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New boats for Outward Bound

Apr 3, 2007
 
After serving for 42 years and hauling around 25,000 students, the classic 1965 Outward Bound wooden pulling boats (see picture) have earned some retirement. Outward Bound, the wilderness training organization, has announced plans to replace their wooden pulling boats with a new 15-boat fleet.

The new cat schooner, designed by Rodger Martin Design and to be known as the Outward Bound 30, will highlight the many changes seen in boat technology over the last 40 years, while respecting the traditional characteristics of the original Outward Bound pulling boat and reflecting the evolution of its sailing program throughout the years.

“The driving reason for the change is to create a better platform to deliver on the long standing Outward Bound mission of challenging students to achieve more than they ever thought possible,” said Landon Fake, Outward Bound Program Director and Project Supervisor. “The “Outward Bound 30” will allow new sailors to master the skills at a faster rate, allowing for increased opportunities for personal growth. Students will gain more responsibility, build stronger teams and stretch themselves further.”

“The driving reason for the change is to create a better platform to deliver on the long standing Outward Bound mission of challenging students to achieve more than they ever thought possible,” said Landon Fake, Outward Bound Program Director and Project Supervisor. “The “Outward Bound 30” will allow new sailors to master the skills at a faster rate, allowing for increased opportunities for personal growth. Students will gain more responsibility, build stronger teams and stretch themselves further.”

Constructed of fiberglass, the “Outward Bound 30” will travel in convoy, carry a maximum of six students, and show significant strides in sailing performance with an easily driven hull, carbon-fiber unstayed spars and more sail area. As well as the addition of modern conveniences such as a marine head, improved accommodations and integrated electrical system. The new boats, as in the past, will be without a motor, but carry six carbon fiber oars.

Outward Bound’s long-standing sailing program teaches students of all ages to sail off the rocky coast of Maine, in Boston Harbor and through the sub- tropical waters of the Florida Keys. Because of the diversity in landscape, the new boats are being designed to appropriately suit all of these environments. For example, the “Outward Bound 30” is being built with a shorter centerboard to accommodate the shallow Floridian waters but will have a “kick-up” rudder to help release snagged lobster trap lines in Maine. In addition, the new sail plan is large enough for the moderate summer Maine conditions, but is able to be reefed quickly to an efficient shape for the windier Florida Keys.

Two boats are currently being constructed by Union River Boat and Southport Island Marine, both of Maine, and will launch in June. This will be followed by the expansion into a 15-vessel fleet by May 2008.

Eric on 04/27/2007 07:30

I think it is sad to see the old boats go. There really is nothing like the sound and creak of the wood under sail, really nothing like it at all. I was in HIOBS about 21 years ago on a one month program and from that experience on the creaky, slightly leaky old wooden boats hae continued to love the wooden boats. Also a sad thing about the marine heads. It was a challenge to go to the bathroom over the side while underway.
Are the old retirement boats going to be for sail? I certainly would be willing to purchase one!

D. Brown on 05/16/2007 17:59

Agreed ... sad to see them go. I am quite certain though; similarly fond memories will be commonplace among the future sailors of the new vessels, much the same way that your recall your pulling boat experience.

Ian on 05/18/2007 07:55

Why couln't they put a “kick-up” rudder on the pulling boats. And what do they need marine heads for?

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