Last week I was able to get out for a short adventure to help my friend Charlie move his boat from the marina in Tiberon, deep in the San Francisco Bay, to Ventura about 400 miles to the south. He hired a professional captain to help and invited me to come along to round out the crew. All three of us got tested for Covid-19 before we left so that we could safely move our bubble down the coast.
It was a great trip and a welcome relief from the monotony of quarantine, wiping down food delivery from my favorite Thai restaurant, and the ongoing search for something to watch on Netflix and Prime. Following are some of the highlights of the 5 day trip.
First, for those of you into boat porn it is a Tollycraft 44 CP. That’s Charlie on the left and Captain Chris on the right. It was a potentially dicey trip, especially if the weather didn’t cooperate, so having a pro like Chris along was a big help and very reassuring.
The trip began with distant, hazy views of San Quentin and Alcatraz on our way to the Golden Gate, the entrance to SF Bay from the ocean. Our first big thrill came just a few minutes later as we approached, then passed under the Golden Gate Bridge.Our first day at sea was a long one, almost 10 bumpy, overcast hours to Monterey where we refueled, walked around and spent the night. As you can see below, everyone is being very careful about social distancing and wearing masks, unlike a certain mango-hued world leader who should know better. From there it was a relatively short hop to the famed Pebble Beach golf course. Between the weather and the pandemic, the links were pretty empty so we were able to explore without worrying about getting hit with an errant golf ball, or perhaps one intended to keep me from contaminating the course with my decidedly low rent look, outfit and attitude. Another long, overcast day took us along the Big Sur coastline….
This was our favorite mooring of the trip – sunny, scenic, and protected enough to go for a morning paddle in one of our kayaks.
From San Simeon it was only a two hour cruise to Morro Bay. The original plan was to spend a few hours and leave early in the morning to get around windy, churning Point Conception before the weather gets dicey and spend our last night on San Miguel Island in the Channel Islands. But after an extensive phone conversation with a professional weather tracker, Charley and Chris decided that the smart course of action was to leave as soon possible and head straight for Ventura to beat the gale force winds predicted in the Channel Islands the next morning.
We pulled out of Morro Bay at 6pm and arrived in Ventura 12 hours later. The seas were calm and the wind was light all the way. By late morning I was home sitting in my usual spot on the couch reading the Sunday LA Times.
It was a great few days, a welcome relief from pandemic tedium. I’m not sure when, where and how I’ll get out again. It will probably be awhile. Until then, I guess, I’ll just have to make do with CNN and Thai take out.