Although the forecast for the YRA’s inaugural Bluewater Bash to longitude 124 on Friday-Saturday called for near-gale force conditions, ironically several entries dropped out in the very light conditions ‘bashing’ out the Gate on Friday.
Brandon Mercer reports from Nick Grebe’s Santa Cruz 37 WildCard: “We were debating Thursday night about even going, given the boat-breaking conditions predicted for Saturday. But the models finally showed us getting in before the worst hit, so we went for it. As we got out there Friday night, we watched the conditions and looked at time to longitude 124. We made a late night call to go for it. Around 4 a.m., we tacked around, popped our kite, and began tearing through the waves — directly toward Monterey. After some fun with that, and huge speed, we peeled to the jib top and headed up to our proper course, where we could now carry the headsail we had up.”
“We had a good ride past the Farallones in the early morning, and then screamed through the Golden Gate after noon to finish second corrected. We saw Kahoots off and on through the race, and were thrilled to see them again near the finish, knowing we would correct above them. The race committee’s greeting back at the dock with proclamations was the best.”
Video of the screaming reach in the Gate by Brandon Mercer
City Lights, Aaron Wangenheim’s Santa Cruz 52, was the only boat that finished in less than 24 hours. They posted an elapsed time of 23:09:23, topping PHRF 1.
Aboard the smallest boat in the fleet, Buzz Blackett and Jim Antrim doublehanded the Antrim 27c ‘io. They did 75 minutes on and 75 off watches. They took nine hours to complete the 75 miles back to the finish from longitude 124, the turnaround point. They covered the distance from the Farallones to the finish line in only three hours.
None of the Cal 40/39 boats in PHRF 3 finished. Jim Quanci’s Green Buffalo turned around Friday night and was back in the berth at RYC by around 2 a.m. Saturday. See results on Jibeset. (Remember that the RC postponed PHRF 4 and Shorthanded 2 due to the dire forecast. They are not currently “Racing.”)
The new race honored the late great Jocelyn Nash, pictured below.
Welcome to May’s Caption Contest(!), and “may” this never happen to any of us!
You can find April’s Caption Contest(!) winner and next top ten in this month’s Latitude 38.
As summer approaches, sailors’ thoughts turn to cruising. For some it’s just a matter of casting off and heading out to sea. But for some it’s a matter of learning more about “how” to cruise, before they take a longer leap. Yes, there have been, and still are, sailors who just throw off the lines and go wherever and however the wind may take them, but not everyone is that confident or experienced. So we came up with a plan to help those sailors: Do the Delta Doo Dah, then sail into the Baja Ha-Ha.
The Delta Doo Dah (DDD) is a fun summer cruising rally that takes sailors from wherever their homeport may be along the miles of picturesque waterways of the California Delta. The beauty of this rally is that it’s a do-it-yourself cruise, meaning you can start and stop wherever and as often as you like along the course, anytime from the Kickoff on May 21 to Labor Day Weekend in September. That gives you more than three months during which you can take short (or long) sails into the Delta, anchor overnight, stop at a guest dock, pop ashore for dinner — the options are endless. And all the while you will be part of a fleet of dozens of cruisers, many of whom have done the Doo Dah in previous years and will be more than happy to share their stories and tips with you.
Throughout the DDD there will be hosted events at various marinas — parties, barbecues, discounts and prizes. And of course, there will be the endless summer days that will entice you to sail, swim, or just laze about on the warmer-than-the-Bay river waters.
The Delta Doo Dah is the perfect way to try cruising without having to leave the mainland. You’ll always be close to home and have safe and easily accessible anchorages, and you’ll be in great company.
Take a look at the Delta Doo Dah website for more details and information on how to register. Oh, and did we mention it’s free?
Once you’ve done the Doo Dah, you’ll have a much better idea of what you and your boat need to head offshore with the Baja Ha-Ha fleet come October. Perfect!
Baja Ha-Ha registrations open on Wednesday, May 11. If you’re wondering if the Ha-Ha is for you, again, you’ll be sailing in great company. Many participants report that one of the best things it did for them was give them a definite “shove-off” date.
“I’d have still been getting my boat ready two years later if I hadn’t signed up for the Ha-Ha and committed myself to leave on a certain date” is something the Ha-Ha team hears time and time again. And that’s only one of the good things about this cruising rally. Like the Delta Doo Dah, the Baja Ha-Ha is packed with fun and organized get-togethers.
