1983 Seafarer 26 Sea Mark
We purchased Sea Mark last April after an exhausting boat search. As you will see from the following turn of events, she literally fell in to our laps. The previous October we sold our Com-Pac 19 because she was just too small for the extended cruising we were doing. This left us boatless, a precarious situation. We initially focused on the Sabre 28 model, one that I had always admired. There were many available in the Chesapeake region, and we toured more than a dozen. It soon became apparent that these boats were out of our price range. The ones that we could afford were really not bargins because they were older and in need of extensive refits.
Then one day a broker showed us a 1982 Seafarer 30 in Georgetown, MD. We really liked this boat, but it was too large for us. That thing could sleep at least 6, maybe 7 if I recall. We wanted to move up to something in the 25-28 foot range, so we started looking for used Seafarers. Almost immediately we found a classified ad for a Seafarer 26 in the "Spinsheet," a free Chesapeake area sailing magazine.
We called the owner, Hal Brundage, and arranged to see the boat. Much to our surprise, she was located deep within the boat yard of our very own marina! She had been listed with the marina owner and broker, but Hal took out the ad in frustration after the broker failed to sell the boat after two full seasons. We had, in fact, been in contact with this broker and told him what we were looking for. He never mentioned the Seafarer, and instead concentrated on trying to sell us a Sabre 30 that was listed at three times what we could afford to pay. No wonder Hal got frustrated.
We looked over the Sea Mark for about half an hour and offered Hal his asking price on the spot. I wrote up a gentleman's contract as we sat in the cockpit and we all signed it. Sea Mark surveyed very well, with the exception of some electrical wiring in the shore power system that is not up to current standards. We closed the deal and sailed her every weekend this summer up through Halloween weekend.
Sea Mark has never been through a major refit, but most of the original equipment is still in decent shape. This year we are replacing the original mail sail, and have already replaced the original ports. We are planning to update the boat over the next few years as time and money allow.
Here is as much hitstory as I know about the boat. Hal Brundage was at least the second owner. He and his wife Holly bought her in 1996 and sailed her one season out of the Sailing Emporium in Rock Hall, MD. This was a "test boat" for them, to see if they really liked sailing. Turns out they really did, and at the end of the 1996 sailing season they bought a Sabre 36. Before Hal and Holly was a man with the last name of Papay. Apparently he and his wife kept the boat behind their house on Cabin John Creek, which is in the northern portion of the Chesapeake Bay. Our marina neighbor remembers seeing the boat a number of times in the upper Chesapeake area in the mid to late 1980s, which makes me think that the Papays may have been the original owners and that the boat has never left the bay. We also have reason to believe that the boat has always been named Sea Mark. I say this because the vinyl letters are affixed over a name that was previously painted. However, if you look close you can see that the original name was Sea Mark as well.
My wife Sue and I sail Sea Mark out of the Sailing Emporium in Rock Hall, MD. We actively cruise the boat, and this year alone we have been to Annapolis, Fairlee Creek, St. Michaels, Oxford, and Galesville (all are easy cruises of one to three days from Rock Hall). Obviously we really enjoy the boat, and have found her to be a perfect match to our needs. We would not hesitate to recommend a Seafarer to anyone looking for a good bay cruising boat.
Fair winds and following seas,