Monday, February 4, 2008


After a bit of morning rain, and a short light rain shower as we were getting ready to head out, we left the dock about 2 pm, before the marina became too shallow, and hoping to do a 2 bridge kiss and sail around both Treasure Island and Angel Island before heading for the gate.

As we sailed toward the Bay Bridge, the city was in the shadow of overlying clouds, and a small power yacht steamed past us, closer to shore.

Off to port, the Alameda County Sherrif's fast boat was blasting westward-- seems unlikely that they had business to do in that direction-- more likely that they were out joyriding, but who knows?

Beautiful cloud patterns were floating over the central bay as we made good progress toward the Bay Bridge against the ebb current, with winds that were a bit irregular and in the range of 10-15 knots.

A Coast Guard patrol boat steamed past to starboard, heading for her home port.

The Naval Museum on Treasure Island was enjoying brilliant sunshine as we approached the shore of Yerba Buena, before gybing to sail through the D-E span of the bridge.

As we sailed past the base of the E tower, we noticed that they have now installed razor wire around the perimeter of the top of the wooden fenders guarding the tower base. I can't recall seeing this last time we passed this way. Perhaps this is an example of our Homeland Security dollars at work, and yet it seems to me that this barrier could easily be breached with a few snips of a wire cutter or using a ladder to form a bridge over it.

The Port of Oakland seemed mostly empty-- perhaps it was closed for the Super Bowl.

Way over in the southwest, we spotted another sailboat heading north, probably out of the South Beach marina.

Behind us, the city and the Bay Bridge were now enjoying clear skies and sunshine.

We sailed past the cute lighthouse on the southwest point of Yerba Buena Island before heading north east to sail under the east span of the Bay Bridge.

Good progress continues ot be made on the suppport base for the tower of the suspension span portion of the bridge to link Yerba Buena Island with the already completed causeway portion of the new bridge.

South of the existing span, some rather fragile looking supports have been erected, presumably for the new on ramps for the new bridge.

The causeway section, including the pedestrian/bike lane on the south roadway, seems to be essentially completed, but I still wonder if they will coast the underside of all of the roadways.

When we reached the east side of Treasure Island, we encountered a breeze out of the NNW, and so had to beat against the wind and the waves built up from the long fetch out of the north.

A small sailboat that seemed to be struggling in the wonds on the north end of TI, finally passed us, sailing off the wind.

We finally managed to clear the north end of TI and headed southwest on starboard tack close reach, and spotted this tug and large barge way in the north. Couldn't tell what they were up to since the tug was tied up next to the barge.

With a good strong breeze, we made fast headway toward the gate, watching the sun and clouds combining to make beautiful patterns in the sky.

As we approached the southeast shore of Alcatraz, the island was enjoying brilliant sunshine... was Telegraph Hill, although the financial district was in shadow.

After we passed Alcatraz, we watched as this apparently new bulk carrier, named PACIFIC WINNER was heading for the gate.

The entire city was now enjoying the brilliant late sunshine.

Beautiful cloud patterns floated over the bay as sundown approached.

We tacked to the north to position ourselves to watch the sundown into the ocean, but then noticed that a big monster cloud on the horizon had already gobbled up the setting sun, creating some beautiful outlines on the cloud tops, and a few rays streaming through some openings in the clouds...

... creating an interesting overall pattern of light in the west.

Some sunset color was developing on the clouds over the bay...

.. and over the gate.

We managed to sail to a point close enough to the gate to declare a kiss, and then came about and headed home, hoping for a freshening breeze, and getting one as the California Hornblower passed to port, heading for the gate.

City lights were brightening as we sailed toward home port-- magic time on the bay.

This video illustrates, though quite inadequately, the magic of evening sailing on our beautiful bay.

It was almost totally dark as we passed Aquatic Park and city lights were bright.

It was dark as we passed between pier 45 and approached pier 39, turning on the engine to motor along, as the wind had now declined, but city lights were bright.

We doused sail after passing the marina and then motored into port,
full of the pleasure of the 4 hours or so that we had spent on our wonderful bay!

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