• 2017 Westpoint Marina Regatta: A Study In Contrasts

    Saturdays 27 nm jaunt from the edge of the Berkeley Flats, up to Alcatraz and then south past
    the Bay Bridge and all the way to Sequoia Yacht Club was a case study in Bay Area micro climates!

    71 boats answered the call for the annual summer micro Transpac, with the uphill cold beat followed
    by cracking off in fresh conditions followed by warmer and warmer temps, a wide open race track and then
    the finishing stretch requiring smart navigation and precise boat handling at the finish!

    The starting beat in 15 to 20 and a generous flood was anything but smooth. With a menacing cold gray curtain shrouding the Gate
    and chilly finger stretching to Alcatraz, it was a bundle up and hike affair. Yes, it was 100 plus in the Central Valley, yet the impending
    warm up had yet to find the Central Bay.

    The vast majority of boats made a beeline on port to Point Blunt, seeking relief before crossing the river and giving crews plenty of time
    to get their kites rigged a get a nice bear away set. The wind direction with its southwest component made the immediate set a rare commodity,
    with most boats holding off until a couple hundred yards before the hoist.

    The wind lightened dramatically for boats that chose to hug the City Front and for most everyone as they passed the Bay Bridge

    Some boats saw the better breeze near Yerba Buena and rode that wind before catching a zephyr near Alameda. A great circle route, but an offshore
    wind is more better than no wind! The flood in the South Bay provided all with a 2-3 knot boost in vmg, regardless of wind assist.

    The lighter boats benefited 1st as they slipped through the anchorage, and sipped on cold ones and stripped off layers.

    Kinda like sailing to Hawaii, and the former hurricane, Eugene sending up some tropical remnants made the ambiance even more Island like.

    When you want light, think kids. Plus they keep you bar tab to a minimum!

    Miraculously, about 2:00 PM, the much anticipated NW wind began to appear in pockets, 1st around the Dog Patch and then eventually the Gulf of Candlestick!

    The right side gang, which had bobbed about for 2 hours along the western edge were rewarded 1st, 10-12 boats
    were the recipients of the godsend winds and were thrusted back into the race, while in the center of the bay, the winds remained lacking,
    a huge glassy pond separating the boats on the eastern shore, still riding the week zephyr, a mid bay inter convergence zone, if you would.

    By 3:30 PM the NW's filled in across the board and the fleet rode the South Bay Trades to the awaiting Mai Tai's, flower leis, and ukulele music
    emanating from the warm tropical confines of Redwood Slough and the Sequoia Yacht Club...


    Back soon with more pretty pics and erroneous commentary...
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Westpoint Regatta started by Wet Spreaders View original post