Our Trip Begins
18 June 2008 | Golden Gate Bridge
CASEY'S CRUISE BLOG
June 12, 2008
We awakened to wonderful weather, hot on the bay, blue skies and calm wind. We were under the Golden Gate on time at 10:00 AM, heading south to either Half Moon Bay or hopefully all the way to Santa Cruz.
It's currently 11AM, we're off Pacifica and are experiencing 5' to 6' rollers coming at us from the Starboard beam (right side) not the preferred smooth cruise we were hoping for, but a heck of a lot better than Tuesday. I'm typing this as we roll around, so it's not horrible. We spotted our good luck dolphins; they have always greeted us upon departures out the gate. I'm guessing that means we'll make it all the way to Santa Cruz today. If we go all the way today, it will take us 7 hours.
There are birds galore (common mures mostly) on the water and flying around. Now we've found the crab trap buoys, as far as the eye can see, probably about 2 miles long. Tom spotted the first whale just before noon, a very large humpback, soon thereafter a small gray whale.
Weather and waves are funny....they change their minds as much as they desire. We've had all types of seas today, super large rollers 8' to 10' hitting the stern, surfing us around, wind chopped waves and confused seas. We did make the full 7 hour run, arriving on time into Santa Cruz at 5 PM, tired but happy to be here. Seals were sunning themselves as we headed into Santa Cruz Harbor.
Having our cocktails, we spot a fisherman going out in the most classic looking fishing boat.... Glad we're on Bula....
June 13th - 16th
13 June 2008 | Santa Cruz ,CA
CASEY'S CRUISE BLOG
June 13 to 16
Santa Cruz weather is so unpredictable?? Foggy and cold Friday and Saturday. I guess if I un-retire, I would love to be a weatherman because you get paid to be wrong most of the time! This weekend was dedicated to being with Cindy's family, from all over the state, with niece Lindsey's graduation from UCSC on Sunday the highlight (great weather on Sunday which was supposed to be the coolest day!). Lots of good times and great food prepared by Jim, although lots of us helped make a mess. Thank goodness the parties were at a beautiful rented home close to the ocean and not on BULA.
Saturday evening back at the boat we were treated to fireworks over the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk (their 101st anniversary!). Sunday when the final event was done, we hopped in the dingy and cruised out the harbor entrance on a beautiful sunny evening, to witness a remake of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds". There had to be 200,000+ Shearwater gulls everywhere. OK, maybe the number isn't right, try 300,000+! Unbelievable! On the water, in the air, and yes...guano in our hair. Pictures don't do it justice!
Sea otters have to be one of the most special sea creatures. One cute male took up a sleeping residence in the harbor at the foot of our guest dock (we named him Cruz-er). After the fireworks he disappeared, but we spotted him Monday as we entered Monterey Bay.
Jim Knutson, Cindy's nephew, is staying with us until the 21st. He loves to fish, hunt and cook! It's great to have an able bodied crewman. Monday was dedicated to fishing. The bites been spotty in Santa Cruz, and we didn't get the halibut we were targeting, just rockfish. We gave up about 1300, and motored towards Moss Landing, the seas were rolling gently, but building as we left Capitola. About 6 miles out from Moss Landing we spotted 4 humpback whales, 2 separate groups each a mother and yearling. We eased in and shut down the engines. We couldn't figure out why the depth suddenly went from 60' to 25' so fast...yes you guessed it...they were underneath Bula checking us out! We were treated to a feeding show, lots of humps, a few tails, and an occasional lunge feed with mouths wide open! An hour and a half went by in a heartbeat.
The wind picked up at 1430, so it was time to do the last 6 miles. The seas built to 6' - 8' with an occasional 10'. Another humpback caught our attention, so it was an easy decision to turn into the building seas to tack the waves rather than take them on the beam. We surfed into Moss Landing and tied up at the Elkhorn Yacht Club guest dock. The port captain was quick to greet us and invite us to join the club for the Monday night dinner. A great yacht club, with very friendly members. Scott, our live aboard dock neighbor was most gracious, and offered up his favorite fishing spots. His recent whale tales made our awesome encounter pale in comparison. Should have been here a few days ago to see the 20+ humpbacks just outside the harbor, and pod of Orcas feeding on all the endangered salmon! Maybe.....tomorrow.... humpies....orcas.....
Our end tie is directly across from a sand spit, home to a large number of sea lions, and gulls. A female gull has nested on the cleat we wished to tie up to. Cindy got an ear full from mother gull when she ran the bowline!
Fifty sea otters call the waters next to the spit their shelter
All of this is just a taste of what Elkhorn Slough's 7 miles have to offer us when we cruise it in our dingy........tomorrow......can it get any better?......