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post #1 of 12 Old 09-14-2012 Thread Starter
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Moving to San Francisco Bay

We will be moving our sailboat into SF Bay and were considering Richmond Bay Marina. Just wondering if any SF people have any knowledge of Richmond Marina. We live near Sacramento and weekend sail so driving is a consideration for us. We sail every weekend.
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-14-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

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Originally Posted by gmcairns View Post
We will be moving our sailboat into SF Bay and were considering Richmond Bay Marina. Just wondering if any SF people have any knowledge of Richmond Marina. We live near Sacramento and weekend sail so driving is a consideration for us. We sail every weekend.
The Richmond Marina is a very good facility and particularly the portions that are situated in the harbor at Brickyard Cove near the Richmond Yacht Club (of which we are members). The area is known as the Banana Belt because of the good conditions that prevail while other areas of the Bay are socked in and cold. Yet, one can reach some of the better cruising areas quite easily and quickly, particularly if one learns to take advantage of the tides. The only draw backs to the area, although that may have changed since we moved, were a shortage of convenient shopping and proximity to some undesireable low income housing areas and their attendant issues. The Richmond YC is a very friendly, welcoming sailing Club and if you stop by on a Saturday or Sunday there will be no shortage of folks that can offer information and advice about the area.

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post #3 of 12 Old 09-14-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

I am going to largely reiterate what was said by svHyLyte.

Are you talking about Marina Bay or are you considering any of the Richmond facilities? Because of their proximity to Richmond, they all tend to be pleasant islands surrounded by areas you might not feel completely comfortable walking through. In contrast to most of Richmond, these marinas are surrounded by nice condos and houses. The Marina Bay area is separated from the rest of the Richmond residences by an area of large commercial/industrial properties. The Richmond Yacht Club and Brickyard Cove areas are primarily separated by the Miller/Knox Regional Shoreline and a series of substantial hills. I think that they are all very nice facilities.

I'm not sure where you'll find a grocery store from the RYC/Brickyard Cove area. That is more easily reached from Marina Bay. On the other hand, there are probably more and better restaurants close to RYC/Brickyard Cove (Point Richmond). Also, there is a West Marine and an ACE Hardware with marine goods close to RYC/Brickyard Cove -- I don't know about Marina Bay.

If it might matter, it is relatively easy to get a live-aboard slot at Marina Bay and it is easier to travel by bus to Marina Bay. By bus to Richmond Yacht Club or Brickyard Cove requires a pleasant walk of something like a mile and a half. I mention buses because I sometimes take Amtrak to Richmond and the bus from there.

I don't have enough experience to talk about the sailing conditions in a helpful way beyond agreeing that it is a very pleasant entry to the Bay that will require sometime to reach the stronger winds of the slip from Berkeley to the GGB. You can also dry sail from Brickyard Cove and RYC if that might be of interest to you in the future.
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-14-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

Thanks for your help we had not considered Brickyard but are now. We are going to check it out tomorrow.
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-14-2012 Thread Starter
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They have a waiting list but say it moves quickly.
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-16-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

I had my boat at Brickyard Cove for 3 years, prior to moving to Santa Barbara, and can't say enough great things about it. It is a family run place that is very friendly, quiet and clean. Best of all it is only a 5 minute motor from slip to bay vs. a much longer trek from Marina Bay to the open water. There are a couple of grocery stores in Point Richmond where you can get provisions and there are also some great pubs and restaurants in point Richmond which is very different from Richmond. I don't think you can go wrong with Brickyard.

Good luck.

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post #7 of 12 Old 09-16-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

I'm berthed at Marina Bay. If you go to MB one thing to consider is that there is less wind protection on E dock. D-Dock is the most sheltered. While I agree that Brickyard cove is nice there are a couple of drawbacks. One is that the entrance is kinda tight and there are shoals inside of the marina so sailing in/out can be tricky. I've motor-sailed with main hoisted in and out a couple of times in a 24' sailboat which is not difficult but you need to be on your toes. The slips are situated so that they are crosswind; but the wind is usually light. Regardless; be prepared to drive the boat out of the fairway in reverse until you get to the open area of the marina. Most people hoist/drop outside of the marina in the Richmond Channel; just be aware that the channel has ship/tug traffic and cross traffic/wakes from other boats. The docks are wood and the tie ups are on dock rings; not cleats. The docks where my friend is berthed at Brickyard are in good condition; not in need of replacement.

For Marina Bay the drawback is higher average wind in the marina; and about 15-20 mins further from SF Bay. I don't mind these things; here's how I take advantage of the 'disadvantages'. First; try and get an upwind slip (facing south) on D-Dock. When we exit the dock we either hoist sail in the protected area of the marina (south of D-Dock) or hoist while motoring upwind between the Marina Bay entrance and the Red Oak Victory ship. Once past 'the corner' there where the channel makes a dog-leg it's an easy upwind reach to the mouth of the Richmond Channel; It's a nice sail up to Brickyard Cove so we usually set the genoa while reaching and get ready for sailing on the bay by stowing dock lines and fenders. On the return we do the opposite; put out fenders/lines while reaching down the channel. Lots of times the wind is good and the water is flat calm because of the breakwater protection from the chop on SF Bay. We furl the genoa while turning downwind at the Red Oak and sail in with only the main hoisted. Once inside Marina Bay we drop/flake the main. The docks at Marina Bay are concrete and the tie downs are cleats. For food services there is Amini's (deli/shortstop), CVS, with Quiznos, Cafe, Pizza, next to it. Marine hardware store is Whale Point on Cutting, West Marine at Point Richmond, or KKMI Boatyard on weekdays. For extended services (regular hardware, food, etc.) El Cerrito is not too far away; we usually avoid central Richmond (aside from going for Fish & Chips at H.Salt on San Pablo Ave. occasionally).

Since you will be driving from Sac; you will want to take Richmond Parkway from 80 over to the SW side of Richmond. There should not be a wait for slips at Marina Bay; also MB allows Live-Aboards while Brickyard Cove does not.

RYC is just West of Brickyard Cove behind the same breakwater. RYC has upwind/downwind slips; and the docks are metal IIRC. Membership requires references by RYC members but if you join the yacht club, membership & berthing fee for a 30' boat is slightly less than a monthly slip fee at Marina Bay.
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

Another vote for Brickyard Cove or the RYC. Both are located in the "Richmond Riviera" and are just more pleasant marinas than Marina Bay, which has something of a ghost town feel about it, IMHO. Low occupancy plus exposure to the weather make it that way. Not as clean as the other marinas either. It's not a horrible place by any means, but if I had a choice amongst the 3 marinas, Marina Bay is on the bottom of the list.

There are two other marinas in Richmond as well (Channel Marina and Point San Pablo Yacht Club) but both of those places are real dumps (IMHO) and even further away from the main Bay.
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

We will be doing the same in a few years. We have been out to the area and looked at Emeryville and Sausilto. My wife being from the bay area said Richmond was out due to the heat and crime in that area. I did not visit the Richmond area myself, but it may be different for us as we plan to be liveaboards..... Just my .02


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post #10 of 12 Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Moving to San Francisco Bay

Big difference between the neighborhoods surrounding Brickyard Cove/RYC and Marina Bay. Likewise there is a big difference between Emeryville Marina and Emery Cove Marina. The Emeryville municipal marina ain't no prize.
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