Page 36


Tales of a Trailerable Sailboat: Georgia to the Florida Keys & Back PART I By Walt McFarlane


ready for some time. Her running ne of the reasons I decided to rigging had all been replaced. She buy a 26-foot MacGregor sailwas equipped with a new VHF and boat was because I would be able GPS. The interior had been to hook up the trailer and off I The author and his wife on board Sea-Renity. arranged to provide not only concould go to wherever my little venience but comfort. I had the electrical system beefed up heart desired, slide her into the water, and then just sail off by adding an additional deep cell battery for house use, into the sunset. Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? shore power, and solar panels. The head got a larger potty, Well, my wife Jan and I have just returned from a 1550and a single-burner, butane stove gave the galley area more mile road trip around the state of Florida with our work space. Safety netMacGregor, Sea-Renity, in ting was added to keep tow. How do I now feel equipment and our pet about my decision? In puppy, Gracie, on board truth I have learned a lot. as well as jack lines to Not only about trailering keep me on board. At last but also about the boat we were ready. herself. I found that conOn the day we pulled verting a day or weekend out from Savannah, GA, boat into an extended it was beautiful. Our first cruising craft is a chalstop would be Saint lenge, to say the least. Petersburg, FL. Jan’s My most eye-opening brother, David Spierling, learning experience was lives there and has been in planning ahead. If you Sea-Renity and truck ready for the road. sailing for many years. think you can just hookHe is a regular competitor in the local racing scene, crewing up the trailer, head down the road to a desired location, on a J/24. He did our homework for us and was able to find a boat ramp, launch, then just sail off, you are make arrangements for a slip at the Harborage Marina at WRONG! It does take planning. As you will see in our litBayboro. We planned on staying there for four to five days tle story, there are a lot of surprises awaiting you. Don’t get and doing some sailing with Dave in Tampa Bay. me wrong. We had a wonderful time, even when battling Our trip started off uneventfully enough. Having a cases of the flu, but it could have been better if we had done three-quarter-ton pickup makes pulling a 26-foot a little homework prior to departure. MacGregor easy. As we rolled down the interstate, Jan and We had been working on getting Sea-Renity cruise-


June 2005