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Old 30-07-2015, 10:40   #1
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SoCal Suggestions?

My wife and I have decided to get our first boat. It is a Hunter 46' and we are absolutely thrilled with our choice. I have two grown children, my son will be taking my ASA classes with me along with two of my brothers so that we always have "crew."
This is my question. We will be having our slip in Marina Del Rey California and while I have already sailed to Catalina and back several times, we really haven't done much else. Now that we will actually have a boat of our own, what suggestions do any of you have to keep our coastal sailing fresh? We won't be cruising the world and probably won't be doing anything "big" like Hawaii for several years. I'd hate for my wife to feel in a "rut" with my new toy. I would say that for the first year or so, nothing more than two or three day weekend voyages. Suggestions?
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Old 30-07-2015, 21:43   #2
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SoCal Suggestions?

There are quite a few places to enjoy in easy reach of Marina Del Rey. You already know about Catalina Island, but have you tried all the coves? Emerald Bay, Cherry Cove, Isthmus, Catalina Harbor, Button Shell Beach, White's Landing to name a few in addition to Avalon. Close by and easy would be King Harbor at Redondo Beach, San Pedro in the Port of LA, Alamitos Bay in Long Beach, Newport Beach and Dana Point. Going South these are all reachable in a day. To the North you have Paradise Cove at Malibu, Channel Island/Oxnard Harbor, Ventura Harbor and Santa Barbara. All beautiful and sailable in one day.

I recommend that you get a copy of Charlie's Charts. It has great information and waypoints for all of these places. http://charliescharts.com/charlies-c...fic-coast.html

Since you are new to sailing I would leave the Channel Islands for later. They are a great natural destination but can be rugged. Best to get some experience first. Enjoy SoCal. Watch the weather and don't try to push yourself, the boat or the crew too far too soon. Take the classes. Is your wife taking them too? Enjoy!


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Old 30-07-2015, 22:31   #3
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

No, she will not be taking the classes. Thank you so much for the suggestions. Do I get Charlie charts from Westmarine or do I need to order them online?
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Old 31-07-2015, 01:16   #4
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

Spend a few days anchored off the children's beach inside Dana Point Harbor just off the marine institute and yacht club. This time of year, there're music festivals and activities on weekends. Many restaurants within walking distance. Much more fun than Catalina... And it's free. There's even a dinghy dock. Anchor safely way inside the marina, excellent holding and wind protection.

You can also anchor off the oil island near the Belmont Shores pier and enjoy downtown Long Beach and somewhat deserted beaches all summer long. There's a guest dock for pump out near the restaurants near Shoreline village, just across from the Queen Mary. A huge number of great restaurants within a short walk.

Anchoring off the newer marina in San Pedro is also possible, but not as much to do nearby.

There's a very small anchorage inside Newport Beach harbor. Anchor there, then make a reservation at The Cannery Restaurant. The restaurant will allow you to dock your boat on its private dock during dinner, and sometimes allow a free overnight stay, as long as your gone first thing in the morning.

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Old 31-07-2015, 01:27   #5
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

mattangels,

Please do what you can to involve your wife. She is the natural "mate" for you when your brothers are not available. She is the one who might be able to rescue you when you go out together, if something bad happened. Ultimately, once you've learned to trust her, you will feel more comfortable with her aboard.

My point of view is from years of cruising, about 27 now, but who's counting, right? I know Jim can sleep when I'm on watch, because he trusts that I can either handle, or get him up if I can't, whatever we encounter. If you help your wife to become a good sailor, she will become competent and grateful.

Ann
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Old 31-07-2015, 09:48   #6
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by mattangels View Post
No, she will not be taking the classes. Thank you so much for the suggestions. Do I get Charlie charts from Westmarine or do I need to order them online?

West Marine sometimes has Charlie's Charts but you can buy it online directly from the nice people who publish and update it.

If your wife doesn't take the classes with you she may forever feel like the lesser partner in the boat. Not good. Many women prefer to learn in a class for women taught by women. Ask and gently encourage her to try one of those.


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Old 31-07-2015, 10:35   #7
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

You can get them from Holly here:
US Pacific Coast Cruising Guide - 6th Edition | Charlie's Charts

I know a really great female captain that is a great teacher, active racer, great sailor... if you want contact info let me know. Based out of Long Beach so nearby.

