It’s been a tough decade for sailing. Between 2004 and 2014, one-design class participation declined 12%, and according to US Sailing, this is reflective of the sport as a whole. One-time and would-be sailors are still reeling from the recent recession’s economic aftershocks, and they’re experiencing dwindling amounts of free time while facing an exploding number of options for the limited time that’s left. Longtime sailors have left the sport, youth sailors stop after college and newbies are staying on land.
A little snow and ice can't keep sailors from doing what they love. More than 50 people strapped on skis, sleds and skates, grabbed hold of their favorite wind-harnessing device and braved frigid temperatures in a quest to satisfy their need for speed at the World Ice and Snow Sailing Championships in February on a frozen Lake Winnebago in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.
From the bird's eye view, the Dufour 350 looks like a race boat, with the beam carried far aft. That trickle-down feature from racers to cruisers has been a boon to sailboat designers because it increases the interior volume, allowing for more cruising gear and features inside the boat and more space in the cockpit. Dufour's designer, Felci Yacht Design, made full use of the extra space in the 350, a 34-foot, 9/10th fractionally rigged cruiser. This boat is loaded.
Sweden's Arcona Yachts built its reputation with durable, no-nonsense boats. The Arcona 380 is a 37-foot, nine-tenths fractional rig, bluewater boat designed as a successor to the venerable Arcona 400.