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A Brisk and Refreshing Summer Sailstice on San Francisco Bay

Saturday, June 20, was both the summer solstice and the 20th annual Summer Sailstice celebration of sailing. San Francisco Bay served up its typical brisk and frothy stuff in the Central Bay, but other corners of the Bay were far more benign. We made it a dual Father’s Day/Sailstice celebration and participated in the YRA Summer Sailstice Treasure Hunt, which sent us to many corners of the Bay searching out pictures to post. That turned into a 31-mile tour taking us from Tiburon to the Cityfront, out the Golden Gate, back down the Cityfront, under the Bay Bridge and back up the Cityfront before returning to Tiburon. Taking all the photos and dealing with the breeze kept us busy!

Daughters Sarah and Hannah
Daughters Sarah and Hannah made it a great day along with brisk breezes and mostly sunny, blue skies.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Aquatic Park
There’s one. The YRA Treasure Hunt #photos included a quick sail into Aquatic Park to spot a swimmer to post #sailsfbayaquaticswimmer.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John

The breeze in the Central Bay remained fresh all day, though the fog backed off and would then return to chill things down. The edges of the Bay were treated to blue skies and gentler breezes with more comfortable conditions in the South Bay and Raccoon Strait. We’re sure the Oakland Estuary had sweet sailing as well. It was one of those days when you could choose the conditions that suited your taste. Or, as we did, you could sample it all: a hard charge out under the Gate in the morning and then down to the South Bay for a warm, comfortable lunch cruise to McCovey Cove.

Catalina 30 Jonathan
Photos can be misleading. Most of the Bay was warm and sunny with pleasant breezes. For the Central Bay, the Catalina 30 Jonathan, sailing out of Sausalito, did the right thing by putting in two reefs.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Raccoon Strait provided a comfortable respite from the center of the Bay for Nick Sands aboard his Sabre 402 Escapade.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Spinnaker Sailing
Drew Harper of Spinnaker Sailing San Francisco was back on the water aboard an Andrews 21 with students in the warm, pleasant South Bay.
Passport 42 Gemini
We crossed tacks with Jack and Sonya on the Passport 42 Gemini, with Latitude 38 and Summer Sailstice marketing and communications ringleader Nicki Bennett aboard as crew. Life was looking good with the Two the Horizon gang reefed down and ready for the Central Bay.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
The nice thing about small boats is you don’t need a big crew to go sailing. This Escape was cruising outside the South Beach Harbor breakwater while many big boats remained sheltered in place.
© 2020 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
The course of Summer Sailstice
It was a 31-mile tour of San Francisco Bay in all kinds of conditions. The 10-hour time suggests a 3-knot average but it did include some very comfortable dockside breaks too.

With the passing of the solstice, it is now officially summer. The breeze is up, the days are long, and somehow we’re finding ways to do more sailing. It’s not as easy as during a normal year, but it’s the same great relief from life on land when you find your way to the Bay on a sailboat. And it’s all that much better when you can do it with your family. If you were out sailing this weekend and have some Summer Sailstice weekend photos, you can email them to [email protected]. We’ll also look for your #sailsfbay posts and look forward to crossing tacks with you more over the summer.

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