First All-Nighter to Morro Bay
Santa Cruz to Morro Bay: Sail Date January 19, 2014. Hours at Sea 14.75 Left Santa Cruz at 2pm 1/19 and arrive 1/20 at 4:45pm.
“Men really do need sea-monsters in their personal oceans”
― John Steinbeck, The Log from the Sea of Cortez
Started with light air, sun and 8ft swell at 12 seconds apart. We sailed for a few hours with a clear sky. The sun began to set as we approached the southern end of Monterey Bay. We were about 6nm offshore watching the sun set when we realized it was disappearing behind aHUGE fog bank! Within a few minutes we were engulfed in the wet fog with little visibility. PEA SOUP! I say, that starts with P, which rhymes with T, that stands for TROUBLE!! Luckily the sea remained calm and quiet.
Once darkness fell, visibility was zero. Now and then we could make out a dark mass next to the boat and hear it take a breath. Most likely a dolphin, but ones imagination does get carried away. The combination of the fog and a big moon made for a hauntingly beautiful night, full of thoughts of B Movie Sea Creatures, Black Beard type Pirates and Davy Jones locker. (at least for Heather) We slept in shifts as proper sailors do. Heather was allotted more sleep because she’s a LADY. By daylight the sea was calm and the sky was beginning to clear.
Daniel (bless him) made egg and sausage sandwiches and coffee for his groggy first mate. Well fed and caffeinated, we raced towards Morro Rock in order to get there before dark. It is known to be one of the most dangerous entrances in the world and conditions must be right to sail in or out.
We passed Morro Rock about 3:45pm. Talked with the Cost Guard and they told us we could enter if we felt confident…OK. Sure! We’re confident?! Waves were breaking 20 ft in the air on both sides of the breakwater. We had choppy swell at 4 to 6ft. every few seconds. The skipper is a badass and cool as a cucumber! We were in the safe and sound by 4:30pm. Friends Kurt and Janet very generously offered us their mooring! We settled in by sunset, with a front row view of Morro Rock and big hearts filled with accomplishment.