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post #21 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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Today was a great day on the water on the Inter-coastal and out on the Gulf of Mexico. We had about 50 boats out today despite the spotty scattered showers that popped up every now and then. Clearwater Beach and Sand Key were bustling with skate boards, joggers, picnickers, beach goers, swimmers, wind surfers, kayaks, Hobie's/Beach Cats, Opti's, 420's, SunFish, Sports Fishermen and the Sailing Centers were really hopping with families enjoying Summer Vacation together.
Sounds like an ad for Fla real estate.
As for hurricanes in California, usually, only the remnants of tropical cyclones affect California. Since 1900, (118 years) only two tropical storms have hit California, one by direct landfall from offshore, another after making landfall in Mexico.
Whereas one year fairly recently, Fla had 5 direct strikes, and most years at least one makes landfall somewhere in the state.
If you are going to try to instill fear of living in California, perhaps earthquakes would be a better angle.

"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

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post #22 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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Hell NO! You sweat your head off the moment you step outside and worry about hurricanes full time.

We get the hell out of FL from July to September. Favourite places are Newport Beach, CA, Marina Del Rey, Ca and San Fco Bay. SAn Francisco is great a huge sailing area in protected waters, Temp in low to hight 60's year around and lots of party places new. You can actually go up the rives quite far to new areas.

Caribbean is great from February to end o May.

Do you live in Florida but escape to the opposite coast when it gets to hot? Do you keep boats on both coasts?

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post #23 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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What's not to like about Florida in the summer!? The oppressive heat and humidity keeps the snowbirds away!
Phil, anyone that has lived in the Mid-Atlantic Region, particularly Maryland, can easily tolerate Florida's summers. During the past two weeks, it has been at least 10 degrees cooler in the Florida Keys than it has been in Baltimore. I have a friend that lives in Stuart and he said please don't tell anyone about our summer weather - we want to keep it a secret.

I was stationed in Key West for three months while in the US Navy and the weather was always better than it was at home in Maryland, much less humidity and usually quite a bit cooler.

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post #24 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

It's rare in SoCal for storms to landfall pretty much year round (especially compared to Florida) and SoCal storms are nothing like Florida storms. We joke here all the time (those of us who have actually been in storms in places like Florida or other parts of the south) about how the lightning in Florida is amazing and beautiful...while here in SoCal, you can miss it even if you are looking right at it. Its usually just like a spark. There is a reason why they say it never rains in Southern California. Unlike Florida.

However, storms at sea are strong enough to be a problem because the Pacific is wide enough to develop a significant swell and a strong offshore wind towards a leeshore which in many parts of the California coast are rocky beaches/cliffs. Nothing particular noteworthy compared to other dangerous coasts, but it can be a serious problem for those new to the area. Especially when adding the surprise factor because our weather is otherwise so nice. A daysailer does not want to be caught out in that...and the winter/early spring is the most likely time for us to receive these types of storms. Most daysailers don't sail much in winter here except on a rare warm day. Wind cuts out early in winter too, even before sundown at times.

Not sure if it would be better here than in certain parts of Florida. Might not sail much here unless you are in an offshore boat and/or don't mind motoring.

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Last edited by neeqness; 07-19-2018 at 10:44 PM.
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post #25 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

When it comes to sailing in Florida it's really important to consider which part of Florida as coasts vary significantly with regards to wind, comfort (weatherwise), and opportunities for sailing.

I don't know as much as others here in this regard as I've done little of that there and can not give specific information on it, but I would advise to consider many areas for all the factors that OP is concerned about to determine which specific area would be the best fit for them...

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post #26 of 44 Old 07-19-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

Tampa St. Pete area will tick most of the buttons as will some spots on the right wrong coast of Florida but if I were a young whipper snapper of 31 ( I have socks older than that) with a tech career I think I would pick the San Francisco Bay Area. The winters are lovely but the summers not so much. I think it was Mark Twain that said the coldest place he had ever been was San Francisco in the summer. I hope we find out what he does.
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post #27 of 44 Old 07-20-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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Do you live in Florida but escape to the opposite coast when it gets to hot? Do you keep boats on both coasts?
I moved to FL from Los Angeles, Ca. I had a cal 30 in CA and sailed ocean or should I say motored during morning and sailed in afternoon. There are no hurricanes of note in CA. But they do have Santa Ana winds for about 90MPH. There are many sailboat races down to Mexico. When it comes to earthquakes all we asked for was a fair shake. Nothing big. They are so common that after a while you don't think about them.

