We finally left Long Beach around 2:30pm. If you know us, you know we have a bad habit of being late. We’re not proud of it, we’re trying to grow out of it, but in true Campbell fashion, we left Long Beach about 3 hours later than we expected. With beautiful blue skies and calm seas ahead of us, we waved one last goodbye to the Queen Mary and were on our way.
We pulled up the main sail as soon as we cleared the breakwater, it felt great to see the sails up and the wind was perfect. We were able to sail for a few hours until the wind died down and we had to get our motors running again. We motor sailed with the jib out for a little longer until the wind died completely.
It was about a 5 hour ride to Dana Point, and while we weren’t happy about arriving to a place we had never been in the dark, we were treated to a gorgeous sunset over Catalina Island. It doesn’t get much better than watching a sunset at sea.
The crab/lobster pot buoys at the entrance of Dana Point are no joke. There are a ton. And since it was now dark and we had never been there before, the stress level was high. I stood on the bow with a flashlight and directed Damien in through the buoys. We stayed a few nights at the guest dock of Dana Point Harbor (a great marina, easy to work with, and a side tie!) and then anchored out for a few more nights waiting out a gale storm warning. I’m so glad that we decided to stay and anchor out, because the anchorage is absolutely beautiful with a gorgeous beach spot just a short walk away.
We left for San Diego on Bella’s 8th Birthday which is also Halloween! As we motored out of Dana Point, dolphins danced under the bows and we were excited to be moving on down the road.
The wind was less than 10 knots for the entire 63 nm trip to San Diego so we motored all the way. Our friend Greg had made the trip to San Diego a short while before us and had warned us of the incredible kelp field around Point Loma (just outside of San Diego Bay).
We started seeing the kelp as we approached the point around 4:45pm. And then there was more. And more. It was WAY more kelp way farther out than I ever would have thought. For the non-boaters out there, kelp can be a real pain in our aft. Ha! Boat jokes. But seriously, the kelp wraps around our sail drives and propellers which can stop us in our tracks. It can also block our sea water intakes which can then overheat our motors. Fortunately, Damien has turned out to be an excellent kelp handler, so he was able to avoid most of it and break free of the other stuff that got us.
We pulled into La Playa Cove around 6pm and anchored right in the middle of Kona Kai Marina. We were only a few days away from the start of the Baja Ha Ha (a big boat rally to Cabo) and San Diego was chock full of boats. They temporarily allowed us to anchor there for the night.
Since our friend Greg was also in San Diego, and had offered to host Bella’s Birthday celebration, we jumped in the dinghy and headed off to find his beautiful trimaran Ravenswing. Thanks again for the fun night, Greg! Bella had a great birthday and sharing these adventures with friends is the best.