I think this photo pretty much says it all. Getting up close and personal with the humpbacks off the Cali coast.

Woohoo! South of Point Conception! We experienced everything on the way from Monterey; dead calm, light breeze, ideal sailing, heavy breeze, a friendly bump from a humpback whale and several memorable passages of major points of land along the California coast. Sirena Gorda and I arrived last night at around 9:30 pm, sailing right into the anchorage and setting anchor. I moved the boat and re-anchored this morning to get closer to the surf, which I hit at 9 AM after a cup of coffee.

 

As I write this (1 pm), i’m back on the boat and it’s gusting to 30 knots with increasingly large swell moving in. If I could retrieve the anchor and sail to Santa Barbara right now, I probably would, but without a windlass

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Another few days, another few miles down the coast. Part of me wanted to stay in Half Moon Bay for a few more days to catch some good local surf while the other part of me wanted to get further down the coast. Trying not to get sucked into the comfortable time vortex that Half Moon Bay ended up being (I could spend a while there...), I shoved off on a Wednesday morning at around 9:30 am. The forecast looked right, if not a bit slow. As low pressure moved inland, the light southerly breeze on the coast was expected to die off and get replaced by a filling northwesterly... perfect. The only bad part was the un-expected 16 hour gap between those two events actually taking place. In other words, after some very slow sailing upwind, I flopped around for the better part of a day and then caught the new northwesterly.

 

 

Sirena Gorda rocked up at Monterey Peninsula Yacht Club guest dock. Fantastic sail across Monterey Bay.

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Sirena Gorda and Adam's boat, General Trees, sailing out of San Francisco bound for Half Moon Bay. In this photo, wind vane engaged and 15 knots of breeze, with the Golden Gate in my wake... Perfect!
 
Over 7 months without an update... Sorry about that. It's been a super busy and very productive year so far, most of which has been thoroughly documented at www.ronniesimpsonracing.com. That's where I try to run a professional solo ocean racing campaing. Open Blue Horizon is where I discuss any and all things related to me sailing my crappy 27-foot boat down the coast. 
 
That's right. We're back. Racing/ work season has basically ended for me this year and i've decided to take the plunge once again. We're going cruising. By "we", I mean me and my Cal 2-27 Sirena Gorda, (soon to be Mongo). And by "cruising", I mean sailing down the coast with a very heavy emphasis on surfing. While i've become fairly accomplished in sailing, I am very novice in surfing and improving upon that is a major motivation for this trip.

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Well, after a 10-day delivery turned into a few months of cruising the Washington, Oregon and California coasts, my Cal 2-27 "Sirena Gorda" has finally made it home to San Francisco Bay. The last two legs, from Brookings, OR to Bodega Bay, CA and then from Bodega Bay to San Fran were both memorable and fun. In Brookings, I mounted an 80-watt solar panel and a Navik self-steering windvane. "Sirena Gorda" started out as a typical daysailer and weekend pleasure craft and has been transformed into a formidable pocket cruiser in the past couple of months. I dig it. Definitely good to be back in the Bay and i'm immensely happy to finally have my "home" be at "home", instead of obscure coastal towns in Oregon... Slight change of plans and i'm shipping the Moore 24 home to sell her. A full season of offshore racing is coming up on the Reichel-Pugh 45 "Criminal Mischief" and i'm working hard on finding a sponsor to help me achieve my dream of racing in the Vendée Globe. My new website is up, www.ronniesimpsonracing.com. You can check out my sales pitch and sponsorship proposals for the Vendée. Speaking of which, MASSIVE CONGRATULATIONS to Francois Gabart for winning this Vendée Globe. A bit bummed I wasn't at the finish after being at the start, but c'est la vie.

Sirena Gorda now sporting a Navik wind vane and 80-watt solar panel

After flying back to the mainland from Hawaii on New Year's Day, I made my way back to Brookings, OR just a day or two later. No surprise, it was raining again in Oregon.... 

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