Location and Moorage: Santa Barbara Harbor (34 24 293N, 119 41 502W); three nights dockside, one night at anchor
The sail from Santa Cruz Island to Santa Barbara was, well, not a sail at all. We left Forney Cove under a single reefed main anticipating pretty blowy conditions, but within a few minutes, we shook out the reef and ended up motor sailing in about 2-3 kts of breeze on the nose. Then just as we approached the traffic separation scheme (basically a defined highway superimposed on the ocean to keep freighters and other large ships organized), a heavy fog descended and we were relying on radar as our eyes. Together with the AIS system, chart plotter, and radar we installed before we left SD, we felt comfortable and reasonably safe. Without this gear, a crossing like this would be nothing short of terrifying. But just to be prudent, we blew our horn every few minutes. As we passed through the shipping lane, the fog lifted and there was Santa Barbara. Such a beautiful sight.
After we got settled in our guest slip, we spent the next couple of hours cleaning up da boat and ourselves. We’d taken so much salt spray over the bow and into the cockpit in previous days that it felt good for everything to be clean. Then it was off to find some grub and the Copa America soccer match, and just wandering around in general. It was nice to be back in SB.
The next few days were spent working (Rand), doing laundry (Jody), taking long walks along the beautiful coastline and weaving through some lovely little neighborhoods, and last but not least, partaking in the Solstice Celebration. It was a sweet visit to Jody’s college stompin’ grounds, but unfortunately, we missed some friends who live in town and family who happened to be in town. Hopefully, we’ll have a chance to catch up soon. Luckily, though, we were there long enough to have McConnell’s Ice Cream at least twice. O.M.G.
Santa Barbara — what did we learn about ourselves and/or observations: Access to good wifi can be addicting when you have work to do and are trying to get a blog up and running, so be mindful to NOT get sucked in to staying dockside. It’s expensive — especially with West Marine and Brophy Bros. (awesome clam chowder and fish and chips) within spitting distance.