Big Left Turn: Breaking & Down to Crescent City

September 29, 2021

We were up bright and early. The weather, and more importantly the wave forecast, was favorable for the time window we needed to get down to Crescent City. Steve and I decided we needed to scope out the bar conditions in person. High tide was at 8 am so we headed out to look at the bar conditions about 7. The conditions were a lot better than the days previous. There were still breaking waves but only about 3-4 foot instead of the previous 6-8 foot. From what the locals had said, it was about the best we could expect. We decided it was a go.

Back on the boat we started up and started to prepare. We were all a little nervous. Breaking waves are not optimal in any situation. About 7:45 we couldn’t take the wait any longer and slowly headed out.

Following the path we were told was best, we navigated out the shallow channel and around the sand bar. There is an area seaward of the sand bar that allows for hovering and watching the waves. We tried to pick a good window and it was time. Barbara was rear watch, and I was up helping Steve navigate around the shallow water and waves. In the middle of the bar, we took a good breaking wave on the bow. Steve had turned into it and it pitched us up pretty good. Everything on the boat was thrown around. Another breaker came in right behind, but it wasn’t as bad as the first but still enough to throw us around, then there was a break, Steve throttled up and we headed out at max speed. We took about 4 more really big waves before safely escaping the bar. Phew…

Barbara informed us that the Pamplemousse bottle had wedged itself between the TV and the other liquor and saved them from escaping. The only damage reported was a couple of wine glasses in the cabinet. Pretty good for movement we had.

The rest of the trip down was relatively calm and we arrived in Crescent City shortly after 2 PM. We met up with Gary and Noelle from S/V Illimite and they said we should join them for dinner. After a nice relaxing afternoon, we headed out to the local restaurant the Chart Room. More shrimp cocktail for me!

Voyage Information:

Curry County to Crescent City
Time: 6 h 46 m ( 07:32 to 14:18 )
Distance: 51.97 nm

Big Left Turn: Gold Beach

September 27, 2021

The weather forecast turned out of favor with us and 11 of the 12 bars on the coast are closed. That is river bars, not alcohol bars. Looks like it will be a few days before the next window allows us to leave.

The first order of business for today was getting Steve an omelet. He’s been wanting one for days. We set off for the Indian Creek Café. It was pouring rain, so I had to buy a poncho at the marina gift shop. When about halfway there, I checked the remaining distance and found out that the café was closed on Monday’s. Bummer!

Luckily it was late enough that the lunch restaurants were open, so I talked Steve and Barbara into going to the pizza place up the street. A short walk later we were at the Crow’s Nest. The locals recommended it and it’s not much to see on the outside. The food was good. The bar reminds me of a lot you’d find in the Midwest and is frequented by locals. While we were there, we found out that 2 inches of rain had fallen overnight, which is the reason we are still in town

After the food digested and the rain let up, it was time to get in a little motion and go out for a run. Caught a couple of rainbows and had some awesome beach scenery to accompany me.

Ended the night with a nice Captain Steve Manhattan. Yummy!

September 28, 2021

The weather was a bit better today but still not acceptable for leaving and going across the Rogue River bar. We had a bunch of company on the dock.

The mission to get Steve an omelet was still on, and the Indian Creek Café was open, so we walked over along the river. Steve was successful and we had a great breakfast. The trail along the river was also nice and had some great views. The town has an old tug/fishing boat that was in service for many years and is now a shipwreck. Kinda weird.

After lunch, it was time to do laundry and get another run in. The next destination is 52 miles away. The weather report says tomorrow may be the day. We’ll see.

Big Left Turn: Bumpy Ride and Ducking into Gold Beach

We stressed over the weather map for a day and a half and made the call that we had a small window to get to Crescent City. That is if we left early and got around Cape Blanco before the heavy weather set in. The engine was fired up at 5 am and we were off. I’d put up a picture but it would be just a completely black image.

The Coos Bay bar was nice and calm, and we were hopeful. That id not last long as the waves started picking up. the problem with today versus the last few was the wind is out of the south and therefore we are going against the wind waves. If it was out of the north, the trip would have been smooth.

The model said after Cape Blanco the wind would calm down and be manageable at least until we could get to Crescent City. As we approached the Cape, it didn’t let up and the updated model showed a change for the worse. We had a decision. 3 hours forward or 5 hours back. We opted for the forward even though the back trip would be smooth. The decision took us to Gold Beach, Oregon. It’s on the Rogue River and unfortunately has a bar that isn’t monitored after Labor Day. The good part is the approach was to the north and thus it was mostly with the waves. Once we turned to go in the ride smoothed out as expected.

The bar was not optimal as it had visibly breaking waves between the jetties. As we came in Steve sped up to stay between the waves. It was a bit tense but we made it thru. The river has bunch of shoaling and shallow spots and luckily, we were coming in at high tide. The local charter captain that was on the dock and helped us was surprised we made it thru without going aground. Guess we got lucky. He said he’d show us the best path to navigate out tomorrow. You can see the nice sand bar across the bar in the satellite image below.

After a nap, we headed up check out the Port Hole Cafe. The dinner was delicious and it’s a pretty nice place. In the same parking lot is Jerry’s Rouge River Museum and Gift Shop that has a lot of history and pictures of how the area developed.

And you can see that the marina is a popular place in the offseason.

Voyage Information:

Coos Bay to Gold Beach
Time: 9 h 25 m ( 04:55 to 14:20 )
Distance: 71.65 nm