Cruising Catamarans Under $200,000

setting them up to cruise can easily run $50K.  And most of them start at $150-200K. So my (new) budget – roughly $150K – is a stretch at best.  Add into this how well the boat has been maintained, what would need to be replaced, the cost of replacing it (and labor) and you can see how quickly this can get convoluted.   Many people count out catamarans that have been through the charter fleet – but I wouldn’t do that.  I would, though, make sure I built into the price of the boat, my costs to get it cruise-ready (again, easily $50K).  But let’s get this party started…

I’ll start with my progress to date:

Cruising Catamarans Under $200,000 Fountaine Pajot Athena 38

Cruising Catamarans Under $200,000 Fountaine Pajot Athena 38

My first offer was on a 1995 Fountaine Pajot Athena 38, with a ton of upgrades.  They were asking $179K, but I came in around $140K.  There was some back and forth, but we couldn’t reach a deal.  Too bad, it was a heck of a boat and the owner had exhibited a ton of pride in ownership.   The reasons I wasn’t budging on this particular boat:

  •  It’s damn near 20 years old
  • It’s over budget
  • It’s a 38′ Fountaine Pajot (not as desirable as some other brands)
  • I would take a beating at resale
  • It’s not a perfect boat to do what I want to do

The things that I liked about the boat:

  • Small enough to single-hand
  • Big enough to do the job
  • Wouldn’t need to dump money into it to go cruising
  • Had extra freezer space
  • Had folding props, additional storage, dinghy/outboard, and huge house battery bank (more on this later)

Not making a deal on this one was a little discouraging, but I keep reminding myself how everyone else will be sitting in their cubicles while I’m out sailing, freediving, spearfishing, and exploring.  That’s enough to get me going again.  I spent the day following the declined offer going through a ton of FSBO boats on and  I called and talked to all of the owners on boats of interest.  Four boats in my price range were of interest.  Here they are:

  • 1993 Lagoon 37′ TPI – good boat, solid reputation, small for my needs.  It needed a bunch of TLC, was in the BVI, and needed almost all systems replaced.  The good news is that it could probably be purchased for $85-90,000.  Meaning that if I kept the outfitting to “need-to-have” instead of “nice-to-have”, I could probably make this work in my budget.  Maybe even come in under budget.  Three things kept me from making an offer:  A) finding a better boat to make an offer on, B) valuing my time and the stress of a complete refit, and C) the chance that I’d underestimated the cost to get it ready to go.  That last one is a real concern and one that could kill the the whole idea.  There’s the possibility that I get to $150K into the boat and it’s still not ready – so I’ve blown my budget on a boat that isn’t worth the money into it, and I can’t go cruising on it.  Not a pretty picture.
  • 1992 Lagoon 42′ TPI – good boat, with a reputation for being tough-as-nails.  Also had 5 extra feet of waterline over the 37 TPI.  The issue here is really the sellers, and the location (Cancun).  They’re insisting on a price at the very upper end of the cruising catamaran market ($165,000), and it’s definitely not in pristine condition, nor could I just jump on it and sail away.  The seller is a bit (maybe more than a bit?) of a PITA as well, making me not want to work with him at all. They, like the owners of the Athena 38, put tons of money into an older boat that simply isn’t worth what they put into it.  That’s sad, but not my problem.  And I’m not itching to make it my problem.
  • 1995 Dean 400 – cheap (asking $159,000) for the size and the gear onboard.  Also been on the market for awhile so there’s likely some room for negotiation in there.  Issue here is that there are original sails ($10K), original rigging ($15K), no watermaker ($5K), older electronics ($5-10K), etc.  But yes, there’s an even bigger issue – the boat isn’t worth it.  This particular Dean 400 sailing catamaran may be worth it, but Dean boats have had some pretty serious build-quality issues that have been well documented.  So the market (as a whole) is a bit scared of them.  I’d get slaughtered on the resale market, and they don’t sail all that well either.
  • 1994 Fountaine Pajot Antigua 37′ – this is the predecessor to the Fountaine Pajot Athena, which I put my first offer on.  By all accounts a capable boat, but an older hull design and not holding it’s value very well on the market.  I found one that I liked (low engine hours, and other new stuff) but they are holding firm around $125,000.  That leaves me with ~$25,000 to do all of the upgrades necessary, which would be tight (dinghy, outboard, solar, wind, sails, rigging, etc).  But the elephant in the room:  it will never be a $150,000 boat.  So after all of that time and money  to get it up to speed – I’m stuck with a boat not worth what I have into it.  Once again – not something I want to be my problem.

