Welcome. This is the place where pictures and a narrative of the ongoing voyages of Minerva will show up, whenever I get internet access and of course, when I have something new and hopefully exciting to share. Hope you enjoy yourself here, and don't be shy, please comment if you have something to share or say!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Little Fisherman

While anchored at Little Fisherman Cove at the Isthmus at Catalina, I had yet another lesson on cruising.  After a couple of months without topping up my water supply, I ran out of fresh water in my water tanks.  It wasn’t any big deal though as water is available at the dock and also at the camp grounds located just behind and above the cove.  I simply rowed ashore with my solar water heater and brought back 5 gallons each trip.  While ashore on one these mini adventures, I ran across a couple, one of whom had just returned from spear fishing with four nice looking Calico Bass and a lobster.  I wandered over to admire the catch and chat with Dave and Vanessa about fishing with the spear gun versus my pole spear.  After a lengthy chat about that, among other things, these very friendly folks who have been stateside from Hawaii for only a year now offered me one of their fine catch, saying they had a bunch more in their freezer at home.  Well, how could I refuse?  They added their left over tortillas, cheese and diced onions to the gift claiming I would be doing them a favor so they wouldn’t have to take it back home with them as they were leaving on the Cat Express back to the mainland in just an hour or so.  They offered Dave’s services as a spear fisherman when I get to the Sea of Cortez and of course I invited them to join us whenever they wished.  I sure do enjoy this life and am looking forward to a marvelous fish dinner tonight!
It’s beginning to get cool out here as winter is starting to creep upon us.  I’m waiting for my anchor windlass electric motor to be rebuilt once again after which we’ll begin heading south toward San Diego.  We’ll be stopping in Newport Beach for 5 days to pick up more supplies and to meet up with an old friend who has promised me lots of books!  They go quickly these days it seems and these will be very welcome!  My new wind vane should arrive in San Diego near the second week of November so I’ll be there by then to pick up and install before heading further south.

Fair winds to us all!

Friday, October 7, 2011


The weekend started early on Thursday, warm and sunny on calm waters, as all manner of boats began making their way into Two Harbors, a small seaport town nestled into the Isthmus of Catalina Island, twenty some miles south by southwest of Long Beach California.  Despite the fact that many of these ships were flying the dreaded skull and crossbones, everyone appeared to be friendly and spent the day settling in.  The day wore on as more ships found their way into the bay and moored.
By mid-morning of Friday you could smell the trouble in the air, literally.   That’s when the cannon fire began.  It was sporadic at first and seemed insincere, but throughout the day, still more pirate ships arrived to add their cannons to the skirmish.  By afternoon a pitched battle was being waged with enormous booms echoing throughout the harbor and smoke billowing in the breeze, though who was fighting who was anybody’s guess.  As darkness fell and the loud crashing subsided, suddenly all of the ship’s crews rowed ashore and invaded the town.  The day’s battle seemed to have aroused an unquenchable thirst for everyone because the rum started flowing and didn’t stop.  When a few fellows picked up some musical instruments, those who could, and even some who couldn’t, began gyrating to the music with reckless abandon.  The revelry lasted most of the night, but as the new day dawned on Saturday, the battles began again, in earnest, and still, even more pirates entered the harbor to join the raging action.  The cannon fire was fierce.  Ships were boarded and booty taken, but still the cannons roared.  As the afternoon progressed, the smoke and loud reports from the guns intensified beyond comprehension.  During the brief lulls of fire, frightening screams and raucous laughter could be heard all around.  Large troop ships had been arriving throughout the weekend delivering so many fresh companies of scoundrels and wenches that the hills were covered with their tents.  And still the cannons roared.  But again as darkness fell, the echoes of explosions were replaced by music and, pirates being pirates, all went ashore to guzzle rum and gloat over their dastardly deeds of the day’s fracas.  Soon everyone was swaying with rum and song.

