Friday, October 6, 2017
Small Boat Solution
Reports are coming out of Florida about the situation on the water. The devastation has been extensive in the Keys. I hear something like 70% of the boats were lost down there. Even boats that survived are sitting still. There are so many wrecks and so much debris in the channels that it's not safe. Then there's the little problem of where do you go? Quite a few marinas are out of business. Even people who don't normally stay at marinas still use their fuel docks, fresh water, and pump outs.
My lovely wife and I plan on sailing the waters of Florida this year. We are taking down our Oday 19 sailboat. With the swing keel retracted, it draws only a foot of water. That will allow us to get into places where most boats cannot go. Instead of being hung up on debris or new shoals, we should be able to pass right over most of them.
In the past we've gotten by quite well without marinas. We used Google maps to find things on shore, then located anchorages that let us reach what we needed. We've anchored off shore, kayaked to town and chained our kayak to a park bench. When I needed gas I'd often just carry a gas can down to a filling station.
Since the boat is a trailer sailor, we can pick and choose where we want to launch. If a section of waterway looks too sketchy, we'll be able to trailer it to a better location.
That's great. It's a good little boat. We even bought a new mainsail for it last summer. There is one persistent problem though. The cabin isn't very large. It is big enough for both of us and the dog to stretch out and sleep comfortably. There is not much room for anything else.
A bigger boat would be nice, but my lovely wife has a different idea. Instead of having a bigger boat, she wants to have smaller crew. If we both lose some weight, there will be more room. Dang, she's got a point. It even fits our budget much better than buying a bigger boat right now.