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Old 10-18-2014, 01:07 AM   #1
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Seattle to San Francisco

I tried to find this topic in another post but could not find what I was looking for, sorry if it is a repeat.
We are still looking at different boats and are thinking of expanding our range to include Oregon and Washington. We are planning on keeping any boat we find in the San Francisco Bay Area and was wondering how big of a trip it would be to bring the boat down the coast to SF from either state at 6-8 knts? To big of a trip? Any advice/experience would be greatly appreciated Thanks for the help as always
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Old 10-18-2014, 01:16 AM   #2
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I tried to find this topic in another post but could not find what I was looking for, sorry if it is a repeat.
We are still looking at different boats and are thinking of expanding our range to include Oregon and Washington. We are planning on keeping any boat we find in the San Francisco Bay Area and was wondering how big of a trip it would be to bring the boat down the coast to SF from either state at 6-8 knts? To big of a trip? Any advice/experience would be greatly appreciated Thanks for the help as always
At that speed, it's a long slow trip but much depends on the boat and crew. Things do get difficult as we get into October and then November and finding weather windows is difficult. Most of the area one can make it from port to port during daylight but at those speeds there are some sections that isn't possible.
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Old 10-18-2014, 07:32 AM   #3
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There has been a lot of discussion on this exact subject here lately, and more in the archives. These two threads will help point you to others as well:

Sailor headed south in a Trawler. Help!

San Juan's in late October
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:41 AM   #4
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Not a big deal with capable boat and proper crew. My boat typically runs at 8.5 knots, 24/7 when en route. Once we spent 7 days at sea traveling 1200 nm without landing, or even ground anchoring (we did sea anchor a few nights for fishing purposes). Your trip will be relatively easy -- down hill and short enough duration that you can find a reliable weather window. Spend some time first getting to know your boat and testing/proving its major systems.
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Old 10-18-2014, 10:26 AM   #5
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As an option if you find the right boat and it will fit in the budget, we purchased a boat in SF this year and had a delivery captain bring it to Seattle. Cost was approximately $5k for Captain and Crew (plus fuel, etc that will be constant no matter who is running it).

I considered bringing it myself but the issue, for me, is that you really need to find weather windows. So you need to be able schedule wise to wait for a window and then leave immediately. You also need to be ok staying for another extended period at port if the window closes (or going home and returning). My boat sat in Alemeda for 4 weeks before they could depart, 5 days in Bodega and then another 5 days in Newport in route.
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Old 10-18-2014, 02:07 PM   #6
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Thanks guys (& gals) for the help. Those older threads really helped and then took me to the Bayliner 5788 trip thread which is exactly what I had in mind. Read and watched almost the entire trip this morning, it's like I've already done it (ha). It seems to be a bit longer than the 7 days I was hoping for, especially with the weather.
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Old 10-18-2014, 03:47 PM   #7
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Thanks guys (& gals) for the help. Those older threads really helped and then took me to the Bayliner 5788 trip thread which is exactly what I had in mind. Read and watched almost the entire trip this morning, it's like I've already done it (ha). It seems to be a bit longer than the 7 days I was hoping for, especially with the weather.
Maybe I'm the wuss here, or maybe I've just been out in enough hair raising weather and learned from it.

If you let a schedule drive the trip you will get into seas that are very unplesant.

I'm not saying you'll die, or sink your boat, or anything that drastic. What im saying is if you are planning this as a "gotta do it during my time off" thing, you will make desisions that looking back you wish you did not make.

Just keep that in mind. You can leave your boat in any harbor along the way and arrange transportation home. Then you can finish the trip, or move the boat further towards your destination later.
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Old 10-18-2014, 04:01 PM   #8
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Maybe I'm the wuss here, or maybe I've just been out in enough hair raising weather and learned from it.

If you let a schedule drive the trip you will get into seas that are very unplesant.

I'm not saying you'll die, or sink your boat, or anything that drastic. What im saying is if you are planning this as a "gotta do it during my time off" thing, you will make desisions that looking back you wish you did not make.