Apparently some sort of victory was reached and truce declared, for Sunday began slowly and, with a few farewell blasts of cannon and hoarse laughter, ships and their weary crews set sail toward the horizon.  By evening the harbor was emptied.  And so, another of the infamous “Buccaneer Days” at Two Harbors is history.


Monday, September 26, 2011

New Post

I’ve been told lately, once again, that I need to get busy blogging again.  Well, in order to comply, I began going through my documents and found a couple that I had started shortly after my last post.  I worked on one, “About Minerva” which has a page of its own that you’ll find on the right under the Pages heading.  I haven’t had time to bring it quite up to date, but will continue in the future.  Another dating from 6/19/11 remains incomplete, but I’ll get that one going again to bring you up to date on my ventures from then to now.
Next weekend is “Buccaneer Days” at Two Harbors, so I’ll be headed that direction tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

4th of July

After spending most of Sunday, the 3rd of July, working on removing the balance of an old bulkhead and beginning to fit a new one in its place, I cleaned up a bit and went to town to catch some of the celebration going on at the Isthmus here on Catalina.  I struck up a conversation with a fellow sitting next to me on the deck and found much common ground to chat about as several hours passed quite pleasantly.  He had come here with a friend who didn’t have the patience to have a leisurely cruise out, but instead had to have the pedal to the metal in one of those big fast gas guzzlers.  Pat had sailed a couple of times previously in some beer can races, liked the quiet of sailing and envied the slow paced lifestyle I am presently enjoying.  He expressed a desire to try a relaxing cruise and since we seemed to enjoy each other’s company, I invited him to call me anytime he had a week or so of time from work and join me and Minerva for a week of sailing, diving, etc. out at one of the Channel Islands, which he eagerly accepted.  As dusk fell, a DJ set up and began playing some good ole rock & roll and several patriotic numbers in time with the exploding rockets that blossomed over the harbor.  After the finale, the crowd returned to the deck, dancing ensued and all had a great time.  The evening began getting late and the younger crowd took over the music, so I took the opportunity to head toward home and ran across three young marines, on leave and camping out here, fishing from the dock where my dink was patiently waiting for my return.  They shared their bottle of refreshment with me as we chatted and they fished.  They were very serious about getting some fish as they had come out with no provisions, depending upon the graciousness of the sea to give up some of her bounty, but they were still awaiting their dinner.  After a bit of time passed with no offers from fish interested in feeding them, I invited them aboard Minerva where they might have better luck getting something more than bait on their hooks.  Once aboard, they did indeed catch a couple of keepers as we kept the pace of the party moving on toward dawn.  Sometime in the wee hours before they left, they did me the honor of helping raise Old Glory upon Minerva’s flag halyard.  The morning of the 4th of July broke fine and clear, with a crisp new Stars and Stripes, raised by US Marines, snapping briskly overhead.
Happy Independence Day!

