Moderated Discussion Areas
ContinuousWave: Trips and Rendezvous
San Francisco to Los Angeles in 170 Montauk
|Author||Topic: San Francisco to Los Angeles in 170 Montauk|
posted 03-06-2007 02:05 AM ET (US)
OK, I brought this up a couple of years ago.
I know positively that I can make the downhill trip to Los Angeles or even San Diego from San Francisco. The question is how do I get back? It might be pretty tough coming back uphill.
Who wants to make this run with me?
posted 03-06-2007 09:33 AM ET (US)
Getting back is easy: Call Enterprise Rent-A-Car from a marina at your destination and drive home. The next day, pull your trailer down and pick up your boat from the transient slip you left it in.
This allows you to remove electronics, etc from the boat and take it with you. It would be less expensive to take a greyhound, but those are slow and you can't take any gear home with you - leaving it in the boat for quite some time unattended.
Good luck sounds like a great trip!
posted 03-06-2007 11:07 AM ET (US)
Dave, that's great solution. There is NO way my wife would drive my trailer from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
When I get some time I'll try to figure out the legs. From what I remember, the longest leg is 100 miles. It should be easily do-able with 40+ gallons at 5 mpg.
I hope the plan maps out well on paper.
posted 03-06-2007 03:15 PM ET (US)
Tempt me again, partner. As we've discussed, the run would be much safer with two or more boats staying in sight of one another or at least staying in VHF contact. With the right weather window it would be a piece of cake, downhill all the way...get the weather wrong and you (we?) are screwed. 1. SF-Monterey, 2. Monterey-Morro Bay or Port San Luis, 3. Morro Bay/Port S.L.-Santa Barbara (the longest pull, and rounding Pt Conception is the gnarlyist challenge...maybe Santa Maria instead of StB, but I don't know that harbor at all), 4. Santa Barbara (or maybe Santa Maria-Los Angeles. Dave's got a good idea about shuttling the trailers; even a better one might be just towing the empty trailers down there and leaving them (and their trucks, of course) at the final L.A. ramp and flying back up to begin the trip. Let's do it this summer, but not during a hot salmon bite.
posted 03-06-2007 08:32 PM ET (US)
No harbor at Santa Maria, once you leave PSL your next port is Santa Barbara. Still, if you can average 20 mph you could make Santa Barbara from PSL in about 5 hours.
posted 03-06-2007 10:25 PM ET (US)
Thanks for that, Estero. Warren and I talked via telephone this afternoon about this possible adventure, and if it becomes a positive go we'll be asking you and other CW buddies down the coast for local knowledge and advice. I know some of the coast pretty well (or I used to) from Pt Conception down to San Diego, and from San Francisco north up to Ft Bragg, but I've never sailed or motored Central California from S.F. down to Pt Conception, and we'll want to get more information than what's available on charts and in the Coast Pilot. We're just beginning to toss this idea around, and the planning will be almost as much fun as the trip.
posted 03-07-2007 03:16 AM ET (US)
Here's a rough draft.
1) Bodega Bay to Monterey Bay, 145 miles
2) Monterey Bay to Morro Bay, 120 miles
3) Morro Bay to Santa Barbara, 125 miles
4) Santa Barbara to Marina Del Rey, 85 miles
Since I'll be carrying 50 gallons of fuel at 5 miles/gallon and a range of 250 miles, it should work, in theory.
posted 03-07-2007 10:21 AM ET (US)
OK, make that 6 hours to SB.
As far as local knowledge goes, I'll fill you in on everything I know, it won't take long...
posted 03-08-2007 05:18 PM ET (US)
I'm in with my Montauk 17. Just let me know the dates. Only problem, now we'll have two boats in LA with my truck and trailer up in SF. I've mapped the same trip a few times and never got around to taking it. I always figured August/September to be the best time of year. What say you? I also thought, due to the long distances and desolate, rocky shoreline between points a kicker was must.
I've done the LA Santa Barbara back to LA run a few times, piece of cake. Can't say anything to the rest of the adventure however.
posted 03-08-2007 05:52 PM ET (US)
A kicker is a plus but not necessary if we ride together or stay within radio contact.
I think the easiest way to get back to the start (Bodega Bay or San Francisco) is like Dave mentioned. We rent a car at Marina Del Rey and we drive back to the starting point to pick up our tow vehicles. Then drive back down to Marina Del Rey to get our boats.
