Many people are attracted to the rugged, no nonsense look of the Pacific Northwest expedition yacht. With enormous tankage and enough storage for all the provisions needed for extended cruising, this genre of yacht stands apart from the rest of the yachting world.
At the same time, most people recognize they don’t plan to circumnavigate, or spend months in the high latitudes for which these boats excel. While people like the character and obvious competence, they don’t need the capability nor do they want to be limited to just six or seven knots. They want it all: the image of the rugged adventurer, along with a higher speed potential and the amenities of the modern cruising motoryacht.
Enter the Northwest 55. It squarely hits all the buttons.
The lines of the Northwest 55 contrast sharply to the overly sleek profile and radical superstructure of the European motoryacht scene. It is a more traditional look that better fits the role of exploring remote areas and rugged coastlines, such as Misty Fjords National Monument, while providing a luxury living experience to its owners and friends.
A collaboration between Steve Seaton and the Northwest Yachts Design Team, the three-stateroom yacht compares nicely to typical motoryachts, which often put more staterooms in the hull than is practical. And when there is only a centerline companionway to access these staterooms, these interior layouts give up valuable space that could be better utilized.
The layout of the Northwest 55 solves this by providing access down to the accommodations from the pilothouse instead of the saloon, which allows the boat to have a large midship master stateroom and ensuite head the full width of the hull, with a VIP stateroom in the bow and just enough room for another small cabin or office and second full head.
The Northwest 55 is a great fit for the realistic cruising plans of many cruisers. It has a semi-displacement hull and twin diesel engines for a wider range of performance than is possible in a full displacement trawler yacht that must carry thousands of gallons of fuel for ocean-crossing range.
The yacht has a normal cruising speed of 10+ knots, with even higher speed possible when the need arises, such as when there is an impending thunderstorm barreling down or there’s a chance to make that bridge that only opens on the hour.
The Northwest 55 carries 1,200 gallons of fuel in two saddle tanks in the engine room, so its range is more than adequate for extended self sufficiency. And the optional ESI fuel polishing system will ensure the fuel in the system is kept clean and stored in clean tanks.
The specs of the new yacht include top of the line appliances and equipment. One won’t find a flybridge hot tub on the option list of this boat, although one can select the hydraulic thruster package for the ultimate in close quarter maneuvering.
Carpeted staterooms and laminated flooring add to the modern interior design. It has the right balance of materials and finishes, in a layout ideal for a couple who want to live aboard and routinely cruise with friends and family. The asymmetrical cabin design allows a wide starboard side deck with side door, which is most appreciated when docking, getting fuel, or locking in a canal. Yet it provides maximum width by taking the saloon out to the port side.
The Northwest 55 has a roomy flybridge and a wide boat deck for carrying a large dinghy and other craft, and which extends over the aft cockpit. This is much appreciated when cruising the Pacific Northwest and its rainy climate, as well as other areas where shade from the sun is critical. This is especially important down in the islands where sun protection is a requirement for safe and healthy outdoor living. The covered cockpit will be one of the most lived in spaces on the boat.
The equipment list for this new yacht will impress even the most experienced yachtsman. John Deere 6068 AFM engines rated at 330hp, Northern Lights 16kW generator, Victron MultiPlus inverter/chargers, optional ESI fuel polishing system, and ABT stabilizers. Interior appliances are GE Profile, Bertazzoni, Braun, and Bosch. The heads are from Headhunter.
Other companies whose products are used include Diamond Seaglaze, Steelhead, Pompanette, Garmin, Cruiseair, and Olympia.
All told, an impressive list of quality brands to outfit a yacht of this caliber.
The boat will no doubt be a regular on the Northwest and SE Alaska cruising scene. But it may also be a great choice if one wants to explore any of the islands in the Caribbean, stringing out from Miami down to Grenada, a gunkholing escapade of grand proportions, and where motoryachts flock each year.
For those who want to see the world closer to home, the Northwest 55 is a perfect boat to connect the dots on a journey from Alaska to Maine, the coastal experience of a lifetime. (Surprisingly, one is only briefly out of sight of land once or twice.)
The Northwest 55 is the right choice for many cruising plans. And a month in the San Juans or New England will result in the best family vacation ever.
To learn more of the Northwest 55, contact your Seattle Yachts dealer, and hear more about this exciting model in the Northwest Yachts lineup. It will be the star in any anchorage, and stand out in your favorite luxury marinas.
Adventure awaits on your own Northwest 55.
|Length Overall:||55' 6|
|Length at Water Level:||51' 6|
|Max Draft:||4' 11|
|Bridge Clearance (with optional hinged radar arch): :||24' 4|
|Engine Make:||John Deere (2x)|
|Horsepower (each):||330HP (each)|
|Fuel Tank Capacity:||1,200 gallons|
|Water Tank Capacity:||300 gallons|
|Black Water Tank Capacity:||130 gallons|
|Gray Water Tank Capacity:||55 gallons|