Friday, July 1, 2011

July 1st

I'm sitting on the deck of the Harbor Reef in Two Harbors, Catalina sipping on a Buffalo Milk, a tasty and refreshing drink, their specialty. The weather is mildly warm with the promise of getting nearly hot by the 4th. We arrived in Cat Harbor a couple of days ago after two days of quite pleasant sailing from San Pedro, the first leg of which light winds brought us, in one tack, to Long Point, just west of Avalon. A couple I met over Memorial Weekend had recommended the place and as it was getting late, I figured we would give it a try. Because of this decision, I saw my first flying fish. As we sailed to within a mile of shore, a fish jumped and just kept on flying for hundreds of feet! As we got closer to the anchorage, another leaped out just in front of a pelican who became very interested. The pelican tried and tried, following right on its tail, again over a long distance, but just wasn't fast enough. This first leg of the voyage also produced sightings of dolphins and seals, which have become common to us. Even though they have appeared during every voyage for the last couple of months now, I never tire of their company.
We spent the night but left early the next morning for the short trip around the West End to Cat Harbor. The wind was extremely light allowing me to scrape paint and varnish, merely to keep from falling asleep. After a few hours, I was bored with working and fired up Mr. Perkins to get me around the point and hopefully into some wind, which never materialized. We cut the point actually too close for comfort and just at the most opportune moment, opposite the outermost precipitous jagged rock, a fish decided to take the lure I was dragging.  In my nervous hurry to avoid the danger to port and get the fish in, I pulled the hook out, only getting a glimpse of shiny silver of what could have been dinner. Just minutes after tossing the lure back into trolling mode, and of course just opposite another rock too close to port, a petrel decided my lure was too tempting to pass up. I had to slow down and drift towards that outcropping to release the bird, but it didn't put up too much of a fight and relaxed enough for me to unhook the lure quickly and get back to powering around that rock.
After all of this excitement, we made Cat Harbor and dropped the hook in my favorite spot for the night. The next day the wind had blown me into the kelp and with a friend due to raft up later in the week, I wanted to get out from the prop tangling kelp into clear water, so moved to the eastern side of the harbor.
And now, here I sit looking for another of these fabulous Buffalo Milks!
Mas tarde

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Catalina Ski Race

The last several days have brought out large speed boats pulling water skiers at quite fast speeds all around the harbor here in Long Beach. They are practiciing for the Catalina Ski Race, a 62 mile water skiing race from Long Beach to Avalon and back averaging speeds of 50 mph and upwards to 70 & 80 mph! the official website includes videos & more at: http://www.catalinaskirace.net/index.html all quite amazing to watch. They will be racing the 63rd annual race on July 6th this year.

Friday, June 24, 2011


I just finished the last of several stories in a book that I found at a swap meet for a mere two bucks;  Tales of the Sea by Joseph Conrad.  I have endeavored in the past to immerse myself in his some of his writings, and enjoyed them at the time, but I have now, finally, after several earlier attempts, read the entire story of Lord Jim as well as several of his other stories.  While I cannot say that I fathom all of his intents, I am now a true fan and will likely reread these stories again and again.  If only for the descriptive powers which entice the reader into the very heart of the adventures and paints each scene and emotion as if with oil on canvas, the author is truly a legend.  Even his history is nearly fantastic.  Born and raised as a Pole, he was unfamiliar with the English language until arriving in England at the age of 20 and from there went on to become “a master of the English language”*, along with other not so common accomplishments, which is obvious in the first sentence the reader lays his eyes upon.  If you enjoy being consumed by language, provoked with human motivation, as well as a good tale, but have never read Joseph Conrad, or haven’t read him in a while, I whole heartedly recommend you do so at your earliest opportunity!  He likely will offer some insight for you psych majors as well.J
*from the Introduction to Tales of the Sea (Joseph Conrad) by Robert O. Patterson

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Long Beach, CA

The Orange County Sheriffs finally kicked me out of the anchorage at Corona Del Mar; apparently there is a three day limit at the outside anchorage, so sailed to Long Beach for provisioning before heading back to Catalina.  Five miles from the breakwater of the harbor, I noticed my fishing pole doing a promising little bounce and reeled in a 2 foot barracuda!  This is the first edible fish I’ve caught since leaving San Francisco!  After making sure the anchor was set and I’d settled in, I cleaned, filleted, and barbecued ½ of one of the fairly large fillets.  Apparently, I need to brush up on my fish preparation skills.J  Many folks fish all around the harbor but with the looks of the water, I don’t think I would eat anything from it; it’s pretty murky and yucky looking to me. 
During my stay anchored behind Island White in the Long Beach Harbor, my daughter Jennifer called to tell me to be sure and stay put until Sunday as she was planning to visit me for Father’s Day!  With a few extra days available to me, I spent several days exploring downtown Long Beach which has changed quite a bit since the 70’s, the last time I spent any time there.  I was also able to get to Kelly’s Marine Supply in San Pedro to get a couple of items needed to complete the aft deck projects I’d been working on.  Jennifer wasn’t able to make it down here after all, but I’ve been using the added time for further exploration and getting online once again, hence this latest update.  The anchorage is pretty calm and secure, so may stay on here for a bit longer but am anxious to get back out to the island and do some more fishing; need to get more practice cooking it!
I have also had the time to finally, after many years of beginning it, finish reading “Lord Jim” by Joseph Conrad.  It is one of several stories in the book “Tales of the Sea” that I picked up at the annual parking lot sale at Minney’s in Newport Beach, one of the few deals I found there.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

