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Old 03-06-2020, 11:34   #1
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Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Hi, I recently purchased a 2002 Bayliner 4788. We plan on cruising her down the coast from Alameda Bay to Port of Los Angeles. It's approximately 480 nautical miles. I plan on taking 3 days at 8 to 12kts depending on conditions. What and where are some good stops to make and maybe pickup fuel and a place to rest (Marinas with guest slips or easy anchorages)? Thank you for your time.
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Old 03-06-2020, 11:46   #2
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Welcome to CF

If you want marinas and fuel then Half Moon Bay, Santa Cruz, and Monterey are your easiest access. After Monterey it gets slightly more complicated. We helped a friend down the coast on a similar boat and fueled in Morro Bay (which is about half way). But Morro Bay can get closed out if the swell is wrong. And last time we were there the fuel was all at the fishing wharf, no floating fuel dock, so you have to be ready to come alongside some pretty rough piles (don't know if that has changed - S/V Third Day here on CF is a MB resident and could give you local info). Moorings are sometimes available for the night.

San Luis Obispo also has fuel, but it can become difficult depending on sea state.

From Morro Bay the next fuel stops are Santa Barbara/Ventura/Oxnard, but these are a bit out of your way if you don't need fuel. Stop in the islands instead. Several good anchorages on Santa Cruz/Santa Rosa (don't know status of the parks in regard to Covid).
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Old 03-06-2020, 15:50   #3
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Past delivery skipper here out of SF (late 1990s through early 2000s). 80% of my runs were nonstop. Last run of consequence I made was delivering my Willard 36 from SF (Emeryville) to Ensenada non-stop, but was late September with a known wx window. 75 hour run that was a lot of fun.

I'd skip Pillar Pt (Half Moon Bay) and go direct SF to monterrey. About 100 nms. I'd plan to arrive early afternoon to avoid winds so leave Alameda around midnight and plan 9 kts or so. It's been a while so I forget the distances. Monterrey is a nice stop. Walking distance to town. It adds a couple hours in/out but if you have the time, nice town. It's been a while, but the old Italian fishermen used to play bocce ball on their day off not far from the marina.

Monterrey south. Tough part of the trip. For some reason, I often caught junk off the central coast. Cape San Martin and Pt Sur barely rate as pimples on the chart but for some reason, I managed to find tough weather, but that was mostly headed north. Sort of a thrill to see the Bixby Bridge (scene of countless car commercials along the Big Sur Coastline) in afternoon sun, even from a distance. I am not a fan of San Simeon anchorage nor of Morro Bay. San Simeon is an open road stead and Morro Bay has tidal currents and can be time consuming to time properly but does have a solid reputation as a friendly and helpful stop if you're inclined. For a delivery schedule, I much prefer Port San Luis if you must stop as it's an anchorage so easy in/out. If you need fuel, I'd pickup here and plan to make LA instead of a stop in Santa Barbara as it's a ways off the rhumbline . If you're worried about Pt Arguello/Conception, you can stage from there. Heading south is less of a problem but I'd still avoid mid/late afternoon this time of year due to very strong winds that will push you around

From there, biggest challenge is crossing the shipping lane, which is not trivial, especially around LA. If you must approach at night, do so closer to the coast where the traffic lane is narrow. Ais helps but trust me, it can get damn busy out there.

Nice boat. She's stable due to broad beam and low dead rise. These boats actually do pretty well along the coast.

Good luck

Peter
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Old 04-06-2020, 07:50   #4
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

A year ago Morro Bay fuel was still at a pile supported platform with no float to moor against. I was solo and it was a challenge to handle the fueling while keeping the boat off the piles. Regular fenders didn't work well. Great place for a fender board if you have one.

I've made the trip three times. Weather can challenging even in normal conditions. NW trades are strong and great for sailing but you will have significant following seas and winds above 20k. Last trip got beaten up by the strong NWesterlies on the sail out of SF and had to duck into Monterey to make repairs. After that ended up with no wind so powered all the way from Monterey to Oceanside. Fog was a bit of a challenge in March getting into Morro Bay without radar to locate the buoys. Couldn't see them till 50' of a buoy with the reduced visibility.
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:58   #5
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

You don't say when you are planning this trip which could be helpful for giving advice.
I used to deliver boats up and down the route for many years. Delivering was about speed, get it done quick and safe so we didn't stop unless there was a reason. I've stopped at all the places possible over the years.
1/2 moon bay is a quick 25 NM trip out the gate. Be very careful going in. There is a reef out there with buoys marking it but you need to carefully study the layout well in advance to safely navigate it.

Monterey bay (Santa Cruz, Monterey etc) is all pretty easy this time of year. Check the Santa Cruz surf reports. If the surf is up, go to Monterey unless you're pretty experienced.
San Simeon. No services. Great anchorage.
Morro Bay. Very friendly town, limited marine services available but plenty for what you might need. Morro bay is a tricky entrance over a bar. This time of year should be no big deal but if the surf is up, Port San Luis would be an easier choice.
Port San Luis. Pretty easy.
Pt Conception/Pt Arguello. Should be fairly easy this time of year. Follow the advice above.

