Port San Luis

Discussion in 'Destinations' started by Kings Gambit, Apr 1, 2019. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Cruising British Columbia again this summer is no longer in the cards I'm holding:wahwah:. So we're planning a trip up the California coast to Port San Luis which lies about 160 to 170 n.mi. by sea from Long Beach. This trip has a more challenging reputation than, say, a cruise from Long Beach to Ensenada, MX--although close to the same distance. Going to Port San Luis one has to pass by the "Cape Horn of the Pacific.:yikes:" But even the true Cape Horn has weather other than horrific at times. For folks with experience along that stretch of coast between Pt. Conception and Port San Luis/ Morro Bay, what's the typical fog situation around mid- to late May? I'm looking at departing around May 18 to take advantage of the full moon as I expect to make some distance during the relatively calmer night(s).
    KG
     


    Last edited: Apr 2, 2019
  2. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Moro Bay... A beautiful location Fog?? Naw... thick air that sometimes rest on the surface.
    Home to one of California’s last true remaining fishing fleets, Morro Bay located on California’s majestic Central Coast is one of those magical surprise destinations you’re not sure should be shared. ... Locals here will tell you with a grin “we’re all about the fish and the fog.”

    Point Conception... Now there is a place..
    The Chumash people of the region have traditionally known Point Conception as the "Western Gate", through which the souls of the dead could pass between the mortal world and the heavenly paradise of Similaqsa.​

    You'll also be passing the site of one of the largest peacetime loss of U.S. Navy ships. On the evening of September 8, 1923, seven destroyers, while traveling at 20 knots, ran aground at Honda Point
    [​IMG]
    The weather surrounding Honda Point at the time of the disaster was windy and foggy while the geography of the area created strong counter-currents and swells that forced the ships into the rocks once they entered the area.

    What is so disruptive about this area is what is known as the California Current System... Here is a white paper on it. https://swfsc.noaa.gov/publications/CR/1987/8747.PDF

    Be safe in your weather passage planning.
     


  3. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Yeah--thanks. I'll get a look out for Honda Point :yikes:. As I said, challenging. We were anchored in Frys @ Santa Cruz Island in July 2008 where we met a solo sailor in a Pearson 34 who had just sailed down from San Francisco to visit the channel islands for a few days. After the visit, he went back up the coast on his own, all alone. Folks from San Francisco and even British Columbia pass this way (by Pt. Conception) in both directions every year. So, it's not like it's never been done.
     


  4. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    It has been done. My Great Uncle was a Fisherman. Plied the waters from Baha to Alaska.
    He hated Point Conception with a passion. :cuss:

    Felt like every time he would have a full net int he area something would happen.:banghead:
    The net would tangle, there would be a lost line, A storm would suddenly show up.
    He disliked the place with a vengeance. :pray:

    I've visited the area several times and always found it pleasant. :poke:
    Of course I was not tempting King Poseidon by trying to challenge his waters.:yikes:

    I was safely on land watching from a car window. :waycool:
    Best of luck...;)
     


  5. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Ah! My inspiration is Professor Brian Fagan who wrote California Coastal Passages. Essentially, not for the beginner but "an experienced sailor in a well-found yacht can pass along the region with safety, even in a gale." (Not an exact quote. Oxymoron?) Of course, the smart sailor avoids the gale altogether, as I intend to do! Hang out at Coho Anchorage until a "window" opens and then"high-tail" it around, preferably between mid-night and 0200.

    Speaking of peering from land. There's a hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant in Gonzales, CA near there where the I had absolutely the hottest, spiciest, Shrimp Diablo of my life. Nearly killed me to eat the whole thing but it was delicious!
     


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  6. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    One of these days we should return and visit. Not that I can stomach hot food like I once could not live without. There was a place on the west side of Denver. They made a chili burrito that would burn the inside of your mouth. My College roommate took me there when I was a Freshman. Not talking about what it did the next 24 hours. Only way I survived was a glass of milk after diner.
     


