Our vision, goals and
dreams determine the boat we chose to sail. We may be looking at solo sailing, sailing
coastal waters, or dream of adventure and need an ocean crossing vessel
capable of sailing to faraway places. If you intend to race, or break records
then that’s another story altogether.
The sizes vary greatly as do the layouts.
There are some with trailer boats but a fixed keeled yacht kept at a mooring or marina is definitely more convenient.
Cruising should be leisurely and enjoyable at any time. When on the water alone thought should be given to appropriate equipment to make your time on the water easy and enjoyable.
A good self-steering system makes life easy.
Once under way the auto helm will keep to a pre-set compass course this allows
you the freedom to raise the sails and trim them, tack when necessary and any
other boat jobs. This includes time to navigate or do radio calls plus going to
the ‘heads’ and getting meals. Not to forget a bit of relaxation.
Roller-reefing gear is excellent and almost a universal addition. A maximum sized Genoa, which can be furled by one person, eliminates the need to carry extra sails and to change them each time the wind strength varies.
If caught in heavy weather and there is a need to reduce sail, efficient and easy to use reefing systems prove their worth in these circumstances.
For singlehanded sailing it’s great to have a yacht where the sails can be raised from the cockpit and that includes the main sail.
Self tailing winches and an anchor winch also make it easy and don’t need strength; make it easy on you and enjoy the experience.
These are some of my all-time ‘must haves’ when you are single handed to make it an easy and joy full experience. Then there is the other essentials...
Sailing Solo-Preparation Weather Safety at Sea