A friend of mine told my wife last night that I must be pretty bored if I want to do this knucklehead trip. :-)
August/September is good, I'm pretty open and can go on a moments notice. The main thing is to pick a week with a great forecast.
I haven't called each marina for availability of hotels or overnight docking.
Let's hope we can get at least another boat to join us.
posted 03-08-2007 06:51 PM ET (US)
Good point about the kicker(s). Also, to the few people I've talked to who've actually made the trip, (all in much larger vessels) they insist voyage is possible in a Whaler but that it's imperative we be able to sit for a few days if the weather kicks up. Apparently, Pt. Conception can get real nasty.
Regarding lodging, I don't know if you've read any of my other postings about the trip I took 20 years ago in my Montauk. Two friends and I towed my boat from LA to Florida and proceeded to travel from Ft. Lauderdale to New York to Chicago to New Orleans by water. 6,100 miles in 112 days.
Anyway, before we left LA we modified the bow with a custom bed that allowed us to sleep in The Whaler. Worked out great. Still do it at Catalina Island periodically as a matter of fact.
posted 03-08-2007 07:35 PM ET (US)
Yikes, 6100 miles!! That must have been a great trip.
This old body of mine is not going to sleep on my Montauk.
Estimated cost at the marinas:
1) Overnight slip fee $30/night some as low as $5.80/night.
Morro Nay Harbor says to call before leaving from Bodega Bay as to wind advisories. Morro Bay says the best times for boating is August/September. I guess we should do the same before leaving for Santa Barbara.
posted 03-09-2007 11:32 AM ET (US)
Come on. After 5 - 6 hours of Whalering upon desolate, open ocean I'm sure you would love to try and sleep in a 17-foot boat. OK, you sold me, we'll get hotel rooms.
Back to the guys who've done the trip. They state the nasty weather patterns can kick-up and last a few days sometimes longer. To quote one captain "You may have to go home for a few days and then come back when the system moves on." The same guy also mentioned that he's done the trip without seeing barely a ripple on the flat calm sea.
Personally, I've traveled the coast from LA to SF many times and 75% of the time it's been flat as can be. But, like you mentioned before, planning the trip (knowing the potential weather patterns) is going to be a big part of the fun.
In the event you are not aware of the site, below please find the link to the NOAA Coastal Marine Forecast.
posted 03-09-2007 01:03 PM ET (US)
John, I may have another 170 Montauk join us. We both have kicker motors. We may both have a crew member on board too.
My other buddy says we could "just" sleep on our Montauks and do a quick shower at the marinas. I guess I could "mountain man it" if the rest of the guys want to "rough it". :-(
We both monitor the NOAA buoys very closely before our fishing runs up in Northern California. Both of us have taken our Montauks 30-40 miles offshore and he has 20 times the experience over me.
Let's hope we can put this trip together.
posted 03-19-2007 08:14 PM ET (US)
Let me know when you go I meet up with you in Santa Barbara
You gotta do the Channel Islands while your here.
Let me know
posted 03-26-2007 10:22 PM ET (US)
You guys rock! Please keep us posted.
posted 03-26-2007 10:38 PM ET (US)
I asked if my Boston Whaler dealer in Alameda (San Francisco Bay Area) if Boston Whaler would sponsor a run from San Francisco to Newport Beach (Boston Whaler dealer in Southern California).
I wanted to know if Boston Whaler would transport our boats back to San Francisco from Newport Beach. Unfortunately Boston Whaler has no funds left this year for special events such as this one. Oh well, I tried.
Back to the original plan of renting a car from Newport Beach (Or anywhere we decide to stop in Southern California) to drive back to San Francisco. Then drive our tow vehicles down to Newport Beach to pick up our boats and drive back to home. All the driving on the freeway is probably the worse part of the whole trip. :-(
posted 03-27-2007 11:51 PM ET (US)
I've found that the Navy's WAM forecasts at
to be about 12 hours ahead of NOAA's C&M forecasts, but
harder to read. The Navy goes a day or two farther out too.
My experience is that flat water can happen any time.
This should be a minimum of three boats.
posted 03-28-2007 12:03 PM ET (US)
If you decide Newport Beach is your terminus, I'd be happy to help coordinate whatever you need down here, and to answer questions. I would rather be making the trip with you, but the wife would surely put the kabosh on it.