I was beginning to get a little frustrated.  I’m looking under the $200,000 mark, but I really need a boat to come in at $150,000 for this round of offers.  Let me be clear:  it can be done, but it wasn’t looking pretty  (this is me resisting a Drew Barrymore joke).  Under $200,000 – fully outfitted is dobable, if you’re flexible and patient.  But under $150,000?  That’s really tough. 

A Glimmer Of Hope

Cruising Catmarans Under $200,000 - Lagoon 380

Cruising Catmarans Under $200,000 – Lagoon 380

The day that contract expired, I sent out another one to a 2000 Lagoon 380 out of the country.  It’s still up in the air, so I can’t talk too much about it.  But I can say that it’s out of the country, and if in the US it would probably sell for significantly more.  It’s not as extensively upgraded as the Athena, but it’s a more desirable boat, an owner’s version (way better), unchartered, and with less hours, on bigger engines.  Not a bad deal on the surface, but it’s a long way from a done deal.  The biggest concern here is:  we don’t have enough information.  And getting reliable information (via a survey) is going to cost $1K or more (haul out, survey, travel costs). And I can’t just take off work, buy a plane ticket and head down there without knowing more. And it’s at the very upper end of my budget.

Our initial plan was this:

  • Get the contract
  • Get a detailed equipment list
  • Get a simple survey ($300) – preliminary, no hauling, not full-blown
  • Go check it out in person
  • Do a sea-trial
  • Decide yes/no

At any point in that process, for roughly 30 days, I can choose to kill the deal.  We were having a little trouble finding a person to do the initial survey because of the location of the boat. We eventually found someone, but they’re charging us $65/hour for travel time to and from the boat.  For $830, they’ll do a full sea-trial and in-the-water survey.  But then, if I want the hull surveyed (ie – they pull the boat out of the water and check the entire hull), I have to either pay them to come back out or fly another surveyor in from Florida.  Both not cheap.  So, at this point it looks like we’re going to do the full-survey, including haul-out (an additional ~$500), get the results, and decide if it’s worth going down there personally.  This brings my total additional costs to $1,500 and I haven’t even stepped foot on the boat.

I’m not sure if this is worth it.  It’s definitely a gamble, but one that may pay off.  We have a very limited amount of information, but what we have seems to point to a boat that has been fairly well maintained, possibly upgraded well, and hopefully not seen hard use, for about 25% under market.  We will see.  Looking past the cosmetic is the key here.

This is a big emotional roller-coaster.  The only thing I can compare it to is dating an emotionally unstable girl in college – you have no idea what’s going to happen, but it’s going to cost you money (and might be entertaining).

The Importance Of Experience

I’ve been fortunate when boat shopping, having picked a knowledgable broker and having two additional e-friends that help me evaluate my boating options.  I met one via Crusiers Forum and another via this very site.  I think it’s important to have other people to bounce ideas off of, especially when you’re new at this (as I am).

Here’s my public thanks.  I’ve never met them, but they’ve been sounding boards (via email) for me as I’m evaluating all of the options.  And there are a million options.  Travis – thanks man for sharing the results of your research.  Bob – the amount of knowledge you have about cruising catamarans and the market is mind-boggling.  I’d be up shit creek without both of you.  And I’ve heard shit-creek isn’t all that fun of a place.

The big thing that the two saints above have helped me with is estimating costs of replacing things, and understanding what the “market value” of a particular boat, set up a particular way, is. On that note, I’ll share some of those numbers in a post over the weekend (this one’s getting a little long).  Update, here’s that post: Cruising Equipment Costs 

Still reading?  You’re a glutton for punishment

Non-Yacht Chaos

To add to the confusion, my Mom still hasn’t committed to the trip yet – which could dramatically change my options and our requirements.  It would give me a better idea of what to look at and what I can afford if I were to wait  until she’s committed (or not).  But I can’t do that. The worry is that if I’m not making progress every day – the dream may wither and die. I can’t allow that to happen.  My Mom is, though, taking a bluewater catamaran sailing class soon – after which she’ll let me know where she’s at on being part of The Nomad Trip.   This is one of the larger concerns right now – Mom needs to come, at least part of the time.

