Photos of the Day
August 4 - Southern California
Sailors have been racing the 81-mile Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race for 31 years, and if there had ever been better sailing conditions and more pleasant weather than for this year's August 1 event, nobody can remember it. One thing is for certain, nobody has sailed the course faster.
The fleet reaches away from Santa Barbara.
One-hundred-and-nineteen boats - from a Melges 24 to Jake Wood's Mull 84 Sorcery, including 14 multihulls - started from Santa Barbara at noon or shortly thereafter under sunny skies, and more importantly, a decent getaway breeze. The wind held in the low to mid-teens across the channel to the rounding mark off Anacapa Island.
Jenn Folvig works the weather traveller aboard Profligate halfway to Anacapa Island.
Greg Sands', N/M 55 Firebird, with the red chute, tries to hold off Loren Colahan's beautiful Farr 45 Rio on the spinnaker reach.
Jim Cushman and his SC 52 Azul tries to hunt down another carbon powered competitor at the tip of Anacapa Island.
After the typical flukey weather in the lee of the island, the wind built again in the late afternoon as the fleet closed on the coast near Pt. Dume. Some boats reported winds in the low to mid-20s, and there were plenty of roundups and ripped shreds - and one tri that nearly flipped. There were also some impressive speeds. Greg Dorland of the Lake Tahoe-based Melges 32 Emotional Rescue, which would be the fourth monohull to finish, reported hitting 22 knots. Pile a ton of sail area on a 4,000-pound 32-ft boat and you can do that.
The fleet leaders work the lee of Anacapa before reaching back to the mainland - that's Sorcery on port jibe near the front.
The Profligate Blues. Having had a pretty good reach out to Anacapa, we had to drop the chute and sail backwards in order to get a ball of kelp off the starboard rudder - giving trailing boats the opportunity to walk right by.
The fleet tries to escape the lees of Santa Cruz and Anacapa Islands by heading back toward the beach.
Buzz, a Henderson 30 owned by John Bishop and Doug Deaver from Santa Barbara runs down the coast near Pt. Dume in the best winds of the race.
Although the wind eased off near sunset in Santa Monica Bay, Bill Gibbs and his 52-ft catamaran Afterburner didn't have to worry, having finished the course at 5:47 p.m., knocking 20% off the course record he'd set last year. Let's see, finishing an 81-mile course in less than six hours . . . that's pretty fast. It wasn't until 90 minutes later that the first monohull, Michael Campbell's TransPac 52 Victoria, crossed the line.
The Melges 24 Groovederci makes the best of the end of the good breeze in Santa Monica Bay.
Corrected time honors, however, went to the smaller boats. The Burke/Ken Kieding Hobie 33 Captain Sluggo from Santa Barbara edged the Thawley/Downey Mull 30 XS, and John Staff's Cheetah 30 Wildcat, by less than four minutes. The Marston/Shortman Antrim 27 Nemesis, from Northern California, overall winner of last year's race, corrected out fourth this year.
It remained warm and dry on the course even after the sun went down.
Photo Courtesy Peter Kacandes
Based on the fact that last year's King Harbor Race was very good and this year's was excellent, next year's should be absolutely perfect. Don't miss it.
except where noted
S/V Robert C. Seamans
August 4 - San Francisco Bay
And on their way down the hill, they got a shot of the lighthouse at Pt. Conception in rare dead calm conditions.
Photos Wayne Meretsky
August 4 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? The YOTREPS daily yacht tracking page has moved to www.bitwrangler.com/psn.
August 4 - Pacific Ocean
San Francisco Bay Weather
Check out this guide to San Francisco Bay Navigational Aids: http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/sfports.html.
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
Check out the Pacific Ocean sea states