Cruising is the art of exploring the interaction of the land and sea. Land and sea intertwine in a myriad of ways that create particular local geographies. Visiting these locales by sailboat brings one in touch with their peoples and cultures. Important, because learning about places afar teaches us about home.
Impala was designed and built by people who understood cruising during, a time when cruising was a proper way to spend a family's summer. Living aboard is more luxurious than camping, but demands skill, knowledge, patience and self reliance. Further, traveling under sail is uncomfortable enough and uncertain enough to be character building, all important things for young people. Impala is strong, stable, and a good sailing boat. She is sensibly laid out and equipped for cruising. Most importantly, she has a beauty that brings grace to our lives even under the most difficult circumstances.
I first saw Impala as a boy in 1955. I came to own her during middle age in 1986. She has stayed with me into old age. She became the summer home of my children. We sailed her up and down the Atlantic coast from Bequia to Newfoundland until, after 10 years or so, they had grown up and left home. In their place I brought aboard the children of friends, who after a while brought aboard the friends themselves. We sailed further afield, across the Atlantic to the Baltic, Norwegian and Mediterranean Seas. As I aged, to help work the ship, I brought aboard young Nantucketers, eager for adventure, and eager to learn how to sail a small ship across the sea. They do the heavier work and listen while us older ones retell our stories.
Impala is in her seventh decade as successful cruiser.
Alfie Sanford April 2017
Stories about Impala's cruises by her crew. A beautiful book created by Connor Wallace from his photographs and the first hand counts of many of who sailed aboard her.