We are doing the loop over 2 summers so we could really explore. And so here are some basics according to me:
You have to clear a fixed bridge near Chicago with a max clearance of 19.5 ft., you have to wait for many bridges if you are over 22ft vs gliding under.
It is a fantastic trip for couples to spend time together, and to become experts at boating
and working together. I'd never talk my wife into crossing the Pacific, and this is a great compromise that lets us live the dream together.
My twin lehmans get over 2.3 gph, and just glide along at 7knts (39ft wl). That's about 3.5gpmile, so a 7000 mile loop is under 2000 gal. At $3, that's about $6000. Plan on $10k in fuel
so you don't poo yourself every time you go to fill up, and can tell your frugal spouse you are under budget
There are places to sail and/or favorable winds, but you'll be motoring mostly. I saw a modified sailboat that has removed the mast
permanently that boasted half my fuel consumption
We love our old pilot house trawler as we are in the shade, out of the rain, and out of the cold winds It is a long voyage. Many people state you must have a full walk around, we don't, and it's never an issue as the pilot house offers immediate access to the fore deck
(vs a fly bridge), with the Mrs. on the stern as we lock and dock
But ultimately, your pocket book outlines your choices, there are few bad choices, just levels of good, and you will love the adventure. As an example we anchor
mostly and look for free docks. We use a laptop
to nav as it is cheap
, and allows active captain
to over lay the chart. With active captain
, any moron can do the trip with little stress - even me. (Though I am still looking for a low cost Canada
solution.) Still a sailor, just not on this trip.
We spent this summer gunk holing the entire Chesapeake after cruising from Fort Myers
- even spent a week in DC for the 4th of July. Next summer, the Great Lakes
and the Canada
'Boldly going where thousands have gone before!'