2014-06-01

Welcome!

Hi!

Welcome to Greg and Sandi's Catalina 22 owner log/blog. My husband and I are excited to join the community of sail boaters, Catalina owners and other trailer sailers alike. We decided to start this blog as an updated version of the standard ship's log, and a way to share with others what we learn along the way.

First, some background...

Since we live in the greater Seattle area, we have a myriad of options for both fresh water and salt water sailing. Nearby, the San Juan Islands are recognized as a prime sailing destination both for their beauty and the protected waterways of Puget Sound. Other nearby lakes offer fresh water destinations, and Victoria, Vancouver and the Inside Passage are all within reach. We live within view of the large and beautiful Lake Washington, where I'm able to see boats out daily much of the year, even in our all too common Pacific Northwest liquid form of sunshine that some call rain. Boating in general is very popular in the region and we're looking forward to getting out on the water and creating many lasting memories with both family and friends.

Growing up in Miami, Fla., another boating mecca, I learned to sail as a child. One summer, when I was about 10, I took a sailing class with my best friend that was offered thru Girl Scouts. A couple of times each week, we attended classes and sailed dinghys around a large harbor, in between lots of large yachts moored offshore. We learned to control our little dinghys pretty quickly since a wrong move could have sent us crashing into a large and expensive yacht! The classes culminated in a day long sail south along the Miami coastline to a nearby island, circumnavigation of the island, a quick shore trip for packed lunches, and finally the long sail back home.  I think that was the day when I fell in love with sailing. Then again, it could have been the day I had a close encounter with a Florida manatee while in my dinghy.

Blackwater Sound, south of Miami, Florida
Blackwater Sound, south of Miami, Florida
Map © OpenStreetMap contributors
Shortly after learning to sail, my grandfather, who had a little property in Key Largo, bought a build-at-home sailboat kit (I don't know the make). I remember getting to work with him on it from time to time when I could go down for a visit. Once the boat was finished, he started taking it out, but my grandmother said he wouldn't put the sails up without me along because he'd never learned to sail! Usually, he'd just motor around with it. I remember one time I got in trouble at home and was grounded on a weekend I'd been planning to go down to Key Largo. I packed my bag, snuck out and started walking towards Key Largo, running away from home, to go sailing with him. That's about 60 miles I was planning to walk, and I was around 12 years old.

Diego Garcia, in the Indian Ocean
Diego Garcia, in the Indian OceanMap © OpenStreetMap contributors
We sailed together on and off for several years, all around Key Largo but mainly in Black Water Sound. In my mid teens, I got busy with school and friends and didn't spend as much time with my grandparents. But at age 19, I had the good fortune to spend a year working on a tropical island in the middle of the Indian Ocean with both Laser and Catalina sailboats available to rent very cheaply, along with some pretty amazing beaches, fishing, and snorkeling. The sailing club on the island put on races regularly, and I spent many of my days off either racing in a Laser or cruising one of their Catalina 22s around the large protected lagoon. It was there that I fell in love with the Catalina 22.

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