38 & 51

I was hanging out in Newport Beach some time ago when two airplanes buzzed the harbor.  They were vintage fighter planes from WWII like the ones my dad flew while serving in Europe during that era.  My first reaction was to say hi to him as the planes soared overhead.  I hope he heard me over the screaming Rolls Royce 12 cylinder, supercharged, 1000 hp engines in both planes (the 38 having two of these monsters).  Even though they made two passes, they were long gone before I had a chance to get my camera and some pictures, but recently, while on the hook in Corona Del Mar, I heard the distinctive sound of those engines again and immediately got my camera and a couple of good pictures:
click on picture to enlarge
P-38 twin engined, twin boomed WWII fighter leading the P-51.

click on picture to enlarge
Once again, Hi Dad!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Corona Del Mar

I'm still anchored outside the Newport Beach breakwater in front of the Corona Del Mar public beach waiting for paint to dry.  I picked up 300 ft of brand new 3/8" G4 galvanized chain to replace my rusting, short, and light weight anchor rode.  After too many sleepless nights at anchor in deep water at the islands, I promised to get it done ASAP.  After searching the internet and several local chandleries along the southern California coast, Minney's Surplus Yacht Supply gave me the best bargain by a long shot.  Minney's, for those who somehow haven't heard of them, carries just about anything a boat could need and at a very reasonable price.  Since I no longer have a vehicle to get 450 lbs of chain from Costa Mesa to the water's edge, Ernie Minney loaded into his Suburban and brought it to me at the local dock!  I tried to buy him and the guy helping him lunch for their generous efforts, but he asked only that I "sing the praises of Minney's".  I've been doing that ever since the first day of browsing the chandlery with the easy going and very helpful staff.  Now I won't be able to do anything but rave further!  Back to paint drying - once I got the chain on board, I wanted to mark the chain at incremental depths to know how much rode was out, so got that done yesterday and am now awaiting it to dry thoroughly before using it.  With light winds forecast for the next couple of days, I just may apply a second coat as well.
I know that this may not sound very exciting to some, but sleeping comfortably knowing your home has a better chance of not ending up on the beach is quite exciting to me!  I now have so much chain on board that Minerva is listing a bit to starboard, but one never knows when it will come in handy.  One friend had so little chain for his anchor that I parted with one section to help, just a bit of repayment for all of the help and stuff others have given me in the past.
From here, we are headed north once again to LA and to Catalina - I know, Catalina again?  What can I say, that island is truly a fabulous place to spend some time.  I've been following a blog from some friends from Richmond who are now in Puerto Vallarta enjoying the heat and tropical paradise that Mexico is.  I am of course quite jealous, but wish them all the best! (Gone Bambu)
That's all for now folks, Asta la luego.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

