We set off from San Francisco
in our trawler
in December 2012, and are now 13,000 miles later in Grenada
in the Caribbean
. We decided on a trawler
right off the bat for several reasons. We loved the space and light that a trawler provides, we wanted to be inside and protected when conditions were bad, and as we had no sailing experience we were not prepared to start our journey as novices.
Not all boats described as "trawlers" are equivalent. In our opinion what you should look for is a boat with a full-displacement hull
, low-power engines and a speed at wide-open throttle of no more than 11 knots (i.e. a passage
maker). These are boats that are designed for long-distance, open water
, cruising, and are the most economical on fuel
We have a Seahorse 52, twin-engined trawler that is extremely capable of open-water cruising. You need to think carefully about the boat you will choose. We carry 800 gallons of diesel
and at 7 knots get 2 to 3 nautical miles per gallon. This gives us a range of 1500-2000 nm. We also have a generator
(essential), a water
maker (essential), a full polishing system (highly desirable) and a stabilizer (highly desirable). We also have a washing
machine and would regard that as almost de rigeur for long-term cruising.
We wanted twin engines rather than a single
for redundancy in case one is lost
for any reason. On two occasions we have temporarily had to shut down one engine
and being able to carry on with the other justified our decision.
Happy to chat about our experience with you.