A Perfect 10

April 26 - San Francisco Bay

It was a perfect night for a 10th birthday: Eight kids ten and under, one dad, one sailboat (a Ranger 33), clearing weather leaving rainbows behind and another affirmation of why it's so great to be able to sail on San Francisco Bay.

It's a fantastic experience taking eight kids out on a boat that sleeps six for an overnight excursion. Hardly anyone had sailed before, no one (except our two) had spent a night on a boat, yet at ten years old the sense of adventure far outweighed any sense of fear. Seals, seabirds, fish and rainbows plus the motion of the ocean and the wind in the sails provided all the excitement anyone needed.

Safety, sailing and steering were of primary importance until we were settled comfortably between the mooring buoys at Ayala Cove. An evening barbecue on the transom was followed by cake around the dinette and all kids sleeping very cozily the night through. We took a morning walk atop Angel Island before a sweet sail home. The smiles on the kids' faces reflect the feeling we get every day we go sailing, and it's great to be able share the fun with friends when you're turning 10!

Photos Latitude/John Arndt

From left to right: front row, Erin, Dorian, Martha;
back row, Claire, Claire, birthday girl Sarah, Hannah, Marnie. Note the hint of rainbow in the background.

USA Gets in Clipper 2002 Round the World Yacht Race

April 25 - New York, NY

The city of New York completes the international line-up for Clipper 2002, the highly competitive biennial event crewed by paying amateurs. Liverpool will host this fourth running of the Clipper. Eight identical Clipper 60s crewed by 14 amateurs, led by one professional skipper, will start and finish in Liverpool, making 16 stops and covering more than 35,000 nm in this longest of all round the world races.

The provisional start date is September 14. Other cities backing yachts are Bristol, Liverpool, Glasgow, Cape Town, Hong Kong, Jersey and London.

Crew (which could be you!) can sign up for 6 week legs or the whole 11 month circumnavigation, and pay large fees to be onboard. They do not need to be experienced sailors, as training is provided, but do need to be at least 18. Clipper Ventures insists that this is not just for folks who can write big checks; they will help you raise the cash for the fee. Crew applications are being accepted at www.clipper-ventures.com.

The Clipper 60 fleet in New York Harbor last September

Aboard one of the yachts

Photos Courtesy Clipper Ventures

Orange Learns to Be Patient

April 26 - Pacific Ocean

In order to spare their damaged mast by avoiding upwind sailing, the crew of maxi-catamaran Orange has taken a turn to the west. Patience will be required to find favorable wind. The atmosphere on board is one of concentration; skipper Bruno Peyron remains calm. A crack in the ball that supports the mast is forcing the caution.

Orange is currently off the coast of Africa and must arrive at the finish line in the English Channel by May 12 at 23:57:29 to earn the Jules Verne around the world record.


April 26 - 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/

Weather Updates

April 26 - 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/stuff/southwest/swstmap.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

Check out the Pacific Ocean sea states at: http://www.mpc.ncep.noaa.gov/RSSA/PacRegSSA.html.
For another view, see http://www.oceanweather.com/data/global.html.

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