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Old 26-06-2019, 08:49   #1
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San Diego to San Francisco

Hello everyone,
I purchased a Pacific Seacraft Flicka in Oceanside, CA last weekend. The boat only has an outboard motor, but goes very deep into the water is very powerful for the weight of the boat. I have a good amount of experience, but have never sailed this long of a distance. I was planning on sailing it up last week, but was told that the trip would be miserable by some experienced sailors at my yacht club. I forgot to ask when it would be okay to sail it up north and that is where you all come in. If I were to pull into marinas or anchorages all the way along the coast, what time of year would be the best time to move it? It will cost $3,000 to have someone sail it up for me and $4,000 to have someone ship it up with a pickup truck. I would prefer paying for a couple airline tickets and doing it myself and with someone I know.

Thank you all in advance
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Old 26-06-2019, 09:01   #2
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

I am afraid it is the Baja bash. Upwind the whole way. You could try to do it in day hops and overnights but generally you get a big onshore breeze every afternoon so it's pretty much a pain in the ass. Certainly this isn't a dangerous trip, just expect about a week and a half of seasickness, getting wet, and not getting very far. I say truck it. 55mph to windward!!
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Old 26-06-2019, 15:55   #3
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

Hello, Montslr,

If you have a couple of weeks vacation time coming up, I think you could do it. Some stretches will be overnighters. The part from San Diego to Cojo anchorage, just under Pt. Conception will be the lightest air.

When we left Cojo, on Jim's 30 footer, we got into Morro Bay the next evening. I'm thinking you learn about what your average days' runs are from SD to Pt. C., and then plan on slower for the windward and against the current portion of the journey, Concepcion to SF. You'll be tacking, and want to put yourselves on the offshore tack when you are most tired. It will be a real ocean voyage, although coastal (where the hard bits are.)

When Jim had his Catalina 22, he used to trailer it to Santa Barbara. The suggestion to trailer it to SF, if you're planning to trailer it to lakes and whatnot, anyway, maybe now's the time to build the trailer and buy the tow car.

If you follow through with sailing it, make sure you've checked out all the systems before heading north. I feel somewhat concerned about the outboard motor. You can get big seas in the Pacific, coming down from the NW, so it's an onshore set, and, in my point of view, the o/b is vulnerable to being swamped and becoming instantly useless. I am generally in favor of people sailing their boats to where they want them to be, but, in this particular case, not at all sure I wouldn't have it trucked if I couldn't do it myself.

Good luck with it, and fair winds, and if you can, see if you can get some Stugeron from TJ, for the trip north. All that windward work into 15-20 can be seasick-making.

Ann
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Old 26-06-2019, 18:11   #4
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

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Originally Posted by JPA Cate View Post
Hello, Montslr,

If you have a couple of weeks vacation time coming up, I think you could do it. Some stretches will be overnighters. The part from San Diego to Cojo anchorage, just under Pt. Conception will be the lightest air.

When we left Cojo, on Jim's 30 footer, we got into Morro Bay the next evening. I'm thinking you learn about what your average days' runs are from SD to Pt. C., and then plan on slower for the windward and against the current portion of the journey, Concepcion to SF. You'll be tacking, and want to put yourselves on the offshore tack when you are most tired. It will be a real ocean voyage, although coastal (where the hard bits are.)

When Jim had his Catalina 22, he used to trailer it to Santa Barbara. The suggestion to trailer it to SF, if you're planning to trailer it to lakes and whatnot, anyway, maybe now's the time to build the trailer and buy the tow car.

If you follow through with sailing it, make sure you've checked out all the systems before heading north. I feel somewhat concerned about the outboard motor. You can get big seas in the Pacific, coming down from the NW, so it's an onshore set, and, in my point of view, the o/b is vulnerable to being swamped and becoming instantly useless. I am generally in favor of people sailing their boats to where they want them to be, but, in this particular case, not at all sure I wouldn't have it trucked if I couldn't do it myself.

Good luck with it, and fair winds, and if you can, see if you can get some Stugeron from TJ, for the trip north. All that windward work into 15-20 can be seasick-making.

Ann
I just think Danaís, although great little boats, could be total pigs to windward, you could easily find yourself going 2.5 knots not in the direction you want to go. Think VMG of 0.6 lol. And I agree about the outboard thing. You could definitely break this trip up though. SD - Dana pt - Oxnard - Morro Bay - then it gets kind of ambitious. Some bailout points in between those places too. If you have enough time though you could just shoot for light air days. iíve definitely motored sd - catalina and back. boring as hell.
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Old 26-06-2019, 21:51   #5
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

Know a guy who did it twice in a Catalina 27 with a 9 hp Evinrude. A Flicka is only 20 feet. Download some GRIB files. Youíll see it is an upwind sail. I guess with enough time and patience it can be done.
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Old 26-06-2019, 23:29   #6
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

I've been mulling this over all day, and I am going to get off my duff and recommend trailering the Flicka to SF. It IS a lot of money, and I favor saving it when possible, but you're paying to lose a lot of frustration and discomfort, especially so if time is limited.

Think in terms of the velocity made good of .6 kn. Pretend it's only one kn, makes 24 hr days work fine. Hard to say how many sea miles you'll sail, but there's current against you, so lets say 600 n. mi. at 1 knot. 25 days at 1 kn., 12.5 @ 2 kn. All this in a boat with which you are unfamiliar....and with the outboard. I think you'll be happier in SF Bay's sheltered waters, and summer winds there will give you plenty of challenge, with lees relatively nearby when you get tired of bashing.

