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May 26, 2021

Do You Recognize this Mast, and Thus the Sunken Boat It’s Attached To?

Readers sometimes send us photos of boats that have sunk somewhere in the Bay. On this occasion we received photos from two different people of what we believe to be the same boat, which had been beached and then sank off Crown Beach, Alameda.

However, as neither photographer was able to tell us much, we thought we’d throw it out to our community in the hope of learning more about the boat that met this unfortunate end.

Here is what we do know.

Art Stiers, who sent us the first photo below, said, “It has since been refloated and towed somewhere. Looks to be about 30-ft, kind of a beater. He has been anchored off the beach for several months, was hard aground on the beach for a while before he got towed back out, and subsequently sank in place. I’m amazed he lasted that long given the wicked chop that develops in that area. Richardson Bay it is not, which is very good.”

Mast visible
No, this is not the next Caption Contest(!).
© 2021 Art Stiers

Jeorg Bashir sent us this photo of what appeared to be a salvage team working on the vessel.

“I had seen it anchored there forever, with a red kayak,” said Jeorg.
© 2021 Joerg Bashir

At first we wondered if the sunken vessel was the same one we had seen on social media a while ago.

Is it this boat that was spotted ashore in February? Art says no, as the boat he photographed has a white hull.
© 2021 Instagram/Cindy Richardson Atases
Our guess it wasn’t Spinner either, beached in March.
© 2021 Contributed

So the question remains: What is the boat that sank off Alameda’s Crown Beach? Who owns (or owned) it, and what has become of it now?

Please tell us what you know, readers.

World Ocean Day Is on June 8 — How Are Sailors Helping the Ocean?

Next month, on June 8, we celebrate World Ocean Day, and in the June issue of Latitude 38, Tim Henry takes a close look at sailors, and organizations, who have combined their passion for sailing with their desire to improve the health of the oceans. Here are a few snippets from next month’s story …

The State of the Ocean

“I am sometimes daunted by the size of the problem and how global the issue is,” Mary Crowley, the founder and executive director of the Ocean Voyages Institute, told us.

“When we first started investigating what was going on in the ocean, a lot of people would say cleanup is futile; it’s too far away, it’s too difficult,” Crowley told us. “But the fact is, professional maritime people are used to doing things mid-ocean.”

Kwai hauling nets
Ocean Voyages Institute’s 118-ft cargo-sailer Kwai hauls aboard a tangle of nets.
© 2021 Ocean Voyages Institute

There have been a slew of other actions and ideas. Estuary sailor Scott Chowning started pulling a home-made trawler behind his Catalina 27 Evening Star to collect debris while he’s out sailing. Santa Cruz captain Jim ‘Homer’ Holm helped invent a small “mobile reactor,” which can turn ocean plastic into diesel fuel. The Swiss organization The Sea Cleaners recently unveiled Manta, set to be launched in 2024.

Cleaning up the Bay
Scott Chowning tows his trawler, called a LADI, across the Bay to reach his goal of removing one ton of trash from the Bay Area in 2021.
© 2021 Scott Chowning

Boyan Slat, the shaggy-haired, unshaven 27-year-old founder and CEO of Ocean Cleanup, said that in 2020, his company had collected 250,000 football fields, or over half a million pounds, of marine trash. Stylish fundraisers who appeal to our greatest environmental hopes, The Ocean Cleanup has the lofty goal of removing “90% of floating ocean plastic pollution.”

Even though we have legitimately changed our behaviors, and we can see a cleaner environment around us, the statistics are still ominous. “The United States is by far the world’s largest generator of plastic waste — it produced about 46 million tons in 2016,” National Geographic reported.

It’s clear, however, that marine pollution is a crisis that has corralled the world’s attention.

Read the full story in June’s Latitude 38 magazine — out next week and available by subscription, or pick up at your favorite distributor.

Baja Ha-Ha XXVII Passes the Century Mark

At the time of writing this update, The Grand Poobah was “tickled to report” that the 2021 Baja Ha-Ha had received 102 entries in the first six days — “the greatest number of boats in the shortest time in the rally’s 27-year history.” A quick look at the Ha-Ha entries page this morning showed us that the number is now 125!

Zak Crawford-Levi’s Marina del Rey-based Newport 41 Bambu was entry #100. Hey, Isn’t that a photo of Zak at the top of Bambu’s mast?

Baja Ha-Ha 100th entrant
It sure is — Zak Crawford-Levi
© 2021 Baja Ha-Ha

We’ve been getting a lot of great crew photos for the Meet the Fleet guide that will be handed out at the Kick-Off Party on October 31.