More chaos?  Coming right up.  Recently another storage unit deal came to my attention, this one looking more promising than the last and I hope that there’s something here.  It would take a massive amount of legwork and add another level of complexity to my already chaotic life, but it could guarantee me some level of monthly stability – which may, in fact, be priceless.  Of course, this is yet another tie to “back-home” – but I’m not sure that being completely unattached is the right answer either.

“Challenging” Is An Understatement

I’ve read stories of people doing similar things and there’s a recurring theme – this process is tough to get right.  It can take many years, as it’s a fundamental change in your life – where you’re risking everything on a few decisions.  My impression is that these doubts and concerns are amplified when you’re doing it all alone.  Sure, I can talk to people – but who really understands this besides someone who has been through it?  It’s a challenge, and not one many can relate to.

But that’s exactly the point, isn’t it?  If everyone were doing this – it wouldn’t be worth as much.

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The Blue Wild Expo – In Review

Speargun Hunter).

The Blue Wild Expo

The Blue Wild Expo Raffle

 The People Rock

It was a great show and I met some really cool people.  A few folks, like me, saw a sailing circumnavigation as something awesome (what’s not awesome about it, right?).  What kind of surprised me was that some didn’t.  I always thought that would be the ultimate adventure for anyone who really loved the ocean…  I thought about this, and I wondered if some of these guys feel challenged by the idea.  If so, that’s pretty short-sighted:  I’d much rather work with everyone than against anyone. Competition is so 2002, this is the Age of Collaboration.

Moving on, I learned some new things, met some new people (though I’m terrible at trade shows, in this regard), and had some interesting conversations.  I didn’t get a chance to talk to some folks I wanted to – Daryl Wong, Sheri Daye, and Brad Thornbrough were all people I wanted to connect with but stayed pretty busy talking with other folks. I hate interrupting or waiting to speak to someone (is patience really a virtue?), so I just kept wandering.  Daryl makes some killer custom spearguns, I really like the hybrids and the Ono’s.  Check ’em out:

The Blue Wild Expo - Daryl Wong Spearguns

The Blue Wild Expo – Daryl Wong Spearguns

People I really enjoyed seeing:  Tim from Palapas Ventana, the guys from Moana Waterman, Rob Allen from Rob Allen Spearguns, Ted Harty from Immersion Freediving, Errol Putinga from FII, Ben Hyson from Omer Diving (you too Kelley), Forrest Gallante, and Ray Powell from DiveR.  The breakout sessions had varying levels of value, but I enjoyed most of them that I went to.  I saw Cameron Kirckonnel being swarmed by people.  I hadn’t quite grasped his celebrity status (well deserved).  When I first met him, somebody was asking him about spots in the Bahamas.  He stopped, opened his backpack, and produced a map of the Bahamas.  That made me laugh, I really wasn’t expecting that.  One of these days, we’ll dive together and I’ll get jealous when he puts bigger fish in the boat.

Since we’re on the subject of celebrity:

Gear, More Gear, and Pneumatics?

By day two I had pretty much seen everything.  But having seen everything I was interested in, I explored some other stuff.  Like pneumatic spearguns.  I have a friend who swears by the small ones for hole hunting.  They do have the advantage of being very compact and very powerful.  This solves some problems when you’re poking around in holes for grouper, snapper, and lobster.  Maintenance is minimal and you don’t have bands to replace.  I think this is something I want to look into a little more. The one I liked the most was the short (58cm) Mares Sten with the 8MM shaft. Seemed solid, simple, powerful, and compact.  I like those qualities for a hole gun.

