Welcome to the December issue of Latitude 38! In true seasonal style, today our heroic delivery drivers demonstrated their willingness and ability to travel through “rain, sleet and snow” and more, to ensure we all wake up to find the magazine bundles neatly stacked at our favorite pickup location. The truck that would ordinarily bring the hot-off-the-press issue to a central point in Marin broke down in Novato, and all our drivers have had to hotfoot it up there to pick up their stacks for delivery across the Bay Area. So If you were up early and wondering where your magazine is, rest assured, it will arrive, it’ll just be a little later today. If you happen to see one of our jolly drivers on their rounds, please give them a wave and a “Thank you” for their extra effort today.
In the meantime, here’s a preview of what you’ll find in the pages this month.
Serendipity has many forms: perhaps running into an old college flame right after a breakup, small talk at a bar bringing a job opportunity, or a gap on the starboard layline when you’ve overstood out on the left side. For me, it happened on August 12, 2022, when on the second-to-last night of the 5O5 Worlds, Rob Woelfel casually mentioned he had worked as a salvage diver. The next two-plus months would bring a crazy adventure, as four friends and competitors came together to save and rehabilitate a boat that had started another sailor’s racing dynasty.
When it comes to sailing offshore, there are few better teachers than experience, and the Ha-Ha is arguably a near-ideal venue for taking baby steps into that world. The winds and seas are generally mild and from astern, the legs aren’t too long, the anchorages for the two R&R stops are huge and well-protected, and there is tremendous support within the fleet. Participants tell the Ha-Ha story best. Read the full story for their take on the voyage south.
At this writing, virtually all island groups in the Central South Pacific have reopened their borders to foreign yachts once again. And the 2023 Pacific Puddle Jump rally is now taking sign-ups. Widely known as a loosely structured event whose focus is on fleetwide safety and camaraderie, the PPJ typically attracts a disparate collection of cruising boats from a dozen or more nations. They depart independently from a variety of ports along the west coast of the Americas, any time between late February and early June.
Also in the December issue:
- Letters: An Issue that Constantly Flares Up; The School of Adventure; Clearly and Concisely; and many, many more.
- Sightings: Becoming a Valued Crew Member; Father, Brandon Mercer Untethers Son James Mercer; and other stories.
- Max Ebb: For the Younger Sailor Who Has Everything
- Changes in Latitudes: Life Under the Baja Stars; “Cruz-Desvous” Marina del Rey and Beyond; and more.
- Racing Sheet: This month we visit RYC’s Great Pumpkin Regatta, the SSS Vallejo 1-2, TYC’s Joan Storer Regatta, Cal Maritime’s win at the Kennedy Cup, the Mercury Fall One Design, GGYC’s Seaweed Soup Regatta, the College Match Race Championship, a Rule 69 finding at the Rolex Big Boat Series, and a new-to-San Francisco-Bay Class 40. Race Notes and Box Scores fill in the gaps.
- Loose Lips: Check out the November Caption Contest(!) winner and top 10 comments.
- The sailboat owners and buyers’ bible, Classy Classifieds.