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Thread: What I Saw

  1. #151
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Santa Rosa


    Jackie, It's probably a hotter than . . . . at the CYC in Discovery Bay and even hotter in the elegant saloon aboard a Cal 2-27. But don't be tempted to follow the example of those bikini clad babes showing lots of bare skin - a situation they'll rue when they are old and wrinkled and visiting the skin Doc. (Although the thought is intriguing.) Here's a "little something" you might find on eBay that you could use to cool off with a dip in the Delta murk. Don't let a crawdaddy nip at your toes. - A friendly fellow sailor

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  2. #152
    Join Date
    Jan 2010


    Thank you, Pat! That’s exactly what I had in mind.

  3. #153
    Join Date
    Jan 2010

    Default Discovery Bay: Part Four

    Mike Cunningham loaned me a jerry can full of diesel, “just in case”, and at 7:56 am the next morning I untied from the dock at the Cunningham Yacht Club. I seemed to be the only person awake on Turtle Bay, and as I stepped aboard a huge grey heron flew across the water.

    Motored around the Discovery Bay loop, turned to starboard just before the sea wall, headed all the way down to where there were two signs: One read BarryLand and the other read Barryland Farms. I motored slowly over to where a really tall, handsome man was hosing down the elaborate gardens around a swimming pool in front of a beautiful building that looked like it might be a hotel/restaurant/spa.

    There were palm trees and lush gardens, several patio tables with umbrellas, a cabana and lounge chairs. A large American flag flew high on a tall flagpole. There was room for about a dozen boats at slips and what looked like a long guest dock along the water.

    “Good morning!” I smiled big because, well, I was hungry. I called out, “Are you serving breakfast?”

    The man laughed and didn’t miss a beat.

    “Sure!” he said, “This is my home! Do I serve breakfast!” He thought that was funny and I decided that I did, too. So there we were, both laughing on this beautiful day with its blue sky in the Delta.

    I circled around again and motored past slowly, closer this time.

    “Oh! So, no breakfast then! Sorry! Your home is beautiful!”

    He smiled BIG, put the hose in the crook of his arm and did that prayer thing with his hands. “Thank you!”

    “Do you know where I can get breakfast?”

    He pointed down between two rows of covered docks, where a restaurant sat, way down at the other end.

    “Thank you!” I waved.

    “You’re welcome!” He waved, still laughing.

    I motored slowly down past a long series of covered slips between Docks A and B.

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    From the Cunningham Yacht Club to the Boardwalk Restaurant = 3.47 nm. There is a fuel dock leading to the restaurant, with three pumps: two for gas and one diesel. There’s also a ramp for powerboats and sea doos and any kind of trailerable water toy.

    Inside the covered slips were large double decker motor yachts stacked side by side, and at the end of the slips lay the Boardwalk Grill. There is a long guest dock for patrons, and it was indeed serving breakfast. But, wait! What was this to starboard? The Discovery Bay Yacht Club, and two slips for guests of the yacht club only. So, of course, I pulled in, tied up and raised my Richmond Yacht Club burgee. I walked around to the front door, which is very impressive

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    and tried to open it. But it was locked. Then it opened, like in the Wizard of Oz, and a fella asked me, “Can I help you?” It was Bill Murphy, a member of the DB yacht club for 38 years.

    I pointed to my sailboat in the slip and asked if there was any breakfast to be had. No breakfast, but brunch at 10 am. Would I like to wait? He would make me a pot of coffee if I wanted to wait. Sure I would. So I did and Bill gave me the grand tour of the place. There were photographs of sailboats everywhere but he said they don’t see many sailboats in Discovery Bay. Bill and his wife sold their Bayliner motorboat last year and moved to the golf course across the street.

    I asked if people like him call their boats motor boats and he said, no, they prefer the term “powerboat”. I asked him what power boat owners think of sailboats and he admitted that they believe “sailboats are always in the way”, something that I suspected all along. Bill said that, while he himself understands that sailboats need to tack back and forth in fairways, he does not think this is a common understanding. We talked about all the funny looks I had gotten from people the day before. Bill nodded in appreciation of my dilemma.

    Wherever Bill and his wife, Fran, travel they seek reciprocity at yacht clubs. As an example he gave the West Palm Beach Yacht Club, where the drinks cost only $2.50 each while comparable drinks in nearby restaurants are $9 each. When he and his wife visited their daughter in Pittsburgh they sought reciprocity at the Pittsburgh Yacht Club in downtown. He noted that there was not a boat in sight.

    Bill introduced me around the club as an exotic: “She came here on a SAILBOAT!” I sat at the bar, drank Bill’s coffee and watched golf on the big screen tv. Brunch was all you can eat and cost $13 plus a tip to the lovely Antonia, she of the big eyes and beautiful smile.
    Last edited by Philpott; 08-04-2019 at 08:50 PM.