Just keep that in mind. You can leave your boat in any harbor along the way and arrange transportation home. Then you can finish the trip, or move the boat further towards your destination later.


I think if you keep Kevin's advice in mind, you'll be fine. It's more unpleasant than dangerous, but hours and days of unpleasant rapidly becomes miserable.

But that said, if the timing is right, I would be glad to help.
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Old 10-18-2014, 05:57 PM   #9
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Maybe I'm the wuss here, or maybe I've just been out in enough hair raising weather and learned from it.

If you let a schedule drive the trip you will get into seas that are very unplesant.

I'm not saying you'll die, or sink your boat, or anything that drastic. What im saying is if you are planning this as a "gotta do it during my time off" thing, you will make desisions that looking back you wish you did not make.

Just keep that in mind. You can leave your boat in any harbor along the way and arrange transportation home. Then you can finish the trip, or move the boat further towards your destination later.
Another big X100 ditto from me. When are you thinking of doing this?
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Old 10-18-2014, 06:24 PM   #10
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CMA, I was on that trip from Seattle to Stockton on the 5788. We had originally planned on 6 days but ended up doing it in 9 due to weather delays. We ran faster than what you're talking about, so factor that into your scheduling.

Got any specific questions? Fire away or PM me.
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Old 10-18-2014, 08:49 PM   #11
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Regardless, I guarantee you'll find the waters in the San Francisco estuary and the California Delta to be enjoyable, once you get your boat here.

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Old 10-19-2014, 01:49 AM   #12
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Portage Bay to San Francisco

Total distance about 843 kn miles, total time running 24/7 5 days. That's at 7 knts. Current from Neah Bay down coast North south 1/2 knt, Winds normally out of the North West. I've had as high as 47knts, usually high teens to mid twenties. But sometime mirror smooth. Lots of places above Eureka to overnight in a harbor . Noyo Harbor and Bodega Bay and possibly Drakes Bay are all that's left below Eureka. Noyo has limited space and a tricky entrance. This is a lonely trip without much traffic. A delivery skipper I know just brought down a stabilized 65' Hatteras LRC in a little over 6 day's running hard 9knts with perfect conditions running 24/7. They ran 20 plus miles off the coast. I think the best way is to harbor hop spending at least 10 days or more. You can count on two days to Neah Bay from Seattle's Lake Washington. Neah Bay to the Columbia is a 24hr overnight run. From the Columbia down it depends on where you stop or if you stop.
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Old 10-19-2014, 08:27 AM   #13
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We just came in the other direction - SF to Seattle. SF to Neah Bay was a straight 3.5 day run at about 8.5 kts average. We had identified bailout points at Bodega Bay, Crescent City, Coos Bay, Newport. There are others, but these seemed the easiest to get into in a bigger boat, and if you are going in it's because the weather is bad, and if the weather is bad the bars are likely to be bad. After Neah Bay we did two day hops to Seattle stopping in Port Angeles for the night.

All the advice we got mimics what others have said here. Watch you weather window and get as far as you can (or as far as you want if you are port hopping). Then be prepared to sit out for a while waiting for the next window. The longer a window you want, the longer you might have to wait.
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Old 10-19-2014, 01:05 PM   #14
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Thank you guys. This seems to be a "BIGGER" trip that I may not have time for. We have been looking at a lot of boats but I think purchasing 1 in the Seattle/Washington area may be a little much for me unless I get a "Great" deal. And then, I might take Bradenvlp's option and hire a delivery crew. Being self employed, 1 week is all I can get away for at a time.
Plus, if I went to Neah Bay, I would have to stay and fish for a day. That place is probably my favorite childhood memory fishing with my dad in the early 80's. The best fishing I ever did, and that includes Alaska and Mexico I told him about the possibility of making that trip from SEA to SF and he got all excited. Someday - just for fun?
Also, any threads or advice for a Los Angeles to SF trip. There are a bunch of boats for sail down there too. Thanks again, great help and advice
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Old 10-19-2014, 02:02 PM   #15
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Thank you guys. This seems to be a "BIGGER" trip that I may not have time for. We have been looking at a lot of boats but I think purchasing 1 in the Seattle/Washington area may be a little much for me unless I get a "Great" deal. And then, I might take Bradenvlp's option and hire a delivery crew. Being self employed, 1 week is all I can get away for at a time.
Plus, if I went to Neah Bay, I would have to stay and fish for a day. That place is probably my favorite childhood memory fishing with my dad in the early 80's. The best fishing I ever did, and that includes Alaska and Mexico I told him about the possibility of making that trip from SEA to SF and he got all excited. Someday - just for fun?
Also, any threads or advice for a Los Angeles to SF trip. There are a bunch of boats for sail down there too. Thanks again, great help and advice

