Thursday, May 24, 2007

Urban Squall
Be it on land or water, it seems our numbers grow year after year and there is less space per person left. Milwaukee is in the middle of condo-mania with, it seems, every inch of property along the main river suddenly growing housing units (with a nice view of the crap floating by...but I digress). The prime land sites, the ones offering views of Lake Michigan, are also starting to see shoulder-to-shoulder high rises. Don't even get me started on the costs of these warehouse units (and the taxes).
I have been aware of a similar problem on the lake, itself. When I first began sailing over 30 years ago "housing" for boats was already at a premium. There were, basically, three options. One was to trailer a boat to a from each outing. This, of course, meant putting up and taking down the rigging each time. No mean feet for even an 18 foot sloop.
Next was a mooring, there basically being an area in the northern end of the harbor and the one pictured above off our launch site at South Shore. This was a relatively cheap arrangement but did require a means of getting out to the boat. That, in turn, generally meant car topping or towing a dinghy or carrying an inflatable (which was a pain to inflate each time...but I digress...again),
Most expensive, and luxurious, was a slip with water and electricity. I enjoyed such an arrangement for many years as a member of SSYC (now a life member). All I had to do was mortgage my first born to pay for it.
After I left sailing, I found the perfect solution: paddling. No need for a mooring or a slip, and transportation meant little more than moving a suit case from place to place. No need for bottom paint, water or electricity either. Nothing to inflate. The "dinghy" was, in fact, the boat.
So, no matter how crowded the planet gets; no matter how many boats vie for a finite number of slips; no matter if the mooring area gets filled to capacity; all I need is two feet of shore from which to launch. KISS.
Paddle safe...


Michael said...

I guess that means you're not going to be interested in buying the 22 ft sloop parked in my backyard. It's been there, sitting on its trailor ever since I discovered how easy it is to go kayaking!

Silbs said...

It does. appears we have travelled yet another similar path.

Capt'n "O" Dark 30 said...

I knew if i kept reading you'd have the answer. :-)

If I can't pick the boat up and put it over my head... then it's just too darn big and heavy.