Friday, September 21, 2012

70 Mile Day to San Simeon

We had a very long, challenging but exhilarating day sail from Monterey to San Simeon anchorage.

The night before we checked the weather and it was predicted to blow 15 to 25 with gusts to 30.  We decided to make a run for it.  Knowing that this was a 70 mile passage and that the wind was predicted to build throughout the afternoon we got an early start before sunrise.  At 5 AM we motored out of the harbor and around point Pinos before setting our sails and aiming South in 17 knots of wind.

Sunrise at Point Sur

The first ½ of the day was hard as we were hand steering.  Shindig was wing on wing with the jib polled out and the mainsail prevented (held in place with a block and tackle).  The following seas made for squirrely steering as the boat surged down swells in the building North-westerlies.  In these conditions we didn't trust the autopilot to keep us on course.  An accidental jybe, with the main prevented was not a situation we wanted to deal with.

Nancy says that one hour on the wheel was more than any “body sculpt” class.   

Winds had built to the high 20's by 9AM  and the boat was handling the conditions well.  Boat speed was averaging 9 knots with surfing speeds over 11 knots regularly.  It was exhilarating but you didn't dare lose focus on driving.

Log Entries

After several hours of hand steering in the building conditions we decided to shorten sail.  We furled the jib and let the auto pilot take over for a while.  This worked great and we still were making great time down the rhumb line.

Rob looped his harness tether around the dodger to hold him on the seat when catching a few Z's

4 miles off shore and South of Point Sur there were no other boats in the area.  AIS showed a few ships 20 miles to the West and the only VHF traffic were emergency broadcasts from the Coast Guard.  

At 4:00 in the afternoon we arrived at San Simeon.  There were 4 other smaller saiboats and one power boat tucked into the anchorage.

Relieved and proud of our 70 hard sailed miles South, we dropped the hook in 20 feet of water in view of the Hearst Castle perched on the hill above.

After some wine, appetizers, baked maple glaze chicken with sweet potatoes and onions, we went to bed at 8PM.  Whew!  Good Night!

Beautiful San Simeon Anchorage

Hearst Castle is on top of the hill on the right

Wind speeds For you data geeks out there

Boat speeds

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