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LineDrawing76 29-11-2007 14:56

Short Story Author with a question about Sailing/Cruising
:dork:My question may seem both overly vague and overly specific at the same time, and is sure to show just how little I know about sailing and cruising vessels.

But to get right down to it, the purpose for asking my question is that I am writing a short story about a man who gets tangled up with an eccentric billionare who owns an island and has established a strange, cult-like commune there.

In the story, the main character ends up travelling to the island on the billionare's private yacht, which is quite large for a private vessel.

The journey to the island is sort of like a pleasure cruise, but the main purpose of the cruise is to get the people on the boat from San Diego to the island; a fictitious island which, in the story, is part of the Galapagos Archipelago.

In other words, it's a modern, powerful boat, but also luxurious and large, and while the guests are being entertained at sea, its somewhat secondary to the goal of just getting there. So they're trying to get there fast, but not at all costs, and they still want the passengers (about 100-150) to have a smooth ride.

The question is then, assuming that everything goes smoothly, the boat doesn't break down, doesn't get caught in any bad weather, about how long would one expect such a voyage to take? And a super precise answer really isn't necessary, just basically, would it be more like three or four days, or more like ten days to two weeks, because I really have no idea, and even though it's fiction, and I could pretty much just make up any figure I wanted, I do want to incorporate some realism and account for the time, whether some plot points could take place on the boat or not, given the amount of time that the action in the story would take place on the boat.

S/V Elusive 29-11-2007 15:16

It is about 3200 miles from San Diego, CA to the Galapagos Archipelago. A boat big enough to comfortably accommodate 150 people (PLUS CREW) would be in the ~250 foot range. Cruising Speed could be anywhere from 20 to 35 knots.

S/V Illusion 29-11-2007 15:17

That number of guests puts it at a huge power boat rather than sailboat which is the focus of this forum. In fact, having that many people onboard even the largest private motoryacht is impractical - you would need a small cruise ship at minimum.
Having said that, figure 20 knots as an avg speed between any two points to get your answer

LineDrawing76 29-11-2007 15:28

Ah, I didn't realize that this forum dealt only with sailing vessels. Sorry for that.

As for the size, true, it would have to be a lot bigger than what is traditionally considered a private yacht, even in more extreme examples of what gets passed as a yacht. But an eccentric billionare who owns a cruise ship for his own private use would likely be inclined to refer to it as a yacht, for no other reasons than as a display of understating the extravagance of their lifestyle; think William Randolph Hearst.

That said though, sorry for going a bit more off topic than "off topic" for this forum. I'm stumbling around in the dark, here.

TaoJones 29-11-2007 15:52


Originally Posted by LineDrawing76 (Post 114660)
Ah, I didn't realize that this forum dealt only with sailing vessels. Sorry for that.

It doesn't, and no apology is necessary. There are plenty of power cruisers here. The members here should be honored that you would ask for their input in seeking information on cruising from San Diego to The Galapagos.

Larry Ellison, as you are probably aware, is a billionaire - 18 times over, last I knew. He owns Rising Sun, a private yacht just over 450 feet long. It would be easily capable of doing what the vessel in your story must do. Here's a link to a site with a lot of pictures of Rising Sun:

Rising Sun - Larry Ellison's yacht

Best of luck to you in the creation of your short story. Oh, and welcome to Cruisers Forum.


Ex-Calif 29-11-2007 20:16

Look at any number of dot comers and real estate tycoons - Paul Allen, Trump etc. Most of these guys have yachts that accomodate helicopter pads so 150 of their intimate friends shouldn't be a problem - LOL

Rare air over there, care bear <sigh>

Unicorn Dreams 29-11-2007 20:45

Rising Sun,
Looks like it would make a good dinghy

cbac 07-12-2007 22:50

The obvious answer is that it will take as long as your plot deems necessary. There can be numerous delays to develop the storyline, the onboard storyline.

cooper 08-12-2007 03:14

Kind regards to Tao, ..cbac, I like the way you think ! Given what others have said about boat speed, google earth can give you a mouse click distance to enhance the "accuracy" of your story. One of the wonderful things about creative writing, is that you can enjoy (develop) the story and come back later to adjust the time lines. Some writers dont even bother. TV .......

MarkJ 08-12-2007 03:49

Well, it could be a super yacht... have a look at this sort of thing from the Blur website

some pretty special pics on the Blur site.

Alos what about a Club Med type yacht? thatw as a 3 mast ship they had over 100 pax. Cruise about 12 knots.


TaoJones 08-12-2007 09:34


Originally Posted by cooper (Post 116891)
Kind regards to Tao, . . .

And to you, Coop.

It appears you've posted a picture of the amazing Maltese Falcon, MarkJ, much discussed in the thread: "Cutty Sark's 24-hour Run Record Falls!" located in the Sailing Forum.


MarkJ 08-12-2007 14:15


Originally Posted by TaoJones (Post 116924)
"Cutty Sark's 24-hour Run Record Falls!" located in the Sailing Forum.


What? It burns quickly?

LOL Sorry, I couldnt resist! I'll go have a look at that thread. I must admit I didnt read it cos I thought it would be some extreeme test tube boat and I dont want to see Cutty Sarks record fall to that. But if its another tall ship, well then... :)

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