There are not many overnight slips avaialable, although the Coast Guard does have about 3 or 4 near the harbor entrance. There is an anchorage area also. Also, possibly some "public" docks at Newport Dunes Marina (for a bargain price of $30 or so a night).
I'm assuming you will need somewhere to leave the boats while you retrieve your tow vehicles.
There are probably many more facilities available in San Pedro/Long Beach harbor, or maybe even Redondo Beach. As an FYI, the trip from Redondo Beach to Newport is about 4-5 hours on a relatively calm day, and is not too exciting. If the goal is to do Nor Cal to So Cal, you would have accomplished it by ending in Redondo, and would not need to make that last very long leg to Newport. Just something to think about.
posted 03-28-2007 01:52 PM ET (US)
It doesn't matter where we finish our trip. I just picked Newport Beach (Schock Boats) to make it a Boston Whaler dealer to dealer (Outboard Motor Shop, Alameda) trip.
Redondo Beach, Marina Del Rey, Long Beach, it doesn't matter to me as long as we can leave our boats there for a couple of days after we are off the water. Or we could even boat back to Santa Barbara if the weather holds up.
Now that we know for sure that we don't have Boston Whaler to shuttle our boats back to San Francisco, I need to see who wants to commit to this crazy run.
I'm guessing that August and September would be the time for this trip.
Anyone else wants to go? We need at least 3 boats.
posted 03-31-2007 08:39 PM ET (US)
You will see a big difference in ocean conditions once you pass Pt. Conception and Pt. Mugu, these areas are break points in So. Cal. weather, I am sure you guys see alot of rough conditions up north , at the trip least downhill would be fun.If you make it to SB let me know I'll try to join you southboud.
posted 04-30-2007 03:30 PM ET (US)
The trip sounds very interesting. I'm in SoCal and have a 170 thats set up with a 51 gallon tank for long ocean runs. On the part of the trip from Morrow Bay to Santa Barbara there are a couple places to hide from the weather if it got life threatening. Vandenburg has a boat house on the South Base just North of Jalama (emergencies only) and Cojo ancorage is just South of Conception. On a small skiff the thing to do is to fit the boat with a kelp knife and if it gets really rough run in the kelp like the urchin boats do. I've done 150+ miles in a day in my 170 and when (not if) it get snotty and you have to slow down to 13-14 kts fuel consumption goes way up especially with all the weight from gear needed for a long trip. I'm interested but my problem is time off and flexibility. As you guys firm up a prospect date I may be in. We've talked about this since we got our 170.
posted 05-01-2007 01:11 AM ET (US)
I keep my boat in the water in King Harbor, Redondo Beach at Portofino Marina. If you want to finish the trip in Redondo I could probably get the King Harbor Yacht Club excited enough to comp a few nights slip fees and maybe even get the Porfofino Inn to sponsor a few nights at the hotel for you guys.
Another option is to end the trip in Avalon, Catalina, a magical place if there ever was one. Even if we do end the trip on the mainland I'll strongly encourage you, as long as your in the neighborhood, to take the run to Catalina.
Speaking of yacht clubs. Are you affiliated with one? Reciprical privledges . . . I am not.
posted 05-01-2007 02:14 AM ET (US)
Thanks for the input guys.
Tonight I have 2 friends that are willing to drive 2 tow vehicles to Southern California from the San Francisco bay area.
I'd like to get 2 other boats to run with me. But I'm now thinking I might be willing to make the run by myself. :-O
I'll keep everyone posted.
posted 05-10-2007 10:28 AM ET (US)
Warren, put me on the list of people willing to drive a tow vehicle to Southern California from the SF Bay Area (or Sacramento) in support of this mission.
posted 05-10-2007 01:23 PM ET (US)
Time your run to make the Pt Conception pass as early as possible. Once passed the Pt. you will have no problems running down swell to Santa Barbara. You'll hit strong winds through El Capitan and then it should die down for the run to SB. Either way, it's not a bad run from Cojo to SB. Cojo to SB at 20-25 should run about an hour and change.
Visitor slips in SB harbor will run .60 per foot/ per night. I can run my boat down and save a spot if it's a busy weekend in town, otherwise you should not have a problem finding a slip. E-mail me for contact info. so you have it just in case. Any need for fuel or a tow, I can run my 19 up and help out. I go as far as Cojo, that's it. For good reason.
