It’s always fun to see sailing through the eyes of a “newbie.” This past week, Captain Jon sailed with a family of neophyte sailors. They had been on the water but had never experienced the thrill of sailing. On Monday, June 18th Steve and his three kids were introduced to an exciting ride from Long Beach to Catalina Island.
The day started out with a typical marine layer over the water. Generally the winds don’t start picking up until early afternoon, but on this day by 11am, their 50 foot sloop was already cruising at 8 knots toward Avalon Harbor. As the boat heeled over, Steve enjoyed the ride, but his kids were feeling trepidation. There were a lot of seals playing around, but the dolphins were elusive. Sea birds flew overhead, guiding the way across the channel.
Once at Avalon Harbor, the family took off in the dinghy to explore the city of Avalon. Jon stayed behind, readying the boat for a two night stay on its mooring. The family enjoyed various shops, restaurants, and rented bicycles to explore. They rode all the way up to the Wrigley Mansion so they could view the great beautiful harbor from above.
On the boat, Steve juggled working at keeping his business together and having fun with his kids.
The cool temps at night made for great sleeping weather…especially for Phoenicians who have been experiencing temperatures of over 100 degrees this past week. The daytime temperature of 70 at Avalon was also very comfortable for this Phoenix crew.
As time went on, everyone became more comfortable and familiar with the vessel and enjoyed the simple life aboard. Erica was one of the best first-time helmsmen Captain Jon has ever seen as they explored the Eastern coastline of Santa Catalina Island. Torin earned the title of first-mate engineer by turning the engine on and off as needed and he made ready the shore-power line when we returned to Long Beach. Nicole was a great organizer of our meals on board.
On Wednesday the winds were non-existent so the crew motored all the way back to Long Beach. Back on terra firma, Steve and Torin, Erica and Nicole took a long walk around the harbor, to the beach.