Thursday, January 8, 2015


Morro Bay can be perfect in the winter, and our stay there was indeed perfect. Spending time with old friends, a long visit with our daughter, Hana, and of course, the comfortable familiarity of our original home port, the Morro Bay Yacht Club, was just what we needed. A lovely hike above the golf course, strolls down the Embarcadero, and a dinghy ride to the sand-spit completed our stay. Darrell and I both started our sailing careers in Morro Bay back in 1975. Although our paths did not cross for two decades, we met and fell in love in 1996 on this Bay. What's not to adore about Morro Bay?

Morro Bay Anchorage is a welcome port in any storm,
or any weather!
Approaching The Rock at the mouth of the harbor as we head out.
 Happy Man
Happy me and Lap Dog Spark

Yes, we love Morro Bay, but we also LOVE warmer sailing weather. A mid-afternoon departure would get Darrell, Pat, Spark, and me around Point Conception in the wee hours and put us into Santa Barbara for breakfast. So, we planned. Santa Barbara is a Port of Refuge and always open to visiting boats, right? Not this time. For Some reason, Darrrell decided to call and see they had changed their rules about "NO Reservations", well they hadn't. In addition, the harbor has been closed to transiting  boats while they are reconstructing their docks. Bummer! I had been counting on martinis and fresh oysters at Brophy's on the pier for days. It was only another 20 miles to Ventura, and Pat reassured me that there was a Brophy's at the Ventura Harbor. The trip along the way was pretty darn memorable.

RED SKY, and more, abeam Point Sal.

No Big deal that Santa Barbara was closed, the weather was great, seas mellow, and wind a bit too calm, but good for getting around Points Arguello and Conception. The big corner turning California southward into the Santa Barbara Channel makes for often choppy seas with big winds. The calmer the better for me these days. I planned my night-watch to coincide with the rounding. Vandenberg was lit up, and the ever-increasing oil fields guide you towards Santa Barbara. The moon was bright, and land loomed dramatically dark. The anchor light of a lone vessel tucked into Cojo anchorage could be faintly seen from our position of four miles offshore. The change in temperature as you head further south can be felt here, and the seas had just enough bounce in them to remind me of the potential danger that lurks here. I have sailed - or motored - around Conception close to 2 dozen times. Each time is different, and each time, I am reminded of my insignificance. After 40 years of sailing these waters, I want just one more opportunity to experience the grandeur of this corner of California's coastline. I love Northern California, it is my home, my land home. For me, boats and warm weather reign supreme, but El Tiburon will have to make another trip to Morro Bay in order to satisfy my lust for rounding Points Arguello and Conception.

Palm Trees are always a good decision!
Sunset signaled cocktail time.

The VYC is always welcomed respite, 
and always a friendly place to stay.

Sparky has asked to put his 2 cents in as well.
 45 steps to the beach from VYC, and no NO DOGS signs.
 All poised, me for the ball, and the surfers for the next ride.
Surfer rides one in with Santa Cruz Island in the background.
There are only NO DOGS signs there.
I WOOF Ventura.

Ventura is not all lovely beaches, it is set amidst large produce and flower growing fields.
 The Country Market is a couple of blocks from the marina.
The BEST Strawberries and Golden Beets are to be had here.
Local grown flowers of every color.
I Woof Ventura too!


  1. Glad you are tucked into Ventura. Say HI to Catie and David for us!

    1. Carla and Doug
      We have lunch with them today - and we said perfectly delightful things about you two wild adventurers!