Finally today I got to go sailing! I have been talking about renting a boat from Marina Sailing for awhile and today was the day. Last week the weather got really crappy so we canned the idea but today my friend Mikey said that we should swing by the marina and take a look since the sun was out. I was a little hesitant because the wind looked like it was picking up and might turn out to be a chilly afternoon. When we got to Channel Islands Harbor, the guy at the marina said that it was beautiful so far but winds might pick up beyond 25 knots late in the day. We looked at the boats they had available and decided to make it an adventure anyways.
This is what I saw this afternoon
We picked a 2006 Catalina 28MKII which was a beautiful boat. Only a year old with roller furling main and jib as well as all the canvas one can mount in the cockpit. Dodger, bimini cover, the whole kit and kaboodle. We were getting excited about the day as I quickly familiarized myself with this new boat. It has been awhile since I piloted an inboard diesel but it came to me fairly quickly. I quickly gave Mike a brief overview of the boat and we were off. The winds started out being about 15 knots even inside the main channel of the harbor so we only unfurled part of the main and the jib to be safe. As we were moving towards the mouth of the harbor everyone is on their way in. They were probably laughing at us but we didn’t care. We were determined to make it a day even if it meant white knuckling it all afternoon. Although winds were fairly strong but not too many white caps were visible in the area.
It turned out to be a beautiful afternoon. We sailed towards Anacapa Island with the intention of making it out as far as we can before having to turn back around. Fury (The name of the boat) actually took us almost to the middle of the channel averaging about 5 1/2 knots before we turned around and sailed downwind almost all the way back to the harbor entrance. Not too many sea life were visible today but Mike did see a sea lion jump out of the water a couple of times which is pretty rare. Fury is the newest boat I have probably ever sailed and it was nice to be equipped with the latest of sailing technology. It made everything a little easier to handle especially sail handing but deep down inside I still like the look and feel of the older boats.
Steering with my toes under perfectly trimmed sails
Sailing downwind on the way home
On the way back we shook out the reef and even sailed Wing-On-Wing for awhile before making it back to the harbor. Since we technically had the boat until 8AM the next day, I called up the family and some friends to have dinner onboard before turning it back in. It was a beautiful day but unfortunately since we weren’t sure at first that we would go out we forgot to bring any cameras. The only evidence we had were pictures I took using my cell phone.
Mike’s ’soon to be’ MySpace profile photo
Nice coverage under dodger and bimini
In two weeks I will be going out for an overnight trip to get my ASA certification from the same marina so this was a great refresher sail before the class. Expect to get a complete run down of that trip in a couple of weeks.