June 23, 2017

Delta Doo Dah BBQ Bash

John and Doreen Abbott’s Catalina 30 Shellback approaches Pittsburg in the company of Express 27s and Moore 24s on their way upriver in the ‘Doo Dah Ditch Run’.

latitude/Chris
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Just as a triple-digit heat wave was launching itself upon California and the entire Southwestern United States, the Delta Doo Dah cruising rally sailed into Owl Harbor in Isleton to join in that marina’s annual Father’s Day Weekend BBQ.

The crew of the Cooper 416 Q, skipper Daryl Yeakle (standing), James Wilson (modeling the Delta Doo Dah shirt) and boys Jacob and Connor, at the Owl Harbor BBQ. The kids received gift bags containing beach balls, miniature kites, Delta Doo Dah tattoos, and more. Big kites and floaty toys were raffled off.

latitude/Chris
©2017Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Many of the Delta Doo Dah’ers made their way up to the Delta by way of the previous weekend’s Delta Ditch Run, a 67.5-mile mad dash from Richmond to Stockton Sailing Club. An exception was Bill and Kathy Crowley’s Newport 30, which sailed up from Glen Cove Marina on the Carquinez Strait on Saturday morning. "We slept on the boat and got up at 5:30," they told us. "It took six hours to sail the 33 miles." They’d never been to Owl Harbor before and sailed right by the entrance, then took a wrong turn in Sevenmile Slough. Nevertheless, they made it to the party on time.

John and Doreen Abbott on the Catalina 30 Shellback were among those who enjoyed "amazing sailing" with the Ditch Run. Entered in the Cruising Division, they took not quite 10 hours to sail from Richmond Yacht Club to SSC, "a good indication there was wind the entire way." They planned to spend a few days at Owl Harbor, visit a couple more marinas, and anchor out, then make stops at Pittsburg and Benicia to break up the return trip back to Richmond.

Bill and Kathy Crowley of Erewhon with Leif, who may be a rat terrier or a beagle/Jack Russell mix. All three made new friends at the BBQ.

latitude/Chris
©2017Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Doug McDougall, who also came up to the Delta with the Ditch Run, said he planned to keep his Newport 30 Elli in Owl Harbor for a month — but then he won a free one-week stay, the grand prize of the raffle drawing. Latitude 38 also brought Sailaway online sailing simulators to raffle off.

Owl Harbor’s harbormaster, Devery Stockon, threw a great party — as usual. Doug McDougall from the Newport 30 Elli is a Division of Boating and Waterways Dockwalker volunteer and had a Boat Clean and Green table at the event.

latitude/Chris
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Dennis Evans and Debra Baker trailered their Ericson 27 Star Gazer up from Moss Landing and launched at Ladd’s Stockton Marina, using Ladd’s crane to raise the mast. They spent a night at Owl, then one on the hook behind Decker Island on the Sacramento River before returning to Owl.

Dennis Evans and Debra Baker of Star Gazer found it necessary to escape the heat on Sevenmile Slough by actually being in Sevenmile Slough. The water’s not clear but it is clean. The water temperature was a bit chilly (snowmelt) at the beginning of the weekend; by Sunday evening it had warmed considerably. 

latitude/Chris
©2017Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Although the official Delta Doo Dah itinerary has wrapped up, there’s an entire summer ahead of us, and free entry is still open for do-it-yourselfers. If you’re in the Delta and want to join a Summer Sailstice event, we recommend Stockton Sailing Club’s Summer Sailstice Poker Run tomorrow. The sailboat with the best five-card poker hand will win a treasure chest full of gold doubloons valued at $75. There’s no charge to enter.

TGIF Racing at SBYC

It’s fun in the sun and sailing on the rail.  Aaaaah, Friday.

© 2017 Joel Krauska

Joel Krauska sent in some shots of another magical evening sailing the South Beach Yacht Club Friday Night Series. And, TGIF, it’s Friday again! If you work in the city and have to commute home anywhere after work for a few hours sailing, we think enjoying SBYC’s hospitality would be a much better way to end the week, start the weekend, and make for an easy, traffic-free trip home.

T-shirts, shorts, smiles — is summer sailing in San Francisco always this pleasant? It’s certainly better than commuting during rush hour.

© 2017 Joel Krauska

The series runs until August 25. The second half of the series begins this evening. If you’re not near SBYC, find an evening beer can series near you.

Just because the racing is over doesn’t mean the fun has to stop. You’ve gotta explain what happened during that last mark rounding.

© 2017 Joel Krauska

No Way to Reason with Hurricane Season

While in the Caribbean this spring, we spoke with friends about their plans for how to deal with the July-to-December tropical-cyclone season in the Eastern Caribbean.

Bill Lilly of the Newport Beach-based Lagoon 470 Moontide decided that he’d go with the consensus advice and head south to Grenada. That’s not quite as far south as Trinidad & Tobago, but it’s to the south of the hurricane belt.

Bill Lilly with his Lagoon 47 at Jolly Harbour, Antigua, a few months ago.

latitude/Richard
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Matt and Christine MItchell on the Austin-based Catana 47 Sugar Shack decided they’d play it safer, by going to Curaçao. Heck, that ABC island only gets hit about once every 28 years.

So what happens? Along comes Tropical Storm Brett, just the second storm of the Atlantic/Caribbean season. And it heads right for Grenada.

Bill Lilly dug Moontide in well at the south end of Grenada, but, lucky for him, Brett went even farther south. So while he got some gusts in the low 30s and torrential rain, it was no big deal. Trinidad, which gets hit even less often than Grenada, took a bit of a beating however, with moderate damage and the airport getting closed down. Even Venezuela, which already has way too many problems, suffered some damage.

Then Brett continued on to give ‘once-in-every-28-years’ Curaçao a bit of a beating. Christine Mitchell said it could have been a lot worse, as the wind didn’t get much over 40, but still, it wasn’t what they had signed up for. Neither was all the rain.

Christine Mitchell, right, of Sugar Shack, in St. Barth with Annie Gardner of the Catana 47 El Gato.

latitude/Richard
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

As for the Eastern Pacific aka Mexican hurricane season, it’s been off to a bit of a slow start. Three mild tropical storms formed way to the south and either fizzled or went inland without much damage.

So far so good, but the big tropical storm months — August, September and October — are still ahead in both areas.

John and Gena Egelston’s 1928 Lester Stone cutter Water Witch (right) prevails and handily earns a first in the Classic division at the 10th annual Great Schooner Race.
Forests and forests of wood will be on hand for the Master Mariners Benevolent Association Wooden Boat Show on June 25.  latitude/File
©2017Latitude 38 Media, LLC For our money, one of the best shows in town this month is the Master Mariners Benevolent Association’s Wooden Boat show, coming to the Corinthian Yacht Club on Summer Sailstice weekend, Sunday, June 25.  For $20 at the gate, you’ll be able to tour an assortment of classic yachts, from Birds to big yawls like Bounty.
Who’s heading out for a summer solstice sail? Were you out there yesterday?