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Photos of the Day

September 26 - Newport Harbor

Photo of the Day

Today's Photos of the Day, both by Michael Scalise, tell the story of why sea lions have become such a big problem in Newport Harbor. In the first photo, you can see that so many of them have climbed on the back of this CSK catamaran that she's in danger of sinking. The second photo is of a wood ketch that did sink from the weight of sea lions. But wrecking big boats isn't the only problem they are causing. They can be extremely noisy - so much so that sleepless residents of waterfront homes have been begging the authorities to do something. But there is little they can do, except squirt them with water. Ironically, sea lions apparently hate being splashed.

Photos Michael Scalise

Enjoying an Extravagant Cruising Life on $1 to $3 a Day

September 26 - Pacific Rim

"You said you'd like to hear from veteran cruisers on the subject of how much it really costs to cruise in Mexico," writes Glenn Tieman, who used to cruise the 26-ft cat Peregrine. "Here are my two cents to help establish a baseline. I cruised Mexico for one year, then spent another 10 years cruising through Hawaii, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Tavalu, Kiribati, Micronesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand. This was from '84 to '95. During the year in Mexico and the five years crossing the Pacific, I spent an average of $1 day - including on boat maintenance and official fees. I often went about with less than $100 to my name. When I got to the Philippines, I flew back to California and worked as a substitute teacher for five months before returning to Southeast Asia. Thanks to my new 'wealth', I lived extravagantly, never cooking too much and drinking too much, on $3 a day.

"In my opinion, too much money is an obstacle to cruising pleasure. I had an absolute ball. My gray California life became vivid when I went cruising in ways that I couldn't have imagined."

If you think that Tieman is full of baloney, wait until you read the letter in the Wednesday 'Lectronic from another thrifty cruising couple, who started out in the '03 Baja Ha-Ha.


September 26 - Two Harbors

These photos are to help remind you that October 1 is Buccaneer Day at Two Harbors on Catalina. The rumor is that this year people who don't show up in costume will be made to walk the plank! There's will be lots of fun and games for kids of all ages during the afternoon, but after dark, the adults are expected to let their pirate and wench alter-egos loose for that one special night a year. We hope to see you there!

Photos Latitude/Richard

Abandoned Vessels Targeted under New Law

September 26 - Sacramento

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed legislation that will allow law enforcement agencies to remove abandoned vessels from waterways, protecting California waters from deserted boat hazards. The bill, AB 716 (Canciamilla, D-Pittsburg), sponsored by Recreational Boaters of California, and supported by Latitude 38, will become law on January 1.

"By signing this bill, Governor Schwarzenegger has demonstrated his continued leadership in protecting both the health of our state's natural resources and of the public," said California Department of Boating and Waterways Director Raynor Tsuneyoshi. "Abandoned vessels impede navigation and leak pollutants, destroying natural habitats."

The changes instituted by AB 716 will enable law enforcement agencies to remove wrecked vessels more quickly so they don't become public health hazards. Under the law, the amount of time abandoned vessels may be held by law enforcement before being sold at auction will be reduced from 90 to 60 days. Additionally, the new law will double the maximum fine for vessel abandonment on public waterways to $3,000. The law also will allow the court to order violators to repay the enforcing agency for the actual cost of removing and disposing of a vessel.

Cruising Boats in Key West and Hurricane Rita

September 26 - Key West, FL

All the talk in the last couple of days has been about trying to save lives in Houston and Louisiana when Hurricane Rita hit. And apparently, officials and citizens combined to do a pretty good job. But you might remember, especially if you had a boat, that Rita had also passed through Key West.

"Our Shannon 38 in Key West came through Rita all right," reports Devan Mullins of Newport Beach. "A friend there reported that several boats were blown up on the beach and others sunk at their moorings. Luckily, our boat was relatively protected, laying to her mooring on the west side of Fleming Key, which meant there was only 100 yards of fetch."

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