Shelter Island - San Diego

Lynn & Mike ..around the world
Mike Drinkrow & Lynn v/d Hoven
Thu 21 Mar 2013 00:57
32:42.87N 117:13.73W   Shelter Island Marina, San Diego
We have been on the Shelter Island docks for a few weeks now - with all kinds of projects, mostly to do with getting the boat ready for our Pacific Ocean crossing.
San Diego has thousands and thousands of boats in 30 or 40 marinas & yacht clubs - there are literally boats everywhere!  The bay is enormous with the distance from the entrance to the bottom of the bay being about 25kms by water.  We are on a marina on Shelter Island, which along with Harbor Island were created by dredging the channel through the bay.  They had to dump that soil somewhere, and so created these two peninsulas that host hotels, marinas, yacht clubs and parks.   
The whole bay                                                                                       One side of Shelter Island - red line shows where we are berthed
The US navy/ marine are all over the bay - they have  facilities in many different locations - including Point Loma at the entrance to bay (Submarines);   about half of Coronado (Seals, aircraft carriers and airborne sections);  to the east side of the lower bay that is filled with repair yards and quays.  We constantly see and hear very large ships and very impressive aircraft moving around.
We are at the Shelter Island marina, and keeping very good company - these are our immediate neighbours:
Jagare - 120ft aluminium  beauty                                                                  Victorius - 110ft Nordlund  (she goes 18knots)
Shelter Island is ideal for anything to do with boats, with many chandleries, equipment suppliers and technicians being based a short bike ride away. We also have the benefit of the highly efficient order and delivery system that the USA has. You can order literally anything over the phone or via the internet and have it delivered within a few days.  While labour charges are high, service and work quality is very good. We also know that anything that we buy in the USA will be the cheapest we are going to see for a very long time - so we have been stocking up.
On the project side, some of the things we have been doing:
  • We sold our big inflatable dinghy and have ordered a 13" Boston Whaler.  Mike has been dying for something better for fishing - bigger and less likely to puncture!
  • A new awning has been built over the back deck - which will give us a lot of extra shade, and protect our lovely new teak outdoor furniture. 
  • All the lighting has been converted to LED's - to save power
  • The Liferaft and EPIRB have been taken away for servicing.  LOTS of spare parts have been ordered. 
  • We also had to replaced the control unit for our Bose entertainment system - our model is no longer made and we would have had to replace everything, including all the perfectly good speakers (a very expensive exercise) However with the joys of the internet we managed to track down a re-furbished unit and the system is working perfectly.
  • I have been provisioning the boat - a mammoth task - as it will be about 3 months before we get to Papeete and are able to do decent provisioning again. (The Marquesas and Tuamotos are very small islands and atolls) We have bought another freezer - portable 12v type, that is working well.
  • and a whole lot more.....
New Whaler being hoisted up on deck - and the proud captain!
We have also been meeting good people, trying out the local restaurants and enjoying San Diego.  Other than driving around on our bikes which is very easy and safe here- we have also rented a car a few times and driven around quite a bit. Been up to Newport Beach (Whaler Shop) and visited with the Nordhavn team at Dana Point where we were seriously tempted by a new Nordhavn 63 ... beautiful boat.
 The Walkers, (including McDuff) came for a ride around the bay - crisp and clear winters day
Our plan is to leave San Diego on the 28th of March and head about halfway down the Mexican Baja peninsula before starting our crossing to The Marquesas in French Polynesia - where we should arrive towards the end of April.