  4. #154
    Join Date
    Sep 2007


    No worries for her silence, Jackie is alive and well anchored bow and stern at Steamboat Slough. Her computer is discharged with no recharging capability, she is running low on food, and the local drawbridges are stuck down. But she reports having a great time, and is interviewing women bridge tenders, Cambodian refugees, and Delta farmers at the local bars...

  5. #155
    Join Date
    Sep 2007


    No doubt. Sounds like I should run a hacksaw up to her - she'll need a tabernacle mast to get back down here for Drake's Bay.

  6. #156
    Join Date
    Jan 2010

    Default Stuck in the Mud

    Once Dura Mater and I had talked our way through the Little Potato Slough bridge opening we turned to port and tacked out of Lodi down the South Mokelumne River. Due west and the wind was on the nose, but the River is wide and I love sailing. However, after 45 minutes I got too hot and tired to keep doing that. So on the motor came, but the sail, she stayed up.

    It’s a perfectly nice trip, but there aren’t many trees along the way. This is one of the long stretches where the Army Corps of Engineers tore down all the trees, so it’s a little boring. If it’s not too windy you just put up the beach umbrella and watch Mount Diablo, which is in sight the whole way.

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    After awhile the Mokelumne curves round to port and by then it’s almost time for breakfast. To starboard is Moore’s Riverboat. Someone was moving chairs around on the patio, and I remembered that Carliane, her son Shawn and I ate lunch at Moore’s two summers ago. We got stuck in the mud near here (but briefly, very briefly). That was the time Carliane admitted that she would rather be aboard a zoom zoom boat instead of Dura Mater. Sad to say, but it’s that Florida blood in her that would cause such bad judgement.

    This morning, showing equally bad judgement, I sailed into the slip, jumped off to tie up and looked around to see if anyone was impressed by my docking prowess. That was when it became apparent that no one was around. Not even that waiter, who wasn’t coming back out into the heat. The sign on the door informed the ignorant that no breakfast would be served, and lunch was hours away. But I was hungry and we were here, so I made a pot of coffee, ate my granola and waited.

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    It got hotter, though, and I had already eaten, so I decided to head back to Owl Harbor.

    The mainsail was still up, so I shoved off the dock and headed back out through the cut in the tule grass toward the deeper channel which would have seemed reasonable except that the depth right there is 4’ at low tide. Dura Mater’s draft is a modest 4.5’ so that was where we stopped short, stuck in the mud in 4’ of water. I checked the chart: Four feet of water. I checked the tides on my handy app: below mean water level today. Well, it was certainly a relief to learn that both the chart and the tidal forecast were accurate. Yes sirree. A real damned relief for the next time, but not for Dura Mater and not for me today.

    I tried to rock us out of the mud but that didn’t work. I sat on the cabin top in the shade of the main and watched as all the powerboats began to arrive for lunch. It seemed that every powerboat owner in the Delta came for lunch while we were stuck there in front of the restaurant. They avoided making eye contact, stopped laughing as they motored slowly by on their way to lunch. They acted like they were entering church, that’s how embarrassed they were for us. I patted my boat. “Sorry, honey.”

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    Oh well. These things happen. I finally gave in and called Vessel Assist. Good thing we have the “unlimited towing package” for Boat US, thanks to Christine Weaver hustling up free stuff for the Delta Doo Dah raffle. Thank you, Phil Delano of Vessel Assist for the donation. And thank you to Tommy and Michael for arriving within ten minutes.
    Last edited by Philpott; 08-15-2019 at 07:57 PM.

  7. #157
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Live in Phoenix, boat in San Diego


    Quote Originally Posted by Philpott View Post
    Good thing we have the “unlimited towing package” for Boat US.
    I have had the Boat US unlimited towing coverage since I bought my first keel boat in 2005. It would take some study of the logs of Sea-Curity to determine exactly how many times we invoked the coverage in ten years of sailing that boat. We have had only one occasion to call for help in 4 years on Morning Star, but I don’t think Boat US has broken even on me yet. :-)
    s/v Morning Star
    Valiant 32

  8. #158
    Join Date
    Jan 2010

    Default On the Water outside Oxford Mississippi

    Got on a plane and flew down to Oxford Mississippi for the weekend. Sat in the skybox of the University of Mississippi for the Ole Miss v Cal football game. Those Rebels are football fans! It was a real cultural treat. I mean, all that free liquor and food, and the cheerleaders and pom pom girls. Miss Mississippi sang the Star Spangled Banner. Someone gave me a Confederate flag, to my host's chagrin. And then, just when I thought all was lost, my friend, Kees, a former sailor, mentioned his boat. A boat?

