Saturday, September 20, 2014

September 20, 2014 - Overnight passage to Crescent City, California

We are now in California!

The trip to Crescent City was about 17 hours, so we had to motor at night for at least part of the trip.  We decided to motor all night so the kids could sleep through most of the trip.  This allowed us to do home school the next day once we arrived at Crescent City.  We left Coos Bay Oregon at about 3:30PM just after the 3:00PM NOAA weather forecast came out.  Once we confirmed that the weather conditions looked good we fired up the motors, untied the lines, and headed out across the bar into the ocean.

The sea was glassy smooth, with rollers from the SW.  It was an easy ride.  For the first hour there was almost no wind, then it suddenly rose to about 8 knots.  Just enough to eliminate the glassy look, but not enough to make any waves.   Kathy saw one whale spout, and we saw one or two crab pots, but not much else.  After darkness arrived the winds gradually increased.  Around midnight or 1:00AM it was blowing about 18-20 knots (forecast was for 5-10 knots).  The ride was still good, but not as good as at was earlier in the day.  At times the wind was directly on our stern, blowing the diesel exhaust right up and over the boat.  We could see it in our forward spotlight, in fact it looked as if we were running in heavy fog, unless you looked to the side to see the lights on shore, or the lights of a few commercial fishing boats.  I suspect that I have a failing fuel injector or two on the starboard motor, as that motor is smoking more that the other motor, and leaves a little oil sheen on the water at start up.  In fact, the port motor has virtually NO smoke, even on a cold start.  I with the starboard motor was as clean burning.

Kathy came to relieve me at about 1:00AM and I went down for an engine room check.  Much to my surprise the port transmission was running hot.  It was about 210 degrees compared to it's normal 160.  I reduced rpm's and monitored the temperature with a handheld laser thermometer.  It didn't drop much.  So, I reduced rpm's to idle, and took it out of gear.  Still not much improvement.  I shutdown the engine and removed the sea strainer.  It was pretty clogged.  We had seen a few patches of sea weed that we ran over , in the dark.  Perhaps some had been sucked into the cooling system?  I put the strainer back together and started the motor, leaving it in neutral and at idle (for maximum cooling).  The temperature did drop back down to normal.  I put it back in gear and brought the speed back to normal.  The temperature was stauying in the normal range.  At about 3:00AM I felt I could take a nap, and did so.  About 6:00AM I woke up and relived Kathy, so she could catch some sleep before we arrived in Crescent City at about 8:00AM.  We tied up at about 8:30 on the beautiful new guest dock.

Crescent City was hit hard by the Tsunami and had to be completely rebuilt.  It is still being finished with landscaping and signage being installed right now.  This is a first class facility.

Crossing the Coos Bay bar.  It was an easy departure.

The kids in heaven while we motor.  A DVD movie playing on a player and
two laptops so they can play games together. 

A fishing boat, an hour or so before sunset.  Beautiful conditions to be motoring
in for a long overnight passage.
Beautiful sunset on the Pacific Ocean.

Miss Sayoka.  A boat I worked on in La Conner.  The boat was built by
La Conner Maritime last year.  I helped a little with the electronics installation.
Crescent City, California.


  1. Steve, looks like your adventure is going as planned. Calm seas my friend. Tony

  2. Madoc says to enjoy the beach at Crescent City - we've been there the last two summers and love the sand and surf there!