As for the run to the Islands, make sure and time that one very carefully. That channel should not be taken lightly, especially on a 17.
posted 05-10-2007 11:38 PM ET (US)
Thanks, I'll keep you posted.
Do you think we should run from Monterey to Morro Bay or another 20 miles south to Port San Luis? I suppose the further south we finish each leg the better. It would make rounding Point Conception easier.
posted 05-11-2007 11:23 PM ET (US)
The closer to Point Conception the better, in my opinion. Although it has been known to be snotty in the early a.m. as well. I'm no authority on that area, but I do know it gets sketchy. Your running down swell should help, just get ready to surf a few on the way down. There's a campground and hoist at Gaviota if you need anything on your may down.
There's a rendezvous in June. Try and time it.
posted 05-21-2007 04:41 PM ET (US)
I am supposed to do a quick write-up as to this proposed cruise/cannonball run. (And I'm a lousy writer.)
My dealer The Outboard Motor Shop in Alameda is going to ask Schocks Marine in Newport Beach and Boston Whaler if they will sponsor part of our trip. The guys at OMS think this could be a neat trip and great press for Boston Whaler.
I need to estimate costs such as fuel, hotel, etc.
I would like to know how many are seriously interested in making this run. I would assume this will take place in August-October of this year.
posted 05-21-2007 09:35 PM ET (US)
At a minimum, I will be glad to provide local Monterey
knowledge (no mud flats here ;-) (lots of good restaurants)
and weather sanity check (I do the weather page for the local
dive community). I MIGHT go, but it will depend on the exact
date and what's happening at work just then.
If I went, I'd have to borrow another gas tank -- I could just
One thing to consider: FRS radios are a great way to do short
Figure out what you are going to do for lunch on that long
If you are going to overnight in Monterey Harbor, it's
You need to plan on having at least N+2 qualified boat drivers,
posted 05-22-2007 03:16 AM ET (US)
This trip sounds great. Depending on dates I am interested in joining in. Will begin looking into adding a kicker to my existing setup. You mentioned the Alameda shop during the Petaluma to SF trip last weekend. Do you have any recommendations on a kicker? Does anyone have a satellite phone? How about any recommendations on a Marine radio?
On another note, next time you make a trip down the Sacramento river to SF bay, I am interested in tagging along. I live in Yuba City and am flexible with a little notice.
posted 05-22-2007 11:38 AM ET (US)
If you are not already, get in touch with Jeff Chamberlain (Skiff) about your Port San Luis to Pts Conception run. I doubt you can find a skipper with better local knowlede of that area.
If you don't have his contact info, let me know.
I wish I could do that run. From an automobile, the water south of Pt Conception is perhaps the most invitng looking boating water I've seen from up on the hills.
posted 05-22-2007 01:19 PM ET (US)
Here's an estimate of my costs/boat, a 170 Montauk. Please feel free to chime in with your thoughts.
Outboard Motor Shop to Schock Marine via Pacific Ocean.
Oakland to Monterey 130 miles
Total 495 miles
Fuel at 5 mpg, $4.50/gallon equals $445.
Outboard Motor Shop to Schock Marine via land 412 miles
Fuel for tow vehicles at $4/galloon, 17 mpg unloaded and 12 mpg loaded. $97 downhill plus $137 uphill or $234.
Hotel at $175/night at Monterey, Morro Bay, Santa Barbara and Newport Beach. 4 nights or $700.
Mooring fees at $30/night for 4 nights $120.
Food for 5 days (2 people) at $50/day or $500.
Miscellaneous cost $250.
posted 05-22-2007 01:25 PM ET (US)
If you go I'll buy you a Tempo tank. :- )
You have mail.
If this really firms up, I'll be asking for lots of advice and help.
This is a once in a lifetime trip. Let's do it!!!!!
posted 05-22-2007 11:49 PM ET (US)
One solution to the return trip problem:
--drive the car and trailer down without the boat before you start. Take a train or bus back north. Of course, this means you have to leave the boat in the water before you start, but that may be easier to arrange than at the other end.
--when you get to the L.A. end of the trip, you car and trailer are waiting for you. You'll probably be tired and glad to just be able to haul out and go home.
We are thinking of using this technique this summer on a trip. We will drive to the starting point, launch the boat, get it into a slip overnight, drive the truck and trailer to our ultimate destination, and return (via train). Hopefully we can make the whole highway trip and train return in one day, so we end up sleeping on the boat. The next morning we start the trip. And the car is waiting at the end.
posted 05-23-2007 01:06 AM ET (US)
I like your idea, and agree that it would be better to have the tow vehicles waiting at the end of the run.
