Quoting our pilot book for Mexico: "San Diego is
the port of departure for most vessels sailing South. It is the southernmost
West Coast port and the last place to obtain stores and fuel before entering
This pretty much sums it up for us. We arrived in
San Diego on Monday evening intending to spend every last few minutes of our
time tracking down the last few items we will need to get before we leave the US
on Sunday morning. I'll spare you the details of what it is we're tracking down.
You can read about it later in my memoirs. :)
In the last 2 months since we left Seattle, we've
been tried both emotionally and physically beyond limits neither of us could
have imagined, on the one hand honing our sailing skills dealing with
the less than ideal conditions the US West Coast presents, while
also dealing with unexpected bouts of seasickness, and on the other hand
trying to define the new "norm" for this new "lawless" life we've started. Since
first cutting off our home ties and making a permanent move onto the boat
after we rented our house, and then letting go of the work tether a month later,
we've been making our own rule of the day-to-day operations and life aboard the
boat. As a few things seemed to have normalized a couple months into it, we've
now reached the edge of the US West Coastline and are preparing to cut off our
last tie to the mothership and plunge into more unknown in foreign land. It is
both exhilarating and as scary as imaginable!
Here is a summary of our US West Coast legs and a
few pictures and highlights:
Seattle, WA --> Port Townsend,
WA 8/20/09 - 8/21/09
We're off! Yeah, ok,
it's like 5 pm on a Thursday - about 5 days after the date we were working
towards last year. As slips go, it's not large. I can't help but think that if
those were whips
and not dock lines
in Valerie's hands, we'd have shipped on time.
Ok, so maybe we
weren't really ready to go when we untied from the dock in Seattle. Maybe those
who love risk would have continued without GPS, without hatches screwed down,
without our one and
only liferaft tied down, without provisions,
without seasickness countermeasures. But not us! Upon turning the corner to the
Straight of Juan de Fuca and getting
thumped on the nose by
counter wind and sea, we chickened and turned around for Port Townsend.
At 00:30 on the second
day, we dropped anchor for the night and used the next day to scour the boat for
the GPS, tie things down and question what it was we had
Port Townsend, WA --> Newport,
OR 8/22/09 -
arrival in Newport
marking the entrance of
over the sandbar
Arriving at the
same time as the fishing
ready to set the lines for docking
Newport, OR --> Eureka,
Eric is passing
time in Eureka while Valerie returns to Seattle to
Humboldt Redwoods State Park...
....and trying out the
jib on the new inner stay.
Eureka, CA --> San Francisco,
CA 9/5/09 -
This leg started out
nicely on the first day...
seas at Cape Mendoceno
Another day at
But a squall on
the second night, followed by rough seas and winds all the way to SF made
this the most trying leg of our trip so far...
Rough seas all the
way to the Golden Gate
San Francisco, CA --> Half Moon Bay,
Leaving SF in the
...arriving at Half Moon
Bay in the early afternoon...
...with enough time for a bike
ride to the beach before dinner.
Half Moon Bay, CA --> Santa Cruz,
Arriving in Santa
Miette is thinking: "I
really like landfalls."
Santa Cruz, CA --> Monterey, CA
Monterey, CA --> Santa Barbara, CA
10/9/09 - 10/11/09
View from the sea of
the famous Pebble Beach Golf Course
Dinner time at the local seaside sushi bar (pelicans,
seagulls, porpoises, sea lions, seals, etc. feasting on tuna sashimi and
Santa Barbara, CA --> Oceanside, CA
10/14/09 - 10/15/09
We made a stop
in Oceanside on the way down from Santa Barbara to San Diego to visit Mark,
Emily, Zane and Auggie.
Mark, Zane and Eric having
lunch at the Four Seasons Hotel pool
Oceanside, CA --> San Diego, CA