Mares Sten

Mares Sten

Naturally, I struggled to not buy a Daryl Wong hybrid for my dedicated reef gun… But I have two reef guns at home and there’s only so much room on a sailboat.  They’re just great, good looking guns.   Meeting Rob Allen was especially cool – I told him about what I was planning, and wondered if there was a way we might be able to work together.  He seemed moderately interested, and I’ll take that.  The first question is always “Do you have a boat?” Well, no, but dropping that kind of coin on a boat is no small thing.  Putting it all on the line, and most of it into a boat, isn’t something that should be rushed into.  That boat thing will  be remedied very shortly though, I hope.

A funny thing  happened when I visited the South Africans.  They told me a story about some guy that had shot 3 marlin in a single day.  They asked if I’d ever shot a marlin.  “Yeah, two in one day, then I jumped in on a couple more with a camera.” The truth of the matter is the hard part is never shooting fish, it’s finding them.  And I’m not proud of two in one day, one is definitely enough.

Next Mission:  I Need A Boat

On my end, the big story is that I had to keep jumping in and out of the show to answer phone calls and emails.  I had offers on boats outstanding, which kept me glued to email and kind of edgy.  Some weird combination of excitement and anxiousness. Shit gets serious when you move money into escrow.  And on Sunday that was amplified by no sleep and a hangover from spending Saturday out late drinking – with good people (so I’m excused).

It’s amazing the difference a week makes. When I left for Miami (the International Boat Show) last week, I didn’t know what to think – I hadn’t been on a Lagoon 380 or Fountaine Pajot, and was honestly feeling kind of stuck . Now I’m worried a little about how my job is going to take it if I need to go look at a boat (haven’t been to the office in almost two weeks), but I feel great about making progress.  It’s such a good feeling when things start moving.  Such a good feeling.

Overall – hell of a show, enjoyed it and hope to do it again.  Cool gear, great people, and they served beer (albeit not my favorite).  For a guy from Austin, Texas – it’s kind of cool to see this many people passionate about the sport. 

PS:  if you want to hear the other side of the story – you can check out this post.  I think it’s a pretty lame attitude, but to each their own.

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Choosing a Cruising Catamaran

Choosing a Cruising Catamaran.  At that time my circumstances were a bit different, and so was my level of education on the subject.  Much has changed since then – both in circumstance and in knowledge.  If you’ve been following along, you may have read my post last week:  Keeping The Dream Alive.  In that post I was whining about how I needed my Mother to make a decision on whether she’d join me for part of this trip.  If decided she wanted to come, great – I’d get a bigger boat.  But if not, I wanted to stay as liquid as possible in order to avoid any nasty budget-related surprises during the trip (which means I want a much smaller boat).

Choosing a Cruising Catamaran – Time: Now

Well, for the last week I’ve been working remotely with limited access to the Internet – which gave me an enormous amount of time back.  Time to think, which for me – is necessary.  It became obvious, when I was thinking, that relying on someone else (in any way) to purchase a boat for this kind of a trip is nothing short of idiotic.  Rather than making excuses, I should be:

  • Figuring out exactly how much I could afford to spend on a boat
  • Figuring out exactly what boats were on the market (in my budget)
  • Poking offers at boats on the absolute lowest end of my price-range

So I did all of that. I’m not sure if it was the right decision, but I can tell you this:  I’ve never felt such a supreme feeling of relief (and apprehension) as I did when I made the wire-transfer to escrow for a cruising catamaran this week.  Holy shit.  This is real.

Yeah, I did it.  

I submitted a very real offer on a very real cruising catamaran (a Fountaine Pajot Athena 38′). Honestly, I don’t think it will go through – but I’ll know within 4 days (or less) at which point I can take another shot at another boat. On that subject – there are two Lagoon TPI’s on the market (and a Privilege 37) that I’m very interested in; one at 42′ of length and another at 37′.   Any of these boats would suit me fine, but obviously, I would prefer the 42′.

