Whether you're still dreaming, acquiring your blue water cruiser or just finished your circumnavigation, the Bluewater Open Boat Weekend in Limington UK on the seventh and 8th June will be the place to be for cruising sailors on the 'starboard' side fo the Atlantic. Experts, experienced cruisers and those just starting out will mingle with much good camaraderie on this weekend arranged by the World Cruising Club, organisers of the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC)
All about blue water cruising - Lady of Avalon - photo by Federico Anzolini
Step aboard a range of different styles of offshore cruising boats
Learn what to look for when choosing your bluewater boat
Start your sail of a lifetime with guidance and advice from experts
Meet and mingle with cruisers and industry experts in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere
Find out what it is really like to live the bluewater sailing dream
Offshore sailing experts World Cruising Club (WCC), have teamed up with leading bluewater yacht brokers Berthon and Yachting World magazine to host a unique weekend rendezvous at Berthon's Lymington UK base in June. The new Bluewater Open Boat weekend is for sailors who are aiming at going offshore cruising and want to know what to look for when choosing a true bluewater boat.
For those in the boat search phase of their count-down to offshore cruising, the Bluewater Open Boat weekend will provide the knowledge to help make the right choice of boat, plan a refit, and manage the costs of cruising, as well as meeting and mingling with experienced bluewater cruisers to share knowledge and gain inspiration, all in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere.
Seminars on practical subjects - here about boltcroppers
World Cruising Club's Jeremy Wyatt, explains the concept for the weekend:
'We already run a series of very popular seminars to help sailors prepare for their first ocean crossing. However, these are aimed at people who have boats. Since we often get asked about boat choices by people planning for their retirement boat, we wanted to create an event totally focused on bluewater boat selection. By displaying a range of different styles of boats, we aim to show how their varying attributes affect the overall boat package. Throughout the weekend there will also be displays of offshore cruising equipment, and a chance to mingle with industry experts and other cruising sailors. Previous World Cruising Club rally participants are invited to bring their own boats to the weekend, and share their personal experiences offering 'open boat' viewing to other cruisers.'
More than just a boat show...
A key element of the weekend is the concept of a cruiser's rendezvous, encouraging ARC and World ARC sailors to bring their boats to Lymington, opening them up for visits by future offshore cruisers. Mixing and mingling with both experienced cruisers and industry experts will provide a unique learning environment for anyone thinking of cruising bluewater.
Billed as an 'open boat weekend', visitors will be able to sit in on selected presentations, chat with experts and other cruisers, step aboard up to 8 different styles of bluewater cruising boats, and immerse themselves into the world of offshore cruising. A range of different styles of fully fitted out offshore cruising boats will be on display for visitors to climb on board, supported by a selection of talks aimed at educating sailors about key aspects of bluewater boat selection and planning for offshore cruising.
Alan Mclroy from Berthon Brokerage comments 'As the preferred broker for the ARC, we have been a partner of the rally for many years and are well placed to advise on the types of yachts popular with bluewater cruisers. In addition to our own brokerage listings, we have ample space in the Berthon Lymington Marina to host the ARC rendezvous, and our onsite shipyard is recognised as one of the leading refit facilities in Europe.'
ARC san blas boats anchored at chichime
In addition to practical sessions on boat choice and refitting, other speakers will focus on what it is really like to sail across an ocean, with the aim of reassuring and inspiring new bluewater cruisers. A women's round table will provide an opportunity for a testosterone free discussion about all aspects of the offshore cruising life, with experienced female sailors leading the discussions. Speakers have been chosen for their knowledge in their specialist fields and include industry experts and previous participants from the ARC and World ARC rallies.
Topics for the weekend presentations include:
Choosing the right boat - an overview of different cruising boat attributes (cockpit, berths, tankage, engines, sea berths, hulls, build material, rudders, keels)
How to plan a refit - Key systems to think about (hull, rig, steering, through-hull fittings, rudder, engine, tankage, heads, sea berths, refrigeration)
Outfitting your boat for offshore cruising - how to convert your boat from a coastal cruiser to an offshore passage-maker
Planning for maintenance - building a maintenance plan; key skills needed for cruisers.
Power Audit - how to do a power audit; understanding batteries and charging methods.
Sails for cruising - sail selection and rig choices for offshore.
Costs of cruising - how to budget for bluewater cruising
Cruising as a couple - tips for the cruising life as a couple
Enjoying Life in the Islands - make the most of your Caribbean cruising- customs, pets, security, where to cruise
Ladies Round table - a chance to share knowledge and concerns without the men around
Rallies and Routes - overview of the ARC and other World Cruising Club rallies and tradewind routes
The Bluewater Weekend will take place at the Berthon Lymington Marina over the weekend of 7/8 June 2014. The event is open to all cruisers, and attendance is free with pre-registration. Visitors can opt to take part in the whole weekend, or choose selected sessions from the programme. Local marine and leisure businesses are also backing the event, with discounts available at pubs, restaurants and marine suppliers in Lymington, for those who want to make it a weekend away.
Register free now at www.worldcruising.com/training
About World Cruising Club:
World Cruising Club specialises in organising cruising rallies for yachts on a worldwide basis. Best known among the events is the ARC - the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers - an annual race for cruising yachts that has been crossing the Atlantic since 1986. www.worldcruising.com/arc
Over 6,000 boats have taken part in the ARC since the first rally set sail from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in 1986, representing a huge range of different designs, styles and cruising concepts from most of the world's offshore boat builders.