If you’ve made the decision to sail a boat, your next decision will inevitably be what type of vessel do you want to use.
There is a myriad of boats available for charter, but many sailors will tell you the reasons why sailing a Catamaran is your best option. Below are the answers to typical Catamaran questions to aid you in your decision.
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How is the Movement Like?
Experienced sailors may find the movements on a Catamaran unusual, but with clocking in time on board, you will quickly acclimate to the difference.
On a Cat, you enjoy more stability than on similar vessels. A Cat can withstand waves and choppy water with more ease and grace than other vessels, making your cruising experience more enjoyable.
Seas that would otherwise toss passengers and loose items about below deck stay put on a Cat in the same weather conditions.
How She Faces the Wind?
Standing against the wind is where a Cat lags behind other vessels. In most cases, when sailing windward, it takes a period of trial and error with the sails to discover a sweet spot in which the Cat can perform well venturing into the wind.
The upside is that most routes can avoid cruising windward almost entirely, so a Cat’s windward sailing ability is moot for most sailors.
Was She Designed for the Rapidity?
A Catamaran’s speed depends on the size and specific design. In general, most Cats are capable of speed and power but are also fuel efficient if properly sailed.
Cruising Cats have an edge in this area, but they are still not meant to be run at full power for long periods. Cats were designed to travel quickly, not race through the water.
What About the Storage?
Catamarans are renowned for their incredible storage capacity, but that shouldn’t be an open invitation to pack the boat to the brim with stuff just because you can.
Overloading your storage space will ultimately bog down the boat and reduce its speed potential.
Less speed means it takes longer to get from Point A to Point B, but it is also less fun to weight down a high-performance Cat.
How Safe is it on a Catamaran?
The design of the Catamaran places an emphasis on safety and stability. The boat is stable and does its best to remain as level as possible, even in the worst of sea conditions.
On top of that, a Cat is equipped with two engines and two rudders, effectively having a backup built right into the vessel.
The Cat’s stability has been mentioned again and again for a reason. This boat is virtually impossible to capsize or sink.
The boat is designed to right itself and its 24-foot beam at the central point of its construction keeps the vessel’s buoyancy at an optimal level in all conditions. It would take a catastrophic event to undo this vessel’s safety standards.
The stability of a Cat is highlighted while at anchor. High winds and turbulent seas have little effect on the boat and allow the passengers to ride out a storm in relative comfort and peace of mind.
Catamaran VS Monohull:
There is a laundry list of disadvantages associated with a Monohull design. A Monohull is plagued with rolling, choppy movements that mimic the condition of the seas and poor weather.
This also plays into the safety of the vessel and the comfort of the passengers on board.
Living space and storage are also lacking in a Monohull while a Cat has these features in abundance.
- Stability and a marked absence of movement in choppy water or bad weather
- Powerful and quick for travel and the purpose of the vessel
- Vast storage space
- Roomy living space
- Safe and sound construction that allows for smooth sailing and anchorage
- Two engines and rudders provide backup equipment if one were to fail or display problems
- Windward performance is somewhat lackluster, but this ability is not critical for pleasure cruising
- Speed can be stunted a bit, but the performance gets the job done
- Too much in storage can hamper the boat’s performance
A Catamaran for sailing gives sailors the best sailing experience possible with less worry. Any sailor who has had to clean up spilled dishes or displaced items due to a rough wave understands the need and desire for stability.
A Cat’s capability to remain stoic in the face of unfavorable seas is enough for any sailor to be converted to Cat-lover!
Have you been on a Catamaran? Did you enjoy sailing with a Catamaran? Feel free to share your experience in the comments below.