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Old 07-04-2009, 07:26   #1
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cruising in a catalina 27

am just curious if its realistic to cruise from vancouver island to the carribean in a catalina 27. i know this boat is not an offshore vessel but its in really good shape brand new sails brand new yanmar good rigging. i want to take a year and cruise up and back but want to make sure that this is doable in this boat. thanks
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Old 07-04-2009, 10:40   #2
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I don't know anything about a Catalina 27, but I can tell you that sailing to the Caribbean and back from Vancouver is a very ambitious agenda. It's not impossible, but very challenging to do in one year in any boat.

If the purpose of the trip is adventure that tests you and your yacht, and if you like lots of sailing compressed into a short period of time, you have a good chance of achieving your purpose. For me it sounds like doing too much in too little time. Doing the same trip over a 2 year period sounds more fun.
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Old 07-04-2009, 10:54   #3
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I'm sure someone has already circumnavigated a Cat 27 by now. That doesn't mean it's an ideal boat for crossing oceans. So, it really depends.
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Old 07-04-2009, 12:15   #4
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They have gone around the world with a Cat 27. That said, I used to own one and I would not take it into deep water. And BC to Panama, that is a true bluewater cruise. Esp in the reverse direction. I bet if you try it you will end up selling the Cat somewhere along the way and upgrading to a true bluewater boat.
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Old 07-04-2009, 12:22   #5
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I agree with Dave. With only a year, either forget the Caribbean or ship the boat to Texas or Florida and spend a year in the Bahamas/Caribbean. For most cruisers the fun part is slow and leisurely island hopping with ample time to stay for awhile or move on whenever and wherever the spirit and the weather moves you.

I donít know anything about Catalina 27s either. But, Catalinas are very popular in the Bahamas/Caribbean, and in good condition I would expect the boat to be acceptable for those waters. 27 feet is small for cruising, but not so much for a single hander. If there are two of you, it all depends on how well you get along.
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Old 07-04-2009, 13:19   #6
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a good 27-28 footer to take on that trip would be a sam morse bristol channel cutter.

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Old 07-04-2009, 13:19   #7
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Patrick Childress circumnavigated in one, but he also beefed up everything (rigging, bulkheads etc..
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Old 07-04-2009, 14:46   #8
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Check out John Vigor's book Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat. Appendix 2 is specifically about "Beefing up a Catalina 27" for offshore sailing.
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Old 07-04-2009, 16:43   #9
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Ship the boat to Florida. Seriously, once you add up the costs (especially the Panama Canal - and you WILL pay a fine for not completing it in 1 day, 'cause your boat won't go that fast), risk your life several times in the Pacific, etc., you would be much better off starting from Florida.

As for shipping it to Texas, and there to Florida, I wouldn't do that trip across the Gulf in a Catalina 27 on a bet. Maybe the ICW...
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Old 08-04-2009, 16:33   #10
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Without getting into the adeqacy of the CAt-27 for your proposed cruise, the distances that you propose to cover in one year are not really feasible, especially if you have any concern for cyclone seasons and your life expectancy. I would say, in fact, that you will not make it! How's that for negative feedback... Not that you will come to some bad end, but that you will not cover all those miles, especially the uphill trip back up the west coast.

The idea of shipping the boat to the most desireable cruising area has merit but will add considerable expense. Another possibilty is (please don't hit me if you really love your particular boat) to sell the Cat, go to Florida and buy another one, or some other similarly priced small cruiser... there are always heaps of them available.

Or if that doesn't appeal, sail as far as the west coast of Mexico and the Sea of Cortez, and spend your year cruising these very pleasant waters. Then ship her back if you wish.

Incidentally, I speak from experience. OUr first year of full time cruising we went from San Francisco to Mexico to The Marquesas, the Tuamotus and Societies, Hawaii and back to SF. Over 16K miles, and I would NEVER do that again (and that was in a 36 foot fairly fast boat). Nowadays we average about 6K miles each year, and enjoy adequate time to smell the roses as we go.

At any rate, I wish you well on whatever adventure you attempt.


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Old 09-04-2009, 04:39   #11
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thanks for all the information everyone. sounds like may have to rethink the cruising plans come up with some new ideas but hey never know unless you ask right.
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:27   #12
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Re: cruising in a catalina 27

This is an old thread. Personally I would suggest selling the boat and getting
A full keeled boat with more ballast. Would be a lot for stable and safe in rough
Weather. It is possible to sail a cat 27 to the carribean but I live on vancouver island and you could sell your boat for around 5000 to 10000 and get a more suitable vessel in the same size for around the same price. Also are you taking the cannal or cape horn? All things to consider. If you just want somewhere hot for the winter I would suggest mexico or southern california would be a lot easier in a catalina 27.

Cheers from guyana

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