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Old 08-02-2020, 15:46   #1
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Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

We are going to be living in Ireland for a year, and we (2 kids, ages 11 and 13, plus mom and dad) would prefer to sail over from the US. Problem is, we don't have a boat, and I'm the only one with water experience. We don't want to go by barge (might as well fly).

Do you have any suggestions? We want to learn to sail, but are landlocked (Colorado) and are happy to learn on the go, cook, clean etc. in exchange for being onboard. Any leads/ideas?

Many thanks
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Old 09-02-2020, 05:48   #2
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, 'Crab.
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Old 09-02-2020, 07:09   #3
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

And welcome again, Happycrab.

North Atlantic crossings are for the very experienced. Yes, lots of cruisers do it, but almost always after years of experience closer at hand, and perhaps after crewing trans-Atlantic before being skipper. While it's been single-handed, you need at least two good watches, not a skipper and newbies. After years of experience with a wide variety of boats, I consider myself (and my wife) Carribean qualified, but not crossing qualified, even though our boat is capable of it.

Go to Ireland. While you are there, take up sailing as a family. Don't throw away the dream in despair, hold on to it and work toward it.
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Old 09-02-2020, 07:39   #4
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

I would bet that you and your family watched and sdmired Greta and said that is the way to do it. Hey she had one of the worlds greatest sailors on board, a weather routing team that have the capt advise, a well founded boat with an experienced crew.


Take and airplace you are not Greta.
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Old 09-02-2020, 08:16   #5
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Thanks for the encouragement, Tkeithlu, and the caution.

My dad's side of the family was Coast Guard, my dad was a fisherman, and I grew up on the ocean, but in 'stink pots', not sailboats. Being stuck in Colorado (ah, what we do for love) has been disappointing. Been waiting for the kids to be big enough to embrace the sea, and this year's adventure is the perfect excuse to indulge.

I've been researching this more, and your response reinforced what I'm learning. I'd hoped to find a large enough tall ship that maybe we could be a part of a larger team. That's been really hard to find, as they are mostly commercial (and expensive) enterprises. While I feel I could contribute meaningfully, and my husband is capable (climber, so he is adept with rope/knots and is strong), two clueless kids might be too much.

I'm looking into the sailing clubs in the UK and Ireland. If I can't make every leg of the trip on water, I can certainly get us all out once we're over there. These poor kids- they can hike and ski, lol, but they don't know the joy of being out where you can't see land. Such a different world.

Any other suggestions/advice from this group is welcome and helpful while we prepare for our year.

HappyCrab
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Old 09-02-2020, 09:50   #6
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Many merchant ships cross the Atlantic and offer paid passage , which would be a lot cheaper , less stress ,and less danger than trying to buy your own boat , and set sail West to East.
Or get the plane stop worrying about the climate , get to Ireland get yourself on the RYA courses and get the kids wet for a year and then look at crossing East to West when you have some experience
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Old 09-02-2020, 09:54   #7
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

I definitely wasn't looking to buy a boat. To be clear, I was looking to help crew a larger boat with a team. lol There's no WAY I'd try to cross the Atlantic under my own hand. There are cheaper ways to be stupid (and die) than that, to be sure! Sorry my original post wasn't more clear.

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Old 09-02-2020, 10:26   #8
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

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Originally Posted by HappyCrab View Post
Thanks for the encouragement, Tkeithlu, and the caution.

My dad's side of the family was Coast Guard, my dad was a fisherman, and I grew up on the ocean, but in 'stink pots', not sailboats. Being stuck in Colorado (ah, what we do for love) has been disappointing. Been waiting for the kids to be big enough to embrace the sea, and this year's adventure is the perfect excuse to indulge.

I've been researching this more, and your response reinforced what I'm learning. I'd hoped to find a large enough tall ship that maybe we could be a part of a larger team. That's been really hard to find, as they are mostly commercial (and expensive) enterprises. While I feel I could contribute meaningfully, and my husband is capable (climber, so he is adept with rope/knots and is strong), two clueless kids might be too much

I'm looking into the sailing clubs in the UK and Ireland. If I can't make every leg of the trip on water, I can certainly get us all out once we're over there. These poor kids- they can hike and ski, lol, but they don't know the joy of being out where you can't see land. Such a different world.

Any other suggestions/advice from this group is welcome and helpful while we prepare for our year.

HappyCrab
Sv Zingaro is offering one week charters (probably in the South Pacific) for four people at what looks like about 8 grand. They are currently finishing up their Kickstart campaign to fund a new blue water catamaran in the 40+ foot range. As this campaign is fully funded, the project is a go and will be active this summer. James would be a great guy for your kids and hubby to learn from as this is a "hands on" charter - which means everybody participates not just in sailing but also boat maintenance (which is a crucial part of the offshore experience). This offer is good until March 5th when the campaign ends. Check out their website at SV Zingaro - it's an amazing story.
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Old 09-02-2020, 10:44   #9
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Have a look at the weather in Ireland today, and keep in mind that October weather can be very similar.
I live in Ireland on the West coast and have 2 winter Transatlantics done and nothing would get me out there in the winter again
Ireland is a lovely place but bare in mind that it is horribly expensive to live here.
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Old 09-02-2020, 12:31   #10
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

I have made 4 transAtlantics, 2 each way, but would never cross in October in either direction.
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Old 10-02-2020, 06:49   #11
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

October, really the beginning of the winter season, would be a horrible time in the North Atlantic. One of several crossings I've made began in Cowes in early December. We took a somewhat southerly route. Even so, it was one of the top WORST sailing experiences I've had. My advice: Don't do it.
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Old 10-02-2020, 08:16   #12
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

+1 to what Yargo said. Wrong time of year.
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Old 10-02-2020, 14:17   #13
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
And welcome again, Happycrab.

North Atlantic crossings are for the very experienced. Yes, lots of cruisers do it, but almost always after years of experience closer at hand, and perhaps after crewing trans-Atlantic before being skipper. While it's been single-handed, you need at least two good watches, not a skipper and newbies. After years of experience with a wide variety of boats, I consider myself (and my wife) Carribean qualified, but not crossing qualified, even though our boat is capable of it.

Go to Ireland. While you are there, take up sailing as a family. Don't throw away the dream in despair, hold on to it and work toward it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarian View Post
Many merchant ships cross the Atlantic and offer paid passage , which would be a lot cheaper , less stress ,and less danger than trying to buy your own boat , and set sail West to East.
Or get the plane stop worrying about the climate , get to Ireland get yourself on the RYA courses and get the kids wet for a year and then look at crossing East to West when you have some experience

Agree with both of the above. My wife and I have eight years sailing together and will try our first crossing this May (best time of year! NOT October). She has 35+ years racing 30'-45' sailboats and I come from a stink-pot background. I can keep course and can do what I'm told. We make a good team. I am also a pilot so I do the navigation and weather with contact to a wx router via SSB and Iridium GO!.



"get to Ireland get yourself on the RYA courses and get the kids wet for a year and then look at crossing East to West when you have some experience".
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Old 11-02-2020, 11:36   #14
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Re: Looking to sail family US to EU in October 2020

Long, long ago, on this planet, a friend of mine wanted to spend a year sailing around the Baltic and visiting the people who had helped him escape (several times) from Stalag Luft whatever during WW2. He met a freighter off Jacksonville, had his 26' gaff rigged catamaran "FUBAR" lifted on as deck cargo, and did it in reverse on the way back.

The late great Major Earnest Norman, I salute you.
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