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Cruising with kids


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So, my younger son used to get sea sick almost the moment we left the marina, he'd get all weak and shaky, whimper a bit, lean over the side and have a chuck, then come right for the rest of the trip - thankfully he's grown out of that

 

Unfortunately the older boy has lost all interest in sailing, however the younger is still keen but I have to remind myself that he needs to be actively involved in the process and doing stuff.  Asking him doesn't work because his default is to say 'no' but just talking him through the process and giving clear instructions, demonstrating how something is done, then handing it over.

 

When we first took the kids out we'd attempt to sail for hours to the furthermost destination until some friends with older kids instructed us in the error of our ways, so we settled on short trips and slowly started going further afield.  Izzy bay from Westhaven is great. Actually.  

 

Last year the 11yo and I sailed around Waiheke on his little boat (22' trailersailer) he's also relished the opportunities to go sailing on Sundreamer because he gets to go to places like Kawau in a fraction of the time it'd take on my old skeg or his boat.

 

Yesterday the wind wasn't playing fair and after some hours of tacking back and forth in the harbour we settled on Motuihe.  We walked around the beaches at low tide, we swam, and generally had a lovely, relaxed time.  This morning we swam once the sun had warmed the air up a bit, had a relaxed breakfast and sailed back to Westhaven as the wind slowly picked up.

 

Today the younger kid flew the (small) spinnaker on his trailersailer back from Motuihe - He stated that today was his best day sailing 'ever' because he learnt new things, he felt challenged and a sense of achievement, he also said that 'just he and I' are going sailing again soon and he's keen to see the big spinnaker up.  

Sooooo, yeah, little steps is good. Getting them involved is good.

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unfortunately with the older boy,15,has lost interest a little when brother is onboard,13,but no2 is willing as no1 sleeps 24/7

if its just no1 and i he wants to go ashore,particularly se side of motuhihe at night looking for kiwis,often heard never seen,

 

3/4hrs sailing seems to be the rule,kawau can be challenge for both,now have plan for both,give them a course and tell them need to do something down below,thats when i have a snooze but poke head up to how its going.they seem to enjoy it a bit better.  tried at xmas your boat i here as observer/cook bit of a failure as no1 sloped off leaving no2. must admit though boat bit small now so could be part of the problem.

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Teenagers are difficult - even ashore! They need some excitement. so tricky if it is fairly calm on a small cruising boat. By 15 my kids mostly did not want to come unless they could bring a friend - by then, cruising locally was "boring" as they had done it many times, over many years. An in-experienced friend with them bought us a few more years, and a dinghy with a decent outboard for towing biscuits etc helped, but by 18 they were off doing their own things.

Now in their mid to 20's they want to come back with partners, as they now understand that not everyone has this opportunity.....

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Any tips for BOI with kids?

I use to leave AK to kawau,maybe 1 or 2 days at kawau,do the big leg early,get away by 4.00am straight to tutukaka then hop up the coast to whangamumu then around to boi,coming home down to whangaruru,down to whangarei(urquharts) then down to leigh,maybe kawau or straight back to AK. depends on ages?

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We have recently installed an oven. It has changed everything, we can now precook meals at home, freeze them and just bung them in the oven half an hour before dinner time. We put them in those foil trays and throw them out after dinner. Very few dishes, no preparation time.

It makes life on board alot less of a chore and gives us more quality family time.

The biggest part of kids being happy on board is mum being happy on board.

Oh, and beach time, wear them out!!! its fun for all.

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Any tips for BOI with kids?

Oke bay if you can. Long beach on the back of Russell. We stopped one night at Kiekie Cove, pretty tight, and needs to be right conditions, bush towering above you, and the vis was good enough to see starfish on the sea bed.

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This is a great thread - must be one of the longest running time-wise - and it brings back happy childhood dialing memories of my own as well as some handy new tips for cruising with our own little one (now 3.5).

 

Look forward to more of Booboos updates from his global travels as well as other tips for Gulf & Northland cruising.

 

I agree with the approach to minimize long non-stop trips hence I try to set sail early so the little man spends the first part of the trip asleep and whewn he wakes up only has 2-3 hrs more sailing to do at most.

 

Cheers

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This is a good thread.

 

Back when we had a slow trailer-sailor and lived out in the far west;

On a Friday, Partner would pack up boat and kids, I'd come home from work, hitch up boat and we'd drive to Hobsonville. Kids would eat fish & chips while I rigged and launched the boat.

We'd sail to Little Shoal Bay and pirate a tidy mooring for the night, then at about 5am I'd hoist sails, drop mooring and we'd set off down the harbour - the kids would wake up about Bean Rock.  Motuihe became "our Beach".  But Home Bay, Motutapu,  Woody Bay, Rakino etc.. all within a day sail in the summer on a slow boat and all lovely places to take the kids.

Sunday could feel a bit long, especially if the tide wasn't favourable... I think we took to taking two cars to the Marina so that my partner could drive the kids home while I de-rigged the boat.

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