Moving On

Wild at Heart, my Hunter 25.5, has served me well over the past two-and-a-half years.  It’s been a short but intense run.

The previous owner, Doug, who moved to Panama recently, owned her twice.  His ownership is more storied than mine.

Doug was married aboard  Wild at Heart on Lake Travis, anchored off Starnes Island.

I had Doug on the boat with me a few months ago.  In fact, it was that day she sailed her best speed under my ownership, 5.9 kts.  Not bad for a mid-eighties wing-keeled cruiser.

I’ve had a ton of fun over these past two-and-a-half years.  I got to sail her more frequently than I deserve.  And I was fortunate to see Lake Travis IMG_5941rise over fifty feet after the Memorial Day rain.  Well, I should temper that.  That was a brutal flood.  We sat stunned in front of the TV when those storms came through in May.  Several people died in the Hill Country that weekend.

I had my own drama on Wild at Heart.  Early in my ownership, I nearly ruined my right hand swapping outboard motors.   In a freak mishap, my hand got stuck between the 90-lb. motor and the mount, resulting in a trip to the Round Rock ER, several stitches, a visit to the hand surgeon, and luckily no severe surgery-requiring damage.  I have a nice scar to show for it.  I sometimes tell people it’s my “shark bite” scar.  More than a few have believed me (at first).

I’m happy with cockpit paint job I did with the generous help of my friend Dave Huber.  After reading about fiberglass deck refurb in Sail Magazine and other places, we launched into the job last year.  As always, it took more time and effort than I guessed it would.  After much sanding, chipping, vacuuming and brushing it came out pretty good.  And so she’s cleaner and shinier than most other mid-80s boats.

I guess they call it “two foot -itis” for a reason.  I’m moving up to a larger boat with a few of the features I’ve been wanting.  The one I have my eye on is twenty-seven feet, exactly two feet larger.

I’ll miss that little boat, but I know she’ll make her next owner happy too.



8 thoughts on “Moving On”

  1. Enjoy your posts Steve, brings back memories of the days very long ago of boat maintaining and sailing with our 23 ft. O’day pop top sail boat in New Jersey and some little sail experiences on Lake Pontchartrain! Regards, Bernadette Kingsley


    1. So good to hear from you, Bernadette. I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog. Oh, how cool – my first sailboat was a 22 O’Day. Speaking of Pontchartrain….I’m going to see a sailing friend in Tampa today who is an avid Lake P sailor.


  2. Steve:
    Two-foot-itis seems to set in at every boat length and every stage of life … We (in our 70s) are now eyeing a 40-footer after 18 great years with our Catalina 380. It must be a sea-borne virus.


    1. Yes, a well-known illness. Have you heard the new pitch from Beneteau (or Hunter, can’t remember which)? A sales rep at the Kemah boat show told me about it. They noticed this real phenomenon – buyers moving up 2′ per purchase. They now offer a stripped down boat with modular design that can be added to over time. It’s supposed to encourage buying that larger boat now and adding, say, a galley later when the need arises or the money is available. Interesting concept. Not sure how it plays out in the market.


      1. Have not seen that … It could be a real good marketing move … Would be interesting to be able to follow it.


  3. Howdy Steve,

    I stumbled upon this looking for Hunter 25.5s with a radar. Did you end up putting one on yours? If so, how was it on such a small boat? I have a new Furuno DRS4W and am wondering if I want the weight and obstruction on my 25.5. Any thoughts?


    1. Hi, Greg! Thanks for visiting. Wow that does seem like a big upgrade for a 25.5. I did not have a RADAR on mine. I sail on a small lake so not much need for it here. I tried to look up the weight for that unit but I don’t see it in the specs.

      I think you would have to install it on a pole on the stern of the boat but I’m certainly no expert on RADAR installation.

      Have you heard of the PANBO website? He’s a big marine electronics guy:

      Let me know how it goes.



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