So Cal

Well, it's been quite a while since I've written anything, but we've been fairly busy these last couple of months.  After leaving San Diego, we sailed to Santa Barbara to meet some Girl Scouts from my sister's troop when she was in high school.  We did a lot of backpacking and overnight camping, as well as several trips to Lake Havasu in the summers.  Back then, since my mom was the leader and didn't leave us boys at home during the camping, my brother and I became Girl Scouts too!  Anyway, it was fun to meet up with some of the gals I hadn't seen in over 45 years!
After that weekend, I left for Santa Cruz Island to spend time working on Minerva, fishing, and generally lazing and sailing about.  In the 8 days we spent there, we had two days of peaceful weather, the rest were days and nights of gales and small craft advisories, lots of wind and chasing after that calm anchorage!  One day the wind was blowing so hard (48 knot winds with 67 knot gusts) that an 80 ft schooner was blown out of one of the supposedly protected anchorages!  Fortunately, I had put down two anchors and stayed put.  After not sleeping much for these 8 days, I got tired of the abundance of wind and ran for Catalina, where the winds are less boisterous and picked up a mooring in Two Harbors, just to get some well deserved rest.  It ended up being over Memorial Day weedend and got quite a few boats over for the holiday.  Winds again came up and blew 15 - 20 boats off of their moorings!  The Harbor Patrol was busy that night!  Again, we were fortunate having a low profile (less windage) and remained in one place.  The boats that pulled their moorings were large power boats with lots of windage.
Since then, we have sailed to Newport Beach to buy a new anchor chain, which I promised to do after the several worrying nights spent anchored at Santa Cruz Island.  In fact, I've got to cut this short in order to go pick it right now!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Change in Agenda

After several long days and sleepless nights of consideration, I have decided to postpone our departure south until later in the year.  This has been an exhausting and disappointing decision for me, but is a more prudent course of action than pushing the weather envelope.  My intentions of a leisurely cruise along the Pacific coast of Baja, indeed all voyages, will take many weeks for the nine hundred mile cruise to Cabo San Lucas and several more sailing the many hundred more miles up into the Gulf of California where tropical storms rarely reach. Hell, I spent four months traveling the four to five hundred miles from San Francisco to San Diego and I don’t want to miss anything in our voyaging simply trying to miss the inclement weather.
Hurricane season is nearly upon the area through which we must pass in order to get to those cruising grounds where I intend to spend several months and even though I tend to lean toward the cavalier attitude of “just do it”, I also try to keep in mind the ever famous saying of “a man has got to know his limitations”.  I am currently not prepared to face a hurricane at sea, or even ready to face one in an anchorage with my life and home at risk, at least not yet.  Instead, I have come to look forward to spending the spring and summer sailing the southern California waters practicing the procedures I’ve been learning about dealing with heavy weather, as well as working toward getting Minerva better prepared to deal with all that we will encounter in the future.  Another bonus of a delay is that I will be able to visit those areas of the Channel Islands that I missed in my hurry to get south earlier in our voyaging.  The delay too will make it easier for friends and family to join us for the delights of the southern California waters if they would care to do so.
I am now getting anxious to get sailing again after spending so much time in one place.  I’ve previously said that I will be leaving mid to late April, and still anticipate this timing, perhaps a bit earlier, just heading in a different direction.
Fair winds

