Back Cove Blog

Celebrating the 200th Back Cove 37

In the summer of 2008, plans were announced for the Back Cove 37, which would become the company’s flagship model and herald a new generation of Back Cove design. Before the Back Cove 37, the lineup consisted of Back Cove’s foundational model, the Back Cove 29, as well as the Back Cove 26 and Back Cove 33. Since its founding five years before, these models had established the company’s sterling reputation for quality, low-maintenance cruising yachts. Now, customers were asking for a little more, and the Back Cove Design Team was ready to answer the call.

True to Back Cove’s founding principles, the new Back Cove 37 would feature a planing hull powered by a single inboard diesel, with operator-friendly features and simple but robust systems. But that’s not all. She would also offer two dedicated staterooms and a fully enclosed “sedan style” helm deck that could be fully opened to the cockpit via a revolutionary door system. If this doesn’t sound familiar, it should – these distinct features can be found, albeit in updated form, aboard the new Back Cove 39O outboard. In this way, you could call the Back Cove 37 “ahead of her time,” and with that forward-thinking aesthetic, she made a triumphant entrance into an otherwise troubled market.

The Back Cove 37 made her debut at the 2009 Miami International Boat Show, at the start of a profound recession, and the Back Cove Team was more than a little concerned about launching a new model at a time when many boatbuilders were struggling to “stay afloat.” Over the next ten months, Back Cove delivered nine more 37s into dealer inventory as the economy fought to correct itself.

Despite the many challenges that the boating industry faced during this troubled period, the Back Cove 37 seemed to rise above it all. She quickly made her way onto magazine covers and earned glowing reviews and ecstatic customers in every corner of the globe, literally. Hull #004 would make her way to Sydney, Australia, hull #005 to Monaco, and hull #006 found a home in San Diego, California. By the next Miami International Boat Show in February of 2010, all the stock boats were sold, the recession was beginning to lift, and the Back Cove 37 began year-two of a run that has gone uninterrupted for the last ten years.

Bentley Collins, Back Cove’s VP of Sales & Marketing, offered this funny sidebar about the original launch of the Back Cove 37:

“Our Head of Design, Kevin Burns, and I, picked up hull one to deliver her from the boatyard on the Miami River to the boat show at Sea Isle Marina. After getting underway for about a quarter of a mile, the engine stalled, and we couldn’t restart it. So, being enterprising “Mainahs,” we used the bow and stern thrusters to maneuver the boat back to the marina, moving sideways with bursts of power from the bow and then the stern thruster. After avoiding the commercial traffic on the river for a while, we realized that the main fuel valve had been closed off for shipping from Maine to Miami! It was certainly an interesting first run, for what would become our most enduring design.” – Bentley Collins

Eleven years later, late in the fall of 2020, the 200th Back Cove 37 was shipped into dealer inventory at Bay Marine’s Chicago Yachting Center. Back Cove’s Production Team acknowledged the achievement by signing the underside of a salon drawer as a memento to her future owners. Back Cove has also begun planning festivities in Waukegan, Illinois, to celebrate this milestone achievement. The event will be scheduled, and details released when weather and social health guidelines allow.

The Back Cove 37 shepherded a new generation of Back Cove yachts and has earned the love and respect of boaters the world over. Her legacy extends even into Back Cove’s new outboard models, and her practical and elegant design principles will continue to guide Back Cove Yachts in the years to come. This astounding success would not have been possible without the support of an extended family of associates, owners, dealerships, and friends, for which they have Back Cove’s deepest thanks.

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Inside the Back Cove 39O – Production Update

Our team is making significant progress constructing the very first Back Cove 39O, and recently pulled the completed IGU (Internal Glass Unit) from the mold.

The IGU may not look like much on its own, but it plays a vital role in both the interior layout and the overall structure of the boat. This single fiberglass unit creates a footprint for the all below-deck accommodations onboard the 39O, including both cabins, the head with separate shower stall, and the lower lounge. This piece is “tabbed” to the hull (meaning permanently fixed in place with fiberglass) where it does double-duty providing structural support for the hull itself.

This is always an exciting step in the build process because installing the IGU means that the interior spaces are beginning to take shape, and the 39O is truly unique from her sister-models in this regard. Forward, her master cabin is the perfect oasis for owners to relax at the end of the day. Her comfortably arranged head to starboard, featuring a separate shower stall, and secluded lower lounge to port create a private space to enjoy the morning news or an evening movie. Aft, the guest quarters offer easy entrance and egress to the two fixed berths.

The amount of space our designers have created below-deck in the Back Cove 39O really sets her apart from other boats of this size, and we cannot wait to share more updates with you as they come together for the first time.

