Whew! What a trip. Seemed simple enough….we’ll trailer over to Southern California, put in at Dana Point, cruise over to Catalina buddy boating with old friends Rod and Kim (that’s Kim up above), sail up to Newport, then back to Dana Point and head home.
2-1/2 hrs from home we blew a trailer tire. No biggy, really, but it wiped out the fender as it went.
Quick stop at Discount Tire and the tire was replaced and we were back on our way. Fast forward 4 hours to Southern California freeways at rush hour. In stop and go traffic the actuator on the trailer stuck and locked the brakes down. Imagine cruising along all fat and happy and having a car go by yelling, “Your trailer’s on FIRE!” Don managed to pull the brake fluid line, stopping the fire, but now what’re you gonna do when you’re 20 minutes from your destination? Well, I don’t know what responsible people would do, but we kept going. By nightfall we had the mast up and the boat in the water, sipping much deserved cocktails in a slip as darkness descended.
The next day we sailed up to Newport Beach to meet up with Rod and Kim in their club boat and sailed for Catalina as though we didn’t have a care in the world!
Rod and Kim on their club boat
It is definitely a little difficult buddy boating with a slower boat. The really awesome thing about our lightweight Corsair is she will sail 6 knots in only 4 knots of wind; so while they motored we sailed, eventually dropping the sails to allow them to catch up.
We picked up our mooring in Avalon Harbor and had a great dinner on the boat with Rod and Kim. The next morning we explored Avalon, did a little shopping and then set off to play with our spinnaker in the light winds.
It was a chug back to Dana Point in a blazing sun, but we finally arrived and settled back into a slip for the evening. Now that we’d had fun, it was time to do some adulting and deal with our trailer. We towed it off to Orange, CA where we left it with Orange Trailer, Hitch and Repair for repairs, then slogged our way back through SoCal traffic for the marina.
Reviewing our trip, we decided we really liked it over at Newport, so the next day we sailed back up to Newport and picked up a mooring ball. Now, the mooring balls at Avalon are very easy to pick up…they have long pick up sticks on them that you just pluck up and then attach. No, Newport doesn’t have those. Newport (and most mooring balls) have a little metal eye on top that we must lean wayyyyyy over the edge of our trampoline and hook with a 4 ft long boat hook, then wrestle up onto deck to attach. Yeah….I missed. While Don is trying to reposition the boat for another try, some random man zips up in his dinghy and yells for me to throw him our line, and then secured us to the mooring in seconds. I’m in awe, and we have secured our fast friendship with John and Trish Billings of S/V Mariah. That friendship gets picked up in our next post though!