Posted by: vlbyers | September 25, 2009

Morro Bay

September 25, 2009

I have updated much on the ‘Voyage’ page but Andrew pointed out that what you all see on the opening page is not the voyage so it may be easier for you to see the update if I do it this way-I catch on eventually!!

Wow the 25th already, glad we gave ourselves months to make it down the coast, it is amazing how days morph into weeks and then it has been over  a month since leaving.

From Monterey we went to San Simeon-knowing it is a very small anchorage and hearing that it is very rolly (read-don’t get much sleep) we considering going straight to Morro Bay. After checking out with the Harbormaster in Monterey he said it is one of the most beautiful anchorages he knows and he dosen’t miss a chance to stop there, we decided to give it a try.

Our trip from Monterey was an overnight and took about 30 hours. We didn’t get much wind so the majority was motoring, pretty uneventful except motoring makes it very hard to get good sleep (for me) and I ended up exhausted when we arrived. Instead of resting before setting out, we decided to go to the Hearst Castle to be sure we would be able to make the tour-this meant making a beach landing with the dinghy, something we had not done yet. Of course we read all the instructions and felt confident-and as Vicki said- ‘this is nothing, those waves are hardly breakin!’ Well our landing wasn’t too bad- only wet on our bottom halves and didn’t lose any gear, Andrew suffered the most, went back to the boat to change and ended up getting wet again!!  The waves were bigger from the shore view!! This really dampened our spirits but we ended up going to the Castle and enjoying the tour.

Getting back to the boat meant going out against the surf-Larry and Andrew had done it earlier, not the most graceful but learned from that experience. We had everything ready to go, oars in hands, cutoff lead for the motor attached to Larry. We waited for the perfect calm time and run, run, run with the boat, out over one small wave up to our thighs, jump into the boat grab the oars, get sideways to the wave and over we all go. Vicki and Larry got pushed under the boat(damn that water is cold), I was prepared to be wet up to my waist but getting soaked through all the 3 layers of upper clothing was certainly a shock. Larry lost his glasses and we lost the boat seat. Righting the dinghy we pushed out and jumped on, grabbed the oars again. Well it took many tries for Larry to get the wet engine started but by this time we were out past the breakers and just rowing towards the boat-while bailing the gallons of water out of the dinghy. Some stuff was in the dry bag but not important stuff like Vicki’s phone-they don’t work well once wet ;{  Anyone trying to contact Vicki will have to wait a few weeks until I can get another phone.

Sailing down from San Simeon took about 7 hours. We had 10-15 k winds and pretty calm seas for the most part-being very cautious we put double reef in the main when we set out knowing (now) that it is easier to let out a reef than it is to take it in when the winds pick up unexpectedly. Knowing the boat and ourselves is key and we are learning more every day. The seas got a bit choppy the last hour and of course the fog really settled in as we were winding our way into this narrow, shallow channel. All the stories about boats mistaking buoys and running aground were in my thoughts as we tried to make out where we were ,’maybe that IS the West jetty and we should be on the other side’. The huge Morro Rock is pretty amazing, especially after docking realizing we passed it in the fog unable to see it at all!!  Thankfully we have 3 brains aboard (usually at least 2 are functioning) and a little luck with us and we made it in safely with Andrew at the helm.

Yesterday we did our laundry, took showers and went to Albertsons and stocked up on everything we needed. Last night was a feast of Steak, asparagus and Larry’s garlic potatoes-yum, yum, yum. We got enough food to last at least 2 weeks, well maybe Andrew will last 1 week. Larry got a pair of readers from the drug store and Vicki recovered from the exhaustion/cold.

Morro Bay is foggy and not very warm (weather), but it is very quaint and friendly. Walking the town streets the first night, there was an air of mystery, slightly foggy, damp (I guess that goes with fog), most of the shops were closed but there were people walking around everywhere-a little spooky. We were thinking of leaving today but looking at the weather made us decide for tomorrow, besides leaving port on a Friday is not cosidered good luck, and we are not going to chance anything even if it leans a little toward superstition.


  1. Way to go with the stories and the sailing. I can’t wait to flip my own dinghy and write about it. I’ve been to all of those places in California by care and cant imagine anything better than seeing them all by boat. Have fun and keep posting. How did you catch the tuna?

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