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Delta Sailors Meet Unexpected Wait by a Bridge

Josh and Candace Williams were making their way up the Delta aboard their Hunter Legend 37.5 Nalu when they encountered a bridge delay. Josh wrote to let us know so we could share this and warn other sailors and Delta Doo Dah participants. Apparently the Rio Vista Bridge and Three Mile Slough Bridge are both under repair and require a four-hour notice for openings. “All summer,” Josh wrote.

“We didn’t bother to check the LNM and assumed we’d hear a Coast Guard broadcast for any issues (such as a partially submerged vessel in Georgiana Slough). Fortunately we only had to wait 30 minutes to sneak in with a tug, but please let people know.”

The Delta waterways are dotted with bridges and diversions. If you’ve sailed up and down a lot, it can be easy to assume you know all the opening schedules; we’ve been guilty of that. But after reading what happened on Josh and Candace’s sail, we’re reminded to check the schedules, look for notices and reports, and maybe chat with the locals if you can.

Delta Threemile slough lift-bridge
Three Mile Slough Bridge has a closed vertical clearance of 10 feet.
© 2023

Thankfully 30 minutes was all it took on this occasion, but we can imagine some people possibly having places to be that a four-hour delay would interrupt. Well, they say that when sailing, all schedules should be loose, or abandoned altogether. Whatever way you plan (or don’t plan) your Delta sailing adventures, we echo Josh and Candace’s words: ” … safe summer travels.”

Delta Ditch Run
If you do end up having to wait by a bridge, there are worse places to spend your time.
© 2023 Slackwater SF

If you want to join the Delta Doo Dah — the do-it-yourself rally that includes opportunities to meet, sail, and/or socialize with fellow fleet members — there’s still time, with registrations closing on August 31. Here’s a schedule of events happening all along the Delta until the end of September: Delta Doo Dah Events.

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