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Old 10-10-2017, 10:27 PM   #1
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Zrmakk first post many more questions to come !!!

This is our first post. In 3 years we plan on retiring & hope to spend 5 to 8 weeks a year cruising the PNW. We live 1500k from water so we are looking for a trailerable boat. Ranger Tug 29 or 31 foot has caught our eye. We plan on exploring & spending more time on the hook then on the dock.

Any suggestions to alternatives that we can research similar to the Ranger Tug that is trailerable ?
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Old 10-10-2017, 11:29 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zrmakk;
In 3 years we plan on retiring & hope to spend 5 to 8 weeks a year cruising the PNW. We live 1500k from water so we are looking for a trailerable boat.
I’m having a hard time imagining you thoughts so, help me out here Zrmakk.

5 to 8 weeks a year; all at once, or broken up?
What about the other 45 or so weeks; it just gonna sit in AB?
Trailer to the Kootenays or Okanagan in between maybe?

Ok, I know, folks drag rigs back and forth over the rock pile all the time but they’re living in them. Lugging a boat that size back and forth, I can’t figure.

If two months a year is all you’re using it, why not stick it in a charter fleet like Cooper in Sidney or Desolation Sound YC in Comox? Block out the time you want, Westjet it, toss them the keys and go home. That would load you up with a whole bunch of other possible boats as well. Damn, you could spend New Years on a NT37.
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Old 10-10-2017, 11:45 PM   #3
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Zrmakk first post many more questions to come !!!

Tofield? I used to live in Viking. That's a long drive with a big boat like that. Did it dozens of times.

Hawgwash has a good suggestion. 1.5 hours from YEG to YVR or YQQ. I do that every week now. It was 14 and sunny at home today, while I'm sitting in a snow fall warning at work right now. My wife's cousin lives in Peace country and kept boats in False Creek for years. Now they have one in Florida. Boat more than I do.

Consider the North Pacific 28.

Best of luck.
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Old 10-11-2017, 01:16 PM   #4
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Thanks Hawgwash, we would probably do 2 stints and would trailer it home at seasons end. Probably not going to the Kootenays or Okanagan. The main reason we want to trailer as we have a heated shop for storage & maintenance vs paying for that. Secondly we think we would like to have the option of putting it in the water at different locations along the coast. As for the Charter Fleet idea not sure if we would like other people running our boat.
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Old 10-11-2017, 04:28 PM   #5
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Zrmakk, you have imposed a significant limitation on yourself, 'must be tailorable'.
Charter until you retire. By then, you might discover you need a larger boat.

If you insist on bring the 31ft home, consider hiring someone licensed and insured to haul that boat.
I hope you have a heated shop to store and work on it too.
Realize, you are 1500 miles from meaningful support of the marine industry.
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Old 10-11-2017, 08:56 PM   #6
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Yes Northern Spy we live in Tofield. We googled the North Pacific 28 that you suggested, it is a nice boat but the First Mate would prefer at least a partial walk around bed. The beam is at 8.5 feet we are allowed to tow up to 10.5 feet through AB & BC and we would like to utilize that width. Any further suggestions are more than welcome ! You mentioned a snowfall warning at your work how did that turn out ?
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Old 10-11-2017, 10:21 PM   #7
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OldDan is right, one of the realities we live with is that there are no local marine hardware sources for a million miles. Even simple things like cleats or stainless shackles or almost any boat parts have to be mail order. We have a convenience store at our (400 slip) marina with some boat stuff, but a couple weeks ago I wanted a hose clamp -- plain old 2" hose clamp -- and they didn't have any hose clamps at all, so that gives you an idea. I used to fly down to my Dad's condo in Florida at least once a year with a big shopping list for all the marine stores around Stuart, but now I have mail order accounts at a dozen marine suppliers. And Amazon Prime. I visit my mother in Connecticut, always make a trip to Defender in Waterford. You get used to it though, when we're 1,500 miles from the nearest salt water a short drive away from the geographic center of the North American continent.
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Old 10-11-2017, 10:39 PM   #8
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Well and then here's another thing -- in addition to parts and hardware, good luck finding anybody to work on your boat locally. Even if I had piles of money to blow on the boat and wanted to hire somebody, there are no boat service people for at least 300 miles. It is a good teaching/learning situation because I have to do everything myself, but sometimes it's just a pain. We wanted somebody to buff and wax the hull because I just didn't have time. We called a car detailer who said he did boats too, but he never showed up. We needed a stratoglass panel replaced on the canvas canopy. One person in Yankton advertised as doing boat canvas, but she never showed up and eventually we shipped the panel to a boat canvas place in upstate New York that has Mainship patterns. Can't find anybody to clean the boat, or troubleshoot my nav electronics, or tune the engines, or change the impellers. I have talked to my Dad about hiring somebody from Stuart FL, sending the person a plane ticket and paying him for three days of service time to knock out my to-do list for me, but that gets frighteningly expensive -- and if he needed any parts when he was here, there's nowhere to get them. It's a challenge.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
I’m having a hard time imagining you thoughts so, help me out here Zrmakk.

