16 foot c-dory... safe for PWS?
THANKS very much to all of you who replied to my post about looking for a boat to explore PWS.
I think I should have started with this question though...
Do you think a 16 foot c-dory would be safe to explore PWS? There will be two of us... 4 at the most. We like to fish for salmon and halibut and enjoy shrimping.
We might also want to check out ressurection bay and the areas around homer... maybe even cook inlet. Mostly PWS though.
Safety has to do with who is operating the boat, not so much the capability of the boat. A good captain can be safe in a 16' boat, and a moron can get into trouble in a 32' boat.
The real question should be, can you live with the limitations that a 16' boat would impose upon you?
This summer has been mostly very mild, pretty much nice every weekend. Thus one could easily get misled to think most years are like this.
I've been out of Whittier about a 1/2 dozen times this summer, and while most days have been like glass for the most part, there were areas that I was in 2-4 seas, and those were mild days. You'd likely be pretty miserable in a 16' boat in those conditions. To me, a 20-22' boat is the minimum I would want in those conditions. You can be out on flat water, stop on an island for lunch, and an hour later when head back the water is starting to get moving. And typically the roughest water is from the harbor out to the first point, a couple of miles. Not only will a small boat be beating your more in the rougher seas, you'll have to slow down, and hence spend more time in the rough water, and more time in rough water is more time for that water to get rougher.
The only spots I've found consistantly good fishing are 50 miles from port, and hence I'd want a boat that can run 22 knots in 2' seas as a minimum.
PWS is more protected than Seward, Cook Inlet and K-bay, so you can expect even bigger seas in those areas, and very strong tides in the inlet and K-bay.
So, 16' boat, safe, can be, good choice, not even close.
I think the best place to ask this question would be in the c-brats (C-Dory's) forum.
I have a 16 ft that I use for fishing and just cruising around. It's very similar to the C-dory you are interested in. It's cool so long as the weather is good, but you really need to use your head regarding the weather and being alert. If I plan to shoot across a body of water I am paying attention to the conditions, and take a predetermined course. Also, be ready to find a place to hide if the weather comes up. If you are crusing Perry Passage, for instance, be mindful of your next weather stop, which might be one of the protected coves on Culross.
A little bigger boat would be a lot handier on the water. Of course, I've been out fishing pretty hard for three days this summer, and I think I've burned about 10 gallons of fuel, total. Not too shabby.
Thanks for all the great advice. Not sure what we're going to do yet... probably won't buy anything this year. We're thinking we'll rent a boat out of Whittier a couple times next year. Kinda spendy but maybe better than buying and deciding it's too much for us.
Thanks again... I appreciate your input!
I had a 16-foot C-Dory Angler that I used for a couple of years in the Sound. It worked great. Had it out as far as Latouche. Just me and one other person on most of the trips. Fishing four would be pretty tight.
Originally Posted by northwestalska