In FL I had a Potter 19 that I sold to get an American SAil 14.6. I sold the AS14.6 and got a C165K.

The wind in SOFLO is between 5 and 20. The weather forecasting is usually wrong. The media drives you crazy in hurricane season (june to November) and yes there have been hurricanes in November. The media starts telling you that the hurricane 1500 miles away is headed for your roof and out to kill you if you don't evacuate early. You can count on 2 or 3 hurricanes crossing or running up FL every year. Hurricanes are a necessary evil because they are natures way of keeping the temp low and run according to ocean temps. The local news media is enough to make you want to move to the desert in Saudi Arabia.

If they cannot tell for sure if it's going to rain the next day how can they say we are going to drown in 100 years? That is quite a stretch. in Business we call 10 yr forecasts a guide or wishful thinking. A 50 year forecast is an inner rectum extraction.
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post #28 of 44 Old 07-20-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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Sounds like an ad for Fla real estate.
As for hurricanes in California, usually, only the remnants of tropical cyclones affect California. Since 1900, (118 years) only two tropical storms have hit California, one by direct landfall from offshore, another after making landfall in Mexico.
Whereas one year fairly recently, Fla had 5 direct strikes, and most years at least one makes landfall somewhere in the state.
If you are going to try to instill fear of living in California, perhaps earthquakes would be a better angle.
My relatives in California are more often affected by the combined effects of mudslides, forest fires and earthquakes along with tidal surges which I previously mentioned than the chances of a hurricane making a direct hit here where I live (yes it could happen and some say we're overdue). I considered the entire package. Oh I left out rock slides too and homes that come off their foundations and slide down a hillside taking out all the homes beneath them in parts of California even without an earthquake.

The hyperbole about constant worry of hurricanes was the main point of that post since its again only a 6 month per year window in the Atlantic Basin overall with most tropical storms that hit close enough to impact the St Pete area with their outer bands milder than the typical Nor Easters that hit the New England area with greater regularity. Yes the news media may publish higher wind speeds then we see here because they take them at Tampa Airport and other more exposed areas however those are much greater that we actually see in built up areas. Many Atlantic hurricanes hit the Mid Atlantic coast and head North with Cape Hatteras being ground zero much of the time so its not just Florida.

My sister moved to the Carolina's from the St Pete area to escape the perceived threat of hurricanes and found she had jumped from the frying pan into the fire. She moved back after a few years and is enjoying the simpler wardrobe and not having to deal with what one would consider the moderately cold winters in North Carolina. Her older husbands health unfortunately took a hit from dealing with the winters there and he is still suffering from the aftereffects.

I also see a number of folks coming into the St Pete area from California because they could not take it any more between the natural and man made disasters and such along with the absurd cost of living.

Remember though that I am not talking about the Glades, Homestead, Punta Gorda, Pan Handle or other parts of the State of Florida with more severe weather known to get the bulk of the "Direct Hits" but just the Pinellas County Peninsula in the area of Clearwater/St Pete. Personally I live in a built up non-evacuation zone know as the Highlands that was constructed in the 1940's. Plenty of buffer zone all around to take the brunt of any storms plus I am at a higher elevation than most of the City of Tampa.

Like I have mentioned a number of times you have to choose wisely.

Last edited by SeaStar58; 07-20-2018 at 12:26 AM.
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post #29 of 44 Old 07-20-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

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My relatives in California are more often affected by the combined effects of mudslides, forest fires and earthquakes along with tidal surges which I previously mentioned than the chances of a hurricane making a direct hit here where I live (yes it could happen and some say we're overdue). I considered the entire package. Oh I left out rock slides too and homes that come off their foundations and slide down a hillside taking out all the homes beneath them in parts of California even without an earthquake.

