Listing this boat has brought back many happy memories for me… and one slightly scary one.
You see, not only did I sell this boat when new, but I used to have one just like it for my own use.
I loved that boat.
It had just about everything we could have wanted at the time….
- Bags of power for pulling skis and water toys
- A massive swim platform and a big open plan cockpit that could swallow up all our gear for a day out (including the skis)
- A proper cabin that was great for the kids and that we could sleep in if needed be
- It was a cracking sea boat that I had complete confidence in
- It really looked the part and got compliments everywhere we went
- We went lots of places – Donegal, the North Coast, Fermanagh… It was a breeze to tow and launch
- And with a proper anchor locker and roller it was a piece of cake to anchor up…. Well, except for the day of my scare…
That boat was maybe the best I’ve ever owned.
I really don’t know why I sold it…
Oh yeah. I was running a business and had to turn the stock… Bummer.
Anyway, my memories of that Rinker 230 were pure boating bliss.
All apart from one day.
That day was mostly perfection too, apart from one little’ incident’.
We were in Donegal, in a place called Sheephaven Bay, a truly beautiful part of the world with white sandy beaches and crystal clear water… Which makes the rest of this story all a bit embarrassing.
I virtually grew up there, spending every summer holiday that I can remember as a kid messing around on the water.
This day was however only a few years ago. I was busy recreating those childhood memories with my own young family and some friends of ours. The weather was fantastic. We had the bimini top up on the 230, to shade the baby from the sun, and we spent a great morning just cruising around the various different inlets off the bay.
At lunchtime we idled into one particular spot where we used to ski as kids. This bay had a nice flat sandy bottom and had a fairly constant 3 to 4 feet of depth at low tide. I remember often coming off the skis in there and being able to stand on the bottom while waiting for the boat to come back around and pick me up.
That lunchtime it was pretty close to high tide so I thought I’d get in nice and close to the beach before dropping the hook for lunch.
I got the boat turned with the nose to the breeze and popped up onto the foredeck to start letting out the anchor rode as the boat drifted back toward the beach. According to the depth finder we were in about 14 feet of water so everything looked good.
Until that was, I glanced behind the boat to check our distance to the shore and saw a large dark mass under the water directly behind the us.
Now, I know this place like the back of my hand, and there ain’t no rocks here, so I was completely baffled.
The anchor hadn’t set yet, the motor was off, and the boat was still drifting back, so there wasn’t much I could do as we started to just drift over the top of the gloomy shape below.
I ran to the back of the boat for a look, thinking it’s maybe a big mat of seaweed on the bottom…
It was a bloody sunken fishing boat – around a 21ft steel built thing with a wheel house and everything, half sticking up out of the sand….
Holy shit. We were right on top of it!
Nothing I could do only run to the foredeck to pull the anchor and try to motor away from it.
As I hauled the anchor in as fast as I could we glided serenely over the top of the wreck, with the anchor dink, dinking off the side of her wheelhouse on the way back up. We were past the wreck by the time I got to the helm and was able to motor away.
We could not have missed that thing by more than a couple of inches… That was a close call.
It turned out the wreck (which by late afternoon was revealed in all it’s glory at low tide) had broke her mooring in a storm a few weeks previously and washed up on the beach. It was still fully intact and was bristling with all sorts of stuff that could hole your boat or ensnare your prop; like bow rails, antennas, an a-frame, and that honking big steel wheelhouse… And not a marker buoy in sight. Although it was real easy to make out in that crystal clear water when you were on top of it!
Anyway, the lesson I took from it, was to order an electric anchor windlass on the next demo boat!
But aside from all that…
The Rinker 230…
What a boat.
I’ll cherish the memories we made on ours.
If you’re in the market for a 23ft cuddy then I would wholeheartedly recommend this Rinker 230.
This one’s like new and has everything you’ll need – watch our full length video review to see just how good these boats are.
Ok, so this one doesn’t have that electric windlass either, but if you’re worried about wrecks and you want one, let me know. It can be arranged.