Archive for August, 2008


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August 4, 2008

Tom – We had a nice breakfast with Terry and Barry at the Rose St Café in Venice and were back in Springfield to walk Lucy at 10:30pm.



Helen – We had the best time!!!  Kayaking was great and both of us survived, my shoulder wasn’t affected by the paddling and neither was Tom’s elbow!


Anacapa Island

August 3, 2008

Tom –  Anacapa is composed of three islets: East, Middle and West.  We arrived at Frenchys Cove on West Anacapa about 9am.  We then kayaked along the northern coast going in and out of sea caves and eventually paddling under Arch Rock on East Anacapa before returning to the boat.  One of the best parts of the trip for me (about half of our group did not try this) was negotiating the tidal zone between Middle and East Anacapa.  I paddled as fast as I could from the north with the waves going through the opening between the islets.  I surfed down a six foot wave and was then hit by an eight foot wave coming in the opposite direction!  According to spectators, it was a spectacular capsize!  Anyway, I got back in the kayak and made it through.  I just made it through the return trip surfing down the eight foot wave without capsizing.








After lunch we snorkeled in a kelp forest (some 100 feet long!) in Frenchys Cove.  Even in our wetsuits, it was cold (about 55 degrees)!  So we only stayed in the water about a half hour but were able to see lots of fish (e.g. including the gold Garibaldi, CA state fish) and other aquatic life.  As the “Truth” returned to Santa Barbara we were at times accompanied by at least two pods of over 50 dolphins!  They enjoyed surfing in the bow and stern waves of our boat.  After returning to Santa Barbara, we drove to Venice and stayed in the Ramada Inn.





Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz Islands

August 2, 2008

Tom – We started the day by climbing from the boat to the top of a pier at Bechers Bay on Santa Rosa Island.  We then hiked (about 3 miles) to and through a Torrey Pines forest (only two in the world) and then bush wacked down a canyon to a beach where we were picked up by the skiff.  We had lunch on the boat while traveling to Santa Cruz.






The boat laid anchor by Painted Cave (on Santa Cruz) which is the largest of over 1,400 sea caves in the Channel Islands, about 250 of which are at least somewhat negotiable by sea kayak.  The Pacific and North American tectonic plates meet in the deep Santa Barbara Channel. The Channel Islands are on the eastern edge of the Pacific plate, have never been connected to the continent and the sea caves have been produced by the pounding action of the Pacific Ocean.  We were fortunate to have calm seas for half of the trip and with lights were able to kayak into several sea caves.  Seals and sea lions inhabit some of the caves and were not too happy for us to be there!  Helen returned to the mother ship at the 6 mile mark and I continued for the 12 mile paddle.  Two-thirds of Santa Cruz is owned by the Nature Conservancy and the other one third is part of the national park.










San Miguel Island

August 1, 2008

Helen –We slept in port and then departed for the first island at 4 in the morning.  The water was choppy and when we awoke, I was sea-dizzy until Tom gave me the wristbands that work like acupressure, then I was great.  Lucky for him he had the patch behind his ear; this was the first time on a small boat like this that he didn’t get seasick!  San Miguel is the westernmost of the Channel Islands and receives the brunt of the severe weather from the open ocean. 


Tom – after breakfast, we kayaked in rough seas along the coast from Harris Point to Cuyler Harbor enjoying the seabird, seal, and sea lion rookeries (even saw two elephant seals battling for territory, some of them weigh over 1400 pounds!) and then returned to the boat for lunch. 





In the afternoon we had better weather and were ferried to a beach by skiff and hiked through a coreopsis (tree sunflower) forest to the ranger station.  Juan Cabrillo (Portuguese explorer) was buried on the island in 1543.