Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Looking at "High Hopes" with High Hopes

So we've set up an appointment on Saturday to look at a boat that Jill found on Yacht World that's right in Newburyport, only 20 minutes away! We've been looking on Yacht World for the last 4 or so months always looking for the following:

  • Used
  • 35-45' 
  • Under $50,000
  • Center Cockpit - these are best for sailing in heavy weather (you can fully enclose it and stay safe and dry) and it has an aft (back) owner's cabin has a lot of head room and space.
  • Located some where in New England
There's never a ton of results but just last week we stumble upon "High Hopes"! 
She's a 1981 39' Mariner 
S/V High Hopes in Harbor - doesn't she have classic lines?
She's younger than us, not by much, but still a plus!  In a wonderful twist of symbiosis Mariners were built in Rochester, NH from 1978-1982! So we may end up with a boat made right here on the Seacoast of NH! 

We've been furiously researching Mariners on the web and the reviews that are out there are pretty awesome.

After searching for 5 years we found the perfect CC cruising boat, the Mariner 39 sloop. It is very well built and sails like a dream. We bought the boat from the first owners who sailed it for 18 years to Alaska, Tahiti, and Peru. It a proven blue water boat.

These boats were built in Rochester, NH between 1978 and 1982. They have an excellent layout, definitely better than anything you will find on today''s new boats. Two cabins with private heads in each, lots of storage space, 180 gallons of water, 80 gals of fuel. Mine has a Perkins 4-108 diesel.

Time and again I''ve met owners of Mariner 39''s who were super pleased with their choice, both living aboard & cruising, just like the above poster. It has good build quality having been built when there were still New England ''old school'' craftsman in abundance but, regrettably, not many were built.

We also stumbled across this blog from a family who lived aboard and sailed their Mariner 39' from Maine to South America for two years and LOVED it! And another twist of symbiosis the Captain, Neil is from Duxbury where Tim grew up! Check out 

So needless to say we are excited. We are tying to control our excitement because we've been told 'never fall in love with a boat'. Just like buying a house we'll have to go through A LOT before we actually jump aboard and sail away. There will be an inspection (called a Marine Survey), a sea trial, financing, insurance, etc. And inherent in all that "red tape" things can and will go wrong so we want to keep our expectations in check.

But...we can't help it - we are PUMPED! This boat is exactly what we're looking for - live aboard layout below deck is optimal, it's blue water boat - meaning it can withstand ocean crossings, it's heavy and substantially built meaning it can stand up to heavy seas and weather and we will still feel safe, it's pretty and is a classic construction with old "New England craftsmen" quality, it's known to keep point while under sail and for all our friends and family - it has a private guest cabin in the front with your own head!!! 

So from now till Saturday we'll try and keep our emotions in check but if there's any tips or thoughts out there on what we should be looking for when we view this boat let us know - we can use all the help we can get! We will take photos and report back next week - who knows, this may be our new home and we could be moving aboard by Summer!  

"Boats, like whiskey, are all good." - Culler

"I want a boat that drinks 6, eats 4, and sleeps 2" - Earnest K. Gann

"People with the boat bug are never happier than when they are poking around marinas, fantasizing about owning other people's boats. It's a disease that costs more to cure than any other single common learning disability." - Randy Wayne White

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