The quiet catboat


"Sailing Off Morris Island (Chatham, Cape Cod),'' by BOBBY BAKER (copyright Bobby Baker Fine Photography).

This is a catboat. I love catboats, with their  comfort, especially their wide cockpits, and lack of pretension. Pure sailing pleasure, albeit without a lot of adrenaline involved, and with mediocre upwind performance.

Catboats have centerboards, which make them very handy along sandy coastlines such as Cape Cod and Long Island.

'When I was a boy, about half the boats in West Falmouth (Mass.) Harbor were catboats. There are far fewer now; they aren't sexy enough.

--- Robert Whitcomb