Friday, August 29, 2008


We left port around 6:30 pm in warm evening air after a warm day in San Francisco, and as we headed out into the central bay with reefed main and jib, we saw several ferried just hanging around northeast of Alcatraz, a very unuusal situation which suggested something must be amiss out there.

As we sailed toward Alcatraz, we turned on the VHF and heard a Coast Guard broadcast about some trouble in that area, but it wasn't until we saw a coast guard fast boat in the vicinity and took a telephoto shot that we could see that a small catamaran had flipped and a crew person was sitting on one of the hulls.

A later shot showed that there were two crew aboard the overturned cat.

A coast guard helo flew over the scene.

We didn't continue to follow the scene so don't know what further actions were taken, but we continued on toward Alcatraz with winds increasing dramatically and putting us in a slightly overpowered condition. We sailed into the lee of Alcatraz and into a soft wind spot and reefed the jib down to a handkerchief size before heading back toward the cityfront on starboard tack close reach.

As we sailed southward, we spotted this nice Beneteau heading our way sailing downwind under full canvas and with flood assist.

We were both on starboard tack so the Beneteau as the windward boat owed us right of way, but sighting the relative bearing change we could see that we were not on a collision course, but the Beneteau would pass in front of us with at least a few yards of clearance, and so it was.

INSPIRATION continued eastward as we continued on toward the cityfront.

The flood current was pushing us eastward as we sailed southward, and we noticed this catamaran heading toward pier 39.

The city was basking in somewhat hazy evening sunshine.

A small flock of pelicans flew overhead.

We tacked to the west again in softer winds near the cityfront shore, and watched as the sun dropped behind the hills of the Marin Headlands.

We continued westward for a while and then came about, pulled out the jib to full and headed home as the city was mostly in shadow with some rosy sunset color above.

Pier 39 flags were fluttering in a breeze of about 10 knots as city lights were coming up.

We sailed into the lee of pier 35 to douse the sails and get ready for landing while enjoying the view of Telegraph Hill and Coit Tower as city lights brightened.

As we motored around pier 35 and toward the marina entrance, the marmalade sunset was intensifying.

The flood current was strong at the marina entrance and we needed some good headway under motor to fight the current and, to nail the landing in the slip, we went in high so the flood current would drift us down into the slip and the landing was near perfect. Another great outing!

No comments: