Monday, 17 September 2012

Impressions of the Bay Area

1.  San Fransisco Bay can be COLD….FOGGY…WINDY…..and LUMPY.
After sitting out a few cold days in lumpy anchorages (Sausalito and China Camp) in the North Bay we realized that this area can be somewhat unwelcoming.  Isn’t it supposed to be sunny and warm every day in California?  There are a ton of marinas in the area but good anchorages are fairly scarce and mooring balls are expensive.  On the other hand, the ice cream is delicious and the wine is really cheap!

2.  Californians have a WEIRD PERSPECTIVE on dogs.
It baffles us that dogs are welcome on restaurant patios but not allowed in any of the Californian Parks.  You can take your dog out for lunch or dinner and they’ll actually get served their ice water before you……but don’t try to take them for a walk in any “official” outdoor space.  Does that seem backwards or what?

3.  There are a GAZZILLION boats blitzing around the Bay.
When the afternoon wind starts to blow, the Bay gets covered with every type of boat you can possibly imagine (including really big ones, like freighters and ferries)….all trying to get in your way and most of them oblivious to the rules of collision avoidance.  But man…we have had some rippin’ rides on the Bay!

4.  The Sacramento and San Joaquin River Delta are a little piece of HEAVEN.
An 8 hour trip up the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers took us to Potato Slough and we simply never got any further…nor did we want to.  It was so nice to just sit in flat water, soak up the sun (90 degrees most days), and swim, swim, swim!  Rizzo was welcome to walk the dikes, which we did most days, and even learnt to kind of enjoy a cooling off session in her “pool”.

5.  Dragon boaters make GREAT birthday entertainment.
On our return from the river to SF Bay….yes, the long undies, toques and gloves came back out of the closet….we headed to Treasure Island to celebrate Tony’s birthday.  To our surprise, the San Fran International Dragon Boat Festival was on and we anchored right beside the finish line, providing some real excitement to our celebrations.  We also enjoyed a pot luck dinner with friends Denis, Holly (also celebrating a birthday and who brought a fresh Tuna to the feast!), Bram and Annya, all of whom spent the winter moored with us in downtown Victoria.

6.  We are ready to head further south to more WARMTH and SUNSHINE!
Our 3 weeks in San Francisco have been a wonderful start to the adventure but it’s time to move on. We will leave tomorrow as the weather looks good, and harbour hop our way to the next big layover in the Channel Islands.  There, we expect to  find a myriad of birds, sea and wildlife, and undoubtedly some more “No Dogs Allowed” signs.  Poor Rizzo!

Would that bridge be as famous if it was green?

Someone's getting a great ride across the bay to Alcatraz

Down town SF in the fog.....surprise!

Golden Gate Bridge in the fog....surprise again!

The pointy one is the Embarcadero

A wind farm on the way up the Sacramento River

Doesn't this guy know that he's supposed to be in salt water?

Potato Slough sunset

River Rat #1

River Rat #2

We know it's just a bin, but don't tell her that....she thinks it's a pool

Out for lunch at Pirates Lair in the River Delta

Vakasa at anchor in Potato Slough

Taking a walk on the dike

Tony rockin' it on his birthday....8 knots across the bay

A BC boat came in 4th at the SF International Dragon Boat Festival...we cheered loudly from our mooring just off the finish line at Treasure Island!


  1. Hey Guys -- we were in SF Bay just after you.

    You're right: it was freezing in SF! (Meanwhile, it was and still is nice and sunny here in Vancouver!).

    Seems you didn't try mooring at Pier 39. Good choice -- it sucks!

    Poor Rizzo -- bucket baths and discrimination. Hope it gets better for her in SoCal.

    Cheap wine: did you try the 2-buck Chuck?

    Have a good trip down.

    We head to Asia in Oct for 2.5 mos.

    David & Michelle

  2. Great Great pictures! Can't say enough about the adventures you are having but what the heck is a potato slough???? 30 degrees here today and tomorrow but somehow we know that our temps will change quickly to fall but you are just going to get warmer Hugs Dar