other year in February the Del Rey Yacht Club sponsors a yacht race from
Marina del Rey, CA to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. There are two main
divisions in the race: the true "racing" boats and the "salsa" division,
or the cruising division. That isn't to say that the cruisers don't take
the race seriously, however there is definitely a different "style"
between the two divisions. For one thing the "racing" boats don't
usually carry a washer/dryer aboard. In any case regardless of the
various divisions everyone seems to have fun and the crew of the Quest
was no exception. Here she rests in Cabo San Lucas at the conclusion of
the second leg of the race.
Columbia, Canada is probably one of the best cruising grounds of
anywhere in the world. People spend years up there and never tire of the
majestic sights and protected waters. One can travel all the way up to
Glacier Bay, Alaska in inland waters. It's quite a trip! We spend time
there both in 2002 and again in 2003. Both trips were unique and
wonderful in their own ways. Many Southern California cruisers are
willing to brave the many miles open ocean along the west coast to enjoy
this fabulous cruising ground. The picture at the left gives you an idea
of why people either live up there or return year after year.
in Southern California is usually a pretty tranquil experience, but that
doesn't mean that sailors shouldn't be ready for winds in the 20 to 30+
knot range and be aware of shipping lanes and natural obstructions. The
bell buoy off of Santa Monica is a favorite day sail destination and
always a hit with the kids! Marina del Rey, itself is a
destination for many tourists and locals who just want to enjoy a
relaxing day near the water. There are public guest docks for visiting
yachts - and visitors and locals alike enjoy the weekly "Concerts in the
Park" at Burton Chase Park in the summertime.
we fail to appreciate the destinations and opportunities in our own back
yard. For Southern Californians Catalina Island is one of those
opportunities. The island lies just 26 miles across the sea! There are
more activities there than I could mention. However, for a fun Mexican
restaurant and pleasant shopping try Avalon. Also, don't miss the
activities at the Casino. For a more active experience there is hiking,
diving and swimming. We loved the tour of the inside of the island which
included this great buffalo and, in fact, a whole herd which is thriving
to the extent that they have to occasionally remove a few.