Have we got one from Diane Berol of her and her husband John’s San Diego-based Pacific Seacraft 42 Celtic Song? Sure have.

This is Diane with the gloved right hand, the dog, and the big smile. Celtic Song is entry #91.
© 2021 Baja Ha-Ha

We knew that Kevin and Katie Millett of the Kalaheo, Kauai, custom 50 cat Kalewa would send a great photo because this is Kevin’s fourth Ha-Ha with Kalewa, and Katie’s second. They are the ones jumping up and down on the foredeck.

Kevin and Katie Millett
Kevin and Katie Millett jump up and down on Kalewa‘s foredeck.
© 2021 Baja Ha-Ha

The Poobah has a special request. Whenever communicating with the Ha-Ha, always include your name, your boat name, and your entry number. And please, please, please, check the spelling on your entry form. It’s a nightmare for the Poobah to have to go back and make corrections.

If you do sign up, it may take a couple of days to appear on the Ha-Ha page because Patsy, the Assistant Poobah, processes all the entries, and she’s on Talion cruising the Sea of Cortez and not always in internet range. Thanks for understanding.

The Resourceful Sailor Watches Aged Committee Boat Go Electric

We’re used to The Resourceful Sailor sharing his experiences as he repairs and sometimes MacGyvers his way through sailboat problems. This time, however, he found himself in the role of observer.

The Resourceful Sailor was privy to some goings-on this past winter at the Boat Haven Boatyard in Port Townsend, WA. While a bit more high-tech and high-budget than his typical subject matter, he was impressed by the Port Townsend Sailing Association’s (PTSA) ambitious commitment to the local racing scene.

The Port Townsend Sailing Association, Blackbird Associates, and Steve Scharf have relaunched the 1979 CHB  race-committee trawler Committee. (Yes, that’s the name. Underworld sounding? Or a little like naming your dog Dog?) Fresh from the Port Townsend Boatyard, simplified for purpose, and with a new electric motor, Committee is meant to augment the local sailing community and to oversee the local Thunderbird fleet and PHRF buoy and long-distance races.

Originally on the hard for winter storage and routine maintenance in fall 2020, the refit turned into more of a rescue. As work commenced, it became clear that many of the systems of the 42-year-old boat were at end of life. The leaky and smoky Ford Lehman diesel, which house mechanic Dan Ginther had kept running, was ultimately going to need a rebuild or replacement. With parts difficult to source, the latter was the reality.

Committee boat
House mechanic Dan Ginther removes the old tankage.
© 2021 Steve Scharf

Steve, the owner of Committee, decided to pull the trigger on installing an electric motor. “At that point,” Steve said, “other diesel options were considered, but I convinced myself, despite a real mix of opinions concerning my sanity, to go electric.” It’s a progressive and new-age conscionable decision, though not yet widespread, whereas a diesel engine is time-honored but not necessarily forward-thinking. Full speed ahead, Steve enlisted Revision Marine to help design the new system.

The recycled Tesla battery takes the place of the old tankage.
© 2021 Joshua Wheeler

In the meantime, there were other tired systems to remove that were unnecessary for a day-use committee boat. Out went the two-cabin heating system, the cooktop, and the hot water. Say bye-bye to refrigeration, radar (a tough call), and extra cushions. Get rid of the two large diesel tanks and the oversize freshwater tank. They removed the excess plumbing, renewed much of the remaining wiring, and rebuilt the steering. Other cosmetic and functional improvements are ongoing.

Committee won’t be needing these buckets of piping anymore.
© 2021 Steve Scharf

After a long winter of prep, the boat was ready for the motor to be installed. The new propulsion system, which Matt Mortensen of Revision Marine, a self-described tech geek, designed for Committee, has a 108-volt, 40hp Elco EP-40 electric inboard powered by a 25kWh battery consisting of five recycled Tesla modules. It will have an operating time of about three hours at 5.5 knots. Efficiency increases at slower speeds, with 6.2 hours of run time at 4.5 knots. “They used about 15% of the battery capacity for Wednesday’s race,” Matt said about Committee’s first outing for the T-bird racing.

The Resourceful Sailor helped with new electric engine
The final install is clean and tidy.
© 2021 Joshua Wheeler

The refit and re-power of the committee boat demonstrate a commitment to supporting PTSA races and leading-edge technologies. The trawler’s structure is solid, providing a good viewing platform. Its operation will often be by volunteers, so it’s important to have a safe, simple and reliable vessel that is easy to operate. As the days get longer and the Port Townsend race season heads into full swing, Committee is ready to play her star role out on the bay. As we see the reign of the internal combustion engine challenged in our modern world, the Port Townsend marine community is embracing the future.