Ok, I know, folks drag rigs back and forth over the rock pile all the time but they’re living in them. Lugging a boat that size back and forth, I can’t figure.

If two months a year is all you’re using it, why not stick it in a charter fleet like Cooper in Sidney or Desolation Sound YC in Comox? Block out the time you want, Westjet it, toss them the keys and go home. That would load you up with a whole bunch of other possible boats as well. Damn, you could spend New Years on a NT37.

Or maybe a variation: get a trailer boat, but intend to store it out near the coast. Get it up on the trailer, but arrange local (heated, whatever) storage semi-nearby, so the tow is relatively short. The storage location could vary from year to year... or remain the same all the time.

Another possible variation: Get a larger boat, bag the idea of towing, but move the boat near the end of a trip so you can leave it at "the next" destination. Haul out, store on the hard while you're gone, return eventually and use the boat, leaving it somewhere else again. (Might have to take winterizing into account.)

Seems to me there was a thread here (or maybe on the cruisersforum sister site) about "pocket trawlers" that mentioned several trailerable options. C-Dory, Rosborough, something like that...

-Chris
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:08 AM   #10
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OldDan is right, one of the realities we live with is that there are no local marine hardware sources for a million miles.
Dan does a 'happy dance.' I was right!!!

I have gone to a couple of good size WestMarine to pick-up an item only to hear
'We don't have it here but we can order it and have it for you next week."
Alas I tell them, 'If I wanted it next week, I would come in next week and buy it.'
Thankfully, we have a few competing boat parts stores and a couple of wholesale supply stores.

Per hose clamps: gotta maintain a supply onboard, need one buy two or 3 extra. Don't forget spare filters. I even have a couple of spare baskets for each of the sea strainers. Salt water seems to eat them for breakfast.
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Old 10-15-2017, 07:48 PM   #11
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Zrmakk first post many more questions to come !!!

We met a couple in Sandspit who had a small Commander (gas engine) they trailered over to Kitimat from the Shuswap. They took it to Rupert and then across Hecate to Sandspit. They were heading down to see Gwaii Haanas. It wasnít the vessel I would have chosen but they made it work. Their limitation was going to be fuel but I suggested a few things (getting fuel at Moresby Camp). Hey it wasnít the boat I would have chosen, but it was the boat they had. And do you know something? They had the same view from their boat that we had from ours. Ranger tugs are great boats, and if that is the boat that you want thatís the boat you should get...just make sure thatís what you want.

All sort of people told us we were stupid to buy our boat, but 5 summers later and no regrets.

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Old 10-15-2017, 08:48 PM   #12
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You've found one sure way to not use the boat. Trailering it a long distance.

Now, for the amount of boating you want to do a year and your desire to do it in multiple locations, I can't recommend buying a boat. You can charter 5 to 8 weeks a year cheaper and with less hassle than owning. You can use a PNW charter company as there are excellent charters there or if you decide you want to do two weeks in FL or one in the BVI, you do it there. If you enjoy it so much that you find yourself really wanting to own and use far more than 8 weeks, then buy at that time. Use the next three years to explore. Then rethink it in three years.

