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Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-02-2004, 06:49 AM   #1
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Cruisin' In Your Retirement

I was curious as to how many people took up sailing in their retirement. Cruising in the Caribbean for example. What qualifications from a sailing perspective is needed? This comes from a from a person with minimal sailing experience. (3 months cruising on a friends 45' boat)

How do you like it? I liked the 3 months we did, after I got over the initial idea of having something to do all the time. Eventually it was quite relaxing. Now I am back on dry land I miss it.

Ian
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-02-2004, 07:07 AM   #2
 
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Hello. Good post.

Before I retired, I had several good friends who were
sailors. Even when I had more energy, it seemed like
too much work to me. I loved being on the water, but
always felt more comfortable if I could hit the throttle
and go. We still plan to have a big boat on big water,
but no sailboats. I do understand the appeal though.

John Galt
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-02-2004, 08:49 AM   #3
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Shokwave - we'll let you know in about 6 months. We are currently hip deep in projects to get our 20+ year old sailboat ready to live aboard. The idea has been brewing for several years and we are just now making the leap - me 46, hubby 55. If there is any more interest, we can post under "Retirement Afloat" so as not to bore anyone to tears. Read what has already been posted there for more info.
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-02-2004, 04:22 PM   #4
 
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Hello Bayfield 40! I think your adventure is pretty
neat and am a bit envious. Are you connected
in any way with Bayfield, Wisconsin? If so, the
cruising season will be pretty short

John Galt
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-02-2004, 05:00 PM   #5
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Quote:
I was curious as to how many people took up sailing in their retirement.
I've been day-sailing for years, but the idea of more than a couple of days on a boat doesn't really appeal to me. I'm trying to work my way up to "gunkholer," but that's as adventuresome as I want to get.
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Re:  OK, I give up.
Old 06-03-2004, 08:34 AM   #6
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Re:  OK, I give up.

What's a "gunkholer" and how low does one have to start to work their way UP to it?
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-03-2004, 09:05 AM   #7
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

If a navy guy is asking me about nautical terms, it must be *really* obscure *

A gunkhole is a small, shallow area of water, usually secluded as to afford great protection from wind and weather. *Practically speaking, it is a quiet anchorage where one "drops the hook" for an overnight stay, without benefit of shore-side power umbilical or marina lights and hubbub; and when the anchor is raised, it is most often covered with indescribable "gunk."

(From http://www.royal-palm-yacht-club.org/GunkHole/gunk1.htm)

There are lots of gunkholes here in the pacific northwest.
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-03-2004, 03:05 PM   #8
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

I think they're called hurricane holes down here or something like that. The gunk is real enough.
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Re:  Yecccch!  Thanks, Wab.
Old 06-03-2004, 03:11 PM   #9
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Re:  Yecccch!  Thanks, Wab.

It's been a little over two years since retirement and I still haven't been out on the water in anything more seaworthy than a longboard or a Zodiac. I'd join in if my kid wanted to take sailing lessons, but otherwise I'm not interested.

I don't miss the "cruising lifestyle" a bit. I occasionally reminisce about surfacing south of Oahu at 3 AM, cracking open the hatch & seeing the Milky Way with a big breath of fresh air, setting a course for home, and enjoying a cup of coffee as the lights of Honolulu slowly rise over the horizon.

Then I remember all of the other things that had to happen to get to that Kodak moment, and I don't miss it all over again. Today's sweetest moment is sitting on my back lanai at sunset with a frosty beverage and watching the ships come home.
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-04-2004, 04:42 AM   #10
 
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Yep, boating has its downside for sure. Mainly it can
be quite expensive. I owned quite a few power boats
in the past, but nothing now except for a little jon boat
used for fishing in our river. Once we get relocated
(shooting for next winter) to Texas, I hope to be in position to go with a fairly large sleep-aboard power
boat, maybe 28 feet. Not to live on though. Now, this is
my segue into a real conundrum that is hanging over me.
Since 1991 I have been an active biker (motorcycle).
I told myself that when I got to a point where I could
not ride anymore I would just concentrate on other
interests. Sounded good at the time. I am close now to
giving up the bike (mostly health issues) and am having a real tough time with it. I actually did quit in 2002, but
then took it up again in 2003. Anyway, I don't know how this will help anyone else except as a reminder
that the things you enjoy in ER will disappear one day,
so maximize your time now. This stuff about waiting
to have fun in 10 years is baloney. I don't care how old you are.