  7. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    I read the story behind the Honda Pt disaster. The crews did not lose control of their vessels due to weather; the fleet Commander lost control of his navigation and ordered a heading change of 93 deg toward the southeast only a mile and a half offshore, and drove the destroyers into the rocks b/c the fleet was not as far south as their DR position indicated, and fog obscured the shoreline. (He believed they were turning into the Santa Barbara Channel-but no.) They were going too fast to sound the bottom and did not slow down to "confirm" their DR w/ soundings before making the turn. They did not heed the RDF bearings they were receiving b/c it was new technology then, created by eggheads, not the work of true sailors; so not to be believed over the tried and true DR method. Their last fix before turning was many hours and many miles in arrears. Of course, they had no RADAR in 1923. So, arrogance, inattentiveness, and generally poor seamanship was the cause of the accident. The fleet Commander and his navigator were court-martialed, and convicted.
     


    Last edited: Apr 1, 2019
    Rick D likes this.
  8. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Yes. It is so easy to believe or not to believe.
    Flying teaches the instruments give you detail that the body is lying about.
    I’m sure that the body and Sailor sense told the Commander and the Navigator we know better than the new technology.

    Sail safe, definitely you should go and as you do you do it with eyes wide open.

    Usually it is the areas we sail that have history also have challenges. They can be the most fun to sail.
     


  9. Michael Davis

    Michael Davis

    Joined Jan 5, 2017
    1,237 posts, 683 likes
    Beneteau First 38
    Ca Lyall Harbour Saturna Island
    ....So.. no need to put the chessboard on the boat for this trip. Sorry you won't be able to make it this year!
     


  10. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    There's one there nearby in Morro Bay!

    Anthony Harris Chessboard.jpg
     


    Last edited: Apr 1, 2019
  11. Michael Davis

    Michael Davis

    Joined Jan 5, 2017
    1,237 posts, 683 likes
    Beneteau First 38
    Ca Lyall Harbour Saturna Island
    I've played on those at Harriet Bay and Lund. I find it a little harder to keep my eye on the whole board, but fun!
     


  12. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    I played one during a visit to Victoria in 2016. There is a hotel with a marina near the Customs dock. It was fun but more difficult.
     


  13. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Here's the actual quote from Professor Fagan: The 60 miles between Morro Bay and Conception loom as a major obstacle in the minds of everyone cruising along the coast. Certainly, Conception is no place for a novice. But there is no reason why a well-found yacht should not round the point in perfect safety.
     


  14. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    I like the quote and find it consistent with the way I approach sailing. The operative words are Well-founded Yacht and I would add, an appropriate weather window.
     


  15. jeepbluetj

    jeepbluetj

    Joined Jan 18, 2016
    482 posts, 149 likes
    Catalina 30
    US Dana Point
    I went around Pt Conception a few years ago in early spring on the way from SF to Dana Point. So foggy couldn't see the front of the boat. Didn't see land/islands/oilwells till 5 miles from DP. Wouldn't even think of it without good radar.

    And the terrible weather? Was flat as a sheet of glass the whole way around.... So much for my being able to tell harrowing stories.
     


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  16. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    What I'm thinking of doing here is a night-time diesel run from Long Beach to perhaps Little Scorpion Anchorage on the east end of Santa Cruz Island. Arrive there in the morning around 1000. Sleep four or so hours. On the afternoon wind, sail across the East Santa Barbara channel (beam reach, mostly) to Santa Barbara Harbor (21 n. mi.). If no berthing there, then anchor off Goleta Beach for the night--about 10 n.mi. west of Santa Barbara. Diesel run to Coho the next morning early. Arrive by early afternoon/late morning. Anchor, rest/sleep. Conditions permitting, depart Coho around midnight on another diesel run, round the Points (Conception/Arguello), and be closing in on Port San Luis b/f noon:dancing:. Remember, Port San Luis is basically upwind all the way from Long Beach.
     


    Last edited: Apr 4, 2019
    Rick D likes this.
  17. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Sounds like a plan.
    Keep an eye on the storms spinning up, up here in the Northern Pacific.
    They are saying some may reach down south into California.
     


  18. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    When you thinking of starting this adventure.
     


  19. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    3,172 posts, 792 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    May 18--full moon for night travel.
     


  20. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,324 posts, 4,156 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Like a vampire.

    Or maybe a bat with sonar sensing
     




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