Bring fuel filters and know how to change them rapidly. Going down the coast any bugs you have in there now are not a big deal because the water is cold but once you hit about Morro Bay the temperature goes way up and they will explode and stop your engines. I'd bring a case. I'd also polish the fuel as best as possible beforehand. This was a requirement for all my deliveries.
Have towing insurance. Another requirement. Engine issues, crab pot lines etc.
Have all documentation paperwork in hand, all persons aboard valid id's. PFD's that will pass Coast Guard inspection, holding tank valves in the proper, legal position. It was the rare trip I didn't get boarded for a safety check. It is a training area for the Coast Guard. Be polite, smile and no big deal.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:06   #6
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Ditto what others have said on where to fuel up along the coat. Last trip from Huntington Beach to Benicia, California on my 56 ft Spindrift Motor Yacht I made 1 fuel stop in Morro Bay, which us about half way. But you have to time it to avoid high surf.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:07   #7
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Welcome aboard ronpdive. You can check the threads in this social group for some tips too.
https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...t+sailors.html
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:18   #8
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

I haven't been there in a long time, but isn't there fuel at Port San Luis too? BTW July and August usually offer the better chances for settled weather.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:24   #9
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Port San Luis has fuel. See this link:

https://www.portsanluis.com/2159/Moo...ating-Services
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:31   #10
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Quote:
Originally Posted by sail sfbay View Post
Port San Luis has fuel. See this link:

https://www.portsanluis.com/2159/Moo...ating-Services
Ahh, yeah. If there is any doubt about the Morro Bay entrance, Port San Luis is always accessible and protected from NW weather. It's just exposed to south swell/wind of course.
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Old 04-06-2020, 11:39   #11
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

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Originally Posted by sail sfbay View Post
Port San Luis has fuel. See this link:

https://www.portsanluis.com/2159/Moo...ating-Services
It's worth mentioning that you should contact possible stops ahead of time to ascertain current operating status. I know of at least a couple of fuel docks that are only open a few hours a day, due to the current Covid situation.
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Old 04-06-2020, 18:35   #12
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
Welcome to CF

If you want marinas and fuel then Half Moon Bay, Santa Cruz, and Monterey are your easiest access. After Monterey it gets slightly more complicated. We helped a friend down the coast on a similar boat and fueled in Morro Bay (which is about half way). But Morro Bay can get closed out if the swell is wrong. And last time we were there the fuel was all at the fishing wharf, no floating fuel dock, so you have to be ready to come alongside some pretty rough piles (don't know if that has changed - S/V Third Day here on CF is a MB resident and could give you local info). Moorings are sometimes available for the night.

San Luis Obispo also has fuel, but it can become difficult depending on sea state.

From Morro Bay the next fuel stops are Santa Barbara/Ventura/Oxnard, but these are a bit out of your way if you don't need fuel. Stop in the islands instead. Several good anchorages on Santa Cruz/Santa Rosa (don't know status of the parks in regard to Covid).
Thank you all for the great information. I will leave Alameda on the 23rd of this month weather permitting. I haven't traveled this far since I was in the Navy many years ago. Im really excited.
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Old 04-06-2020, 18:42   #13
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

Thank you. Great information. Especially the fuel filters. I do have extras. But, I will pick up a couple more for insurance. I have gone over everything pretty thoroughly and upgraded my BoatUS to premium.
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Old 04-06-2020, 23:30   #14
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

I recommend Monterey as your first stop, as It's closer to the lay line than Santa Cruz, about 90nm from the Bay and a good day's run at 9-10kts. Two marinas - the Mont. Municipal straight ahead as you clear the jetties; and Breakwater Cove Marina to the right, which has the only fuel dock (assuming you're diesel powered) right across from the CG boats, with usually easy transient slips or side tie available for boats of all sizes. Mont. Muni. marina can be tight maneuvering for larger vessels such as yours.

The first safe anchorage in the ususally brisk summer NW winds is San Simeon - about 100nm S of Monterey. It's easy and delightful.

Cojo anchorage right after rounding Pt. Conception is another 90nm or so, and safe in the prevailing NW winds, but I feel sort of "hung-out" in the wide-open anchorage. Santa Barbara and its excellent marina and easy fuel dock is only about 40nm further.

If you want to do one long overnighter, the Monterey to Santa Barb. leg is the place to do it, as the commercial traffic really picks up in the Santa Barbara Channel heading SE past the Channel Is.

The whole area past S. B. is infamous for its "Santa Ann" winds, where cool high pressure builds inland and and flows SW through the mountain passes to to sea if there's an offshore low - sometimes gusting over hurricane force. Oct. to June is the usual "season", but keep an ear to the weather channel and for sure head for a safe port if these conditions are forecast
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Old 05-06-2020, 02:38   #15
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Re: Alameda to Port of Los Angeles

480 nms in OP sounds long - I assume you mean to Long Beach? I'm showing about 360 nms from GG Bridge to entrance of LB. Your boat carries 450 gals of diesel. She will get around 1mpg at 8-8.5 kts. If I were delivering her, I'd pack the tanks with diesel in Alameda and plan to run straight through to Conception. I'd have to look closely, at timing, but probably means crossing under GGB around 1800 hrs which lays Conception 2400 hrs the following day. Given the run from Conception to LB is close along the coast, there are many fuel options, SB being the first. If fuel burn was greater than estimated, could put on fuel at Pt San Luis north of Conception if needed, about 200 nms from GGB.

Just depends on whether this is a delivery or you want to take the time to smell the roses. For example, a stop in Monterey will add about 5-6 hours of running time in addition to the time spent there. Classic difference in difference between deliveries on East Coast where ICW is an option vs West Coast.
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