Who needs a Boréal? Shelter and tech come to the rescue…

by Adrian on March 16, 2013

Last night whilst motoring the first few hours when crossing the Channel we put up the sprayhood backdrop for a bit of shelter.

It was fantastic, revolutionary almost!

We had full visibility, but were for the first time enclosed in a cockpit.

For us sailors that is an unknown concept, and whilst we wouldn’t do it when sailing in brisk winds (when we’d need full cockpit mobility) it provided a very pleasant environment for long night watches.

Inside the sprayhood backdrop

Even more revolutionary (for us) was using for the first time in anger the new GoFree remote connectivity to the Simrad chart plotter through the iPad.

So there we were, sheltered and warm(ish) in our enclosed ‘pilothouse’, controlling the chart plotter, watching the radar and keeping an eye on AIS targets on the iPad without having to move or go outside in the cold.

We could move around, keep a visual watch, monitor the engine temperature see all the instruments, see the charts and navigate all from relative comfort.

If we needed to, getting outside was as easy as unzipping one zip, so not an issue at all.

Compared to a solid doghouse

When we were making the decision to buy an Allures, we seriously contemplated a Boréal yacht because of the solid enclosed ‘doghouse’ between the cockpit and down below.


This was very attractive for cold climate sailing, but in our opinion compromised interior space too much and whilst nice to have, we intend on balance to be in warm climates more.

Whilst not exactly the same, our sprayhood backdrop provides us with a similar enclosed and sheltered space, with the added benefit of being able to take it down whenever we want and enjoy free passage between the cockpit and inside.

We are very happy at this – a great solution with multiple uses – one of my boating maxims…

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