With a forecast of sunny, low 70s, and westerly winds from 15 to 25 knots on Sunday, it looks like we are in for an incredible Opening Day. Other than the high temperature, I’d say that sounds like Summer!
The blessing of the fleet will occur on Sunday April 25, 2010 between 10:30 and Noon in front of the Corinthian Yacht Club in Raccoon Strait. There are rules (last year somebody cut in line in front of me, argh), so here they are:
- all vessels are to proceed under power (including sailboats)
- enter the Raccoon Strait Restricted Zone at the Northeast end, taking Pt. Campbell (Angel Island) to Port
- Proceed on Southwesterly heading down Raccoon Strait, observing the 6 knot speed limit
- Pass between the Blessing Vessel and the Corinthian Yacht Club in Tiburon
- At no time pass between the Blessing Vessel and Angel Island (Pt. Stuart)
- Exit the Raccoon Strait Restricted Zone at the Southwest end
This is a fancy way of saying, get in line, don’t bump into each other and notice that there is a LOT of waterborne law enforcement hanging out in the Strait. One thing that I would add after doing this for many years is that powerboats and sailboats under power behave differently while in line, recognize that sailboats don’t slow down as fast when they let off the throttle.
I am always partial to going over to Ayala Cove after the blessing (though curiously, the rules seem to make this difficult, asking you to go around Angel Island to do this). If for no other reason than it’s fun to watch the people who leave the marina once per year struggle with docking at Angel Island or picking up a mooring ball! Two, maybe three, years ago I actually saw a Grey Whale surface in Ayala Cove, obviously checking out the mayhem for himself.
The blessing of the fleet is a great way to start your sailing year.