I live in San Diego
on a Hans Christian in Shelter Island; we've done that trip several times on different boats. We're even getting married there in November. The short list is:
. Small city, probably not too busy this time of year. A good place to be for a day or two if you've never been to Catalina
before, and especially if you need anything. There's an upholstry shop that can do sail repair stuff as well. Grocery store, restraunts, etc. They have mooring
balls. It's not 16, but you hail them once you're within a mile or so. They escort you to your ball.
- Two Harbors. Liked by cruisers more than Avalon, it's pretty dead as far as services go, but it's a lot more "rural" and if your boat is self sufficient you'll probably like it more.
- Emerald Bay. My favorite spot, very rural, absolutely beautiful.
The worst thing about Catalina is the lack of wind, but that's a San Diego thing in general. We usually ballpark 30 hours each way, drop it down to 10 under motor
. We just had some blog readers head
out there under engine
all the way. Especially at 2am-3am, it will be dead.
We usually head
off the coast, avoiding the kelp beds, for about 4-5 miles. If you haven't sailed past La Jolla, that's nice too, so maybe you don't want to be too far off the coast. Also, you can head to Oceanside for the night, or do so on the way back. It's a nice way to stop into a few different harbors. Oceanside Harbor Police have a few open slips.
Just get ready for a lot of calm wind.
Here's a great bar in Avalon to stop into: the world famous Marlin Club