The hyperbole about constant worry of hurricanes was the main point of that post since its again only a 6 month per year window in the Atlantic Basin overall with most tropical storms that hit close enough to impact the St Pete area with their outer bands milder than the typical Nor Easters that hit the New England area with greater regularity. Yes the news media may publish higher wind speeds then we see here because they take them at Tampa Airport and other more exposed areas however those are much greater that we actually see in built up areas. Many Atlantic hurricanes hit the Mid Atlantic coast and head North with Cape Hatteras being ground zero much of the time so its not just Florida.

My sister moved to the Carolina's from the St Pete area to escape the perceived threat of hurricanes and found she had jumped from the frying pan into the fire. She moved back after a few years and is enjoying the simpler wardrobe and not having to deal with what one would consider the moderately cold winters in North Carolina. Her older husbands health unfortunately took a hit from dealing with the winters there and he is still suffering from the aftereffects.

I also see a number of folks coming into the St Pete area from California because they could not take it any more between the natural and man made disasters and such along with the absurd cost of living.

Remember though that I am not talking about the Glades, Homestead, Punta Gorda, Pan Handle or other parts of the State of Florida with more severe weather known to get the bulk of the "Direct Hits" but just the Pinellas County Peninsula in the area of Clearwater/St Pete. Personally I live in a built up non-evacuation zone know as the Highlands that was constructed in the 1940's. Plenty of buffer zone all around to take the brunt of any storms plus I am at a higher elevation than most of the City of Tampa.

Like I have mentioned a number of times you have to choose wisely.

Your relatives in California are a significant minority. 98% of Southern Californians are absolutely not worried about mudslides. Those who are worried about it, have chosen to be worried about it since mudslides are only a problem on certain hillsides with a certain geology. If you are worried about a mudslide you either live on such hillside or right below it, but this is not typical for Californians and especially not for one who will be living on a boat.

Same for forest fires, although the number of people worried about it may be a bit higher. While we do have forest fires on occassion, they typically happen in the forest areas where the population is pretty low and forest fires are much more likely to occur in the summer months when it is hot and dry, not in the winter months. However again, this shouldn't even be a thought for someone who will be living on a boat, particularly in any of the marinas previously mentioned.

When we do have earthquakes, they are typically well inland so if you are on a boat, it is not really a concern. Tidal waves (tsunamis) are extremely rare and typically occur so far away that by the time they reach our coast, the prevailing winds/currents, intermittent offshore weather, and squalls that it would encounter on the way will have reduced them to a mere caution mainly for those at sea, not in the marina.

I won't talk about the number of Florida plates I see here regularly...yet when I drove to Florida and stayed visiting for nearly 3 weeks, I think I saw only 1 maybe 2 California plates.

I've lived in Florida for a few months and while I personally liked the storms there and the weather is probably second only to California nationwide. Even though we had one hurricane scare and it did hit us but we missed the brunt of it while in Florida. Yet to be honest I am not even counting that...personally I liked how Florida got more rain and beautiful thunderstorms so I'm probably a little biased towards Florida a bit, yet still overall I'd say California gets better weather.

The only reason why I said that OP might prefer Florida is because I think in the winter months that Florida (certain parts of it anyway) will have more opportunities for sailing. I do not at all believe however that Florida has better weather than we do...in any season. In summer months, I think California has hands down better day sailing and for year round living, I'd rather be here.

I sure do miss the awesome thunderstorms though...


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Last edited by neeqness; 07-20-2018 at 05:05 AM.
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post #30 of 44 Old 07-20-2018
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Re: Where to go for winter sailing? Florida or California?

The question I would be asking myself here is: what kind of sailing do I want to do? If all you want is to go day sailing from your marina, California may work for you. If you are interested in cruising and exploring Florida is probably a better bet.

Since female companionship is one of your significant criteria, I want to share one other observation with you. Since I started living aboard I have had a variety of reactions ranging from wow, that is really cool to: oh, so your basically homeless. You may find that your status as a live aboard may not have a positive impact on your dating prospects.
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