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Old 01-06-2011, 08:29   #1
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San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

seek one good hand for an adventure sail down the west coast- Leave Lopez island (north of seattle) around june 20th. out 75 miles and turn left, next stop San Fran.

Well equipped S&S design blue water center cockpit cruiser 38'. All new rigging, sails, new radar, new gps chart plotter, new cpt auto pilot.


email me please paul.poehlman at gmail.com
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Old 01-06-2011, 08:45   #2
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Ya need to go out further than 75 miles. Go out far enough to get off of the shelf.
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Old 01-06-2011, 09:05   #3
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

So how far out do you need to go? 100nm? 200nm? I am taking my boat from the sound to Astoria in about a month.

Thanks

Brad
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Old 01-06-2011, 09:30   #4
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Made the trip 4 times, both ways, and you dont have to go that far out.. we did a lot of harbor hopping, great places down the coast to stop and sightsee..
My only concern was "St Georges Reef" of the north coast of California but its only a few miles offshore.. the light house marks the outer edge..
last time down, the wife took the jeep and I sailed about 50 miles offshore.. My only concern was to be outside the fog bank.. single handed the FIRST42 and it was a dream sail all the way down........
friend of ours came down from Coos Bay just a couple weeks ago.. ran the complete trip without stopping , except for Bodega Bay, and ran about 25 miles offshore.. far enough to clear the crab pots but close enough to get in to a harbor if crap turned bad or he had problems..
your destination should be Bodega bay and then replan for the tides at the golden gate.. if closing on SF on an EBB tide, you could be setting in one spot for hours waiting for the tide to change.. with the winter rains, there is a lot of water running out the gate on an EBB..
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Old 01-06-2011, 09:59   #5
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Randyonr3 has it 'sussed. Done many deliveries both ways and as long as you clear the 'washing machine' off Cape Flattery, usually out about 40nm, hang a left and on a broad reach you should hit Point Reyes in about 4-5 days. Under power, you can turn earlier but the main thing under either power or sail is, you need to clear the foul ground off Washington State and have enough westing to avoid the Columbia bar. No need to shave the points off CA coast until you approach SF unless you want to do some sightseeing ashore. It's down hill the whole way and that far off the coast you will avoid crab lines, most commercial fishing boats and day cruisers out for a day. Keep your eyes open for cruise ships in summer and crude tankers coming from Alaska 30-40 nm out. If you hit Bodega Bay at night, you might want to continue on and drop your hook in Drakes Bay around the corner from Point Reyes. If you enter SF Bay from that position, be careful of the Potato Patch, a shallow that runs out off the northern entrance to the Golden Gate. The sea has rolled 50 footers there on a bad day... cheers, Capt Phil
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Old 01-06-2011, 12:46   #6
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Tar View Post
Ya need to go out further than 75 miles. Go out far enough to get off of the shelf.
thanks for the note, getting lots of folks say no need go further? How far out would you go before you flop over?

Thanks.

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Old 01-06-2011, 13:25   #7
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

I guess it is a personal choice... I've done the 75nm out and 30nm out and used to work a troller out of Port Alberni off the Swiftsure Bank although that was a few years ago. So my advice is based purely on my personal experience. One of the posters, Ironhorse74, who is looking at a short hop to Astoria, could hang out in Neah Bay, wait for a weather window and sneak down the coast past Greys Harbor but if something goes haywire, he could end up on the rocks unless he doesn't give himself at least 20nm of sea room off the lee shore. The Columbia is running high at the moment which will give you fits in a strong westerly trying to cross in Astoria.
If you are headed further south, the more sea room you have the higher the comfort level but it takes a while to make distance west into headon buck and then easterly when you are further south.
I'd stick with my suggestion of around 35-40nm out to SF. You can stay closer to the coast south of SF as there is a slight counter current running north from Morro Bay to Monterey out about 8-12nm. Give yourself some searoom around Conception just out side the oil rigs before turning SE unless you luck out and it is dead calm. Capt Phil
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Old 02-06-2011, 11:10   #8
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

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Randyonr3 has it 'sussed. Done many deliveries both ways and as long as you clear the 'washing machine' off Cape Flattery, usually out about 40nm, hang a left and on a broad reach you should hit Point Reyes in about 4-5 days. Under power, you can turn earlier but the main thing under either power or sail is, you need to clear the foul ground off Washington State and have enough westing to avoid the Columbia bar. No need to shave the points off CA coast until you approach SF unless you want to do some sightseeing ashore. It's down hill the whole way and that far off the coast you will avoid crab lines, most commercial fishing boats and day cruisers out for a day. Keep your eyes open for cruise ships in summer and crude tankers coming from Alaska 30-40 nm out. If you hit Bodega Bay at night, you might want to continue on and drop your hook in Drakes Bay around the corner from Point Reyes. If you enter SF Bay from that position, be careful of the Potato Patch, a shallow that runs out off the northern entrance to the Golden Gate. The sea has rolled 50 footers there on a bad day... cheers, Capt Phil
cpt phil, question. to make pt Reyes in 4-5 days from Leaving Flattery, what kind of boat speed did you clock?