The easiest you can make your boating life, the more you'll enjoy it. Don't do anything that makes it a burden. Start your next possible time to go and charter and see what it's like.
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Old 10-15-2017, 10:41 PM   #13
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So the question was could any one suggest a boat similar to the 29' or 31' Ranger Tug that we could research.
Northern Spy suggested the North Pacific 28'. This is my only other options out there? As for hauling a boat of this size or a bit bigger over 1500 KM is not a concern. We currently transport loads 84' long and up to 137000 lbs so 31' 12000 lbs and 10' wide isn't a concern.
Lots of good suggestions so far and thanks for all of your thoughts.
Over the last few years we have taken the ferry from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert as well as boated up Princess Louisa Inlet to Chatter Box Falls etc . We fell in love with the scenery on these trips and want to see more.
Thanks JDCave for your input much appreciated.
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Old 10-16-2017, 12:47 PM   #14
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I was going to follow up on B&B's last post about chartering for now instead of buying a boat but to be sure I just mapped your home area -- yikes, you are far from any big water (other than Beaverhill which doesn't look like a big boating lake). We live in the heart of Corn-Country Prairie but we still have the Missouri River a little over an hour away with a 400-slip marina. It's big enough for now to slip, run, upgrade, and maintain our boat for an eventual Loop or "Big U" trip (or some parts thereof) but it doesn't look like that's a local option for you either. I suppose you can make it work with something trailerable, but if your boat is going to stay dry for 335 days of the year (or whatever), is that really worth it? Even with our own boat trapped on the Missouri for now, we've still had a blast chartering. It raises our skill and experience level every year and we have the whole world to choose from (although we most often do the PNW), and the week-long charters usually cost about 10% of what we spend each year to buy and keep the boat at home (I do the accounting very carefully). To each his own, it's your money and time, and I realize you may have the storage and trailering ability to do it, but...
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Old 10-16-2017, 02:21 PM   #15
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I was going to follow up on B&B's last post about chartering for now instead of buying a boat but to be sure I just mapped your home area -- yikes, you are far from any big water (other than Beaverhill which doesn't look like a big boating lake)...
True but he's only a few hours from Shuswap Lake, which is a large enough lake to spend a couple of weeks exploring. has a lot of those house boat rentals. So he could leave his boat on the coast and rely on someone to check in or he could trailer it. Lots of Albertans trailer their boats to Prince Rupert, Kitmat or Bella Coola for fishing on the north and central coasts. It is an option.

I do agree that they should consider some bare-boat charters first (we used Desolation Sound Charters) but I am reluctant to challenge the dreams of someone else. They see if they could B-B Charter the Ranger tug first to see if it fits with their needs.

Jim
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Old 10-16-2017, 08:14 PM   #16
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Check out the new TT35 by Great Harbor

http://www.greatharbourtrawlers.com/tt35.html
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Old 10-16-2017, 10:50 PM   #17
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Are you buying new or used?

If you are looking at new boats and you've got the beef to tow it, the Seapiper 35 doesn't need a permit.

Its only 2.6 m wide, but they are heavy.

SeaPiper 35 - Modern Compact Trawler - SeaPiper
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Old 10-17-2017, 11:27 AM   #18
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We spent more than 20 years cruising the PNW up through BC and SE Alaska in a trailer boat. Home is in Utah, 800-900 miles from the sea. For us it worked well. Having the boat in its garage on our property in Utah made for convenient maintenance, loading, etc. Our C- Dory and Bounty boats sure weren't as roomy as our present NT37, or even a Ranger 31, but they were a great compromise for cruising and fishing in a very affordable way.







BTW, New Moon is for sale - a very affordable diesel cruiser.
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Old 10-17-2017, 05:24 PM   #19
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In my opinion the Ranger tugs are fun to look at at the boat show, but they try and cram way too much into too small a package. There are too many roof penetrations that will start leaking, too many fussy little parts that will all start to break down, and not enough initial build quality. I think they will be a nightmare to keep running long term.

My 2 cents on trailered boats is unless you find one you like that is full displacement, go for twin gas 4 stroke outboards instead of Diesel. They are cheaper, easier to fix anywhere, quieter, it's nice to be able to raise them up out of the water, and did I mention cheaper? They are also better for fishing around here.

If the budget allows, in that size range I would get a 28-32 Seawolf, Ocean sport Roamer, or Costal Craft. I would much rather have a used one of any of those, than a new Ranger tug. Any one of those boats would easily take you far up into Alaska.

If you are buying a new trailer with the boat, get a Tuff Trailer. They are sweet, light, and reasonably priced.
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Old 10-17-2017, 11:45 PM   #20
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Thanks for your reply kthoennes. You stated when you charter a boat it is 10%, so looking at the cost to charter a 31' Ranger is about $650 per night so a 10 day charter is $6500.00 plus insurance. So am I correct in assuming your yearly budget to run your boat is $65000.00 a year ?
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