From the board of the much admired naval architect Michael Pocock Brown Bear is a truly unique blue water cruising yacht. Commissioned by the discerning owners to satisfy a very open brief for the perfect blue water cruiser, capable of sailing to windward properly while making long distance passages and being self sufficient while cruising in remote areas. With more than 50,000 miles under her keel which has seen her cruising in waters from Alaska South to Pitcairn and Chile, surviving two knock downs in the process; it appears Brown Bear has more than fulfilled the brief.
Following the much documented cruising success of her predecessor Troubadour it was natural that Brown Bear would be an evolution of the design improving functionality and performance where possible. In the same manner as Troubadour the hull is constructed of a wood epoxy sandwich, ideally suited to custom boat building and offering greater resilience than a run of the mill GRP moulding. Just like her sistership Brown Bear was built by Steve Etheridge under the watchful eye of Pocock himself in Lymington.
The success of Brown Bear and her sistership lead to the development of the Pocock 42 design which had a number of examples (Al Shaheen, Sadko & Arabesque) built in differing hull material and all of which have gone on to prove themselves as world class cruising yachts. All of the designs have been the subject of many press reports thanks to their exploits over the years and indeed Brown Bear has featured in a few herself.
Lying afloat here at Ardfern she is available for viewing by appointment.
Under the close supervision of the designer Michael Pocock; Brown Bear was built by Stephen Etheridge Yacht Construction, the same team which completed the yacht Troubadour a couple of years earlier. With the custom nature of the build she was constructed using a wood epoxy construction; a well proven method for custom construction with many benefits over other methods of construction including low built weight, stiffness and insulation qualities. Designed to be capable of long distance cruising in isolated waters, requiring the boat to be self sufficient for extended periods of time the hull was designed with considerable load carrying capability.
The hull is constructed of an epoxy glassfibre laminate sandwich consisting of a 25mm Speedstrip Western Red Cedar core between two substantial S glass laminated skins. In way of vulnerable areas an additional Kevlar layer was included within the laminate skins, internally and externally to further enhance impact resistance. In way of the keel the structure is stiffened with an epoxy glass back bone and glass floor members tying the structure together with all ply bulkheads fully bonded to both the hull and deck. A substantial long fin keel forms part of the hull structure and is constructed with integral lead ballast and fuel tank. The hull is finished in white Awlgrip.
The deck is constructed of a single piece custom GRP moulding with the deck house and cockpit integral to the moulding. The deck and superstructure are again finished in a finished in the same Awlgrip white as the hull with non-slip panels in a cream colour.
A separate appendix is available upon request detailing the construction in greater details with accompanying photographs.
Rigged as a mast head sloop Brown Bear has been designed throughout with an eye on making her reliable and predictable to sail in all conditions. Having survived two separate knock downs with little more than a broken boom has certainly tested the Selden rig and proved its up to the job. All spars are by Selden finished in silver anodised aluminium with cast end fittings. With twin head stays both fitted with Harken roller furling gears the genoa and blade style jib are not used simultaneously other than running dead down wind. A further detachable inner stay is provided for use with the hank on storm jib. Running backstays are fitted for use in heavy weather. All standing rigging was replaced during the 2004 re-fit.
The engine is located within a sound insulated compartment beneath the galley worktop. Easily removable inspection panels within the box provide access to all vital points for routine maintenance while the box can be dismantled allowing full access to the engine and gearbox for larger jobs. Fuel is supplied via a duplex Racor filter unit again easily accessible, both fuel tanks are fitted with drain-able sumps. Prior to setting off on her worldwide adventures the current owner attended a 2 day Perkins Service Engineer course and has undertaken all routine maintenance since the boats commissioning.
Having clocked up some 50,000 miles under her keel during a worldwide adventure which saw Brown Bear exploring waters from Alaska to Chile and the Pitcairn Islands she returned to the builder Steve Etheridge in 2004 for a refit. Works included :
Since completion of the 2004 refit the Brown Bear has been subject to ongoing routine maintenance and upgrading.
Below decks the principles of a practical ocean going design can be observed throughout the boat with everything designed to be as easy as possible to use at sea and secure in case of rough weather. All work surfaces have deep wipe through fiddles and stout hand holds are always easily with reach. The interior joinery work is of North American Cherry which has been finished with a satin type varnish, lighter than the traditional teak joinery finish.
Designed as the 'owners cabin' the forepeak provides two large single berths in the traditional V-berth layout. Both berths are fitted with lee cloths and make excellent sea berths. Throughout the cabin a generous selection of storage is provided in over head lockers, under bunk lockers and a large hanging locker space aft to starboard. Within the forepeak a separate walk in shower compartment with sink and vanity unit is provided.
At the heart of the accommodation space is the large saloon with a U-shaped settee to port and bench settee to starboard. Located centrally within the saloon area is the very cleverly designed rotating table which when required can more than double in size allowing crew to sit on both sides of the saloon. All upholstery is of dark blue Alcantara and the saloon settees both have fitted covers. The settees both convert to full size single berths and with lee cloths make excellent sea berths. Storage is provided around the saloon with numerous lockers and bookshelf's, the chest freezer is located under the port saloon settee.
