John martino, annapolis school of seamanship and annapolis yacht         management
The following review was written by John Martino and prepared by the marketing department of Chesapeake Bay Magazine. Mr. Martino is the founder and president of Annapolis Yacht Management and Annapolis School of Seamanship. He develops and teaches hands-on training courses for recreational boaters and professional mariners, and offers yacht delivery and onboard training services for powerboaters as well as sailors.
Seaward 32 RK, Boat Review
JUNE 2011
 
   
Length overall  34' 7"
Beam  10' 6"
Draft  1' 8" - 6' 6"
Displ. 8,300 lb
Fuel 20 gal   Water 65 gal
Price as Tested $167,900


If you have walked across the Chesapeake Bay Magazine "bridge" at the Annapolis Sailboat Show (that magical walkway that allows you to cross over Ego Alley to reach the legendary pit beef sandwiches on the other side) then you have seen Hake Yacht's Seaward 26 and 32 RK. I have admired these compact cruisers, nestled at the epicenter of the fall sailboat show, for quite some time. Needless to say, I was delighted to give the 32 a test sail, and a day or so after the show, I boarded the Seaward 32 RK at Port Annapolis Marina. 

The sun was shining and about 15 knots of breeze riffled the trees. As we were getting ready to head out, I was struck by the realization that every facet of this pocket cruiser was designed and executed deliberately. From the retractable, ballasted keel to the interior layout, this sporty yacht optimizes the use of space and weight while maintaining comfort and performance. The 32 RK is clearly a sailor's boat, versatile enough to go offshore yet still able to gunkhole in the skinny water of the Bay. And if you just can't find that perfect anchorage where you are cruising, one person can easily de-step the mast, load the boat on a trailer and haul it to a different cruising ground all together. After all, nothin' goes upwind like the family SUV.

Down below, the 32 RK has an open and airy feel. Just aft of the V-berth, the head compartment, to port, features a separate stall shower--an important amenity for comfortable cruising. The saloon has a U-shaped dining area to port that converts to a double bunk by lowering the table. Across the saloon to starboard there are two individual seats with a tray table between. A quarter berth extends under the cockpit on the port side. The galley is opposite on the starboard quarter, with no bulkhead between it and the starboard cockpit lid; one of the more convenient features of this arrangement is the ability to pass groceries from the cockpit directly into the galley.

All of the hardware on deck and below is substantial, and the construction, fit and finish all appear to be very good. On deck the cockpit is roomy for a boat this size and features a walk-through transom. A DC electric motor and cable system raise and lower the keel. Plus, there is a back system in place for raising the keel in the unlikely event of a failure. The rudder is a high-aspect ratio dagger-style that can be raised in shallow water.

Underway, the boat handled well in the Severn River. I easily singlehanded her through a few tacks and a jibe. She was nimble yet stable with the keel 2/3 down. We sailed her up Back Creek before calling it a day.

The Hake Yachts Seaward 32 RK is ideal for cruising the Chesapeake. Her shoal draft affords the option of getting away from those crowded anchorages. With her keel down she sails well and can outperform many in her class. Trailerability makes it truly a go anywhere boat, for the Chesapeake Bay and beyond.