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The lists are endless.
We have so much to do but I learned on my last sailing adventure that the boat is never "ready". You just have to pick a date and go. Of course you have to be sure it's not unsafe but that's about it.
1 -Remember that there are only a few "must haves"
Keep water out. Make boat go. Make boat stay. Keep crew alive.
That's pretty much it. Most everything else can be done while travelling. It may be harder to get things done but at least you will be travelling.
2 - Make a plan and stick to it.
It's important to make a plan that addresses the four key issues above and to place them above everything else. Don't cut corners here. After that you can plan out the rest of the days until your departure date. Those projects on those days are a bit more flexible but the number of days is not. If you decide to go away for the weekend instead of installing that new water pump then you still lose those days.. Commit to that departure date. (Weather permitting of course!!)
3 - Prioritize
All plans change. What is important is to prioritize your projects. I made a list of the minimum needed to do the following.
- Day sailing
- Night sailing
- Simple Overnight in San Francisco Bay
- Coastal Passage to a Marina
- Coastal Passage to Anchorage - Drakes Bay
- Full Offshore
Then I started at the top and made sure everything was in working order. If not I either repaired or replaced it. Once I got past the minimums I got into the things we just "wanted". Sure some of these we want really badly. They would defineitely be easier to do here with easy access to high quality stores and tools.. but they won't stop us from leaving if we don't get them done.
4 - GO SAILING!!!
You need to shake down your systems before you leave. There are always things that break or just don't work out as planned. the only way you will find them is if you go sailing. Our plan includes an increasing seriousness sailing schedule before we go. It follows the list in item 3 with time between each one to fix or change a few things...
Remember - Pick a date, make sure it's safe then just untie the lines and go.
We leave on the first weather window after Feb 10, 2017.
Marc and Laura.
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