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Old 01-22-2022, 04:28 PM   #1
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How long can you stay out on the hook in 30-42 ft boat?

I enjoy long times at anchor while fishing, cruising or lazing. Over the years, I've modified my boat with systems with the goal of being able to spend two weeks on the hook without touching a dock when singlehanding. Of course, this drops by more than 50% when a crew 'mate' is aboard. My personal best is 16 days with just a trash haul of convenience bc I was bored, but I used a dink for entertainment and stopped a a couple bars and restaurants. I can easily hold 3 weeks of food aboard with two fridges.

How long are you able to stay out until the limits of power, water, fuel, sanitation, food, water, comfort, bait, beer/booze/??? or entertainment are reached?

What's your record solo boat excursion without docking?
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Old 01-22-2022, 04:44 PM   #2
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When I was younger two weeks but not in one spot allowed recharging batteries. The sad part is/was that I and the boat could have lasted longer if not for the dreaded must go back to work.

Now headed into semi retirement (as in still working part time) while the boat can go longer, the older body may not. We are looking to go 3 weeks this summer, only time will tell if we will do it.
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Old 01-22-2022, 04:46 PM   #3
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Interesting question. With ample solar, freezer, decent sized fridge, 500g diesel plus a watermaker and a compost head, limiting factors become food and perhaps beer/booze. Depends on what the underlying circumstances are. When 9/11 hit, my boat was equipped as a bug-out vehicle with 6-mos of very austere accommodations for two. For cruising? Depends on where we are. Gasoline for dinghy is probably our biggest hard limit. That and craving for fresh salad. Without that, we could easily go 3-months between provisioning if needed.

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Old 01-22-2022, 05:15 PM   #4
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I have to ask, What is your budget for deodorant?
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Old 01-22-2022, 05:24 PM   #5
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My boat is smaller than most here so the hard limit tends to be fresh water. I can carry plenty of bottled drinking water, but just for cleaning, showering, head operation, 40 gals doesn't last too long. You can always carry enough non-perishable food. Power can be handled by the generator for a very long time. I guess if I knew I had to or wanted to stay on the hook for an extended time, I could stretch the 40 gal of water as far as possible. Never tried more than a few days in one place.
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Old 01-22-2022, 05:40 PM   #6
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On prior 46’sailboat we could and did stay totally off grid for periods >1 month. Limiting factor is food. With solar/wind/watermaker and appropriate spares it’s only food that’s limiting. Eating nothing but hard stores is miserable. Sure carry rice, beans, flour, pasta and canned or cured meats. But a nice roast with a salad or fresh veggies is a joy. In boats in the size range your talking about will have 400-1000g of diesel and several tanks of propane. You’re not doing passages just bopping around a select cruising ground so fuel isn’t as limiting as food. With adequate ventilation you don’t run AC. So it’s food especially fruit that’s limiting. In the tropics you occasionally get lucky and can pick fruit and catch the occasional non ciguatera prone safe fish..
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Old 01-22-2022, 05:51 PM   #7
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i have to ask, what is your budget for deodorant?
good one!
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:05 PM   #8
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I have to ask, What is your budget for deodorant?
If he is alone it isn’t as important…
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:06 PM   #9
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This couple has circumnavigated AU on a 30' sailboat, living very well but very self-sufficient and minimalist. Their latest video documents 2 months out without reprovisioning. I love their videos - very enjoyable and informative. They have a provisioning guide available as a free .pdf download as well.

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Old 01-22-2022, 06:06 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by FlyWright View Post
How long are you able to stay out until the limits of power, water, fuel, sanitation, food, water, comfort, bait, beer/booze/??? or entertainment are reached?

What's your record solo boat excursion without docking?
Well it depends:

Without docking, I'm probably between 3 and 4 weeks in Lake Champlain. Now I did dinghy to shore for a grocery runs. Lake Superior (The Apostle Islands or Isle Royale) it was 2 to 3 weeks without reprovisoning. In these fresh water lakes a daily soap swim can replace a shower. With a 2,400 mile range, 300 gallons of water and an 80 gallon holding tank, the fresh fruit and salad probably becomes the limiting factor. I guess the other question is whether you consider dinghying to shore to walk an island or climb a mountain as not staying off the dock.