Thanks,

Paul sv trimming-out
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Old 02-06-2011, 12:46   #9
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Don't have my log handy but as I recall it was around 5 days under sail in a Peterson 44 with an average speed of around 6.5-7 knots. Under power in a DeFever 54 at 9 knots, just over 4 days. Don't recall the DMG but weather was favorable with relatively flat seas and a moderate northwesterly swell of around 6-8 feet. Under sail, we ran up to about 9 knots but down around 4-5 knots at night when the wind drops. I usually ran under at least one reef in the main 24/7 and think we only reefed down to 2 on one occasion. Travelling both directions, I've always been a bit on the conservative side not wanting to break anything, not always successfully, however. I've pulled in to a number of ports to duck out of weather and being out only 30-40nm was always within a few hours of making port if something really bad blew up. Always check with USCG for bar conditions if you need to pull in. A few years before I retired, I began using a weather router which I found was really helpful on coastal passages and avoiding the worst of the blows and really heavy seas, particularly traveling north. If the weather is a little unsettled and you feel more comfortable a little closer in than 30-40nm off shore, and you have a good functioning radar, you may well be fine but run the risk of crab lines and heavier traffic. My personal comfort zone is 30-40nm out. Hope this helps in your planning... cheers, Capt Phil
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Old 02-06-2011, 15:22   #10
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Neah bay is a good place to wait for favorable conditions. Also the diesel price was much better than Friday harbor but only Verizon cell would work. (Sept. 09). I did the trip in 09 and going to again this summer. We had no wind until Cape Blanco. But all the motoring allowed us to sneak down between to major storm systems. Have a great trip. There is nothing like sailing under the Golden Gate bridge! The Bolinas channel which runs between Potatoe patch and the shore is a big time saver but can have have big swells even in fair conditions.
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Old 03-06-2011, 07:57   #11
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Most of my experience is between Portland and the San Juans and Vancouver Island. Between The Columbia and Neah Bay I tend to not go more than about 15 nm out. You do need to keep an eye out for crab pots and the fishing fleet. As well as crossing the Columbia bar at slack with careful attention to the bar report. The Columbia is at flood stage right now (17.3' at Vancouvuer, flood is 16') and spitting out whole trees to dodge.

It looks like the forecasts are down right now, but you can get a prediction of where the freshwater plume from the Columbia will be by going to:

Daily Forecasts | Center for Coastal Margin Observation & Prediction

This will predict the temp and the current. Going out further and hitting 60 degree water will allow for some tuna fishing sooner rather than later.

Oh, and if the sea state permits it use the "Hole in the Wall" passage between Tatoosh Island and cape Flattery to get into and out of the Strait of Juan de Fuca from the south. It will cut out an hour and is quite scenic. Stay north - the center rock usually has visible breakers on it.

Regards, Ethan
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Old 03-06-2011, 13:30   #12
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

Have you got your crew yet? Picton Castle just cancelled on me for the summer voyage. I'm over on Orcas, and I'd love to join you if the space is open. I'm new to sheet sailing, but am a quick study as well as an ABYC diesel mechanic and electrician. Also, I'm an EMT/B and can bring my kit.

Scotty
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Old 03-06-2011, 15:10   #13
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Re: San Juan Islands to San Fran / LA

evm1024, you have a litle more tolerance for risk than I. I've fished in a small (23 footer) between Tatoosh and the Olympic Peninsula but never tried to cut the corner on a passage north or south. It is beautiful through there but I only ventured out on a warm, flat sunny day from Neah Bay with a couple of locals.
When I fished the Swiftsure Bank back in the 60's on a troller out of Port Alberni, I used to get the sh*t scared out of myself regularly day and night. However, that was further north and 20-30 nm out.
I've ventured in to Greys Harbor a couple of times but only in daylight and favorable sea conditions. I recall talking with another delivery skipper who lost a Endurance 35 trying to get in there at night many years ago. Not a pretty story but no loss of life... Capt Phil
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