June 28, 2000
After leaving the boat for a couple of weeks after our experience with Point Conception, we returned to complete some repairs and put some more miles up the coast. This time we brought my dog, Captain, along with us. We needed another crew mate.
I had a stainless steel bracket made that I would use to bolt down the bow pulpit. Attaching this to the forward keel/beam and to the windlass bracket would do what was needed hold down the bow pulpit. The bow pulpit had also worked one of the aft bolts into the wood of the bow, so I added another next to it with a good solid brass backplate to add a little more strength. A little sealant placed in some of the more obvious openings would finish the repairs. It wasn't perfect only completely tearing the bow pulpit off would accomplish that but it was sea-worthy.
After these two days of repairs, we cast off again for another try at Point Conception.
The weather was overcast with a marine layer as we left, but it soon cleared off to another beautiful southern California day. And the most important item to Debbie and I, the seas, were cooperating by only reaching four feet and coming at us at about 10-12 seconds apart - about as calm as they can get.
As we approached Point Conception the seas came at us a bit closer, the
wind began to pick up, the ride got more uncomfortable, and Debbie and I began to think,
Oh no, not again!
As we crossed our Rubicund, we made a point of
checking the bow about every fifteen minutes. We were making about eight knots as the
waves on the choppy seas between Points Conception and Argue pounded our bow. I went below
to check the V-berth and to my horror saw water up to the floorboards.
, I thought. I looked around the rest of the boat and did not find any water
to speak of, particularly around the bilge pumps, so returned to the water next to the
chain locker to investigate.
While I was below trying to find out what was going on, Debbie steered a course closer to shore to get out of the direct path of the swells that were contributing the water to the bow.
One of the things we did prior to departing Santa Barbara was to vacuum out the bilge's, focusing on the bits of cardboard and debris that tended to clog up the bilge pumps and wreak havoc with the automatic floats for the pumps. What I found in the V-berth as we fought the weather of Point Conception was some cardboard that I had missed. I cleared this out by hand while underway and that was the last of the water we saw in the bow. Phew!
With that crisis out of the way, and a bit more of a relaxed attitude,
Debbie and I motored passed the area where we had anchored in another lifetime and drank a
Passing around Point Arguello, the weather returned to the calm conditions we had experienced before coming to Pt. Conception. The ride was very comfortable.
We had departed Santa Barbara intending to end up in Morro Bay, but we didn't get out of Santa Barbara early enough and ended up with a new destination of Port San Luis, an anchorage consisting of mooring buoys and free anchorage areas.
We approached Port San Luis just as the sun was setting. As we crossed over into the port, we called the harbormaster to ask where to keep the boat for the night. We were offered a mooring buoy for $10 per night, or the option of anchoring between the county and the Shell piers. We chose to anchor.
We dropped the anchor in about 20' of water and it set perfectly the first time.
We then proceeded to set up house for the night only to find another victim of our
flooding from the
mayday incident the fresh water pump. Not a
crisis per se, but a convenience we sure like to have. So I got down in the engine room
and tore it apart. Salt corrosion had caused it to bind and cleaning the armatures and
bearings seemed to allow it to rotate freely. Except now I couldn't get the brushes back
onto the armature. After trying for a couple of hours, I gave up and vowed to buy another
one in the morning.
In the morning we called for the water taxi, who promptly came and picked us up. After taking the dog off to do his business, we went to the Port San Luis general store/marine supply to inquire about a pump. Unfortunately, he didn't have one, but he could order one and get it in a day or two. We didn't want to wait.
When we got back to the boat I gave the brushes another shot. With Debbie's help, and the judicious use of fishing line, we got the brushes back into the pump and soon had a working fresh water pump. Yeah baby!
We fired up and headed in a northerly direction. Next stop, San Simeon.