Hunter 33

By Rob MacLeod

The newly commissioned Hunter 33 sat on the end of the dock in Port Credit Harbour. Ted Graham, Service Manager for Angus Yachts of Toronto excused himself to wash up before

we took the boat out for a run. This gave me the opportunity to look around the boat the sales team were all gushing about. They had the boat out the week before and were blown away (literally) by its handling and stability in high wind conditions. My experience was to be in closer to normal Lake Ontario conditions – 10 to 15 knots.

The review Hunter 33 had the optional mast furling system with all lines leading aft to the coach roof. Ted and his service crew have started slicing the furling control lines into a continuous loop – eliminating the struggle to keep the two separate lines clear while launching or furling the main sail. Harken winches and lines stoppers are standard.

Hunter 33 - Main SalonThe cockpit is roomy, although it does get a little crowded at the companion way. This is caused by the cockpit table extending forward in the cockpit. What it gives back is ample table space and easy access by helm and crew to reasonabley sized folding tables and four drink holders. After all, this is a cruising boat and during the season most meals will be taken in the cockpit area.

The Hunter traveller arch gives back even more space by keeping the main sheet out of the cockpit altogether. The arch also acts as a platform for cockpit lighting and sound system speakers.

Room. The main salon and galley area have room. The mast of the Hunter 33 is set well forward. This opens up the salon and places the mast compression pole just forward of the Hunter 33 - Guest Berthforward cabin bulkhead. Glenn Henderson (Hunter 41 and 44) has carried the 6’2″ headroom all the way through the main cabin. The beam of the boat is carried aft, which improves the usable space in the galley area. I found the aft cabin a little tight for my large frame – but good room for a 33 foot boat. The forward cabin is a little more open. Great bunks in both cases.

The 18hp Yanmar sail drive gives ample power. Combined with the high aspect rudder and clean underwater profile give the Hunter 33 superb close quarters han≠ dling, while ensuring a smooth passage when the wind takes a day off.

The Whitlock console gives easy access to all key controls – and ample room for instruments within easy visual range of the helm. Engine controls are also easily seen – set above the cockpit seat, behind a Lexan cover. The console mounted single control throttle and gear shift allows the person on the helm to keep their eye on what is going around the boat.

Hunter 33 - Main BerthHaving the mast stepped forward not only opens the boat below deck, but it improves handling for cruising couples. The forward rig makes for a larger mainsail and smaller jib. A smaller jib with sheet lead to the cockpit for single handing (or to the coach roof in a crewed situation) makes tacking the Hunter 33 an easily managed task. In 10 knots apparent wind, Ted and I were able to sheet the jib in with little or no winching.

The large mainsail offers sailing characteristics similar to a cat (single sail) rig. To test that, I asked Ted if he minded if I sailed the boat back to the dock. When the look of shock wore off his face he insisted the final docking be done under power. What’s the fun in that?

Coming into the marina with the wind on the nose, we were able to keep the boat speed at or above 2 knots in 8-10 knots of apparent wind. We were able to tack – keeping boat movements smooth – 3 or 4 times. That was sufficient to prove the Hunter 33 sails really well.

Hunter 33 - ProfileCONCLUSION
Quite simply, I was impressed. The Hunter 33 is a great boat for those moving up in size and want extended cruising range, modern conveniences and a great sailing boat.

Originally published in Canadian Yachting’s June 2004 issue.

Length Overall: 33’6″/ 10.21m
Hull Length: 33’1″ / 10.08m
Length of Waterline(LWL): 29′ 5″ / 8.97 m
Beam: 11′ 6″ / 3.51 m
Draft * Shoal: 4′ 6″ / 1.37 m
* Draft Deep: 5′ 6″ / 1.67 m
Displacement: 11,016 lb / 4,997 kg
Ballast (Shoal/Deep): 3,579/3,459 lbs. 1,623/1,569 kg
Mast Height (Standard/Furling): 46′ 7″/51’11” 14.20/15.80 m
Sail Area – Actual (Standard/Furling): 625/542 ft2 58.06/50.35 m
Hunter 33 - DesignStandard Cabin: Sleeps 6
Headroom: 6’4″ / 1.93m
Fuel tank Capacity: 25 gal. 95 liters
Water Capacity: 50 gal. 189 liters
Holding Tank Capacity: 25 gal. 95 liters
Water Heater: 6 gal. 23 litres
Aux Power: (Yanmar) 18 HP 13.4 CE Classification A

Angus Yachts of Toronto is the exclusive Hunter dealer for Ontario.
Contact us at 905-274-2968 or go to




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