Sunday, November 19, 2017

Big Wednesdays

Had a bunch of rain on Thursday for the first big storm in CA.  The ski resorts opened in the Sierras this weekend to 4'-6' of new pow!  Winter is around the corner.  This weekend has been beautiful with mid 60's during the day.  Going sailing today with a few friends and my wife.  I think she likes the new boat as she never sails.  Gonna be fun!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Haha Blog Post

After 6 Haha's I decided not to attend this years Haha.  I just purchased a new boat and I felt like I had learned a bunch from my previous adventures down the coast of Mexico.  I found a blogger on line who is posting updates and here is one of his posts form the Haha:

Two days of excellent sailing — 14 to 20 knots of breeze on the quarter, the spinnaker up from sunrise to dusk — let us cover the 200-plus miles from Turtle Bay to Bahia Santa Maria in 37 hours.
That’s the good news. Running without engines and with the autopilot doing the heavy lifting left Meriweather’s battery bank fatigued. Over night, we turned off the Seawind 1190’s fridge and freezer, and during the day, we kept the solar panels on the bimini as clear of shadows as possible. Any extras — phones, computers, Iridium Off! — were turned off and stowed. The peace and quite was appreciated by kit and crew alike, but still, the battery bank lost steam. What was needed was a good long day of no work and plenty of sun to recoup lost amps, and it turns out our landfall, literally in the middle of nowhere, was the perfect place to do it.
Bahia Santa Maria is a jewel. The entrance is around a bold head formed by Cabo San Lazaro and Punta Hughes, sometimes called Punta Huge because of its oft impressive surf point break. We arrived at 2030, and after motoring the last mile or so into the anchorage, dropped the hook an hour later.
A good number of boats were ahead of us, and their anchor lights made the broad cove look like a small city. We dropped the hook in near shore, where the high bluff and beach meet. Thankfully we were well off the beach and the impressive breaking waves that immediately caught our attention in the morning.
Arrival day in Santa Maria was dedicated to rest and relaxation. Kurt, Randy and I ventured out in the inflatable with strict orders from Skipper Steve not to flip the tender and soak his Honda outboard. Instead of attempting a landing in the surf, we motored just out of the swell along the beach, where Kurt and Randy jumped into play in the waves. I remained with the boat and watched the pelicans dive for fish, a handful of surfers catching waves and the nail-biting gyrations of the few inflatables that did try and land on the sand.
I will miss the 25th running of the Haha next year as well.  We will be in San Diego on my boat that weekend but my wife and I are celebrating 25 years of marriage that falls right in the middle of the Haha.  The good news is, we will be meeting a ton of the folks before and after the Haha on our way to Australia.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Sunday Rendevous!

Well I have been so blessed to be able to enjoy this lovely body of water with my best friends.  A few times a month, I get to take some old friends and enjoy their company on the San Francisco Bay.  To make this happen, every Sunday or Monday, I send an email blast to folks that haven't been out in a while.  Some respond, some are too busy or not interested.  The ones that do come out, have one of their best days of their month!

Yesterday was a fine example!  We are still in the celebration mode of a new boat!  It been a little over a month since the purchase (2001 40' Jeanneau) and we are having a ball!!  I invited out several of my oldest friends, plus a few new ones.  We hit the end of the channel about noon at 5.5 knots and the 56 hp Yanmar is humming softly.  We had 7 on board plus a canine named Kona.  There was no wind so we motored 2 miles to the end of the Berkeley Pier.  It's 7-8 out of the south.  We raise the sails and go on a slow reach towards Angel, about 4 miles away.  It takes a couple hours of drifting and sailing to get close to the island.  Getting lots of compliments on the new to me boat.  Sure enough, about 2pm, the wind picks up to 12 and we are moving.  We take off on a beautiful 5 knot run towards the city.  You just can't beat the dramatic views of Mt. Tam, the Golden Gate Bridge, the city front and the mountains of Napa in the distance.  Soon after, we started our downwind run to the barn.  It takes a good hour but how sweet it is! We got in shortly after 4pm and savor this amazing moment in time.  Does it get any better??

 We are loving life and the boat!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Thursday, November 09, 2017

Flying High

Getting ready for a big sail over the weekend with a bunch of friends.  Full report on Monday.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Monday, November 06, 2017

Our Grand Adventure to OZ!

It's getting closer!  Our departure date for Australia is 10 months away!  Here is a quick checklist:

1) Purchase the boat.  Picked up a 2001 40' Jeanneau with 3 cabins last month.  She is as beautiful as she is fast!

2) Crew for the one year journey.  Tex and Mike will be onboard for our adventure.

3) Add cruising gear to the boat. AIS, solar, spinnaker, life raft, etc. will be added in January.

4) Take the boat up and down the Pacific coast for some trial sails.  Plan to do that once all the safety gear is added.

5) Once we arrive in Brisbane, Australia - sell the boat and fly home.  I have a top broker lined up.

Here is our itinerary:

I have been dreaming about this voyage for over 30 years.  And now the dream is becoming a reality.  We hope to have friends and family join us along the way.  At Burning Man this year, I met a chap who has sailed around the world several times.  He will join us for the first month or so and give us insights into a successful/safe cruise.  It will be great to have him on board.

We plan to document our radical sabbatical on these pages and I hope you will follow us as we hit some of the most beautiful landfalls on the planet.  They call the sail from the eastern Pacific to the western Pacific the Coconut Milk Run.  Here are some highlights of our trip:

6 weeks cruising Cali and the islands off Santa Barbara.  The Channel Islands offer amazing anchorages just off the LA Basin.

3 months in Mexico.  It's a huge country with many beautiful places to anchor.  We will be in Puerto Vallarta for 3 weeks to meet friends for sails, fun and parties.

An 18 -22 day passage from Central America to the Marquesas and over 3000 miles.

3 months in the South Pacific including a 3 week stop in Bora Bora to meet more friends in paradise.

Cook Islands, Niue, Fiji, Tonga and many of the amazing islands on the route.

An October arrival in Australia.

Wish us a bon voyage!!!

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Captain Bonehead!

Who comes into a crowded anchorage with both sails up?  Oh yeah, this guy?