Getting Ready for San Diego!


First Mate and I were talking the other day when we realized that we have not taken a proper vacation in a long time. In fact, we’ve not been on a real vacation for several years. Too much work and no play makes for a dull sailor’s life, indeed.

This weekend at the marina, while taking care of various projects, we noticed that Jason, a friend at the marina and who owns a charter boat, was washing his powerboat. He knows quite a bit about fishing Southern California waters and is a good source of information. First Mate asked him about the fishing this season, which he responded that the fishing around Los Angeles port and Catalina Island were not going to be very good this year, but that if we sailed south towards San Diego, things would be much better. Warmer waters and more fish. Of course, First Mate was stoked! She immediately¬†called me and said, “quick, look at the calendar and see when we can take a week off!”. I connected to the office computer and found that we had some time in late June, so now the planning starts!

Using OpenCPN I laid out a course south out of Angel’s Gate to a stopover at Dana Point. There are two really nice anchorages there, one of which is very protected. We’ve stayed there a time or two during past sails to San Diego. Dana Point is some 38 nautical miles south of L.A. Harbor, so calculating at an average speed of 4.5 knots, the first leg of the trip would take approximately 8 hours, 31 minutes. If we leave early enough we would have time to go ashore and hang out. Dana Point is a really pretty city, and the marina area is nice. We had our first sailboat slipped at a marina at Dana Point and we¬†loved it there. If we leave by about six the next morning, we should pull into San Diego around four in the afternoon. We’ll get a good night’s sleep then be ready for A full day of fishing the next. This is something First Mate has been looking forward to for a long time. Although I enjoy fishing, she’s the real fishing nut between the two of us.

The entire round trip will be just under 200 nautical miles, and I am really looking forward to being about five days off the grid to test some of the systems. We should have enough solar to keep the battery banks charged (200 watts), as long as we are cognizant of our power usage. When we’ve sailed to Catalina Island I’ve been able to keep the inverter on all night without discharging the house bank more than to about 60%. I have kept the inverter going so that First Mate can keep her iPad going to sleep with. She likes to listen to her favorite Netflix episodes. The solar then quickly replenishes the batteries within a few hours the next day.

As we plan for this we’ll update here and on Youtube. Stay tuned!