    "You have a boat?"

    "Well, yeah!" And here it is:

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    So we got into his big white Ford F 150, drove to Sardis Lake outside town, and zoomed around all day. Jumped into the water. Zoomed around again. It was very nice. But it wasn't sailing, was it? There were plenty of sailboats at Sardis Lake, just not any we could board.

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    So we drove home via the cotton fields

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    Tomorrow I get to sail on DM in the last Wednesday night beer can race out of RYC. If you'd like to join me, call or post here. 510.681.5440
    Last edited by Philpott; 09-24-2019 at 07:50 PM.

  9. #159
    Join Date
    Dec 2008


    First real snow here on the South Shore. Retrieved the boat on Thursday. Got the stuff done that needed a warm day on Friday. Saturday night it snowed.
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  10. #160
    Join Date
    Jan 2010


    Yesterday was a windy day on the bay. DM and I left the RYC marina at about noon, when the wind was a perfect 15 knots. A brand new Seascape 18 was practicing exiting at the same time, and the fella was practicing over and over: meaning, the wind was on the nose and he had to try and try again. In 15 knots I’m thinking that boat was a handful. Looked like a lot of fun, though, as long as seawalls are not in the equation.

    Hmmm. Where to go? Where to go? It was still flooding, and a big one. 3.4 knots, but since there was wind it didn’t matter as much, so I turned left. Or “to port” as a sailor might say.

    Pier 1 ˝ was our destination, for a latte at Peet’s in the Fairy Building. By the time we reached the slot the wind ratcheted up to 20 knots with gusts higher. I reefed down to where my Belgian tactician had noted that it made the bottom of the sail taut at the bottom. Thank you, that IS much better. And so we sailed over toward the City Front.

    We reached the entrance to Pier 1 ˝ , and I furled in DM's big jib, before it became apparent that several other sailors had had the same destination in mind, and gotten there first. Their masts were waving back and forth like Peet’s-infused metronomes. Lots of surge in there yesterday, plus there was no room for DM. Bad language ensued. Big sigh, then we turned around. When I unfurled the jib I failed to notice that the furling line had caught on DM’s forward, outside track on the starboard side. The jib worked, though, and I didn’t pay much attention. Sometime when the furling line is too short the jib luff looks like that. I would address it back at the dock.

    Below Angel Island, what to my wondering eyes should appear, but this gorgeous apparition? It isn’t obvious from my photograph, but the afternoon sun made this all-silver sailboat shimmer.

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    Silver boat. Silver sails. Very fast, with about 5 sailors aboard. Wow. New to the Bay, for sure. What. Is. It? I’d like to know.

    And then this: looks like a lighthouse from far away, looks the same close up.

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    It was about 3:30 pm now, and upon reaching Potrero Reach I furled the jib. Huh. That’s weird. It kind of bunched up instead of rolling tightly. Oh well. In five minutes we’ll be back in the slip. Right? I put on my Pelagic and went forward to take the mainsail down. Wow. That’s a gusty wind. And here’s the jib, come undone, with the sheets wrapped around the middle. That is always messy. And in big wind, ugly.

    Other boats were starting to return home through Potrero Reach, and they had to motor around me as I struggled, first at the bow, then back in the cockpit, lurching back and forth in the reach, dealing with the wind, the narrow width of the water space and the power of the wind on my relatively large jib. All this while monitoring the possibility of long lines in the water, potentially wrapping around the propeller. My jib certainly seemed large to me yesterday. Those jib sheets can really smack a person hard. They really smacked me hard yesterday. I have welt marks on my arms.

    Went forward and tried to pull down the jib but the furling line was stuck, the sail was rolled around the forestay just enough so that it was not free to fall. Back and forth, back and forth. What the hell?

    Ah, that’s when I finally realized that the sail wouldn’t come down because the furling line was trapped on the track. I yanked it loose, the sail rattled a moment and down it came. Finally I was able, after a lot of sturm und drang, to contain it within the lifelines.

    So that was the afternoon’s entertainment for all those people who live along Potrero Reach. An hour and a half during which they could sit in their living rooms on a Sunday afternoon, drinking an early whisky over ice, commenting upon the idiot on the water:

    “Hi, honey, I’m back from the grocery. Oh, my! Is that sailboat still out there?”

    “Yes, can you get me another drink, please, dear?" Sigh of contentment. "And this is why WE own a power boat.”

    Well, I disagree with that way of thinking, but I AM grateful for my Engine by Dave, that’s for sure. I needed it yesterday.
    Last edited by Philpott; 09-30-2019 at 10:23 AM.

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