Ted
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:12 PM   #11
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On a previous 33 ft catamaran it was 8 weeks
Lots of fresh fish, rice and rainwater

On our current vessel we can and do stay off grid indefinately
Into our 6th year without touching a dock apart from haulout and a tender run for fresh veg every few weeks.
We have done a 4 month stint with zero reprov on her with full freezers and frozen veg
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:16 PM   #12
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We spent two months in the Abacos, coming in to a marine every other week for provisions, water and holding tank pumpout (well, if I recall correctly, the Bahamas doesn't know about holding tank pumpouts- don't tell!).

Water and fresh food were the limiting factors. We took quick showers, saving the warm up water for rinsing dishes. Frozen meat and vegetables ran out after two weeks as well.

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Old 01-22-2022, 06:33 PM   #13
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Once the new 110-ish gallon water tank is done, we'll be able to comfortably go at least a week without needing anything more than taking the dog ashore.

The 70 gallon holding tank is easily good for about 10 days with 2 of us on board, but could probably be stretched a few more days if we're really careful. If we're not moving around much (not burning much fuel) and don't mind carrying water back to the boat on some of the dinghy trips with the dog, waste capacity would be our biggest limiting factor.

We know from experience that provisioning food for 2 - 3 weeks is easy for 2 of us and we could certainly provision for longer if necessary. In general, if provisioning by dinghy is acceptable, we could probably stay away from docks nearly indefinitely, save for fuel and pumpout stops.
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:36 PM   #14
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With 400 gallons of water, big frig, freezer and huge pantry, we can go approximately 40 days without going to a dock, which we did when we summered in the Broughtons.

Sandpiper is 40'.
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:38 PM   #15
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On the Inside Passage two of us easily go three weeks before running low on fresh veggies and fresh water. If I fire up the watermaker we can go a good bit longer, especially if the fishing is good, relying more on foods that do not need to fit into the fridge. Certain crew members wish the ice cream lasted longer.

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Old 01-22-2022, 06:55 PM   #16
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An interesting addition to this thread would be to not only say how long you can stay on the hook, but what is the limiting factor. In our case, about 15 days. At that point we need to add fresh water. That is with 2 of us on board and both showering every day, so not exactly roughing it. We have no water maker. When we were traveling most of the time, it would not have have mattered because we were usually in areas where one probably would not have used a water maker anyway. So, 15 days.... limiting factor is water.
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Old 01-22-2022, 07:03 PM   #17
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An interesting addition to this thread would be to not only say how long you can stay on the hook, but what is the limiting factor. In our case, about 15 days. At that point we need to add fresh water. That is with 2 of us on board and both showering every day, so not exactly roughing it. We have no water maker. When we were traveling most of the time, it would not have have mattered because we were usually in areas where one probably would not have used a water maker anyway. So, 15 days.... limiting factor is water.
We're typically my wife & I, 2 dogs, our 3 kids, and 1-2 guests, so a big crew. We got a water maker before last summer's 6 week excursion because without it, even with 400g of tankage, water use was constantly top of mind, and each guest needed to be educated. Adding the water maker made for a massive improvement.

We're now at the point where our limiting factor is not so much provision-related as enjoyment-related. Wife and kids get restless after a week or two totally away from civilization. Not needing water means re-provisioning can be done easily via dinghy, at our convenience when we go to shore.
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Old 01-22-2022, 07:05 PM   #18
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Interesting question Al. We carry 350 gal of water (no watermaker), 600 gal of diesel, and have a good generator. Fairly large fridge/freezer. Our limiting factor is our holding tank at 40 gal - of course if 3 miles offshore no problem. Will have to give it try when the Admiral is away some time, and see how long I can go.
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Old 01-22-2022, 07:11 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyWright View Post
I enjoy long times at anchor while fishing, cruising or lazing. Over the years, I've modified my boat with systems with the goal of being able to spend two weeks on the hook without touching a dock when singlehanding. Of course, this drops by more than 50% when a crew 'mate' is aboard. My personal best is 14 days with just a trash haul of convenience bc I was bored, but I used a dink for entertainment and stopped a a couple bars and restaurants. I can easily hold 3 weeks of food aboard with two fridges.



How long are you able to stay out until the limits of power, water, fuel, sanitation, food, water, comfort, bait, beer/booze/??? or entertainment are reached?



What's your record solo boat excursion without docking?


How long is a piece of string?
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Old 01-22-2022, 07:34 PM   #20
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....We're now at the point where our limiting factor is not so much provision-related as enjoyment-related...
Great point. I would say more often than not, that was our situation too. I love nights on the hook, but sometimes a marina sounds great to us, too.
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