Anyhow, those are my thoughts this evening. Sorry to have encouraged you to do something I later thought is not that good an idea.

Ann
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Old 27-06-2019, 02:48   #7
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

And situations like this are what i think of when pundits bray about cruisers not needing to go to windward, so windward performance doesn't matter.

Jim
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Old 27-06-2019, 05:47   #8
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

We did Oceanside to San Fran in my old Alberg 35. It was a pretty easy trip with a lot of motoring. We waited on weather and had a bit of fog. We rounded Point Conception at night in dead calm. Even Moro Bay to the Gate was mostly motoring in light air. This was in August if I remember correctly. YMMV.

I'd want to take the boat out in some seas and see if that outboard can drive to weather or not, before I committed.

Putting the money into a trailer might be a good long term investment. One of the best things about these small cruisers is that you can trailer them to some wonderful cruising grounds and have a great pocket cruiser when you get there - Sea of Cortez, San Juan Islands, Desolation Sound, even ferry it to Alaska.
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Old 27-06-2019, 08:04   #9
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

If you have enough patience, there are weather windows. The problem is that in a slow boat, the windows may not be long enough to get between safe ports. The best time of year would be October-November; lighter northwesterlys and before the winter storm southerlies and the truly nasty northwesterlys as the high gets reestablished. As mentioned, the San Diego to Santa Barbara part is by far the easiest. If you have problems on that leg, its time for the trailer. Try going against the wind in 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 knots to see what progress you will make. Plan on running the motor the entire trip, and figure out in advance how much gas you need to bring.

Also remember that going against the wind means wear and tear on the boat and the crew.

Details for Flicka Flicka Trailer
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Old 27-06-2019, 10:02   #10
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

i think it’s telling that Flickas have been around the world and here we are all saying don’t try to sail 600nm to windward.
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Old 27-06-2019, 10:40   #11
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

We did it, or tried to, on weekends in a Beneteau 49 early last year. Could not make it from San Simeon to Monterey - weather predictions were way off and we were slow to recognize this - and there is no safe place to tuck in in that stretch. so we had to turn around. It was actually pretty scary - we were all tied in and the waves were huge. Ended up hiring a delivery skipper from Moro Bay.
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Old 27-06-2019, 10:43   #12
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

Unless you are a complete masochist, truck it!. That size boat should be relatively inexpensive and I would hate to see your sailing dreams dashed by an unbearable bash uphill. Good luck
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Old 27-06-2019, 10:48   #13
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

"Point Conception! That word was enough to recall all our experiences and dreads of gales, swept decks, topmast carried away, and the hardships of a coast service in the winter.”

"Point Conception, —the Cape Horn of California, where, the sailors say, it begins to blow the first of January, and blows until the last of December."

-Richard Henry Dana, Jr., Two Years Before the Mast (1840)

I'd plan on crossing the Point at night, when the winds can abate slightly. The winds and sea state can also be high just north of Santa Cruz up to Pigeon Point. I spent a night once, just south of Pigeon Point, hanging from my sea anchor against a lee shore in massive cross seas with 20 foot combined sharp swells. Those conditions were entirely unpredicted by the weather service. If you see what looks like fog ahead - it may not be fog. It may be spume thrown up aloft a hundred feet from cross-seas bashing about.

If you're lucky, you may get a few days of southerlies. Unfortunately, southern winds usually precede bad conditions.

Don't go in the winter. Stay in deep water - I never go shallower than 100 feet except when entering a harbor.
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Old 27-06-2019, 10:58   #14
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

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Putting the money into a trailer might be a good long term investment. One of the best things about these small cruisers is that you can trailer them to some wonderful cruising grounds and have a great pocket cruiser when you get there - Sea of Cortez, San Juan Islands, Desolation Sound, even ferry it to Alaska.

I have no idea whether you should sail it or not, outside of the fact that if you really had the time - it would definitely get you familiar with the boat.

But the post above raises a great point, the real extra advantage of these boats is the ease of storage, and ease of transport. There are a ton of advantages to having a trailer, and if you have a sufficient tow vehicle (or can rent a truck from home depot, or something) the money spent on a trailer will be extremely well spent if you plan on keeping the boat for any length of time. It's the kind of boat you could keep for a lifetime if you had a small space to store it on your property. Cheap to own, and always ready for that 10 day get-a-way when you gotta get-a-way. A lot of cool places to cruise within a day's drive.
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Old 27-06-2019, 11:03   #15
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Re: San Diego to San Francisco

I've done that trip a number of times, but never in a boat that small. it can be easy. I've had to motor around both of the major points, Conception and Sur, because of lack of wind. I've also been turned back from Conception to the Coho anchorage in much larger boats because we couldn't make any forward progress around the point and were just beating ourselves up too badly.

If you've enough time, to wait for weather windows, it can certainly be done. However, I agree that with a boat that small, I think I'd invest in a trailer. That opens up the possibility of future trips to the channel islands and even Baja (I've sailed the west coast from SF to Ecuador and and Baja is the my favorite).

If you do decide to sail up, have LOTS of fuel on board and plan on passing Pt. Conception in the wee hours of the morning.
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