I own a Gibsea 302 since 2004. I cruise
with her about 9 weeks per years. Before that, I have been an instructor with a sailing school
that owned a few of them.
, I ferried her from Pauillac on the Gironde to Lorient in winter in the Bay of Biscay without any problem. Since then, I have been cruising the north part of the Bay of Biscay, the western part of the English Channel
, the Celtic sea and the SW coast of Ireland
. Then, I think my opinion about this boat is fairly well informed.
IMO, this is a good sailing yacht, strongly built, fairly fast as soon as the wind
4, very pleasant and easy to helm
. The rudder
has very good authority when going ahead or astern, it is able to check the prop walk when backing.
The boat sails
efficiently in a seaway, going to windward or downwind. Close-hauled, I got 6 kts in Beaufort
5 and moderate sea (2.5m significant height) with double reefed main and working jib
, and 5.5 kts in Beaufort 7-8, gusting to 9 and very rough sea (4 to 5m significant height) with triple-reefed main and storm jib
. Downwind, I carry the spinnaker
up to Beaufort 4-5 and at least 8kts.
The weak point is in light wind
with some chop. The speed is disappointing in these conditions.
is very wide and comfortable, pleasant in port, at anchor
and at sea. When helming, I generally sit on the wide windward coaming, to get a better view of the waves. The mainsheet track is very long across the cockpit
but so low that it isn't an obstacle.
The starboard cockpit locker is huge. It accommodates the inflatable
, 5 headsails, 7 fenders, all the docklines... The port cockpit locker is shallower but roomy enough to receive a 6-person life raft, the storm anchor
and its rode
, 2 gas bottles, the outboard
gasoline tank, a bucket...
There are berths for sleeping 6 people (2 in the salon
, 2 in the fore cabin
and 2 in the aft one) but then the boat is slightly crowded at night, for there isn't much space for stowing personal items: the luggage bags have to be stacked on the salon
table. It is much more pleasant with only 4 people aboard.
is close to the companionway
and usable in all sea conditions. There are variations regarding the galley
: some boats have an oven
, mine hasn't. The water
tank is 110 litres, the Diesel
one is 70 litres.
Please note, there are 4 different keel
configurations: shallow draught (1.45m), deep draught (1.85m), centreboarder (0.65 / 1.65m) and medium draught (1.6m, the one I have).