The 37′ TPI is also nothing short of a “project-boat” needed at least $50,000 in repairs to be serviceable for my type of trip.  The worry on the 37′ TPI is that it is A) a little small for a circumnavigation and B) might be more repairs than I’ve bargained for.   The 42′ TPI?  Great boat, almost turn-key, and at the upper end of my budget.  This could put me in a tight spot if things go pear-shaped in the middle of the South Pacific. But of course, a 42′ TPI is a hell of a cruising catamaran and one that I would be infinitely happy with.  Why not buy it then? Because I can’t get ahold of the seller!  I’ve called, left messages, sent emails, and I can’t get ahold of him to buy his damned boat.  Kind of a bad joke huh? Which makes me very skeptical – in the past when I’ve overlooked this kind of failure to communicate it’s ended badly. Or maybe he just thinks I’m kicking tires… Either way, I’m at my wit’s end with this guy (and I haven’t even met him yet).  Enough of that though.

Wait.  What?  A Monohull?

What happens if my Mom says “no Nathan, I don’t want to spend time in beautiful and remote spots on a comfortable, spacious cruising catamaran”?  Well, we get her head checked.   And then I’ll go down to a monohull.  You read that right, after all this talk about cruising catamarans – if Momma doesn’t come, I’m headed down to a single-hulled sailboat.  But why?  Price.  I want more of my money liquid, where I can play in the stock market with it, repair a busted engine, or buy cruising equipment and adventure gear (see: man-toys).  I can save (at least) $50,000 of upfront startup costs by switching to a monohull – and if that’s not significant to you, I have no idea why you’re wasting your time reading these words;  you should be making small candles out of $100 bills.

Wishy-Washy and Learning to Sail

Yes, I’m still typing.  Because there’s been even more progress.  At Strictly Sail Miami I bumped into the Bluewater Sailing School – something that I planned on getting into post-boat buying. But a thought occurred to me:  what if my Mom would attend the catamaran sailing class?

It could be her “I like/don’t like sailing” litmus test, and be a genuinely great learning experience in the process.  Even if she decided not to go and sail with me, she’d have learned some really cool stuff and had a little mini-adventure. Plus – it’s affordable.  A 7 day charter on a catamaran can cost anywhere between $4,500 (on the very low end) to $20,000 (on the not-so-high end).  But the Bluewater Sailing School is ~$2,300 for 7 days of sailing/learning – including certs from ASA.  Not bad.  Not bad at all.   So I pushed my poor Mom a bit.

And check this out. Drumroll……….

Choosing a Cruising Catamaran

Mom’s going sailing!

What a massive, massive relief.  This has been, to date, one of the harder things I’ve ever attempted to do. And I’ve been through 15 months of combat (actual combat too – not just pushing paper on a military base, which – incidentally – is what most deployed soldiers actually do).  Anyways.

I can’t describe the feeling of relief that washed over me.  Soon enough, I’ll know alot more about choosing a cruising catamaran.

It was a huge ask for me, and a huge step for her.  In her generation, people didn’t just take off on a 5 year circumnavigation.  Their entire identities were tied up in their professional accomplishments.  The mere fact that she’s willing to explore the idea (and has bought the class/ticktets) is a huge step.  And it’s soon.  Which means I’ll know exactly what boat I’m looking for very shortly. Which is (again) huge.

If you’re wondering why I’m not accompanying her (and I’m not) – it’s because I must take sailing lessons, and want to do so onboard the actual boat I’ll be cruising on.  So our deal is this:  she goes and takes this course alone, I stay and don’t take time off work.  If she likes it:  I’m responsible for boat buying, survey, sea-trial, etc.  And then responsible for getting a qualified captain onboard to train us, on our boat. If she doesn’t like it:  No harm, no foul.  I proceed as described previously – get the boat, get the captain, learn to sail.

 What Else is New?

Financial stuff – I’m out of the storage unit deal, I’m thinking about a multi-family real estate deal, I’m thinking about putting $ into REIT’s, and I’m trying to design for simplicity.  Incidentally, I got the audio book from Bumfuzzle – Living on The Margin.  If the financial aspects of this (or any) type of adventure travel interest you READ THE BOOK.  This kind of thing doesn’t have to be expensive – and it doesn’t have to drain your savings.

Expo stuff – yep, this Saturday is the Blue Wild Expo.  I’ve never been and I’m stoked.

Insane?  Good? Bad?  What say you?

