Saturday, February 23, 2008


The rain showers of Thursday and Friday morning cleared out and skies became mostly sunny by mid-afternoon, so it was irresistible to head out for a sunset sail.

We left port about 4:15 and headed out into the central bay, then set course to the WNW with the still strong ebb current dragging us westward, passing the end of Pier 39 where flags were fluttering in a breeze of about 8-10 knots.

The city was enjoying the brilliant late afternoon sunshine.... was Alcatraz.

We sailed past the southern shore of the island and then fell off to sail northwest past the west shore of the island where there are amany abandoned structures-- a water tower and a power plant or incinerator.

We contemplated heading for the weather side of Angel Island, but decided instead to head northeast against the ebb current to be closer to home port if the wind should die out, so we sailed past the north shore of Alcatraz and spotted a tower that, I'm pretty sure, hasn't been there before.

A large cloud bank, a residual of the earlier rain, hung over the east part of the bay.

We gybed back and forth a couple of times and ended up heading for the lee side of Angel Island, enjoying views of the island as sundown approached.

As the sun dropped into a cloud bank over the Marin Headlands, we came about and headed for home port, hoping to watch the sundown through the gate if clouds were thin enough to permit this.

The top half of the sun was visible in this shot, so we hoped clouds nearer the horizon would also be thin enough to watch the sundown.

Pretty sunset color developed as the sundown progressed.

This sunset color continued to develop as we sailed southward.

Golden brightness gave us continued hope of seeing the sundown.

Later, we could see that thick clouds on the horizon had swallowed the sun and left some brilliant sunset color.

We sailed past the northeast shore of Alcatraz as dusk fell.

Ahead of us, city lights were brightening against the dusky sky-- magic time on the Bay!!!!

As dusk gave way to twilight, we watched as city lights brightened more and more.

We experienced the full magic of twilight over the cityscape with lights in the Pyramid and the B of A tower glowing brightly, along with Coit Tower.

As twilight began to fade, the lights of the financial district dominated the low portion of the southern sky.

We doused sail in the lee of pier 35 and then motored around that pier toward the marina entrance, enjoying the view of Telegraph Hill at last twilight.

As we entered the marina, the last twilight sky in the west greeted us, adding a last touch of beauty to a chilly, but very enjoyable outing.

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