With the boats design based around long distance, self sufficient cruising the galley obviously needed to be high functional in all sea states. The U-shaped layout keeps everything close at hand while keeping the chef secure. Again full use of the space has been made both above and below the worktop with galley equipment including; 1 full size sink, 1 half sized sink, GN Espace Levant 3 burner and oven gas cooker, hot and cold faucets, manually pumped saltwater faucet. Throughout the space clever storage solutions to make catering at sea easier have been built in with mesh vegetable racks and dry goods storage bins all fitting securely into place.
Opposite the galley a generously sized navigation area is provided with everything close at hand for the navigator. Appointed with a full sized chart table, repeater plotter display, radar and multi function nav instrument. Storage for charts and pilots is also provided within the table however additional chart storage drawers are provided under the starboard aft berth.
Accessed through the galley the aft cabin is offset to port and provides a large double bunk with clear standing area at the forward end. Again a generous amount of storage is provided around the cabin.
The large heads compartment occupies the area aft of the chart table. Finished in a wipe clean laminate with varnished trim the compartment is appointed with Lavac sea toilet, basin and vanity unit. Situated aft of the compartment is a large oilskin locker, draining into the bilge.
The silhouette of Brown Bears coachroof makes her instantly recognisable as a Micheal Pocock boat with the conservative coachroof forward running aft to an elevated almost deckhouse structure aft. This style of deck design, well proven on Troubadour and Brown Bear carried through to Pocock 42 designs. Unlike many other boats of this size she benefits from not having been fitted with teak decks, the owners opting only for limited teak decking panels in the cockpit. The superstructure is finished in the same white two-pack Awlgrip paint as the hull with non-slip textured panels are finished in an Ivory deck paint.
Forward two stout bow rollers occupy the stemhead allowing the substantial Rocna anchor to self stow while leaving the second roller free for use picking up moorings. The Lofrans electric windlass is mounted centrally on the foredeck with the chain self-stowing in a large below decks chain locker, controls for the windlass are provided both on the foredeck and aft at the binnacle. A large deck opening bow locker provides ample storage for fenders, mooring warps and other general hardware.
Substantial guardwires run the full length of the boat with gates provided port and starboard just forward of the cockpit. Crew can move easily around the boat with side decks running the full length of the boat and jackstays providing additional security. All deck ventilators are neatly protected with stainless steel guards. Granny bars at the mast provide additional security and support for crew working forward in heavy seas.
The cockpit is extremely well protected with the natural shelter of the raised deck house forward complimented by a stout sprayhood and deep coamings. Seating around the cockpit is provided along either side and across the aft end. Located toward the aft end of the cockpit the binnacle provides the helmsman with a commanding view forward and the integrated pod house a close hauled wind instrument, autopilot control head and general repeater all close at hand. Additional nav instrument displays and a chart plotter are located on the bridge deck. Within the coamings a number of deep cave type lockers provide easily accessible storage while a large deck locker to starboard provides more voluminous storage for larger items. A gate on the pushpit provides access to the transom boarding ladder.
If you’re looking for the adventure of a lifetime, Brown Bear is the boat for you.
Our brief for her designer, Mike Pocock, was simple: please make us us the perfect bluewater cruiser that sails to windward properly. Seventeen years and 65,000 miles later we can say without reservation that he did us proud.
The Bear took us across the Atlantic, through Panama, out to the Galapagos and Hawaii, up to Alaska, down the US west coast, back out to French Polynesia, down to Pitcairn and Chile, through the Beagle Channel, back up the Brazilian coast - and home for a full refit in 2004.
Much as she’s been enjoying her summers sailing in Scotland, she’s champing for something more exciting than taking the (grand)children seal-watching … which is where you come in.
All you need to know is that the Bear is pure gold to sail. Whether hard on the wind (35 knots on the nose is child’s play!), racking up 180+ miles a day in the trades or spinnakering through the Doldrums, she’s sophisticated enough to satisfy any ex-dinghy sailor, but forgiving enough for a single-hander. Plus, when you’re goose-winging through the flying fish you’ll thank the stars above that, as his wife told us long ago: “Mike’s boats don’t roll.”
One more thing. The Bear will get you back. Force 10 and triple-decker seas twice knocked us flat, but both times she shook herself upright and brought us safe to land.
And when the anchor finally is down (and the sun past the yard arm), you can bask in the smug glow of knowing your boat has the handsomest lines in sight. Hurry, before we manage to persuade our non-sailing spouses that our children would learn more sailing round the Atlantic than they ever would at school …
In this case we are acting as brokers only. The Owner is not selling in the course of a business. whilst every care has been taken in their preparation , the correctness of these particulars is not guaranteed. The Purchaser is strongly advised to check the particulars and where appropriate at their expense to employ a qualified Marine Surveyor to carry out a survey and/or to have an engine trial conducted which if conducted by us shall not imply any liability for such engine on our part.
This vessel is offered subject to prior sale, price change, or withdrawal without notice.