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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US 101 FOR SALE, lying Honolulu

101 rocked up into paradise again at Hawaii Yacht Club. Now to strip her and sell her. Good-bye old friend.

Well, I didn't really have a weather window to cross the channel and the reinforced Easterly tradewinds weren't scheduled to let up for another week, so.... I went ahead and crossed the channel to Oahu. And it was every bit as miserable as I had feared. Ugh. First time in more than 2 years and 5 ocean crossings that I couldn't hold down food. And here's a little statistic that might tell you how hard the sailing was: It took me 8 hours to sail the last 21 miles. "US 101" did great as she always has, but sailing dead upwind in 25-30 knots with 12 foot breaking seas is never fun in a 2,000 lb 24-foot boat. 

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In Kauai to sell 101 :(

Back in Kauai for the first time in 4 months.... A bit bittersweet, but my situation has changed and unfortunately my beloved Moore 24 "US 101" must go. Mooring and insuring it in hte islands has been an unnecessary financial burden and with me now planning to move to France in the spring, I can't winter on it like I had originally planned, so.... 101 is for sale. Just flew into Kauai (for $196 direct from Oakland! Check out Alaska Airlines' specials!!) this morning and am planning to sail dead upwind in 20-30 knot reinforced tradewinds to get her to Oahu. Great... Bashing my brains out in a 24 foot engineless boat to weather in big breeze and seas. Oh well, it's supposed to blow for at least 8 more days and I don't want to sit around here just waiting for lighter breeze, so I plan to head out tomorrow or Saturday. The plan is to strip off the offshore gear and ship home to be sold, while I plan to leave the boat with a broker in Honolulu. $9999 if you're interested, stripped down to stock Moore 24 buoy set-up and with my old used practice sails. That price still includes the brand new rudder, boom, standing rigging, deck hardware and running rigging (all new in 2012), but does not include the new Quantum sails, offshore gear, safety gear or electronics. Drop me a line if you're interested and i'll send you more info!

I have no idea why this photo is sideways and I can't fix it. :(

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