I may have 2 or 3 volunteers willing to drive our tow vehicles to Newport Beach from Oakland. This way, a boat may be retrieved at any of the harbors along the way if necessary.
Hey guys, the Mexican border is only another 85 miles from Newport Beach. :- )
posted 06-04-2007 11:34 AM ET (US)
Hey guys, I THINK I am going to be able to pull this off and join you. Depends on the dates, but, with sufficient notice, should be able to make it. I passed the biggest hurdle this weekend, which was getting the OK from wife.
If I do go, I can carry some of your duffle bags in my cabin to keep them dry.
I will have a buddy on board with me also.
Looking forward to planning this!
posted 06-04-2007 11:39 AM ET (US)
As a follow up to jimh's suggestion on driving a vehicle/trailer down first: if you do this, you would want to park the car/trailer at Newport Dunes Marina, which is the only ramp on Newport Harbor. This is where you will be retrieving your boat after the trip (it is also where I keep my boat on dry storage).
posted 06-05-2007 01:18 AM ET (US)
Have your trailers hauled South using Uship.com and then rent a truck to tow your rigs home. FYI - All Trailblazers have hitches on them, even if the rental company says they can not be used for towing.
posted 06-05-2007 05:02 PM ET (US)
I've been in New Orleans the past few days. When I get back home this weekend, I'll check with my Boston Whaler dealer. They (Outboard Motor Shop), Schock Marine and Boston Whaler may sponsor part of the cost of our trip.
posted 06-05-2007 08:14 PM ET (US)
I doubt that either dealer can afford your (re)fine(d) tastes in cigars or libation. But then again, we are not talking "Bayliners" here, so who knows!
posted 06-05-2007 11:25 PM ET (US)
If you end up anywhere in the vicinity of Redondo Beach, I'll enjoy bringing my Outrage 21 to pal along for a while ...
|Knot at Work||
posted 06-06-2007 09:14 AM ET (US)
Make sure one of you is designated "Commodore" and swear an oath of obediance from the rest of the flotilla....
posted 06-06-2007 11:28 AM ET (US)
Better build in a few days for weather delay. Case in point: Monday off the north coast of Santa Cruz (which is pretty representative of the SF to Monterey Bay leg) it was just about flat calm all day. Tuesday, it was still blowing 20+ knots at 5:30 p.m., and didn't lay down until after dark. You would not have wanted to be out there in a Montauk. Heck, the one commercial salmon boat I saw lumbering back was getting beat, and that was in a 50 foot displacement boat.
posted 06-06-2007 10:09 PM ET (US)
I agree with Andy, a few days cushion will be needed unless you are very lucky. Yesterday afternoon, it was gusting to 56.8 mph near Morro Bay, and it was flat calm here a week ago with ideal conditions for what you are attempting. Setting dates way ahead of time (which I've done on many occassions) brings with it a real element of chance. The key will be the prudence to go or no go based on good wx info a day or so out. I'd have alternate storage, mooring, or parking plans fleshed out for every harbor you plan to run through; just in case you need to pull out and wait for the next weather window. With flexibility, almost anything can be accomplished. Without it, you are setting yourself up for a bad experience. On the right day? You can do almost anything. On the wrong day? You can do nothing but watch from the beach. 80% of all maritime problems were created by rigid schedules, but the man that can watch and wait? He'll be a success every time. I realize that the larger the group, the harder it is to organize all of this; and therein lies the challenge. Warren, you have a grand concept, and I certainly don't mean to throw cold water on it. It is certainly do-able. I'm sure that everything I've mentioned is second nature to all concerned. But sometimes, it never hurts to repeat the obvious.
posted 06-07-2007 12:25 AM ET (US)
The critical piece is out of Monterey and south. There should
be well-defined criteria for the forecast conditions. Here's
what we use for Farallones runs:
The go/nogo decision is based on the Pt. Arena to Pigeon
Now, for this trip, it would of course be based on the
Powered by: Ultimate Bulletin Board, Freeware Version 2000
Purchase our Licensed Version- which adds many more features!
© Infopop Corporation (formerly Madrona Park, Inc.), 1998 - 2000.
Powered by: Ultimate Bulletin Board, Freeware Version 2000