We drove to South Carolina to see what we hoped would become our new boat. We also had made arrangements to stop and see many boats in States along the way from Ontario Canada to South Carolina. One we entered in the rain and got more wet inside than out. Some were obviously much older and worse for wear than the internet pictures posted of them were. There really are all kinds of vessels out there for sale and all kinds of people selling them. After meeting with the Broker and owner of the boat we had come to see, we were hooked. Stepping onto this vessel just felt like coming home. It would take a little elbow grease and a few bucks to get it into the shape we needed for a liveaboard but the bones were there. The hull was the most stable we had been on. It is a 45 ft pilothouse ketch built by Micheal Dufour (prior to Dufour being bought out). It was made in order to get the Lords of London Seal of Approval, in the style my husband would artfully call "built like a brick s***house". Solid as a rock. She had brand new unused sails, a watermaker, solar panels, wind generator, new transmission, new prop, and that blessed second helm in the pilot house. So we negotiated a price that we could live with knowing how much we would need to still spend on her. And she was ours !
We headed back home to Canada to call the broker who helped us import our Catalina a few years earlier. He said it would be $200 to him and tax on the sale price to the Government and we would be all set to sail her home. Checking flight prices we decided it would be cheaper for the 3 of us to drive to SC plus we could then bring our own boating equipment which we would feel safer having. But we needed a vehicle to do so. Internet to the rescue again. We bought an old van for $400, loaded it with our our boat stuff, told our daughter to jump in and off we went to Georgetown South Carolina. It was a 1550 km drive and cost us $200 for gas. We later sold the van for $200 before we left so that gave our gas money back :)
We did a detailed daily blog of this entire trip home www.kyleandshelley.blogspot.com but the basics I will include here.
We took 3 days to clean up the boat and make it ours. Then we spent from July 16 thru to August 10 bringing her home to Canada. We travelled 1297 nm. Our route started in Georgetown SC and continued thru Mrytle Beach SC, Wrightsville Beach, Beaufort NC, Norfolk VA, Atlantic City NJ, NY NY, up the Hudson River thru the Catskills were we demasted to enter the Erie Canal, Erie Canal, Oswego NY and then down Lake Ontario to Home.
Photos Below -Entering NY City, Demasted and traveling in the fog up the Erie Canal, The Lengendary $400 van, passing Lady Liberty to enter NY Habour, motoring up the Hudson River, New York City