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Port Side

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Port Side

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Forward End

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Forward End

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Forward-Starboard End

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Forward – Starboard End

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Aft-Starboard Side

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Aft-Starboard Side

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Starboard Side

Internal Glass Unit (Seen Here Upside Down) Starboard Side

Internal Glass Unit (Right Side Up) Looking Aft at the Guest Quarters

Internal Glass Unit (Right Side Up) Looking Aft at the Guest Quarters

Leave a comment and let us know what you think, and don’t forget to sign up for our Back Cove 39O Email List for early updates and extra information!

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Back Cove 39O with Triple Outboards

It’s okay to drool, we understand…

As if the introduction of a second outboard model with a fully enclosed salon wasn’t enough, the Back Cove Design Team has just released renderings of the NEW Back Cove 39O with triple outboards!

More details are soon to follow, but we are happy to confirm that the 39O will be available withtriple installations from 850hp to 1200hp from Yamaha, Suzuki, and Mercury Marine. This is an exciting possibility that has been a factor in the overall 39O design from the first draft. Utilizing our signature Trailing Edge Lifting Surface (TRELIS) *D* Back Cove’s designers have optimized the hull geometry of the 39O for performance and handling with three engines. Pair that with her iconic Back Cove construction, and the 39O is truly in a league of her own.

Want to know more?  Check out the Back Cove 39O Model Page.

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Back Cove 39O Tooling Progres

Tooling for the new Back Cove 39O is taking shape…

Tooling is one of the most exciting steps for our team because, until this point, each new model has only existed in our design software. This is the first time we get to see our designs completely to scale – and in the case of the 39O, we couldn’t be happier!

Construction will begin in the New Year…

It’s hard to believe that 2020 is almost here, but with the start of the new decade, our Production Team will also start construction on the prototype hull of the new Back Cove 39O. 

Stay tuned…

We will keep you updated as the molds arrive at our factory and fiberglass construction begins. Plus, keep your eyes peeled for updates on some new technology that will guarantee the Back Cove 39O is groundbreaking in more than just design!

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MAR-KAT Completes the Great Loop

Bill and Amy

Bill and Amy

After purchasing our Back Cove 41, M/V MAR-KAT, in October 2016, we decided to make a shakedown cruise during the summer of 2017 to Maine and then on to Nova Scotia. The Back Cove 41 felt right at home in the Maine waters, and we had the opportunity to visit the factory for a tour.

Traveling to the more remote parts of Nova Scotia was a challenge and a thrill to see such a beautiful part of Canada. The 41 proved to be a very capable and reliable boat. Now, what will our next adventure be? We decided during the winter of 2018 to travel the Great Loop, a 6500-mile journey crossing 13 states and the Province of Ontario. The route basically circumnavigates the eastern part of the US. So we ordered charts, cruising guides and joined the AGLCA. How do we live in a space that is less than 400 square feet? We had to take with us everything that a homeowner would need to run a house, but in this case, the house is our new boat. We had to be organized, and everything had its dedicated spot.

On any given year there may be 300 to 400 boats making this trip. And since it is a loop, you can start anywhere, and most people travel the Loop in a counterclockwise direction to receive the benefit of the river currents. So off we go on June 15, 2018, leaving from the Albemarle Sound in North Carolina. After reaching Norfolk, the weather being good, we decided to go out to sea and run offshore to NY Harbor with one stop at Cape May.

We continued north on the Hudson River for about 155 miles. The scenery was stunning as we passed by the tall buildings of New York City. As we proceed northward, we noticed how the mountains came down steeply to the water’s edge. Further up the Hudson, we passed the US Military Academy at West Point and then on to Albany where we experienced our first big lock in Troy, NY. We decided to go west and enter the Erie Canal in Waterford, continuing on to Oswego, which is on Lake Ontario. The Erie Canal was a scenic cruise through the farmlands of New York. So far we have transited 30 locks. The Erie Canal was completed in 1825, and we were able to experience the many towns along the way and tie up at town docks. This part of the journey was very peaceful and relaxing since we did not have to worry about tides and currents,

Entering Lake Ontario, we noticed the geology change greatly as the soft bottoms of the rivers have been replaced by granite of the Canadian Shield. It was in Oswego we had to make a choice of going straight across to Kingston, Ontario or continue east down the St Lawrence River to Alexandria Bay in the Thousand Islands. And there really are 1,000 islands. If it is large enough to stick out of the water and has at least one tree, it is considered an island. This is where the famous Boldt Castle is located.
There are endless beautiful anchorages among these many islands. It was here in Gananoque, Ontario we decided to enter Canada, clear customs and hoist our Canadian courtesy flag.

Big Chute Marine Railway

Big Chute Marine Railway

From the Thousand Islands, we traveled westward for two months on our way to the Georgian Bay and Lake Huron. As we went the scenery got more spectacular with the many species of pine trees growing between the rocks down to the shoreline. In Trenton, we entered The Trent-Severn Waterway and negotiated the 41 locks and 240 miles on the waterway. Most of the locks are still hand-operated, and there are many rivers and lakes that interconnect the waterway. There are two unusual locks we encountered. One is a hydraulic lift lock where the boats are secured in a tub of water on the upper side, and an identical tub on the lower side and the boats ride up like an elevator. The other unusual lock is the Big Chute Railway that takes the boat completely out of the water on a carriage that travels overland to the other side.

