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Old 08-31-2019, 01:22 PM   #1
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Retirement options; Puget Sound

Hi all. Longtime boater, currently own a sailboat in SF, while living in SD. But I'm on the cusp of retirement, and really digging the idea of cruising Puget Sound and the islands in a trawler. I lived near there in the '90s (Fall City) so I'm a little familiar with the area, and my daughter is living in Ballard.

I'm sure I'll have a zillion questions; I know boats, but Trawlers not so much. Thinking something like a GB 36 as a target. Need to learn about the various marinas, particularly up the 'left side' of the of the sound... Poulsbo, Kingston, Port Townsend... but north like Everett or even Anacortes would work. My ex is in Bellingham, so it'd need to be a really good deal there.

Suggestions welcomed and I'll try not to be a pest.

Thanks in advance to all!
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Old 08-31-2019, 01:24 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard. You can ask away, we are not pestered. Actually we like questions because they keep the forum alive.
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Old 08-31-2019, 02:18 PM   #3
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My ex is in Bellingham, so it'd need to be a really good deal there.

Thanks in advance to all!
Kirwan, welcome to TF. This is a great place to hang your hat and fire away with the questions.

Ex? Seems many of us have one of those we like to avoid but in a city like Bellingham it's unlikely you would run into her. Or run over her, which ever the case may be.
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Old 08-31-2019, 04:06 PM   #4
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Kirwan, welcome to TF. This is a great place to hang your hat and fire away with the questions.

Ex? Seems many of us have one of those we like to avoid but in a city like Bellingham it's unlikely you would run into her. Or run over her, which ever the case may be.
I love Bellingham, it'd be a good base of operations, it's just a bit ... close.

Let's see.... questions (I'll be looking for threads, these are probably well discussed topics)

Marinas, as mentioned...

Single or dual diesels?

Real world fuel economy? I'm thinking roughly $1/nm, but that once in the San Juans, they are pretty short hops.

What anchors do y'all like? Seems like I've seen a lot of Bruces on bows... All Chain rode? - probably need a lot.

And of course, favorite spots to anchor/moor/dock/fish/crab .....
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Old 08-31-2019, 04:19 PM   #5
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Retirement options; Puget Sound

Hi Kirwan,

My best buddy Dave has a 36 Grand Banks for sale in Bellingham, twin Lehmanís, generator, Avon dingy with a 15hp Johnson. Itís in great shape. Burns about 3 gal per hour at 7.5 kts. Has a Rokna on the bow and a combination of chain and rode. If you are interested send me a message with your contact information.

You could always moor in Blaine and avoid the ex that way. We are in Blaine and it is an excellent jump off point for the San Juanís and Canadian Gulf Islands.

Good luck with your search,
Bob
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Old 08-31-2019, 07:15 PM   #6
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Welcome aboard. You can ask away, we are not pestered. Actually we like questions because they keep the forum alive.
Like he said.
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:34 AM   #7
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Hi Kirwan and Welcome!
For me personally, I would avoid screwed down teak decks. They look nice, but they can be a very expensive and time consuming repair problem. They will eventually leak and if not caught in time (can be hard to tell they are leaking until they are really leaking) can lead to damaged decks (and coring) and interior damage.
Also unless boathouse kept, exterior brightwork requires a lot of work, so I would avoid that as well.
For me, single diesel is the way to go. Twins are double the cost and headache for repair and maintenance, as well in boats of the size you describe, you usually end up with very cramped engine rooms (with twins) with problems accessing the various maintenance items. Just maintain the engine well and join a commercial towing service (if that would give peace of mind).
Real world fuel economy: I have a Nordic Tug 37 (single) and this summer we put about 200 hours on the engine and about 35 hours on the gen set. Including the gen set run time, we used 2 gallons per hour (based on the engine only) travelling between 7 and 8 knots.
I am not familiar with all the marinas you mentioned, but for location, Anacortes is very good. You don't have to cross the Juan de Fuca Strait (unless heading south), the San Juans are right there, and it is a short hop to the Canadian Gulf Islands.

My 2 cents worth, hope you found some of it useful,
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:58 AM   #8
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Finding a boat is the easy part. Finding moorage will be more difficult. Be sure to ask if moorage transfers with the boat. Call a few of the marinas you are considering to find out if moorage is available for a 36' boat.

There is a wait list for my space in La Conner with 3 or 4 names on it, for example!
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:13 AM   #9
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Liveaboard moorage is in short supply. You will need to plan ahead. Put yourself on all the wait lists. However, if you are retired you can keep cruising until something comes up. Waggoner cruising guide lists all the marina’s in the PNW. This will help you shop for a marina. South Sound is usually more available than Central or North Sound.
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Old 09-13-2019, 12:45 PM   #10
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The left side of Puget Sound is great as a base for your "retired" cruising! We liveaboard in Port Ludlow, which is itself a lovely, quiet master planned retirement community. We've made a few cruising guide videos to some of the marinas on this side (even though these 90-sec videos are geared toward visiting boaters, they'll give you an idea of what the marina is like). Many of the marinas will have a waiting list, and Point Hudson only has long term moorage Oct-May.

Port Ludlow - https://youtu.be/okq2oXsLaXg

Poulsbo - https://youtu.be/YZzvv02YnCY

Kingston - https://youtu.be/SyCvtEcN7EM

Boat Haven/Port Townsend - https://youtu.be/hRmNHmznZ7U

Point Hudson/Port Townsend - https://youtu.be/53hzlYfw5c8

Pleasant Harbor - https://youtu.be/PPJkoLhCP98

Langley/Whidbey Island - https://youtu.be/zWAPdABiaXw

Interesting connection: our daughter is in the Navy and lives in Poway. My wife will be there in a week for the impending birth of our grandson.
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Old 09-13-2019, 01:13 PM   #11
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Kirwan,
I have a Nordic Tugs 32 at shelter island/San Diego. I am not selling but if you want to go out some day I could share some of my experiences. I have had 7-8 powerboats over the years. Of course everyone has different needs and wants so you will have to come to your own conclusions but I am sure I could provide you some good questions to consider as you start your search. Feel free to send me a PM.
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