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April 9, 2010

Storm Wreaks Havoc in Vancouver

Two of the four boats that washed up on the Kits Beach in Vancouver, B.C., after they dragged anchor in English Bay during yesterday’s big blow.

© 2010 Denise Brook

The south coast of British Columbia was pummeled by a winter-like storm yesterday, with winds up to 54 knots downing trees, killing power to 6,000 people, and sending several boats onto Vancouver beaches. Vancouver-based cruisers Wayne and Elly Smith of the Stan Huntingford 47 Zeppelin — who, last we heard, were in Catalina — forwarded these photos taken by friend Denise Brook of some of the wreckage. "Four boats washed up on Kits Beach and one at Vanier," said Brook. "Of course, the boat owners are blaming it on the city for kicking them out of False Creek."

Instead of seeking shelter in the face of the oncoming fury, several former False Creek anchor-outs took their chances in English Bay.

© 2010 Denise Brook
Some who lost their boats in the blow are blaming authorities for not letting them live regulation-free in a highly congested boating area.

© 2010
False Creek is a very narrow stretch of water with limited anchoring room. The city’s regulations forced those who wanted to live there permanently to find other accommodations — some chose the unprotected waters of English Bay.

© 2010 Google Earth

Faced with increasing numbers of anchor-outs and derelicts calling False Creek home, the city implemented time limits for the anchorage. Summer stays are limited to two weeks out of the month, while the winter limit is three weeks every 40 days, though they are allowed to seek shelter there during storms. "The owners are responsible for their safety and property," city official Jerry Dobrovlny told The Province newspaper. "As a boat owner it’s not a good choice to be in an exposed body of water during a windstorm."

Grounded boats are always a heartbreaking sight.

© 2010 Denise Brook

America’s Cup Coming to Strictly Sail

Word just came down from from on high that the America’s Cup will be making a visit to Strictly Sail Pacific on Thursday, April 15. No other details were available when we posted this so check out Strictly Sail’s website for details.

UPDATE: "We have designated Thursday as ‘America’s Cup Day at Strictly Sail’ in honor of the BMW Oracle Racing Team’s victory," said SSP Show Manager Jonathan Banks in the official press release. Though the exact location of the Cup within the show is unclear, the Cup will be on display from noon-6 p.m., with a BMW Oracle Racing Team presentation to follow from 6-7 p.m. The discussion is free to showgoers, and will include Q&A with Brad Webb, Ian Burns and Tom Ehman.

This is quite a coup for the show, and we hope those who want to see the next America’s Cup sailed on San Francisco Bay will attend to show their support!

Race Talks Galore

If you weren’t one of the 70 or so people who showed up last night to see ’08-’09 Vendée Globe veteran Rich Wilson kick off the Corinthian YC‘s speaker series, you really, really missed out. The 59-year-old resident of Marblehead, MA put on a well-paced multimedia presentation that visibly moved not only himself — he became choked up when relating the tales of the support he received from the rest of the fleet and the French public — but the enrapt audience, which honored him with a standing ovation. Hitting topics like his educational program sitesALIVE!, a rib-breaking, cross-cabin fall on Day 2 of his 121-day sojourn around the world, and the support of both the French public and his fellow sailors, Wilson’s engaging, humorous and fast-paced talk painted a vivid picture of what it was like to prepare for and compete in the Vendée Globe. If you get the chance to see Wilson in action, make sure you take it — it’s a wholly worthwhile 90 minutes.

Tonight at St. Francis YC, Peter "Luigi" Reggio, one of the world’s preeminent PROs will be joined by another, Tom Duggan, to share stories, photos and experiences from their worlds. Here to teach the advanced race management seminar this weekend, the pair agreed to the event, which benefits the club’s junior program. The program starts at 6 p.m. and admission is $10.

Speaking of seminars, on Monday the SSS will present a medical seminar ostensibly for Singlehanded TransPac racers, but is really open to anyone. Dr. Lou Freeman, veteran of the ’02 and ’06 races aboard his Swan 51 Freebird, will discuss what you need in your medical kit and how to treat common injuries at sea. As ususal, the talk will be held at Oakland YC at 7 p.m., so get there a little early for socializing. Robert Crawford will also be there to share his experiences in racing his Cal 20 Black Feathers in the ’08 race, as well as to sign copies of his and wife Jeanne’s book on the subject, Black Feathers.

This weekend’s weather is looking pretty good for breeze, although it looks like Sunday will be fairly wet. It’s a busy weekend between the SSS’ Corinthian Race, the El Toro YRA’s Bullship Regatta, the St. Francis YC’s J/Fest, the San Francisco YC’s Resin Regatta and a whole host of other events you’ll find in the 2010 Northern California Racing Schedule and YRA Master Calendar. Available in both pdf, html and print editions, the calendar is an essential resource for any Bay Area sailor.

Give us your Crew List tips and tales

Although the Crew List is definitely not intended to be a match-making service, occasionally romances do develop. Who knows, you might find yourself rolling in the surf like this pair.

©2010 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

What the heck is the Crew List? For the uninitiated, we should explain that Latitude 38‘s Crew List system has been hooking up eager, would-be crew members with skippers-in-need for decades. Now online and available 24/7, listings in a broad range of categories are constantly updated. 

We’re proud to say that over the years, many captains have gained extra hands to make on-board work lighter and passages easier, while spirited male and female crew — both young and old — have hooked sailing adventures that they might never have had otherwise.

Several hundred boats will head south in the fall, then across the Pacific in the spring. Could this be your year to join one as crew?

© Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Since the Crew List phenomenon has been functioning so well for so long, we think it’s high time that we run a feature article on it, peppered with anecdotes from those who’ve used the system. If you’re one of them, please take a few minutes to give us a short synopsis of your Crew List experiences, and a few tips for those who may be thinking about signing up. We’d also love to receive a few of your favorite (high resolution) photos from Crew List adventures. Send them to Andy. Thanks!

Bob, Bob, and Debbie – no last names in an event as casual as the Sea of Cortez Sailing Week – on the Mac 65 Braveheart found the sailing to their liking.
In just over a week, the only all-sail boat show on the West Coast — Strictly Sail Pacific — will open its gates to sailing enthusiasts, and for the first time ever, will feature quality used boats in addition to new.