Liberte in cruising kit
13 April 2010
Here's Liberte, heading NW in the channel between Los Muertos and La Paz. This photo was taken by our friends and sometimes buddy boat 'Ithaki.' Thanks, Anastasia and Deano!
You can see a few bits of the kit we added to Liberte for our cruising plans. We kept it simple but well-planned:
Manson Anchor - oversized for the boat. Definitely a good piece of gear.
North Cruising Sails - Made from Norlam and Nordac, with a rope luff on the jib and full battens and a deep third reef on the main. The QuickCover doubled as a storm sail off Cape Mendicino on the way down the coast.
AquaPro Dinghy - Bought used from the Dinghy Doctor in San Diego, this was an excellent upgrade. Powered with an 8hp 2-stroke Mercury, it goes scary fast with just me and the dog. With two people and a couple bags of groceries it's still up on a plane. We made numerous surf landings with this setup. The whole kit only weighs 150 pounds, so we can haul it up on the beach pretty easily. We use the main halyard to hoist the outboard on and off. The dinghy has an aluminum bottom and weighs only 75 pounds, so it's easy to hoist onto the foredeck using the spin halyard.
Seylor inflatable kayaks from West Marine. Great gear. We use them everywhere, and keep them inflated on deck most of the time except for major passages. Sometimes we go weeks without using the dinghy.
Fish flag from Pete and Amy - essential to any yacht. It makes a great wind indicator and "weather fish." (If it's wet, it's raining, etc., etc).
What you can't see in this photo is the PowerSurvivor80E watermaker and the saltwater galley pump, two other modifications we've found to be very nice. We also carry a full compliment of safety gear including a well-stocked ditch bag and satellite phone.
Also not shown is the "Scottimini," our simple bimini which uses the existing structure of the boat with no new holes to drill. It gets its name from Scottie, our longtime crew member who helped design and build it. Scottie used round batten material fore and aft, tied into the dodger and the backstays. The material is "captain navy" sunbrella to match the rest of the boat. The bimini stayed up for our entire season (except for this delivery), and was a most valuable piece of kit.
The SolarStik on the transom proved its worth from the beginning, and continues to provide enough wind and solar power to keep us off the grid indefinitely if we so choose.
We have a Raymarine chartplotter mounted at the helm, along with an ST4000 autohelm. We do not carry radar, but you can see the Davis Instruments deluxe model radar reflector mounted in the rigging. We have an AIS Class B that puts large shipping targets on the chartplotter, and sends them our position as well.
The boat has a small integral diesel tank, so we fill 6 jerry jugs of diesel for longer trips, extending our range to around 600 nm. We can easily refill underway using a pretty neat and simple device called the Magic Siphon that we discovered on our way around Vancouver Island.
We've been very happy with Liberte and the few upgrades we've made to make her a sweet little coastal cruiser.