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Extreme West Coast Weather

If you’re from the East Coast, you might find that for a state with so much sunshine, Californians sure do complain about the weather a lot. In Southern California, a rainy day often makes the news (and a newscaster is always [inexplicably] sent into the drizzle for a report).

But the weather hitting the Golden State today is no joke, according to the US Coast Guard. “Mariners are encouraged to take precautions to protect themselves and their vessels.” In the Bay Area, heavy, gusty winds and big surf are forecast through Friday, with waves in the 12- to 25-ft range. SoCal will see similar conditions. The Coast Guard recommends that mariners throughout the state go through the standard motions in securing their vessels during a winter storm. They also recommend extreme caution at the beach, as “sneaker waves” are prevalent, and a legitimate danger,  claiming a few lives every year.

The National Weather Service’s forecast for the Bay Area today.
© 2018 National Weather Service

“Extreme” winter West Coast weather always brings with it extreme feats and extreme fun. The ski season in Lake Tahoe looks to be off to a good start.

There’s nothing extreme about a tranquil alpine lake . . . but Lake Tahoe is undergoing its annual metamorphosis from summer-sailing paradise to winter wonderland. This photo was taken during “Miracle March” in the spring.
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media LLC /

Yesterday in Maui, the Big Wave Tour’s Jaws Challenge saw waves in the ridiculously huge range. Men and women from all over the world displayed harrowing acts of bravery (and insanity) in riding these monsters.

This is not a photoshopped image. On Monday, the “Jaws Challenge” in Pe’ahi, Maui, was put on hold because conditions were too big. That didn’t stop Hawaiian madman (and occasional sailor) Kai Lenny from getting some tow-in action.
© 2018 @kai_lenny

Please be careful out there these next few days, West Coast. And, as we said on Monday, the weekend is looking pretty good for sailing.

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Sailors Battling Plastics
Longtime readers of Latitude 38 are probably familiar with the adventures of Bruce Balan and Alene Rice of the California-based Cross 46 trimaran Migration.
golden globe race
Suddenly, the boat was as picked up by a huge wave and surfed down the forward face. The bows dug in and the boat went end-for-end before rolling out on her side.