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Strictly Sail and The Miami International Boat Show

Strictly Sail – Getting Here

Making it to the Miami International Boat Show (and Strictly Sail) was something of a feat in itself.  Originally the plan was to only attend the Blue Wild Expo in Fort Lauderdale. But finding out that Strictly Sail (and MIBS) were the weekend before got me thinking… It would be a hell of a week if I could get down to Strictly Sail, bunk up with a friend for the week, work remotely, and then go to the Blue Wild the following weekend.

But I needed a place to stay.  So I put out a blast on social media and tagged a couple of my friends from Florida.  Those particular friends said no, but another spearfisherman said he might be able to help out (thanks Andrew, that was really cool man).  Fast forward a few days:  I was trying to confirm that I had a place to stay, and it was looking promising.  So I booked my flights.  It was a gamble though, as I’d never really met the person whose house I’d be occupying.  Since gambling is fun, I was willing to take a shot.

Strictly Sail Sailing Catamarans

Miami Beach – My View When Attending Strictly Sail

I’m glad I did too – I’m writing this now, and I can see the saltwater (not the ocean, but beggars can’t be choosers).  Just smelling the saltwater was enough to energize me again – I’ve been so busy I haven’t had the time to chase down trips offshore this year yet.  Anyways, I made it, I’m staying in a big, private house, for free.  My only real complaint is that it doesn’t have WiFi and is far enough removed from coffee shops that I’m having to use my phone’s hotspot (which is pretty damn expensive).

Sailboats and (Much) More

Strictly Sail - Sunsail Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail – Sunsail Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail is a (relatively) small part of the larger Miami International Boat Show.  It is certainly the part I’m most interested in, for obvious reasons – I’m in the sailing/cruising catamaran market.  In fact, while sitting at the airport waiting on a connection, I called my boat broker – and as chance would have it we were both going to be at Strictly Sail at the same time.  That’s nice.

Getting to Strictly Sail was a bit of a challenge as it was at MiaMarina which is tucked into one corner of (the very busy) Bayside shopping/food hub of Miami.  After being pointed in the wrong direction, and hiring another cab to drive me in circles – I made it.  The sailboats were absolutely beautiful.  And way more than I could ever afford to put into a boat.  Check out the 60+ foot Catana:

Strictly Sail Sailing Catamarans

Strictly Sail – Catana Sailing Catamaran

I won’t even show the Gunboat, it was so amazing and outrageous that I can’t justify giving it any attention.  Something between a work of art, a feat of engineering, and a boat.  Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe it. I won’t show it though – it’s too painful to think about the price tag.

Fountaine Pajot Sailing Catamaran

Of interest were the newer Foutaine Pajot, Leopard, and Lagoon sailing catamarans.  The Fountaine Pajot weren’t my favorite, but on the used boat market they’re remarkably affordable so they’re worth considering.

Fountaine Pajot Sailing Catamarans - Strictly Sail

Fountaine Pajot Sailing Catamarans – Strictly Sail

Lagoon 39 Sailing Catamaran

Next up was the Lagoon 39, and I have to say it was my favorite of the smaller sailing catamarans.  It had space, an excellent 3-cabin layout, and ample space in the galley.  The helm position was raised, and I can’t tell whether I’d like it or not.  The view is nice, but climbing up and down wouldn’t be my favorite exercise.

Strictly Sail - Lagoon 39 Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail – Lagoon 39 Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail - Lagoon 39 Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail – Lagoon 39 Sailing Catamaran (a huge cabin)

Leopard 39 Sailing Catamaran

The Leopard 39 is a bit smaller in beam, length, and in interior volume than the Lagoon 39, and though it is more than enough for my purposes – the difference is perceptible.  Don’t get me wrong though – this is a fine sailing catamaran.  And it starts at a remarkably affordable price, the one I looked at being just over $300K.  Yes, this is considered affordable for any brand-new sailing catamaran over 36 feet.

