Dream boat


Recycles dryer sheets
Dec 20, 2006
For those of us who are dreaming of boating in one form or another, I'd like to hear what you're dreaming of and why.

My personal dream is a 20' - 24' double ender, something like Ian Oughtred's Grey Seal or Eun Mara. I love the traditional appearance and the lapstrake form. I think I agree with the Pardey's about not having any motor, since I no great chakes as a mechanic. Some PV panels for basic electrical needs, but heavy on the simpler mechanical systems. I'm talking celestial nav here, not GPS; ice box, not reefer, and oil lanterns with minimal 12v electrical lighting. By being trailerable, when it is here at home I won't be paying slip fees and I can do maintenance at home at my leisure. Plus I can take it all over North America with us as we travel. The two boats I named can be rigged in less than two hours, which means I can spend an hour towing up to the Finger Lakes, launch, enjoy a day of sailing, and two home, all before supper. And if I get the itch we can cruise the Caribbean all winter for next to nothing.
I'm no longer dreaming of a boat, but of the four sailboats I've owned, the most important issue is your intended use. Many boaters make the mistake of buying a racing boat when they want to cruise, or vice versa, or buying an inland water boat then wanting to do offshore, etc.

If your intent is on trailering (not a bad idea), this is a major constraint. It's not only the boat, it's the vehicle as well. An important aspect is to not get a fixed keel, but instead go with a swing keel, a shoal keel with daggerboard, etc, so that it rides at a low profile. It's also important to get it light enough to handle with your vehicle.

I trailered a swing keel McGregor 25 up and down the East Coast for some years and, even though it's not a blue water boat, it was great for my intents, to do inland waters and protected offshore. It has all the things you mentioned for light cruising, and I stayed overnight in it many times with no problem.

One of my best experiences was dropping it off at Liberty State Park and sailing across to Manhattan and back, then pulling it out and driving home. That was a 2300 pound boat with a 600 pound keel, a bit too much for my T-bird at the time, so I got a Jeep Cherokee that pulled it just fine. I was able to do 70 on the highway and with the low boat profile never had any problem with trucks or other traffic. It also had a lightweight mast, important if you're going to single hand, because it will be you who has to step and unstep the mast every time. Even though there are mast stepping gizmos you can set up, it's much easier if you can do it barehanded.

The knock on the Mac 25 is its construction if you're going to do much offshore or heavy weather sailing. A more rugged alternative a friend has is an S2 7.9, which is also a good racer, but I've seen him trailering it and stepping the mast, and it's not for me. Even though it has a lifting keel, it rides high and takes 2-3 people to step the mast.

If you want something a little more classical looking, the West Wight Potter is a possibility. Never sailed one, but I've heard they don't sail that well.

You mentioned the Grey Seal, and not having a motor. Gorgeous little boat but remember, there's a difference between beauty and practicality. That's a wooden boat, so it's heavy, may not trailer that well, and there are issues with the wood drying it out if you leave it out of the water too long. Also, caring for a wooden boat can be very time-consuming. On the other hand, it's a great hobby if you want a "story" boat, as long as you know what you are getting into. As far as not having a motor, no problem as long as you have an outboard to hook up. You really need a motor for no wind situations and to get in and out of slips when the weather is really against you. Well, if you are purist you don't need a motor, but having had to sail into a slip in a big blow when my engine died, I would not do that voluntarily.

Good luck with your search, and hope you find exactly what you are looking for!
I love to sail, and I live by the water, but I hate trailering, maintenance, and slip fees.

So, I bum a ride from my boat owning friends and join a sailing club with low fees in the summer.

I did get suckered into taking a free Lido 14. Nice boat to teach the kid, but I'd still rather have my parking space back.
Mike, we met a lady in a McGregor 24 in the Abacos. Your plan sounds great for the US stuff, it will suck a bit more if you are living in the boat. But if you are towing to and from a hotel or home, that is all you need.

I knew many folks outfitting for cruising, and as a general rule, the older you are when you sail, the more space, gadgets, and comforts you will need. I saw many kids in their 20s cram 4 or 5 onto a 30 footer and sail for a year in the islands with nary a complaint!

It sounds like a perfect plan, but hey, get a GPS anyway, you know, just in case! :)
And a little outboard would be a really really good idea when the wind dies and there is no one to tow you back to shore and the wife is hungry....
I love the monohull's grace and am old fashioned when it comes to sailing...I lived on a Block Island 40 when I was stationed in PR and sailed throughout the carib as much as time would allow - which wasn't enough to justify keeping her.
For sheer pleasure and sharing with friends/family who aren't exactly into boating I've found the catamarans/trimarans a great way to go...I can put more folks on per ft. and I'm sold on them now. Would've been a different answer many years ago though, wouldn't look at a cat/tri for serious sailing - just isn't the case now.

