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Old 30-05-2006, 16:53   #1
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Santa Cruz CA
Boat: Bayliner 2556
Posts: 30
Images: 8
SF Bay to Angel Island, rough night

Ayala Cove 05 08 06

Darkness set in at Ayala Cove. Vivi and I were exhausted from hiking the island. We settled into bed, looking forward to some rest. The boat bucked and swayed at its moorings. I prayed for the distant ferries to stop churning up the seas. I looked at the clock and noticed the nearby barometer dropped another 2 points. Every minute we hoped for the foul weather to end.

We heard the flags snap. Gusts of wind first came from the West and later, from the East. An icy sliver of wind came in from the gap in my port window. I saw the currents swirling menacingly around the boat. We settled into our berths, dozing fitfully. A pale shaft of moonlight sliced down between our narrow V berths. We were roused each time the boat sloshed and crunched through a new set of waves.

In the inky darkness, I could hear the splash of running water coming from the engine room. I sprang out of bed, alarmed at the thought of the boat being holed and the bilge pumps running on such a foul night. I grabbed the spot light and opened the door to the aft deck. A fresh splash of cold wind rushed in the door, the stars shown icily above. I lit up the aft deck and saw the mooring lines taught at an odd angle. The mooring ball was tipped over, straining to hold our vessel. The currents rushed past the boat, splashing against the side. I’ve never seen such a strong current. A look below showed only our trusty engine hunched in the well. I returned to my bunk and pulled the thin blankets over my shoulder.

The next morning, the sky was white with morning mist. Our neighboring boats were moving off into the haze. Our brains were dense, our eyes sticky with a lack of restful sleep. We hastily departed Ayala cove in route to San Francisco. We were looking forward to warmth, calm water and terra firma.

Looking back, we enjoyed the hike around Angel Island. We took a different route and saw a new side of the island. We had a magic moment when Vivi and I took the Zodiac ashore and sat on a sunny beach, admiring the cove and the sight of our boat moored off shore. Knowing what I know now, I would have made this a day trip. Mid week, you will find that you are the only ones on the island, making it all the more special.

We’re going on ten days now. Memories of work, home, families and our dogs are fading away. The feeling of the never ending summer vacation is upon us.
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Craig Harlamoff is offline   Reply With Quote

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