You know, you don't have to make the whole trip at one time. There is really no difference between leaving your boat in one harbor vs another.

You could go a ways, eat up your time and go home for awhile. Then if the weather looks good, make a snap decision, and go move the boat a few more harbors down the line.
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Old 10-19-2014, 02:11 PM   #16
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Thank you guys. This seems to be a "BIGGER" trip that I may not have time for. We have been looking at a lot of boats but I think purchasing 1 in the Seattle/Washington area may be a little much for me unless I get a "Great" deal. And then, I might take Bradenvlp's option and hire a delivery crew. Being self employed, 1 week is all I can get away for at a time.
Plus, if I went to Neah Bay, I would have to stay and fish for a day. That place is probably my favorite childhood memory fishing with my dad in the early 80's. The best fishing I ever did, and that includes Alaska and Mexico I told him about the possibility of making that trip from SEA to SF and he got all excited. Someday - just for fun?
Also, any threads or advice for a Los Angeles to SF trip. There are a bunch of boats for sail down there too. Thanks again, great help and advice
I still wouldn't eliminate Seattle from consideration. A delivery crew is a good choice. There is one more way to do it too.

You take advantage of it being purchased in Seattle. Easiest you will ever get it there. Enjoy it. Use it in that area the first week you have.

Then maybe next trip head to Neah Bay and end up in Gray's Harbor, leaving it at Westport.

The next time you have a long weekend, go on down and explore the Columbia River, then leave it in Astoria.

From there you might make it down given a week off with two long weekends and you're in San Francisco.

Honestly, if I bought one in Seattle, I'd not really pre-determine when it would be home but just enjoy the trip home as much as possible. Others are working hard to get their boat up to Seattle to spend some time.

Now, if that doesn't appeal to you, the cost of a delivery crew is really small when considered as part of the overall cost. It could even be used as a final negotiating point to get price reduced to at least partially cover it.
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Old 10-19-2014, 02:26 PM   #17
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I wouldn't worry about buying in Seattle, or San Diego, it's not that big a deal to have it delivered. I would have a smaller boat trucked, over forty' I'd move it on it's bottom, if it was a solid boat. Not that you can't run a smaller boat up and down the coast, it's just easier on the boat to truck it.
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Old 10-19-2014, 11:38 PM   #18
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Thanks everybody. Never thought of leaving it from port to port on the way down. A great excuse to hit Neah Bay for a few days This forum is awesome!!!!! GFC, sounds like that trip truly was a "trip of a lifetime"
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:12 AM   #19
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Also, any threads or advice for a Los Angeles to SF trip. There are a bunch of boats for sail down there too.

I've done that trip a couple of times in sailboats (motorsailing). It can get sloppy the first part of the trip as well as around Points Conception and Arguello. On one trip we had a southerly breeze from Morro Bay to SF along with serious fog (went several hours with 50 foot visibility at night and no radar). There are lots of commercial fish boats around Monterey; if you hail them on 16 they will usually advise you on traffic and weather conditions. Advice on waiting for weather windows is worth heeding; we were on a schedule and just had to grit our teeth and hang on when it got nasty. By the way, this was in late June so the weather wasn't too bad.

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Old 10-20-2014, 10:18 AM   #20
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There was a good thread here with link to a nice blog just recently on the LA-SF subject, with plenty of discussion.
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