Jeff Brantley at Committee’s helm, headed out for the inaugural race.
© 2021 Amanda Landon

*This story originally appeared on the Port Townsend Sailing Association website.

Update Your Dad’s Wardrobe for Father’s Day with Latitude 38 Logowear

Is your father one of those dads who likes to wear a terribly daggy (Australian for grungy) old T-shirt or hat all the time? And to your deep embarrassment, does he claim it’s his favorite and wear it out in public, particularly when you’re with him? Don’t worry, you’re not alone in this; we think most dads have gone through this phase. Some are still in it. But we have a solution: Update your dad’s wardrobe by giving him Latitude 38 logowear for Father’s Day. It’s a win/win — he gets to strut his stuff wearing the coolest gear on the Bay, and you get peace of mind knowing your personal-fashion reputation will remain intact. In fact, it will even get a boost.

Here’s an idea — post a photo of your dad (preferably on a sailboat) wearing his favorite T-shirt or hat on Latitude 38‘s Instagram page with #Latitudedads, and to honor dads everywhere, we’ll share the photos on ‘Lectronic Latitude. We’ll even send a few lucky dads a new Latitude 38 T-shirt or hat. Does that sound like a good deal? We’ll announce one daggy-dad winner each Friday until Father’s Day. That’s four Fridays, so we should have four winners. But what about everyone else?

Latitude 38 t-shirt blue
If you’ve been trying to order the blue T-shirt, it’s now back in stock. (It’s popular, so get in early!)
© 2021 Latitude 38/Store

To be sure your dad gets to enjoy a new Latitude T-shirt or hat, check out Latitude‘s logowear and place your order before 5 p.m. on June 11 for delivery before Father’s Day.

Of course the danger is that the new item will become his favorite and find its way into the ranks of dagginess, but you know where to find new ones, so check it out now!

Why Are Latitude 38 Golden Tickets Won in a Run?

The other day, we received an email from Al Carvalheira, who had picked up a Golden Ticket along with his copy of Latitude 38‘s May edition. If you remember, we recently shared the story about Todd Brubaker, who had also found a Golden Ticket in his May Latitude 38. So we’re wondering why we can have no winners for what seems like months, then suddenly we get two in two weeks. And this phenomenon has happened before.

Do you have any answers? Please tell us if you do, as we’re curious. In the meantime, back to Al.

Golden ticket winner
Al Carvalheira picked up his winning issue at West Marine in Alameda.
© 2021 Al Carvalheira

Al says he considers himself to be a “novice” sailor, which is perfectly okay with us — every sailor was a novice once.

“I haven’t sailed since late 2019 because of the lockdown. I learned to sail and am still a member of OCSC. Over the years and in addition to sailing at OCSC, I’ve crewed on several YRA and OYRA races,” Al says.

Despite being a self-labeled novice, Al has the good sense to be a long-term Latitude 38 reader. “I’ve read every issue since 2004.” And in a little moment of patting ourselves on the back, we’re sharing Al’s feedback about our magazine. “Thank you, John Arndt, for continuing to produce a quality publication with great content, so keep up the good work.”

Al also told us that he happened to meet John at the Annapolis Boat Show in 2014. “I came across an East Coast sailing publication’s booth and said to attendant, ‘You must be the Latitude 38 of these parts.’ He laughed and said, ‘Well, we happen to have someone from Latitude 38 right here.’ It was John, of course, not missing an opportunity.”

While we’re on the path of sharing reader feedback, we also received an email from readers Kyle and Rita from El Dorado Hills, who had listed their boat for sale in Latitude 38‘s classifieds section.

“We just wanted to let you know that the one-time ad in Classy Classifieds was a success. A reader in Lake Havasu, Arizona, contacted us in January and we had numerous conversations. He picked up the boat on his way to his summer home in Snohomish, Washington, yesterday — full price. $40 well spent. Sadly we are leaving the sailing world for a ‘land yacht.’ We enjoyed sailing the Bay and out the Gate — Thanksgiving week for many years, Richmond-to-Isleton Delta cruise, Tomales Bay, whale watching on Monterey Bay, Lake Tahoe, and hundreds of sunset sails on our home port at Folsom Lake.

“For years we decorated Paragon with 10,000 LED lights at Christmas and were a stop for limo tours. That boat was well loved, but life changed and we hadn’t raised the sails for over six years, and she needed to be loved again. We loved the sailing community and loved reading Latitude 38 for the past 30 years. Thank you.” – Kyle & Rita Yates.

Thanks to Al, Kyle and Rita for the great feedback. Oh, and Kyle and Rita, don’t let the lack of a boat stop you from reading Latitude 38, or from sailing, for that matter; there are always OPBs to enjoy.