Typically, only small sailboats careen themselves, as larger boats will pay for a haul out. That being said, large boats are more costly to haul out and when you're cruising, every dollar counts!
So why limit this free bottom cleaning procedure to only small yachts? We may be 45 feet, but we can do it too!
As the 8 foot tide rushed away, our 6.5 foot draft sailboat slowly tilted onto her side and rested on the turn of her bilge and her keel. The water around the keel was only ankle deep which meant that we could easily do some work on her bottom.
Hard growth like barnacles were easy to knock off the antifouling paint, while soft growth was easily swept away. We typically use this large brush while snorkeling or from the dinghy to clean the fuzzy parts of the bottom, but this was my first time ever doing so without being underwater! The procedure was simple, wet the brush, wet the hull, scrub the hull, wet the brush, rinse the hull.
The entire side of the hull took less than a half hour to clean, giving us a smoother bottom to grant us less resistance as we sail through the water.
In no time flat, we had the bottom cleaned up and we were ready for the tide to come back in and float us again.
While we were heeled over and dried out, we were able to see the condition of the mural that Maddie had painted on the bottom when we set off on our journey! It was nice to see that the bottom mural had not all rubbed away into obscurity.