Lots of good destinations already suggested. I would only add a few tidbits of advice for you:
YACHT CLUBS>Look into the local yacht clubs and see if you like the folks at any of them. Yacht clubs are a great way to meet other people that share your passion for sailing, and most clubs have racing that is a great way to learn to sail better, as well as cruises where you can go with a group and people will help you as needed and then party with you after. Many clubs offer ASA training, you may get a better price as well.
SANTA BARBARA ISLAND> That's a neat island once you get comfortable anchoring, although I wouldn't swim with the sealions at sunrise or sunset with all the shark activity lately.
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Old 01-08-2015, 14:36   #8
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

Back when there were still abalone in SoCal, my diving buddy and I used to dock our ancient Seabird type yawl in Ventura for the Summer and take 3-day trips to Santa Cruz or Anacapa islands. Even at our 3.5kt hull speed, it was an easy 10 hour cruise. As long as you watch the weather, there should be no problems. Of, since Cary Stanton sold the island to Nature Conservancy there might be more of a problem going ashore.
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Old 01-08-2015, 15:25   #9
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SoCal Suggestions?

Right now we are anchored behind Shelter Island in San Diego. We took our time coming down from San Pedro. It's a trip we've made many times before.

We had stopped at Cabrillo Way Marina in San Pedro for a week to catch up with grandkids. We skipped Long Beach ( where we oftentimes anchored behind Island White off the Belmont Pier) and had a nice sail to Newport Beach. It was about 4 hours from Angeles Gate to the entrance at Newport. Beam reach 10-12 knots apparent. We anchored at the south end of Lido Island in a mud bottom (free for up to 5 days per month) and used the public dinghy docks on Balboa Island to take the dog ashore and go to restaurants. Stayed 2 nights.

From there we sailed to Dana Point. About 3 hours in 10 knots apparent just ahead of the beam. We anchored in the west anchorages just in front of the Ocean Institute in a good sand bottom. (Free for 3 days.) Used the free dinghy dock by the pier next to the tall ship Pilgrim (a replica of the ship Richard Henry Dana sailed on and wrote about in Two Years Before The Mast). An amazing number of people enjoying the harbor on SUPs, kayaks, small boats of every type. Stayed one night.

Then we moved on to Oceanside, about 5 hours sail in 12-14 knots nearly on the beam. Good size swell out of the SW but not too close together. We surfed into Oceanside entrance. We matched our speed to the swells and made it safely in. Oceanside entrance can have breakers across the bar if there is a southerly swell. We stayed one night at the guest docks in front of the Jolly Roger restaurant. $1.25 per ft. Left the next morning as the swell was down somewhat.

Our next stop was Mission Bay, about 6 hours in 12-15 knots on the starboard quarter. Anchored in Mariners Basin (free but limited to 3 consecutive days and they do enforce the limit ). No dinghy dock but we went ashore by SUP and by dinghy onto the beach. Pretty vacation homes line the basin and there are a coffeehouse and coin laundry an easy walk from the beach.

Mission Bay to San Diego was our next hop (4 hours to Shelter Island in 10 knots or less behind the beam until point Loma then 20-25 on a beat). Be careful to go way outside from Mission Bay all the way around Point Loma. Kelp grows thick in 50-100 ft. 2-3 miles offshore. Stay offshore rounding Point Loma at least as far south as the #3 buoy. Don't try to cut the corner. You have to reserve anchorages in San Diego on the web site of the Port of San Diego ( easy and free but very limited so check the web site for the rules).
http://reservations.portofsandiego.org/boating/

That's it for us for now. When we head back up the coast we will stop at most of the same places though it will be a beat and maybe a motor sail back. A longer day but still just a day between ports.



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Old 01-08-2015, 16:40   #10
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Re: SoCal Suggestions?

First off, Congratulations!

I took my ASA courses at MDR with Marina Sailing - marinasailing.com - and have been sailing extensively with that club up and down the So. Cal coast ever since. Good instructors and reasonably priced.

You can do nice daysails from MDR to Redondo Beach for lunch; up to Paradise Cove (but you need to anchor and dinghy ashore); up to Malibu Point and back; down to Palos Verdes Point (10 PV Buoy)and back; or "race" around the buoys offshore from the breakwater of the MDR channel (you can download a chart of the buoys from calyachtclub.com).

Once you've "mastered" Santa Monica Bay, there's plenty of coastline to explore from Oxnard to San Diego.

If you're ever short on crew, send me a PM.

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