I like the gemini 105Mc(cat) or Telstars(tri), basically an RV for the intercoastal/coastal cruiser. can't deviate from the fledgling FIRE plan and gotta figure out how to get some one else to pay for it!
For those of us who are dreaming of boating in one form or another, I'd like to hear what you're dreaming of and why.
No longer a dream: Pacific Seacraft 31, because I wanted a blue water
cruiser that I could singlehand. Soon no house, no car, just the boat.
I understand keeping your life simple, but an engine and handheld GPS
come in handy. I still have a sextant and do noon sites just to make
me feel nautical :), but I can't imagine no GPS.
my dream boat if i had $100mm (since we're dreaming):


my dream boat if my buddy didn't die when i was in my 40s:


my dream boat if i decide to liveaboard/cruise solo in my 50s instead of landlocked vagabonding:


or this sweet thing:


my dream boat if i wind up vagabonding first and later boating the circle route, the bahamas, caribbean & n & s america when i'm in my 60s & 70s:


or something like this:

with all this dreaming i'll never be able to sleep. here's another one of my favorites, woof:

Last edited:
I have 2 PWCs (sea-doos) now, and it's fun to go crazy on them once in a while, but mostly my wife and I like to cruise slowly along shorelines and look at the nice properties and scenery with them. The maneuverability and ease of loading and unloading the trailer can't be beat and they can go in 2 feet of water easily.

The only downside of having the Sea-Doos is that lots of people hate those of us that drive them. There are too many people riding them that are inconsiderate. The people who rent them usually can't ride well, and tend to stay in the same area all day.

I'd love to go on a trip around the continent with them, just putting them in any puddle of water that I can find.
Last edited:
We found our dream boat last year, a 46 Nordhavn trawler. We have owned boats for many years but decided that it was time to sell the house and most of everything else, move onto a boat and see where that goes. FIRE Calc said we were close to having enough money and we can tolerate the financial risk so off we went. Bought the boat last Fall in So Cailif and brought it up the coast to our home port of Anacortes, WA just north of Seattle. Last summer we spent 120 days going to Alaska and back. Next year Mexico and places south. After nearly a year and 3500 mile we wouldn't change for anything or any amount of money or security.
Here's a picture of us last summer in Alaska.

Frank Osborne
Anacortes, WA


  • P6140030.JPG
    85.7 KB · Views: 32
My dream boat is my neighbors boat. Its really low maintenance. Sometimes I walk over and drink a beer while he fixes it and the next day we go out on it.

I'd get one just like his if he'd let me keep it in his garage and if he did all the repairs and maintenance on it.
I like the idea of a houseboat that sits at the end of a boat dock all summer and is used as a summer cottage,it doesnt really have to go anywhere as its on the water and as far as i'm concerned the water under the boat is probably no different than the water under a boat a hundred miles away. Something like this. http://www.1000friendsofflorida.org/FL_Panhandle_Initiative/graphics/VisitFlaBrochure/houseboat.JPG

But if i were to get a boat that actually goes some where i would consider some form of Trawler like this one. Google Image Result for http://www.monktrawler.com/photos/monk1.jpg
jambo, those are kind of neat. DW and I saw whole communities of them on lakes in eastern TN last summer. Apparently, in the season, they drive them out and tie them to their moorings.

Afloat, I am SO jealous. Not into trawlers myself, but that's a nice looking boat, and to actually be living your dream, you are so lucky.

Glad, SV Wind Angel is a beauty! I had originally dreamed of a 40' ketch, but financial reality set that dream aside. I also found reading books by Lin and Larry Pardey that there were a lot of good reasons to stay under 30'.

CFB you have to warn me before you do things like that!! Do you know how hard it is to clean oatmeal spew off a computer monitor!!??

In my opinion you have the best boat on the market to do what you are doing. Those Nordhavn's are really nice boats. You are living my retirement dream. I have started small with a C-Dory 22 Cruiser, but plan to upgrade when my kids are a little older to something like a Monk 36. Have fun cruising!


It varies on year and condition. The best place to do a search is on Yachtworld.com. New, I think they run between 350K-400K. I think it is the perfect boat for a family of four to do coastal cruising and the Great Loop cruise around the eastern US.

that's the new monks. used are much lower. i checked one out at last year's miami boat show. nice boat only i found it to be a little tight.

agree that afloat has it made. love the nordies. the 46 is a great boat. briefly met dan streech at one show. and it was the private owner of their then flagship 72 footer (an unbelievably gorgeous boat) who helped convince me to retire early. "we should have quit 20 years earlier," he said to me, "just look at us." later it would turn out that about six months after he finished his most amazing dream boat, he had to sell due to health reasons.

a few days ago i checked out the strictly sail show in st pete. awful show. didn't like hardly any of the new boats. but i also looked at one i thought would be for sale but turned up sold. talked to the new proud owner. he's planning a sail to the caribbean and then where the wind blows. i offered to share costs. will email his broker with my name & number just to let him know i'm serious. totally loved that boat way better than any of the new boats i saw. here are pics of only other two sisterships currently for sale. it is a robert perry design. great use of space...




Yachtsworld.com shows one 1986 Monk available for $129,900.

Thanks, CaptSJD!


Actually, there are over a dozen, if you do the search parameters properly. :duh:

Last edited:
My dream boat is a trailerable power boat suitable for two people for 2-3 weeks. I am thinking something about 28-32 feet long, weighting 6,000 to 8,000 pounds that is capable of trips on rivers, lakes, canals and semi-protected waters such as the ICW. Ideally, it would be capable of doing the Inside assage in good weather. I have looked a lot but have not found what I want yet.

I have a whole list of places I want to cruise.
Dream Boat is a 47 Bayliner Pilothouse

Here's a couple of pictures of our dream boat that we purchase Fall of 2004. We intend to take it on the Great Loop trip beginning summer of 2009 after I retire.:)


Top Bottom