A sailing blog about a skipper and his yacht

History of Sea Bear

Sea Bear was built by Northshore in 1987 for Joy & Dick Skinner. They paid £39,675.40. She was registered with Ipswich as being her home port. Over the next 11 years they logged 12,824 n miles in her,cruising mainly in the north   – Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Poland and East Germany and south as far as  Les Sables d’Olone. An account of their cruise to Denmark appears in the Vancouver Yacht Association’s Newsletter of 1995. 

Dick also wrote a book “The Road to Anywhere” in which he tells of his sailing experiences and of Sea Bear.

In all this time they never had a vhf radio as they said “we really do hate the things”. They fitted a new engine in 1992. They eventually returned her to Chichester and Northshore’s yard to put up for sale in 1998. 

The next owner was a NC White but I only know that he sold Sea Bear to J Freddie Jarvis in March 2001. He in turn sold her to Michael Pfeuffer in October 2002. When she came into Michaels hands the interior was apparently in a poor state but the rest of the boat was sound. He had the interior rebuilt in 2003 by Hamble Yacht Services. He  also carried out a few other worthwhile modifications such as fitting guard rails over the rear dorado vents, extending the guardrail stanchions and fitting a Dickinson Oil heater. Michael always sailed single handed and long distance – no harbour hopping he said. 

I bought Sea Bear in October 2012 after selling my previous boat Dansa.

I had long wanted a Vancouver as they had a very good reputation for being sturdy well found sea boats. Sea Bear had almost all the features I wanted, a long integral keel, transom hung rudder and came already fitted with a windvane self steering system, something I regarded as an essential.

When I bought her she was lying in a boat yard on the Hamble. Although she was in good condition there were a few items I thought to attend to. I had all the old anti-foul stripped off and had copper coat applied. I’d disliked the annual chore of anti-fouling on Dansa. I also replaced the boom so as update the reefing system and fitted a rod- kicker.

In the spring I sailed her singlehanded from the Solent up to my old mooring in the Menai Straits,  North Wales. This was a nice little trip, a bit of a shakedown cruise which enabled me to learn Sea Bear’s ways.

On this site you can follow where Sea Bear has been.