Point Conception-How bad is it really? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 20 Old 09-26-2006 Thread Starter
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Point Conception-How bad is it really?

I hear stories of it being tough when headed north. I am a new sailor and am in Channel Islands heading toward San Francisco thn eventually North to Tacoma. How is Point Conception and the Cojo anchorage. Would you reccomend anchoring there for a novice? Anchoring is one thing that scares me, I prefer the open ocean to rocky, kelpy, shallow shores. We are planning on making this trip in a few days.
Thanks for comments.
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post #2 of 20 Old 09-26-2006
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No problems with GOOD boat.


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post #3 of 20 Old 09-27-2006
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Point Conception can be very nasty, dead calm or anywhere in between. Plan your trip around the weather. Talk to some experienced sailors in your area before you embark as to what conditions are likely to be encountered this time of year. Listen to reports. Have fun.

Last edited by knothead; 04-11-2009 at 06:33 PM.
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post #4 of 20 Old 09-27-2006
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I have always made a deal with the old sea, that if I get caught out and have not gone there to see how bad it is, I will fight it out. But, if I have been trying it on, and get clobbered, then I have myself to blame.

Scotland's coast has a few killing zones, always dangerous when wind meets tide.

I have been to one, the Gulf of Corryvreckan, at night, from the shore!!!, to see how bad it can get. It was a westerly wind and swell (not full gale), meeting a spring tide (about 8 knots).

I could hear the disturbed seas before I coud see them.

The words of Captain Scott... "Great God, this is an awful place"..... came to mind.

Be careful. I suspect Cape Conception could be a very lonely place if it turns nasty.
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post #5 of 20 Old 09-30-2006
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Here's today's weather report, typical balmy day most other places:
PZZ673-302245-
/O.EXT.KLOX.SC.Y.0102.000000T0000Z-061001T1600Z/
WATERS FROM PT. ARGUELLO TO SANTA CRUZ ISLAND CA AND WESTWARD 60 NM
INCLUDING SAN MIGUEL AND SANTA ROSA ISLANDS-
858 AM PDT SAT SEP 30 2006

...SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY NOW IN EFFECT THROUGH SUNDAY MORNING...

.TODAY...NW WIND 15 TO 25 KT WITH LOCALLY HIGHER GUSTS. COMBINED SEAS
5 TO 7 FT DOMINANT PERIOD 12 SECONDS. PATCHY FOG LATE IN THE MORNING.
.TONIGHT...NW WIND 15 TO 25 KT...WITH LOCAL GUSTS TO 30 KT AROUND
POINT CONCEPTION. COMBINED SEAS 5 TO 7 FT DOMINANT PERIOD 10 SECONDS.
PATCHY FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT.
.SUN...NW WIND 10 TO 20 KT...WITH GUSTS TO 25 KT IN THE MORNING.
WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT. NW SWELL 3 TO 5 FT AT 10 SECONDS. PATCHY FOG IN
THE MORNING.
.SUN NIGHT...NW WIND 10 TO 20 KT...WITH GUSTS TO 25 KT IN THE EVENING.
WIND WAVES 2 TO 3 FT. NW SWELL 3 TO 5 FT. PATCHY FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT.
.MON...NW WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 3 TO 5
FT. PATCHY FOG IN THE MORNING.
.MON NIGHT...NW WIND 10 TO 20 KT...WITH HIGHER GUSTS IN THE EVENING.
WIND WAVES 2 TO 3 FT. NW SWELL 4 TO 6 FT. PATCHY FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT.
.TUE THROUGH WED...NW WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 3 FT. NW
SWELL 5 TO 7 FT...BUILDING TO 6 TO 8 FT BY WED.
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post #6 of 20 Old 09-30-2006
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Go Offshore

Just talking about this yesterday while out sailing. A buddy has made the trip twice from San Diego to SF Bay. 1st time along the coast past PC.
After getting beat up, said it would not happen again. Next time 40nm miles off shore & said it was 100% better.
True for many of the points up the coast including going north from SF. You get away from the water coming up from the ocean depths + compressed winds in certain areas
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post #7 of 20 Old 10-03-2006
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Try this site for local WX that takes the terrain into account around Conception and the islands

http://www.sdcoos.ucsd.edu/data/interactive/winds/?r=2
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post #8 of 20 Old 10-03-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capttb
...WITH LOCAL GUSTS TO 30 KT AROUND
POINT CONCEPTION. COMBINED SEAS 5 TO 7 FT DOMINANT PERIOD 10 SECONDS.
PATCHY FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT...
That is actually a fairly "good conditions" report for a Point on the California coast. Big Sur can have some incredibly treacharous conditions from what I have heard. A highly experienced sailor I know told me that once it took them 3 days to beat their way past Pt. Sur with heavy conditions the entire time. It can make a big difference the type of boat you have and how well it beats to windward; and how well you can trim the reefed sails to make good headway. Looking at the map you would probably want to sail west from the western most Channel Islands and then turn north to make a long Stbd tack up past Pt. Conception. But this depends on wind conditions/direction.

I would be sure you know how to DR navigate and log your position and be able to take running fixes to verify your position (in case your GPS goes down). Know where your fallback points would be and where to sail back downwind to them. There also is lots of shipping traffic along the coast so keep a good watch at night and if you have Radar know how to use it and make use of it in fog and at night. If you have any concern about your skill/ability to make this sail you should consider hiring an experienced captain to help you sail her to your destination.
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post #9 of 20 Old 04-08-2009
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The Blow & When To Go

Howdy everyone,

Just signed on and hoping to get some esoteric intelligence on the So-Cal to S.F. passage. I've done Santa Cruz to S.F and back again three times. But I am reluctant to do Long Beach to Santa Cruz due to the hairy-hairy tales of passing Point Conception.

I've have a new boat, a sound pocket crusier with blue water specs. I've single handed for years. Spent many a night on the hook in S.F. Bay, Santa Cruz and in open water off Bolinas.
Can someone tell me the worst to prepare for while I hope for the best to prevail.

How about the safe anchorages and plan B's to consider. Is Cojo Anchorage crowded when seas are dicey?

Any informed, experienced advice would be welcome and greatly appreciated.

Planning on doing So-Cal until late June and setting sail for Santa Cruz Harbor 10 days before, The 4th of July - 2009.

Thanks folks!

Sun27
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post #10 of 20 Old 04-08-2009
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I have done the Point going south, and north. It can be one hell of a ride, or a mill pond. Your weather is the most important thing as always. I would make sure the weather would allow me to get past the Point. There is always Avila Harbor, Morro, and San Simeon to duck into. After that it's Monterey, Santa Cruz, and Half Moon before S.F. Bay. BEST WISHES a fun, and successful journey......i2f

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