She is Located Matlacha, Florida. "S/V Poule D'Eau". Literal French Translation is "Chicken of the Sea"; however, the original owner, a doctor in Louisiana, gave her this name after the small marsh bird "American Coot" which the local Cajuns refer to as Poule D'Eau for it's well known table fare.
She is a 23' Bruce Kirby Norwalk Island Sharpie (N.I.S.); has a freestanding cat ketch rig. Masts are carbon fiber. Have two suits of sails: one white, loose footed; one tan bark, fully battened. All running rigging leads to cockpit. Single axle aluminum trailer that tracks well with a medium vehicle.
Professionally built 1996 by Sea Island Boat Works, Charleston, S.C. Hull is epoxy coated inside and out; hull exterior sheathed in glass cloth. Two settees (adult bunks) provide comfortable sitting headroom with main hatch cover closed. No amenities except cockpit cushions and interior cushions for bunks. Standard horizon VHF. Powered by 6HP Mercury.
The Norwalk Islands Sharpie yachts were created by Bruce Kirby - arguably the most successful sailboat designer of this era - designer of Laser, Sonar, America's Cup challengers and many more. Bruce has designed a much bigger Laser for grown ups, still following the philosophy of simple to rig and sail, but easily homebuilt, with cabin accommodation and real cruiser/racing ability.
The 23 version of the NIS is trailerable, and possesses shallow-draft beachability, high maneuverability and self-righting characteristics. Bruce conceived the Norwalk Islands Sharpies out of the need for a shallow, capable boat to access his own slowly silting waterway in Rowayton, on the edge of Long Island Sound. The Sharpie type was a natural choice. The Rowayton Norwalk Islands area of Connecticut was a famed oyster ground. The light, shallow, cross-planked, unstayed cat ketch sharpies - ubiquitous in this area - could carry great loads of oysters across breaking bars to get to market early and safely. A crew of two was the norm, and the low sides facilitated the tonging of oysters from the shallow seabed. .......
The Norwalk Islands Sharpies are what happens when a racing and performance aesthetic meets workboat commonsense, practicality and heritage. NIS 23 "Poule D'eau" - a name used locally by Louisiana Cajun to describe a small marsh bird properly known as the American Coot
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