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Sailing?

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Sailing?

Postby ExcitableBoy » Tue Jun 22, 2010 3:57 am

So, I am taking 12 months off from mountaineering/alpine climbing to recover from a serious illness. I am toying with the idea of teachning myself to sail. I live very close to a put in for a relevatively calm lake (Lake Sammamish) and a bit furhter of a larger lake (Lake Washington) and a bit further form a deep water, serious estuary (Puget Sound). I thought I would start off with a rowable sailboat, 16 ft. That way if the wind goes out I can row to shore. I bought I used copy of Chapman's (boating's version of Freedom of the Hills). Any comments?
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Postby oldandslow » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:32 am

Sailing is a great sport, especially around Seattle. I recommend that you give up the idea of a rowable boat. You probably would be disappointed in the performance of a rowboat and you can paddle if the wind stops. There are a lot of boats that will trailer easily and are fun to sail without being too sensitive to error. Find out what people are sailing in your area and evaluate those boats to see how they fit your aspirations. When I was in college--many years ago--I bought two used sailboats in Seattle at very reasonable prices. I would expect that there is still a good market in used boats. If you get a relatively popular class of small boat, you might enjoy getting into racing. You should inquire into sailing clubs in your area. You might be able to get some help in selecting a boat and in learning to sail it.
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Postby dskoon » Tue Jun 22, 2010 6:45 am

Great idea! I grew up sailing, and though I was a bit pissed at my parents for not allowing me to pursue my dream of professional motorcycle racing, and that we sold most of our bikes and got into sailing(following my father's old dream), I soon grew to love sailing. Non-motorized sport, cute women in shorts and bikinis, and the feel of the boat responding to a good breeze. Nothing quite like it.
Take a couple of lessons somewhere. It will increase your knowledge a hundredfold, similar to getting out there and climbing, rather than just reading about it in Freedom of the Hills(though the book you picked up is a good one, and certainly a good place to begin). Firsthand experience adds up to knowledge.
I recommend looking around for a used Lido. 14 ft. of fun. Might take you awhile, as they are popular boats, but perfect for lake/sound sailing. Easy trailerable boat. Probably a Lido club around Seattle. Good, responsive, beginner friendly boat. As a previous poster mentioned, skip the rowing-sailboat idea. Learn to read the weather and the wind(maybe you already know how from climbing), and skip the windless days. Usually you can sail in even the most gentle of breezes, but you'll learn to tell when it's a good day for sailing.
Peruse Craigslist, and you'll start to get a good idea of boats.
Happy Sailing, man!
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Postby oldandslow » Wed Jun 23, 2010 4:17 am

Lido is an excellent choice. Good boat for learning to sail. My three kids learned on our Lido. Not the fastest but a very versitle boat. When I was at the Willamette Sailing Club in Portland, Lido was about the most popular racing class.
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Postby Mountainjeff » Wed Jun 23, 2010 6:40 am

You should check out Sail Sand Point on Lake Washington. I know they teach youth classes, but they might have adult classes too. It will be much more enjoyable to learn sailing from a class than teaching yourself (though it is possible to do so). If you are just planning to sail for pleasure, you original idea for a boat would be just fine. I sailed for many years in a 12 ft rowing/sailing boat. I have started racing in the past few years, but it is competing with my climbing budget too much :lol:
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Postby nartreb » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:34 am

If you're too weak to climb, how are you going to get a boat in and out of the water, or row a sailboat to shore?

My advice, assuming you're fit enough, is to learn windsurfing. Maybe take a sailing class or two first so you've got the basic concepts of tacking before you add the difficulty of keeping your balance, but don't buy a big ol' boat until you've tasted the joys of riding a board.
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Postby dskoon » Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:02 am

nartreb wrote:If you're too weak to climb, how are you going to get a boat in and out of the water, or row a sailboat to shore?

My advice, assuming you're fit enough, is to learn windsurfing. Maybe take a sailing class or two first so you've got the basic concepts of tacking before you add the difficulty of keeping your balance, but don't buy a big ol' boat until you've tasted the joys of riding a board.


Yeah, talk about needing big body strength, try windsurfing! :?
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Postby welle » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:10 pm

^^^ exactly what I thought. The smaller the craft, the more physically demanding it is to operate it. Sailing is so much fun - I miss it, but it cuts my climbing time too much. I second the advice to join a sailing club to learn and also to use their boats, instead of rushing to buy one and learning on your own.
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Postby jrc » Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:26 pm

The wooden boat museum on the south end of lake union used to offer very inexpensive intro classes. I used to teach there and it would be a great way to get your feet wet. Then just head up to Shilshole bay marina on a...Wednesday(?) around 5:30 and see if you can get on a boat that's going out to race (look near the Corinthian yacht club). Bring a 6 pack, tell them you want to learn, have fun! You'll be hooked instantly.
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Postby Sierra Ledge Rat » Fri Jun 25, 2010 5:10 am

The sunfish is great little sailboat with which to start.
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Postby ExcitableBoy » Fri Jun 25, 2010 8:33 pm

[quote="nartreb"]If you're too weak to climb, how are you going to get a boat in and out of the water, or row a sailboat to shore?
quote]

I'm not too weak to climb, (I recently guided Mt Baker car to car less than 1/2 a day) but I realize the 12, 14, 16, 18 + hour days that alpine climbing/mountaineering demand is too much for my body right now.

I plan on sailing with my wife and father in law and I think with out too much effort we can lift a 120 lb sailing dinghy in and and out of the water.

Windsurfing holds absolutely no interest for me.
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Postby ksolem » Fri Jun 25, 2010 9:15 pm

All I can say is hold on tight when Shortimer (aka Captain Chaos) is driving!

Image
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Postby ShortTimer » Sat Jun 26, 2010 12:35 am

Honestly, discard the notion of some small, crappy, slow boat. You will be bored in 2 days. Just go buy a Laser and learn to sail it. They do have different height rigs available for calmer or windier days so you could always buy one with a small rig and buy a larger rig later. They are just about impossible to break and once you figure it out (honestly, it will only take a couple days) you will have an absolute blast on a Laser.
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