Seeking row/sail boat and advice in Seattle : LUSENET : Open-water rowing : One Thread

I am looking for both a boat and advice. What I hope to find is a rowing/sailing boat that is light enough to cartop, but substantial enough to take a family of three on multinight trips around Puget Sound. I intend to explore estuaries, fish, explore, and camp from it. I am considering a Pygmy Wineglass Wherry build it yourself kit (, but am impatient and would rather buy something used in the $1000 to $1500 range. I welcome any advice or boat for sale opportunities.

-- Peter Skidmore (, July 31, 2003


IMHO, cartoppable and "family of 3/multi-night trips" are conflicting goals, and any choice is bound to disappoint on some level. That said, have a look at this design that ALMOST fits the criteria, the Bolger Long Dory, stretched version of his famous Light Dory:

-- Kim Apel (, July 31, 2003.

I'll second that, in that a Puget Sound worthy boat is unlikely to be light enough to be car top-able. I ended up in a Gig Harbor 16ft Dory, but that's more than your price range. But I haven't had it in the sound much so I can't really tell you that its the right boat.

The issue I've run into is that its a bit tippy & small for 3 adults as a sailing boat. Nevermind the 5 (4 adult sized people & one kid size) I have to haul around. It would be fine as a row boat for 3 adults. Although I've had 5 in it on a quiet pond.

On the other hand I've got an 18ft canoe and I've had it out on the Sound on nice days (with an electric motor) and all over Lake Washington and the ponds around here. I've had 4 adults in it by using two beach chairs in the middle. While I have 1/2 of a sailing rig I again think it would be difficult to sail with more than 2 people based on my sailing other canoes.

The issue is that a sailboat really can't utilize all the space as the mast takes over one of the seats and you have to be able to shift from side to side as you tack and not trip over people. Plus some extra freeboard for heeling means a lightly loaded boat.


-- Gary Powell (, August 04, 2003.

Oh, one other thing I've recently "discovered" is that for salmon fishing you want to bring a cooler to hold the fish. A lot of small sailing/row boats with a centerboard or dagger board don't have a good place to put the cooler. If the centerboard trunk wasn't there, it would fit crosswise. Anyways its something else to think about when you are looking for a boat. -Gary-

-- Gary Powell (, August 11, 2003.

Well I finally got the dory out in the Sound. I spent a day fishing with my brother and it was great. A dory really does chop well. We were surrounded by those floating ferry sized recreation boats, which naturally slowed down for a look and to be "safe", which maximzed their wake. We were pretty loaded with fish and gear but took almost no water over the side. A dory is pretty tippy in still water but in a chop it lifts right over the waves steady as you please.

Anyway sailing with 3 people and gear I'd go for something larger than the Wherry. Rowing you would be fine in the light stuff. When the wind kicks up you'd want more freeboard, or else you will be bailing.


-- Gary Powell (, September 02, 2003.

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