Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Channel Islands-Will It Be Better This Time?

You might recall that the last time we were in the Channel Island (Becher’s Bay), we got our butts spanked a bit. This time however, the weather was balmy, clear and warm. We spent one night each in Prisoner’s Cove and Little Scorpion, both on Santa Cruz Island. It was nice to be on the hook again! Then we ventured over to Catalina Island where our first anchorage was at Two Harbors, or more specifically, Isthmus. It’s this way-laid-back sandy, dusty small little place that has a 50’s kind of feel to it. We had a bit of a hard time picking up a mooring buoy because they have this special system where you go to the bow and grab this long flexible pole that’s on on a float attached to the buoy, you pull it aboard and keep pulling till you come to a loop in the line, attach to a cleat on the bow, then keep pulling the line till you come to another loop and attach to a cleat on the stern. Of course, we have to try this is a strong headwind. I’m at the bow wrestling the dang thing, but the wind kept blowing us back. Finally Terry and I traded places, I took the helm, and he did the wrestling, a much better arrangement. It’s such a pleasant spot to be in—not very touristy, no shops, just a little store, a restaurant, and a nice beach. I loved it because it’s so quiet! Or maybe I loved Isthmus because of the Buffalo Milk!
On to Avalon, the gem of Santa Catalina Island. Well, it is really very pretty, but it’s a busy busy place. Glass Bottom Boat tours, diving and snorkeling tours, kayaking tours-- lots and lots of tours, and noise and commotion. There were two fishing derbies, a outrigger event and an art festival going on. We walked a lot, we shopped some, we read some. All was fine until Saturday afternoon. Rick needed to dinghy to shore to retrieve his ATM card left in the machine, so Terry went with him. At the dinghy dock things went awry and Terry ended up with one foot on the dock and one foot on the dinghy. Are you getting a good visual here? After he did the splits and fell into the water and drowned my cell phone,  he realized he had a badly pulled muscle in the back of his thigh—is that a hamstring? Anyway, he was in lots of pain by the time he got back to the boat, so alternating  ice-massaging and warm compresses, and liberal doses of various pain killers were called for. Then Rick was putting our dinghy back up the davit for us, when a splice failed and the dinghy dumped back into the water. It was not one of our better days.
We decided to spend another day in Avalon while Terry recuperated. Endeavor left very early headed directly to San Diego. Their calendar is filled with some fun and family things and they needed to get moving. I played nurse for Terry, and then took the water taxi ashore to get a few supplies. We leave tomorrow morning for Newport, CA. The Channel Islands have not been boring! Was it better this time? Yes, because Buffalo Milk and The Channel Islands make a great combo! (And add some whipped cream and nutmeg on top of mine please).

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