A Pocket Full Of PossibilitiesBy Mark Wilson
Published: June/July 2013
They came from near and far. The largest fleet of trailerable pocket cruisers ever assembled shared 10 days of winter sailing fun at the annual Havasu Pocket Cruiser Convention.
The Hardened Pros
Jeff and Bev Dere, Renton, Washington, and
San Francisco, California
Two of HPCC's warmest and most engaging participants are brother-and-sister team Jeff and Bev Dere. Flying their red, white, and blue spinnaker from Jeff's San Juan 21, theirs is often the most exciting boat to watch during the 150-plus boat "Parade of Sails." With a sense of NASCAR-type drama, they skillfully weave their way downwind through the flotilla, dodging unyielding ferryboats, laughing, waving, and taking pictures. They seem to accelerate and decelerate at will, just barely avoiding trading gelcoat with other boats.
Their noticeable talent comes from years of sailing together. Growing up in Palo Alto, California, their father brought home a 14-foot sailing dinghy from Sears when they were in junior high school and this became the focus of family vacations and camping adventures. When they were old enough to drive, they frequently set out on their own to sail in a variety of waters.
For work- and school-related reasons, they both ended up in the Seattle area where Jeff decided a small, trailerable sailboat would give his family the most opportunities to sail different waters. Trailering Jeff's San Juan, they recently explored the Barkley Sound area of Vancouver Island and presented their trip as part of HPCC's "Sailing Gems" seminar series. Bev, wanting to live aboard and take full advantage of the vast cruising area of Puget Sound, opted for a larger boat, a Brandlmayr 32. Aye Aye was her home for 19 years, during which time she and Jeff frequently cruised the San Juan Islands and Desolation Sound areas. She still sails Aye Aye, but doesn't mind downsizing for HPCC. At this year's event she took out several less experienced all-women crews. "I really felt good about sharing some of my sailing experience and knowledge with other women and helping them feel more confident at the tiller," she says.
For Jeff, the annual meeting gives him the opportunity to explore new winter sailing destinations and check out other trailerable boats. "I even won a sail-building kit last year. It took over our living and dining rooms for several months, and I really enjoyed learning how to sew a new main and genoa."
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