The Ha-Ha’s Grand Poobah, Richard Spindler, says, “The Cabo Falso finish to the Ha-Ha is every bit as distinctive as the Diamond Head finish of the Transpac. Once in port, members of the fleet enjoy the warm waters of Medano Beach. The young kids splash and swim — and try to figure out what the adults are up to. They are participating in the world-famous ‘Here to Eternity Kissing Contest.’
“The idea is to display as much passion as possible in the surf in front of the assembled throng. In days where there is a swell, coupling for as long as possible is a winner.” You get the idea?
This year’s shove-off date is October 31. Registration will start Wednesday, May 11, at noon.
Who’s helping get the whole world sailing on the June 18 Summer Sailstice weekend? In 2021 Summer Sailstice initiated (only for the brave of heart) its first class of Summer Sailtice ambassadors. Some survived to do it another year. And a few more are joining in. Sailstice ambassadors can come from anywhere, but we’re introducing a few California ambassadors who are helping spread the word to their club, class or whatever group of sailing friends they sail with. Ambassadors have the fun job of recruiting their sailing community to ask them to join the world in raising their sails on Summer Sailstice weekend.
Why would you want to do that? Jennifer Gridley and her husband Randy own the Sabre 38 MkII Aegea on San Francisco Bay, and they’ve found the Sabre owners group a helpful bunch when solving Sabre riddles. Jennifer is looking to connect all Sabre owners with a shared sail on Summer Sailstice. It’s a way to unite Sabre owners everywhere for a shared celebration of sailing. Marissa and Chris Neely live in a great “neighborhood” in Safe Harbor Ventura Isle. Getting their Safe Harbor dock neighbors off the dock for a marina sail out is their goal. Ryan Foland sails in SoCal with the Bluewater Cruising Club at Big Geiger Cove on Catalina Island. He’s rallying the sailing club members to get out and sail that weekend.
Ros de Vries is the current commodore of the Island Yacht Club in Alameda, and she and her husband Nathan own the Santa Cruz 27 Medusa. Ros is an active sailor, inspired to bring more attention to the always-fun Santa Cruz 27 class, and also growing membership at the Encinal Yacht Club. Getting club members and fleet members to all hoist their sails on Summer Sailstice weekend is an ideal way to connect them all while also making sure they are on the Summer Sailstice map. Sailstice ambassador and Latitude 38 rock star Nicki Bennett will be collaborating in the Delta with the Owl Harbor Marina Cruise Out as Delta Doo Dah cruisers start to arrive.
Want to race for Summer Sailstice? Truls Myklebust has posted BAMA’s rescheduled Doublehanded Farallones race, now being held on Summer Sailstice. Racers can sign up with BAMA for the race and also for Summer Sailstice so they are taking part in both the race and the celebration. If you want to start the weekend with a sail on June 17, the Corinthian Yacht Club has posted their Friday night beer can race as part of the weekend celebrations.
All Sailstice ambassadors have the simple goal of getting more people out sailing on the solstice weekend. Beyond that, they belong to a club, class or group that wants to showcase what, where and how they sail. This is good for one-design fleets, owner associations, cruising clubs, yacht clubs, marinas and any group that would like to have more sailors joining their ranks.
The Bay Area’s tall ship Matthew Turner will be out for Summer Sailstice when youth members of the San Francisco Sea Scouts, crew of the whaleboats Viking and Corsair, will join the crew for a four-day voyage in the Bay and out the Gate with a visit to Drake’s Bay and Half Moon Bay. The Sea Scouts will climb aloft, help the crew with all aspects of sailing the ship, take watches, and help in the galley.
Beyond California, US Sailing is spreading the word to their national community of sailing organizations — yacht clubs, sailing schools, one-design classes, community sailing programs and more. On the Bay, US Sailing School Club Nautique will have members taking out their fleet from both locations — Sausalito and Alameda — for a Summer Sailstice sail, while the US Sailing Siebel Sailing Center, Alameda Community Sailing Center, will host an Open Sail on Summer Sailstice.
If you’re a sailing booster and would like to see more people sailing in your one-design fleet, your yacht club or your marina, sign up to be one of the elite crew of Summer Sailstice ambassadors and be the spark plug that gets your sailing world to hoist their sails “together,” wherever and however they happen to be sailing. The rewards are endless, and there’s no better way to start your summer of sailing.
Waves of improvement are transforming the Berkeley Marina. Download a free day pass for your boat and check out all the improvements we have to offer. A clean, fenced entrance off of the freeway transitions drivers off of I-80 while smooth paving and new street improvements guide you to your dock gate. Come on in to check out our renovated restrooms, dock improvements, and more.