Monday, February 19, 2007

To Pilot House or Not (to Pilot House)

Cruising World magazine is running a review of the new Wauquiez Pilot Saloon 41. I've always been a fan of the Centurion 40s and, in fact, advanced so far in my lust as to actually contact a broker and order the marketing action that did little to endear me to my wife who wondered, quite rightly, if I'd gone insane. But back to the Pilot Saloon 41. My jury is still out on sloops with pilot saloons. I've been offshore enough to get why one might welcome a dry comfy pilot house perch. And as the Cruising World review notes, "...the object of the pilot-saloon concept is to avoid the cavelike feeling of traditional boat interiors by providing a panoramic view of the horizon, not just of the sky, for anyone in the saloon, nav station, or galley."

Sure - you get more light and a better view of the wharf rats at dock. But these boats look so damn dumpy, in my humble opinion. And what about lying on your back in a bunk and staring up at the blue sky through deck hatch...a wind scoop funneling the fresh sea air across your body? What about letting your eye sweep the clean line of a flush deck? Sorry Wauquiez...I won't be calling for the Pilot House 41 brochure (to the relief of my wife).

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