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Old 11-11-2019, 12:39   #16
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Courtenay BC
Boat: Bavaria Vision 42
Posts: 705
Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

Go for it Frank - and welcome to CF.

I was 56 when we bought our boat and am almost 71 now - the purchase a pre-retirement decision taken after chartering in the PNW a few times. You don't have to cruise the world to enjoy the life. We're coastal cruisers in BC with a huge relatively unpopulated coast to explore and we both love it.

Consider that your reality will not necessarily be what you're looking at on You Tube. For us, the chartering gave us some experience cruising for a couple of weeks at a time and some experience with different boats. Our boat is probably not a world cruiser but it suits us for our usage, especially following major upgrades to the electrical system ( inc solar). I'd suggest some flexibility in your plan as well - as others have said, finances, health and family all have an impact and those factors can change quickly.
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Old 11-11-2019, 13:18   #17
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Location: Ocean World, Dominican Republic
Boat: bavaria, 49 ft. sailboat
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Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

My husband and I plan to do the same thing. We are now 68 and 69.

Going diving and sailing on cat for 2 weeks in March next year as we have not spent any time on a catamaran yet and would like to so before deciding what to purchase. Got certifications on monohull and will get same for cat, hopefully that helps to get insurance when the time comes. Read that can be an issue if you don't have a lot of experience. We still won't retire for a year and we will purchase then.

Just wanted you to know that you won't be the oldest newbie out there.
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Old 11-11-2019, 13:37   #18
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Location: Cowichan Bay, BC (Maple Bay Marina)
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Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

Welcome to our merry little band, Frank.

I'm 73. When I was 70 I sailed (95% motored) our Catalina 34 from SF to B.C.

You're never too old. It's all in your head if your body still works.

One thing that is usually missing from initial responses to these types of questions (you're not the first), is:

sailing is the easy part

You have to learn to be an electrician, plumber, mechanic and rigger, too.

How's your brain set up for those?!?

Good luck, it's a great life. I sail the same waters as desodave, the skipper from Courtenay, beautiful place.
Stu Jackson
Catalina 34 #224 (1986) C34IA Secretary
Cowichan Bay, BC, SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)
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Old 11-11-2019, 14:25   #19
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Location: Good question
Boat: Rafiki 37
Posts: 14,266
Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

I love reading all these wonderful examples. At 52 I sometimes complain about feeling a bit creaky, but you folks are setting the example us (relative) youngin's can follow.

Thanks .
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
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Old 11-11-2019, 19:31   #20
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Location: Gympie
Boat: Volkscruiser
Posts: 2,744
Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

91 is my oldest customer to buy a yacht so far. He knew his limitations and was happy to have a crew for some of time.
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Old 11-11-2019, 20:01   #21
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Boat: SY Wake: 53' Amel Super Maramu
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Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

Not only is 60 not too old, all things being equal, but I've noticed living onboard full time and sailing around for the last 2 years that sailing ages people funny.... The skin can suffer if you're not careful, but everything else seems to go in reverse I see guys and gals on the water who look 50 but are 70 all the time. Lots of healthy food, plenty of mental occupation like learning languages, navigation, mechanical stuff; lots of good, fun body work (I don't call swimming, diving, fishing, sailing, and hiking new cities and ruins by the sea exercise)... plus just daily living onboard is a surprisingly physical thing, maintaining balance, pumping the heads, climbing in and out of the dinghy or over the rails, lifting and hauling provisions.... It all leaves you looking and feeling much younger than living in a condo somewhere in the suburbs

Long story short, NO! Now tell us everything ELSE about your life so we can tell you if everything else is gonna work
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Old 11-11-2019, 20:25   #22
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Location: St. Augustine, FL
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Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

Originally Posted by heysteve View Post
I've also noticed we're in much better physical shape now than when we started a year ago. We used to walk all around our neighborhood but it's nothing like going up and down your companionway fifty times a day. Or think of just getting groceries to the boat and garbage off... everything is more work with a boat but it's also exercise.

THIS. According to all the clocks I see and people I talk to, I am in fact getting older every day. However, I can't tell going just by my current physical state of being alive. If anything, my body is much happier this way than on land full time. I do know I've lost some weight (that really needed to happen). My knees don't ache anymore, possibly because of the vastly higher usage they're getting with those three vertical steps to go do anything outside. Some of the things I've done lately would've been nearly impossible six months or a year ago. Using a sticky #40 non-electric winch to lift a 180lb guy to the top of the mast and back down - a journey of about 42' times 4 - twice in about a half hour. That level of exertion might well have killed me if ALL those other boat projects hadn't been subtly conditioning me a bit at a time and adding a little cardio here and there.

It ain't the fountain of youth but if there is such a thing somewhere out there, you'd need a boat to get to it anyway.
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Old 11-11-2019, 20:33   #23
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Location: New Zealand
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Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

You're not a lot older than Sir Alec Rose, who bought a boat in his late 50s and circumnavigated, back when it was a difficult thing to do. And don't forget Jeanne Socrates, at age 77 just finished her third circumnavigation alone...

Plenty of time yet!
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Old 11-11-2019, 21:33   #24
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Join Date: Feb 2019
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Posts: 18
Re: Am I Too Old To Do This?

Hello. As the other posters said, there are so many people out there in your age group.

The only thing might be that there are ways of using your body weight and balance that take a while to learn, so older experienced boaties have an advantage there. Itís worthwhile when you are learning getting the padded pants, knee pads etc to save bumps.

I do want to say that you donít have to start with a plan to sail
the world or do long passages, and then freak yourselves out with the thought of how much you need to learn. Assuming you have somewhere nearby to sail, itís very satisfying just cruising and exploring locally.
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