After exiting the Trent-Severn Waterway, we entered the Georgian Bay. We decided to explore the Bruce Peninsula’s eastern shore. There were many remarkable anchorages we visited. In most cases, we were the only boat staying the night. Wingfield anchorage was one of our favorites. When we reached Tobermory at the north end of the Penninsula, we steered an easterly course to the Bustard Islands about 50 NM across the Georgian Bay. These are a small grouping of islands composed of mostly granite rocks and pine trees coming down to the water’s edge. The inflatable dinghy was a great way to explore the islands and also try some fishing.

Next, we traveled through Collin’s Inlet with a stop for a few nights at the Sportsman’s Inn in Killarney on our way to the North Channel. One thing that surprised me was how clear the water was. You can see at least 20 feet down. So checking the anchor for a good set was easy. The North Channel was probably the most beautiful place on the whole trip with endless anchoring possibilities and a few small towns along the way to get provisions and top off the water tanks. Baie Fine is a not to be missed destination up a 10-mile fjord to a popular anchoring spot called the Pool. The Pool is the only place on the trip that had neither cell service nor TV reception. Definitely, this is a place where you can disconnect.

MARKAT Anchored at the Bustard Islands

MAR-KAT anchored at the Bustard Islands

At the western end of the North Channel, we re-entered the US at De Tour Village in Michigan. The new Customs and Border Patrol app for the smartphone made clearing customs easy. From there, we decided to take a step back in time and spend a few nights on Mackinac Island. To this day, cars are not allowed on the island, so all transportation is accomplished by horse and wagon and bicycle. It was truly a wonderful experience. At this point, we had to decide which coastline of Lake Michigan to travel the 300 NM south towards Chicago. We decided to go down the Michigan side. There were many harbors of refuge about 50 miles apart. It took us about ten days to get to Chicago on account of 8 to 10-foot seas in the lake. It was great the Back Cove 41 has the speed to travel longer distances in a shorter time. We arrived in Chicago for Labor Day and some sightseeing. The deep-dish pizza and the architecture tour were fabulous.

Our next experience after leaving Chicago was navigating about 1,000 NM of the various rivers to Mobile Bay and back to the salt water in the Gulf of Mexico. The rivers down to Mobile are used primarily for commercial tows and barges, many of which push 40 to 50 barges at a time. We realized that the rivers belonged to them, and we are just sharing the river with them; we got along fine. AIS was most helpful at spotting the tows ahead of time so that we could make passing arrangements. From Chicago, it was 300 NM to the Mississippi River, and that is where the fun began. The river was up about 25 feet with a current of 4 to 5 knots. Buoys were being sucked under, and in some instances, on the Ohio River, we actually went over the dams, so we did not need to use the locks going upstream to Paducah, KY. We needed a few days rest in Paducah after traveling the “wild river” and fortunately did not hit any floating logs. The remaining rivers being the Cumberland, Tennessee and the Tenn-Tom canal completes the trip to the Gulf of Mexico. These rivers were much more tame and beautiful than the trip down from Chicago. We met up with many other “Loopers” on the river systems, and we tended to travel together for days at a time.

lock on the tennessee river

Lock on the Tennessee River

Once in the Gulf of Mexico, we were rewarded with the warm weather we had been looking forward to. It was getting close to Thanksgiving, and our goal was to be in Fort Myers and find a turkey to cook. It was sad to cruise through the hurricane damage around the panhandle of Florida, which occurred just months before. Our plan was to get to Key West by mid-December, so we had plenty of time to visit the towns along the west coast of Florida. We spent a month in Key West. What a fun place with great restaurants and historical places of interest. In Marathon, there was the Turtle Hospital and the Dolphin Research Center, which are very important for the rehabilitation of these beautiful animals that get entangled in man-made plastics and fishing gear.

After spending about two months in the keys, it was time to head north since we had been gone for almost nine months. There were still many great anchorages and towns we visited on the east coast. A few of the most fun places were St Augustine, Savannah, Charleston, and St Simons Island. There were great food tours in St Augustine and also Savannah. Our pace returning home in North Carolina was somewhat leisurely since we wanted to arrive back home with the warm spring weather. We arrived back home on March 27, 2019, after an amazing 10-month journey. We had so many great experiences, and the fellow boaters doing the loop were great to travel with.

The Back Cove 41 was the ideal boat for this trip. It was a perfect size and could fit under most bridges along the way. We put close to 500 hours on the boat, and the only maintenance required was a few oil changes.

We now look forward to our next adventure.
– Amy and Bill
Back Cove 41, MAR-KAT

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