John Galt
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-04-2004, 05:14 AM   #11
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

I like the part where someone else owns the boat - one neighbor has seven(counting waveriders) and the other three - and we get along well. Riding is way more fun than owning. Although haven't been on a sailboat in 10 years - I know a few ddaysailors if the mood strikes.
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-07-2004, 06:54 AM   #12
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Thanks for all the input. I think we will go back to the "Friends" 45 footer (Stable Cat) in November for a few more months. Then look for someplace to settle. At the moment we are completely liquid and staying with family for the summer in Canada. Come October it will be too cold and we will be looking for some warmth.

Where is the Lanai, and the view of the ships Sounds expensive.

SWR
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Re:  The back lanai
Old 06-07-2004, 09:00 AM   #13
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Re:  The back lanai

Our lanai is on a hill in central Oahu, with a tiny obscured view of the Pearl Harbor channel entrance. Ships are visible to the naked eye but details require a clear day and a good pair of 7x50s. And if those trees on the next ridge grow much taller...

Hawaii was a bit expensive four years ago, but this is getting downright ridiculous. Yesterday we visited an open house-- 4BR 3BA, 2700 sq ft two-story on 8000 sq ft lot. (Yes, a little less than one-fifth of an acre but nearly twice the size of the average suburban Hawaii lot.) Only two years old, wonderful high-quality construction with cathedral-ceiling livingroom & diningroom & master bedroom, squeaky clean, nicely landscaped, great architectural details & fantastic ultramodern kitchen, whirlpool bathtub, walk-in closets, fully-mirrored closet doors, integrated sound system & intercom with security, wood Venetian blinds throughout, two-car garage, and solar water heater. I always try to run down open houses to see how flexible the realtor is, but I couldn't find anything to bad-mouth here. 20 minutes from south-shore surf, 30 minutes from the North Shore, it's the best-looking residence I've seen in years without being an over-the-top "trophy house" or a hotel lobby.

The downside is no view, not much privacy from the neighbors, ugly stucco perimeter wall, heavy ceramic tile roof requiring air conditioning, undisclosed water leak in the garage (smells damp & musty), and a gated community with a $20/mo fee (in addition to the neighborhood's $26/mo fee). The owner is making an unexpected upward career move so presumably is motivated but can hold out for a high offer.

The realtor, who's very experienced (he listed the home we bought four years ago) and personable, freely admits that the property has no nearby comps. He also agrees that he's testing the market with his listing price, and he seems to feel a little pressure from the seller to push the envelope. OTOH he's not bashful about making the price the largest font on the listing sheet-- $985,000!

A/C bills will run $150/mo but, hey, property taxes will only be about $300/mo.

The realtor's phone barely stopped ringing. Over a dozen people went through the place in 20 minutes and several of them were making appointments to submit offers. Move fast-- it'll probably only last a couple weeks...

Oh, well, now I'm motivated to fix the busted hose inside our washing machine. Just as soon as we finish extracting the water that leaked under the wall to the kid's bedroom, and then buy new carpet padding! (The next ER wannabe who asks me "So, waddya DO all day?!?"...)
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-07-2004, 10:16 AM   #14
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

I and many friends I know moved to a boat and cruise full time in early retirement.

I'd estimate that roughly 1000 boats cruise up and down the East Coast (Intracoastal Waterway) between the Chesapeake and Miami every year. Of those, perhaps half are doing it on a full time/retirement basis rather than a "year off" basis. Of the half that are full time, probably half continue to the Bahamas for winter and half stay in Florida.

Generally they will spend June 1 to late October in the Chesapeake or farther north, since this is when the hurricanes threaten the areas south of the Chesapeake. (Insurance policies often require this as well.)

Probably 20% of the people we saw were very much novices to all this. The trip down the waterway is not challenging at all, and those going to the Bahamas will almost always wait for excellent weather forecasts that extend for several days beyond their planned passage, and then go with a gaggle of other boat.

Average boat size was probably 35' for power and 40' for sail, but we saw both in the 25' range as well.

Dory36
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement
Old 06-07-2004, 01:22 PM   #15
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Re: Cruisin' In Your Retirement

Hi John Galt - Our sailing season seems pretty short in the midwest as it is and since I'm originally from Michigan, I know short seasons! The Bayfield reference is our boat - a Bayfield 40, early Ted Gozzard design from Bayfield Boat Yards in Canada. I'm sure she's looking forward to thawing out for a while in the blue caribbean waters as much as we are, where I'm sure we'll be gunkoling whether we like it not! Gets a bit scarier as it gets closer, but I second the "don't wait another 10 years" philosophy - by then we won't even be able to get up and down the companionway!
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