet . .so here is the offer . .I have a 32" Pearson docked in Muskegon and I would be more than willing to take you and the first mate out some day in the spring . . then you will know . let's talk come may . . Wayne
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Old 27-12-2012, 17:12   #13
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Kamp,

I am from Gladstone Michigan and have been sailing/racing for 15 years and my dad has been at it for 40 years. We have started the very thing that you speak of "sailing around the world and finding all the adventures you can dandle". My blog is "dragonsbanevoyage"com. I find it fun that before I got off the Michigan lakes I had only a few experiences up in Alaska, bare boating in the Bahamas etc. My dad is 65 and I am 30 FYI. We have found that the ideas you shared above are more of the postcard dream we all share. Not to be a party pooper but the ocean is a tough and unforgiving place. We spent months outfitting our Scepter 43 with new equipment and thought we would be good to go, sit back and enjoy the ride. Boy I was wrong, everyday is something different, things break all the time, salt covers everything, and you have to learn lots of information from guide books, locals and so on to get from one island to the next safely. All the chart plotters, nautical charts are so wrong you will hit a reef if you follow them. The weather is always a problem and parts, fuel, and anything else that needs to be bought becomes very difficult out of country. Donít for get all the duty you pay when you get things shipped; think about 25 to 50% duty on parts in most countries.

That aside I suggest the best way to do what you are thinking about is the ARC group which starts a group of sailors every year or two usually about 100 sailboats plus and they sail from place to place all over together and support one another. This would be the best way to complete your dream trust me. Trust me even with a hundred sailboat leaving at once after a day you never see them till you regroup at the rally point. I really wish we had join this but we will continue!

Jacques
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Old 27-12-2012, 21:54   #14
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

Jacques,

Thank you for your input.

Oh how i know about maps, even bouy's being wrong. Toasted my boat real bad up in your neck of the woods 10 or so years ago. Worse yet nobody would assist, blew me off like a darned fly on their noses. In short i was pushed to the side by the charters and held study as i could and Wham.. i hit that reef hard. floated for several hours before i hit land walked several miles till i got a ride, etc.

I realize this won't be a cake walk one bit. but to me it'll be retirement. Some of us thrive on exhilarating moments and the like. So no your not raining on my parade at all, rather giving some sound advice. and Nope i don't do post cards, rarely do pictures for that matter. But i do live the life of adventure, always have and figure to do so till they drive that last nail in that pine box (actually over board would be my preference).

I was wondering about groups like you mentioned here "ARC"and will be looking some up. I'll be looking at your Blog also.

Thank you for the reminder on the duties (i was wondering what the range is going to be but hadn't researched that yet).

So thank you very much for your kind words of caution and wisdom. I'm very much excited about the adventure, the challenges the make the beauty all worth while.

If you know of a certain ARC group you could refer me to I"d appreciate it.

Kevin

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Kamp,

I am from Gladstone Michigan and have been sailing/racing for 15 years and my dad has been at it for 40 years.

We have found that the ideas you shared above are more of the postcard dream we all share. Not to be a party pooper but the ocean is a tough and unforgiving place. We spent months outfitting our Scepter 43 with new equipment and thought we would be good to go, sit back and enjoy the ride. Boy I was wrong, everyday is something different, things break all the time, salt covers everything, and you have to learn lots of information from guide books, locals and so on to get from one island to the next safely. All the chart plotters, nautical charts are so wrong you will hit a reef if you follow them. The weather is always a problem and parts, fuel, and anything else that needs to be bought becomes very difficult out of country. Donít for get all the duty you pay when you get things shipped; think about 25 to 50% duty on parts in most countries.


That aside I suggest the best way to do what you are thinking about is the ARC group
This would be the best way to complete your dream trust me. Trust me even with a hundred sailboat leaving at once after a day you never see them till you regroup at the rally point. I really wish we had join this but we will continue!


Jacques
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Old 27-12-2012, 22:05   #15
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Re: Hello From Baldwin Michigan

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Originally Posted by waynecatt View Post
Good Afternoon Kamp . . it sounds as if you may have not actually tried sailing yet . .so here is the offer . .I have a 32" Pearson docked in Muskegon and I would be more than willing to take you and the first mate out some day in the spring . . then you will know . let's talk come may . . Wayne
Wayne,

Thank you very much for that offer.

My proposed first mate has sailed i want to say the Caribbean, but no, I've never officially been under sail. Power boats has been my life. I've helped refit them, helped build one, heck even have a tiny one here for customers but never truly sailed myself.

Again, thank you.

Kevin
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