In keeping with this blogs purpose to help first timers get to the San Juans, lets talk reality.
Here are ten or more irrefutable truths about dinghies.
- You must have a dinghy to go ashore at most parks, because you can't count on there being room at the dock. Many docks have room for only four boats. Many parks have no dock.
- You don't need a dinghy if you only go to resorts and marinas.
- You will probably tow your dinghy everywhere you go.
- You may not use it at all (makes you wish you left it home).
- If you need it you will be thankful you brought it with you.
- There is no place you will go that you can't drag your dinghy along.
- Dinghies may be major status symbols among some groups.
- Towing a dinghy slows you down and uses fuel
- You may run over your tow line and foul your prop or rudder (use a floating tow line).
- Certain people have a hard time climbing into or out of a dinghy alongside their boat.
- Children need a dinghy.
|Our Livingston dinghy is nine feet long and a tad bit overloaded|
|This inflatable was $69 and holds two people|
|This inflatable stows on deck, or deflated stows below and carries three people.|
If you have children that take off with the dinghy, they are effectively leaving you stranded on the boat or ashore. Well that's not going to happen you may say. I say, "what if they get hurt ashore and call you on the phone or radio for help? What do you do? What if they take off in the dinghy and it gets dark, what do you do? (swim)"
Several years past I sent my bored and restless son (in the dinghy) to shore at dusk, telling him to invite himself to one of the many campfires we could see from the boat. He met some other boaters with kids and before you know it it was after 10:00 pm and very dark. His mother and I started to wonder what to do as we were stranded, and had no way to communicate with him. After a few minutes I took a strong flash light and blinked it into the darkness in the direction we thought he was last seen. A short while later he appeared at our transom asking if we wanted him or something. This little non event made me realize how handy a second dinghy would be, so we bought an inflatable kayak to stow below, just in case.
I'm selling the new sailing dinghy
4/17/17 update on converting the 9' Livingston dinghy to sailing
>> go to the do-it-yourself page and scroll way way way down to see the finished conversion << The dinghy conversion section is before the Bimini top on the cheap instructions and after the Boat acronyms if that helps you find it.
Livingston dinghy sailing conversion