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Santa Cruz to Monterey

After a long and chilly two day voyage from San Francisco and the dip in the cold waters landing dinghy, dog, and crew on the beach, the morning coffee tasted exceptionally fine as dawn broke sunny and warm over the range of mountains to the southeast of the semi-protected waters of Santa Cruz anchorage.  After a short breakfast, I weighed anchor around 1230 HRS. With only a light breeze, as we had experienced the entire voyage so far, I raised sails once again in the hopes of getting some wind for the twenty two mile crossing of Monterey Bay to the town of the same name and the historical harbor there.  Because it was only a short distance, I elected to leave the dinghy in the water and tow it.  Visibility was around 10 miles, so our destination was apparent only to our trusty compass, with the sandy coastline wandering off to port.  A large sailboat had sailed just ahead of me out of the anchorage and had steered left, so I simply followed their course for a few minutes until I determined that they weren’t headed for Monterey or were staying in sight of shore, and so adjusted our heading to the course I had worked out the night before. We chugged along under motor for only a short time until the breeze finally filled in enough to shut down the engine and sail along at 3 - 4 knots.  An hour or two into the crossing, the wind was blowing steadily at around 15 knots just aft of the beam giving us the best sail yet encountered since leaving San Francisco, with Minerva happily settled in making 5 -7 knots.  The seas were a gentle 4 – 6 feet rolling easily along giving a welcome change from the flat, glossy, nearly nonexistent seas encountered the two days prior.  The sun had been covered by a light cloud cover encouraging me to put on some warmer clothing, but the exhilaration of a good wind and the promise of an easy passage kept a smile on my face the whole trip.  We made the outer harbor buoy on the mark, turned to windward and secured the sails at 1630 HRS, only a 4 hour sail.  I had read the cruising guide and had studied the local chart to help find the anchorage into which we motored.  There were several small fishing boats anchored just inside the fishing wharf and opposite the inner harbor channel from the mooring field, but it didn’t seem too crowded, so I got the hook ready to set and started searching for a likely place to hang out for a while.  I was on my third pass through the anchorage looking for just the right spot when a Harbor Patrol boat showed up to advise me that this was not the anchorage but was located on the opposite side of the fishing wharf.  I thanked him for catching me before I dropped the hook, as the anchor windlass wasn’t working properly and I was hauling up the 45 lb CQR with 3/8” chain by hand.  That isn’t a job to be taken lightly!  As it turned out, I would have likely lost my anchor and chain had I set it in the inner harbor which was extremely foul, according to the Harbor Patrolmen.  Anyway, we got settled without further ado about 500 feet off of the wharf, just in front of a second mooring field standing off the beach and outside the breakwater.  The sun had returned, albeit a bit low in the sky by this time, the boat was sitting comfortably at anchor, and we had just completed the best sailing day, out of sight of land, that I have had in much too long a time.  I was ecstatic!  I prepared a fine dinner and was sitting back with a cocktail looking at the lights of the city and harbor when I heard a very deep breathing just off my stern.  Now I’ve heard seals, sea lions, and porpoises grabbing air as they swim by but this was much deeper and of longer duration than any I’ve heard before.  Looking toward the sound, there was just enough light from the wharf to illuminate a small “bow wave” moving across my stern toward the wharf.  Reason told me that it had to be a whale, but we were anchored in just 30 feet of water and only 1000 feet from the beach!  The bow wave disappeared for several minutes as I waited for either the wharf to collapse from the collision of the brute or some other indication of the whale’s progress.  The pier didn’t move and I heard another “blow” giving evidence of what I fancied as a young bull whale moving off from the pier toward open waters.  What a finale to a fine day and a splendid welcome to Monterey!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Out the Gate and Left!

Finally, after all of the preparations, installations, provisioning, and several bon voyage parties, the crew assembled and we slipped the dock lines to head for the unknown.  My daughter Jennifer, who had recently graduated UC Santa Cruz, which was one of the pivotal factors in my decision to venture forth, joined the crew for the first leg out of the Gate to the town of Santa Cruz.  A friend from the docks where I had been living and had owned, loved, and sailed a woodie (a wooden boat) too, Steve Block, also joined us for the voyage.  The final member rounding out our motley crew was Stoney, Steve’s dog, a big boy that didn’t complain the entire trip.
The weather forecast called for moderate winds for the day, so without fanfare, we set sail at 1230 HRS and sailed out and under the Golden Gate for my final time. 

