Cruising my 1995 Catalina 42 MK II sailboat with my cat XO, the good, the bad, and the ugly of the open ocean world cruising life.
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We left Cleveland headed for Buffalo and the autopilot started acting up again. We are coming to the conclusion that it is the control head and not the computer but there is no real way of telling until we have more time and equipment to test with.
We had a long, hot, flat no wind trip up the lake. We put in at EriePA for the night. At first we tied up at the public dock, but it was quite public and not very appealing. Se we went across the small inlet area and tied up in front of the convention center. We made some soup and while we were sitting in the cockpit a boat covered with disco lights with the music blaring came by a couple of times. On the third pass we realized that it was one guy alone on the boat – he was dancing with himself. I guess disco lights just don’t get the girls at Pasquile Isle. Fortunately his third pass was his last and we were able to bed down for the night.
The next morning we left and went direct to Buffalo. Another flat, hot, windless boring trip across Lake Erie. We got into Buffalo late in the evening, headed for a restaurant called The Pier only to find it long gone and replaced with a park. We then went up to Lake Erie marina and had a nice dinner in the marina restaurant. We headed back down the harbor break wall and anchored for the night at the location of the missing Pier restaurant. I am glad to have Lake Erie behind us.
There has always been a great interest in knowing how much to budget for the cruising life. The answer is always "it depends." I too was frustrated by the "it depends." In an effort to shed some light on the subject here is my take on the parameters of "it depends." I own a 42' sailboat and have done some cruising in North and Central American, Portugal, Spain and the Canaries, and in the Caribbean. My personal take is that one can cruise and tour comfortably in a 40 to 45 foot boat for about $2,500 to $3,000 per month. One can "live aboard" for much less. I am assuming that you are on a sailboat to see the world, not stay in a relatively small area.
The Big Issues
There are four factors that have an overall influence on both initial and operating costs. They are:
What risks you are willing to take,
How much comfort you desire,
What you consider to be a prudent insurance profile,
Where you cruise
PRECISE NAVIGATION!The passenger steamer SS Warrimoo was quietly knifing its way through the waters of the mid-Pacific on its way from Vancouver to Australia. The navigator had just finished working out a star fix and brought the Master, Captain John Phillips, the result.The ships position was LAT 0 S 31' N and LON 179 S 30' W. The date was 31 December 1899 “Know what this means?” First Mate Payton broke in, “We are only a few miles from the intersection of the Equator and the International Date Line.”Captain Phillips was prankish enough to take full advantage of the opportunity for achieving the navigational freak of a lifetime. He called his navigators to the bridge to check and double check the ships position. He changed course slightly so as to bear directly on his mark. Then he adjusted the engine speed. The calm weather and clear night worked in his favor.At midnight the Master ensured that the Warrimoo lay still on the equator at exactly the point where it crossed the I…
We intended to leave Savusavu this morning and head out to explore more of Fiji. The rain quelled our ardour. So I came into shore to pay the marina for one more night on the mooring ball. I also figured I could get a hot shower. That got me thinking. If you had every told me during my executive days that in my retirement I would be sharing the "mens' locker room" to take a shower or use the bathroom I would have laughed. But the thing is, I do. Sure I use the head when on Reboot. But marine heads are notorious for clogs. So the less use the better. (We have a rule on Reboot: any woman who flushes a "feminine napkin" down the toilet pays a $200 fine for a new pump and gets to unclog the system! They are brutal on the waste system no matter what the package says.) Showers are another thing. It takes the water maker 4 hours to make five gallons of water. Then you have to run the engine to heat the water up. It is a great disincentive.Fair winds and following sea…