Strictly Sail - Leopard 39 Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail – Leopard 39 Sailing Catamaran

Strictly Sail Sailing Catamarans

Strictly Sail – Leopard 39 Sailing Catamaran

Sailing Stuff

Equally interesting was the amount of tangential products being offered – it wasn’t just about sailing catamarans apparently… Everything from motors to fridge/freezers to aloe creams were being sold in the booths scattered about Strictly Sail.  I went through them more than once and even found a booth of old salts selling books on their adventures.  Of course, this prompted the question:  can you actually subsidize sailing with books?  Admittedly, an uneducated question – it always depends on the quality of the product and the marketing tactics.  Some sailing books have been successful, most not.  The overall impression that I got was:  it’s a way to supplement your trip, and you have to be prepared to market your book as well as write/edit it.  There are probably more profitable ways to spend one’s time (which I’m reminded of as I pay ridiculously high prices for wireless access, to write this very post).

Strictly Sail - Engines

Strictly Sail – Engines

Strictly Sail - Refrigeration

Strictly Sail – Refrigeration (and crafty marketing)

All The Pretty Horses

I did visit the other parts of the Miami International Boat Show.  I admittedly still love powerboats and horsepower – so here are some pictures from that end of the spectrum.

Horsepower - Miami Boat Show

Over 1100 Horsepower on Two Outboards – Miami Boat Show

Powerboats - Miami Boat Show

Powerboats- Miami Boat Show

Horsepower - Miami Boat Show

1400 Horsepower – Miami Boat Show

Miami Boat Show - The Hulk

Miami Boat Show – The Hulk

Finally – I spent some time in the Marine Electronics section of the boat show.  I’m a technology nut, that became clear pretty quickly.  The electronics – navigation, communication, lighting, fish-finding, maps, overlays, and solar/wind power actually were more interesting than even the sailing catamarans at Strictly Sail.  After all – I couldn’t afford any of the sailing catamarans at Strictly Sail, but I could afford some of the electronic gizmos in the Marine Electronics room.

In Conclusion

All in all – great experience, top notch show, but one for those looking for new boats, the latest in products, and deep pockets.  I don’t really fall into those categories – but I enjoyed it nonetheless.  I’m definitely looking forward to the main reason for being in South Florida – The Blue Wild Expo. 

The post Strictly Sail and The Miami International Boat Show appeared first on The Nomad Trip.

Keeping the Dream Alive – An Update

keeping the dream alive - sailing catamaran

Sailing Catamaran … photo credit: Jean-Pierre Bazard 

I began seriously looking for boats not long ago, but that’s completely stalled right now.

It’s killing me. 

Part of the reason I made the decision to cast-off on this sailing circumnavigation was the recent death of my father, and some health scares with my Mother.   It was a harsh reminder how short life is, how attaching your self-worth to your profession is foolish, the importance of right now, and how much I really value some of my friends and family (although I really suck at showing it).

So – part of the point of the trip is to take my Mom with me (part of the time!) so that:

  • we can spend time together
  • she can relax
  • she can do something she’s always wanted to do
  • she can save me if I fall off the boat 100 miles offshore (selfish, right?)

To be clear – I like to think I’m a decent son, but spending every hour of every day, in tight quarters, with one’s mother isn’t my idea of a lifestyle improvement (I’m sure she’d agree).  So, we’ve agreed on easing into it.  If she comes, it’ll be for a couple of months here and there.

Here’s where it ties into boat shopping:

  • she wants to take a charter before she commits (fair enough)
  • she’s too busy to take a charter (no comment)
  • if she’s going to come, we need a catamaran (sharing a boat is one thing, sharing a hull is a whole ‘nother level)
  • until she makes a decision, I can’t start shopping with any real authority

So I’m stuck.  And frustrated.  And feel like I’m wasting time.  And everything else hinges on this.  So I wait…
But I’m not just killing time – I’m finishing up some remodel work on my duplex, working on getting my financial life together, experimenting with photography, etc.   Oh yeah – I did make my first gear purchase for the trip.  It’s a Canon 70D, and I suck right now.  But I’m learning.

Keeping the Dream Alive

So, I’m sure you’re wondering how I’m keeping the dream alive?  Well – this coming weekend is promising:  I’m heading to the Miami Boat Show (to check out sailing catamarans) and The Blue Wild Expo (to mingle with the freediving spearfishing crowd).  Both of which are a much-needed “keeping the dream alive” break from working too much.  I’ll be doing a short writeup on both of those, and I’ll create a gallery dedicated to each so you don’t have to make the flight yourself.

You’re welcome.


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