Jennifer was aware enough to grab the camera and get this shot.
With 10 – 15 knots of wind, we sailed most of the day taking turns at the wheel while others adjusted sails, prepared food, or rested easy.  Jennifer had a somewhat sour look most of the journey and finally told us of her seasickness.  After eating some ginger snacks and taking a Dramamine, she still looked pretty sour!
But she was a sport, didn’t complain, and spent quite a bit of time at the wheel.
One of our options was to sail straight on to Santa Cruz with no stops through the night.  However, as this journey is supposed to be pleasant and easy going, we elected to stop over in Half Moon Bay for the night.  It was already dark two hours before reaching harbor and with Steve below napping, Jennifer was at the wheel while I navigated and dropped the sails.  It took a while to find the small blinking lights with all of the traffic lights, street lights, advertising lights, etc.in the background , but Jen and I finally identified the lighted buoys marking the channel around a shoal, and inside the protection of the breakwaters, which quickly calmed the waters around us.  Many boats were anchored in this calm bay but we found a likely spot and nestled between them and out of the main channel at 2200 HRS.  It is always a great feeling to sit comfortably at anchor in calm waters after rocking and rolling all day long.  Drinks all around!  I prepared a good hearty breakfast (even if it was dinnertime) as a reward to all, particularly my brave crew, and we sat around afterwards congratulating ourselves for only a short time, all very tired and wanting to get some sleep for the even longer voyage on the morrow.
At 0830 HRS the anchor was up and we were on our way once more toward SC, although we were motoring with no wind to drive the sails.  Just before noon, and one mile before Pigeon Point, a breeze sprang up enough to again turn the motor off and sail at 5 knots in the peaceful rolling quiet that only sailors know.   This respite from the constant chugging of a diesel motor was short lived however and we were forced once again to fire up the “iron jenny” (jenny is slang for genoa, a large foresail).

We had a casualty at this point; Jennifer, only wanting to relax, mis-judged the swinging of the staysail boom and bent over to sit down on the foredeck just as the boom swung back (due to lack of wind) where it clobbered her right across the bridge of her nose. I was below doing something when I felt my presence needed on deck.  I found her, just squatting on the side deck, holding her nose and slightly dazed, but she's a tough cookie and all was well once we stopped the bleeding.  She had two black eyes for weeks afterwards, and some tall tales I'll bet!

We made Santa Cruz around 1700 HRS and dropped the hook just west of the pier.

Soon after arriving, we spotted my Jeep that a friend from Berkeley had driven down to pick up the crew and was flashing the car’s headlights from the wharf.  We lowered the dinghy into the water, loaded the gear and Jennifer aboard and headed to a ladder that extended from the deck of the pier to the water, where we were able to unload this boatload.  Stoney was going to be another problem, because he couldn’t climb ladders so, with Steve, Stoney, and me aboard, we drove for the beach.  I timed the swells rolling in to keep from swamping the dink and, at just the right moment, gunned the outboard to drive us up the beach.  Well, I thought it was the right moment, but two seconds later, with the boat nearly stopped, the boat’s side swung high enough to roll Steve and me both right into the surf!  Stoney jumped clear without getting but his feet wet, but Steve and I were soaked through and through.  I didn’t think it was all that funny, but Jennifer and Cynthia were in hysterics!  The roll in the surf hurt my ego a bit but wasn’t enough to dampen my spirits, however Steve had a two hour car ride home, wet and sandy, although he was able to put some dry clothes on before departing.  I on the other hand, was able to have a warm bath and a change of clothes before cooking up a celebratory dinner.  We had just completed the first of many legs on our voyage to paradise.

Thanks to Jennifer and Steve for the help and for being such great sports!

Moored in Berkeley


Cree very kindly allowed me to hang out on an end tie for a couple of weeks while I took care of final preparations to leave.

As you will see in later posts, I really enjoy night shots of the surrounding lights; Berkeley being only the first being posted.  Below is from Minerva in Berkeley looking toward San Francisco Bay Bridge with the City behind. 

The same perspective only a light fog has rolled in.


I can't come up with many more good excuses, so it seems to be time to leave. A few more details to take care of early next week and try to push off toward the end of the week. Those who have expressed a desire to crew, should figure out the days you are available and let me know asap to coordinate. First stop will be either Half Moon Bay or Santa Cruz, depending on weather and crew's time schedules.