Monday, December 29, 2008

Catalina Island for the holidays 2008

After staying in King Harbor longer than we had anticipated, we are noticing that this is becoming a pattern. It turns out that we like to enjoy being at a place instead of rushing by. So, after an approximately 30-hour sail out to Catalina Island which entailed turning the motor on to get through the shipping lanes and otherwise bobbing slowly toward our destination, we set anchor in Cat Harbor on the south west side of the island, outside the huge mooring fields on the west side of the harbor. We awoke the next morning with shifted winds and a bit too close to the bottom of the sheer cliffs on the outer west edge of the harbor and spent the next day setting bomber bow and stern anchors to prepare for a forecasted Christmas storm from the SE. The following day we did a half day loop hike up from Two Harbors up the east side and over to Cat Harbor. The forecasts were getting worse up from 35 to 40 and we heard reports of 50 knots blowing directly at us in the harbor. We finally decided to take a mooring in the more protected part of the harbor. The storm descended with its squally peak throughout Christmas day- a great day to snuggle up and be warm below decks, open presents, sip warm drinks, bake and munch on cookies. The weather calmed in time for some neighbors to gather people for some social holiday cheer. It was nice to meet friendly cruisers- a couple from Newport Beach living aboard with 2 kids and a couple, much like ourselves, from San Francisco en route to Mexico. Hopefully we’ll see them both again in our travels!

Our mooring came with a week long winter deal, so after holding tight for the storm we’ve decided to spend a few more days checking out the island in the sun. Yesterday we had a beautiful hike from Two Harbors up the north east side of the island to the airport in the sky, up Mount Orizaba, and back to Two Harbors via Rancho Escondito and Little Harbor. It was amazing- bison and all, but 25-miles of up and down mountains crossing Catalina was a bit painful after the past month and a half exclusively sailing. Still, after a recovery day today, we’re thinking about a hike to the west end of the island tomorrow and then all of a sudden it’s New Year’s Eve! Who know’s where we’ll be, we’ll let you know as soon as we do. Best wishes to you all for 2009!!


  1. Happy New Year!

    Because we work outdoors we all know that rushed feeling having to wash all clothes, pack all food, and make all phone calls in the two days between trips... it sucks! I am happy that the two of you are finding time to breathe when you are at port (is that the right word?). A cozy Christmas below deck sounds perfect!

    Love, angie