Graphic of the Day
October 24 - Mexico's West Coast
Today's Graphic of the Day is of the very powerful 140-knot Hurricane Kenna, which is sweeping up the coast of mainland Mexico and is expected to make landfall within 36 hours. There are tropical storm warnings from as far south as Manzanillo, and hurricane warnings as far north as Mazatlan. Much of the prime cruising grounds along Mexico's Gold Coast are and will be getting nailed with huge surf, but the real damage will be done by the approaching winds, storm surge, and rain. We're keeping our fingers crossed for all the sailors, boats, marina facilities, and ports in Kenna's path.
Graphic Unisys Weather
For about 450 other people looking forward to starting the Baja Ha-Ha next Tuesday, the obvious question is how the hurricane might affect the Ha-Ha. Lauren Spindler, Ha-Ha Honcho, issued the following statement: "While Hurricane Kenna is not predicted to come within hundreds of miles of the Ha-Ha course, we're naturally concerned that the conditions necessary for a tropical storm or hurricane might continue to exist at the southern extremes of the Ha-Ha course this late in the season. So we're currently checking with our weather sources regarding upper level conditions and ocean water temperatures in those areas. As of today, Thursday at 10:30 a.m., I can say that the Skipper's Meeting and Kick-Off Costume Party will be held in San Diego on Sunday as scheduled, and I expect the Ha-Ha to start on Tuesday. Safety, however, is the primary concern of the Ha-Ha, so, based on the weather conditions, we will also be drawing up contingency plans such as: 1) Doing the first leg to Turtle Bay - where the water is now too cold for hurricanes - and reevaluate; 2) Postpone the event a week. 3) Postpone the event a month. I'm acutely aware that any changes in the original schedule will cause inconvenience and expense, but it's better to deal with those than recklessly sailing into a tropical storm or worse. I'll have an updated announcement on 'Lectronic tomorrow."
Things Are Getting Juicy in Round Robin II of the Louis Vuitton Series
October 24 - Auckland, NZ
The Prada chief blew a gut after a bad first round, canned head designer Doug Peterson, and had the bow dramatically modified to his own liking. In a move likely to set back yacht design, the result has been three straight wins, the latter two against Oracle BMW and Dennis Conner.
It's not surprising then that mercurial Larry Ellison, no doubt unhappy after Oracle started so well and then faltered so badly, has done the nearly unthinkable by bringing in Chris Dickson. The Kiwi skipper had been put on the sidelines nearly two years ago after reportedly being a corrosive influence on the team. Dickson is now the primary helmsman and manager of sailing operations. Peter Holmberg, John Cutler, and Bill Erkelens are all still valuable members of the team, but Dickson has obviously gotten a huge promotion. He promptly went out and got Oracle back on the winning track, although it was against the 'Latin Rascals', who are a lower grade opponent. Will the talented Dickson be too new to the boat and too rusty to win against the top competition? Will his intensity be just what Oracle needs? How many of the old team members might quit in protest? How long before Ellison calls in Paul Cayard, also still under contract? Oh yeah, it's getting good!
In another interesting development, Alinghi handed OneWorld their first loss of the series. It's clear that both these teams will make the double elimination foursome, what other two syndicates will join them?
The 'Land Canal' and Nautical Stairway
October 24 - Santa Rosalillita, Baja California
A protected harbor at little Santa Rosalillita, some 300 miles south of San Diego on the Pacific Coast of Baja, is the first step in the establishment of Mexico's 'Nautical Stairway' from California to Mexico, and a proposed 'land canal' between Baja and the Pacific Coast. Mac and Mary Shroyer, owners of Marina de La Paz, took a drive to Santa Rosalillita - the name is spelled incorrectly on the billboard - where they took the accompanying photographs and filed the following report:
"We drove to Santa Rosalillita to see what has and hasn't been done. (We were told by the man who sells gas at the Bahia de Los Angeles turnoff that work is going on on that part of the road.) The road from the TransPeninsular Highway to the Pacific Coast has the same 4 kilometers of paving that we saw last year. The rest is pretty awful going, with sharp gravel and washboard. Note the graffito on the billboard, as someone doesn't believe that 100,000 will be helped."
Downtown Santa Rosalillitia
October 24 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? Check out YOTREPS - 'yacht reports' - at http://www.bitwrangler.com/yotreps/
October 24 - Pacific Ocean
San Francisco Bay Weather
To see what the winds are like on the Bay and just outside the Gate right now, check out http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/wind/. The National Weather Service site for San Francisco Bay is at www.wrh.noaa.gov/Monterey/.
California Coast Weather
Looking for current as well as recent wind and sea readings from 17 buoys and stations between Pt. Arena and the Mexican border? Here's the place - which has further links to weather buoys and stations all over the U.S.: www.ndbc.noaa.gov/Maps/Southwest.shtml.
Pacific Winds and Pressure
The University of Hawaii Dept. of Meteorology page posts a daily map of the NE Pacific Ocean barometric pressure and winds.
Pacific Sea State