The North Pacific 42 Pilothouse adds shelter for the helmsman to a roomy layout and ends up with a versatile cruising package.
Mike and Lois Fannon used to sit on their houseboat listening to visiting cruisers talk about doing the Great Loop. At one point a few years ago, they looked at each other and said, “We should do this.”
Now they’re on their way. The Germantown, Tennessee, couple cast off from nearby Grand Harbor Marina early in the spring to begin their own three-year Great Loop odyssey. It’s a far cry from Mike Fannon’s early boating days, fishing in the High Sierras from a 12-foot aluminum skiff. “We’re very excited,” says Fannon, 65, who retired last winter from Hilton Worldwide.
The wanderlust may have begun 14 years ago, when the couple bought the houseboat, a 42-foot Gibson. They owned it for 11 years, going out on weekends, making trips up and down the Tennessee River. “We would anchor out in the coves, tie up with other boats, and have a good time,” he says.
For the Great Loop, however, they knew they needed a different boat. “We went to the Fort Lauderdale [boat] show and Trawler Fest, and we decided we liked the pilothouse trawlers,” Fannon says. “When the weather’s bad, you can stay inside.”