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Crissy - launch near North Tower
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happybob



Joined: 14 Apr 2001
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 7:49 am    Post subject: Crissy - launch near North Tower Reply with quote

On certain deep fog days the wind is always ripping near the North Tower of the Golden Gate, but you can't get there across the Bay from the launch at Crissy. Seems like if you could launch near there it would be great. Is there any legal/safe launch near the North Tower?

Thanks
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89Spring



Joined: 24 Jul 2003
Posts: 241

PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fort Baker, not that easy of a launch. Very gusty shifty at the launch and lots of current. Most people park on the east of the yacht club and walk down the rocks. Wait for a puff and you are off, or slog/swim to the wind line. The current rips through here and has some back eddies, this is not a beginner/intermediate launch.
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victor



Joined: 03 Aug 1998
Posts: 581

PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

almost anyone that has sailed from there more than a dozen times has a horror story. the currents can get very strong and if for some reason you miss the launch you can end up miles away. getting in an out on the jetty is dicey, too. otherwise the sailing itself is great
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happybob



Joined: 14 Apr 2001
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2009 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the feedback. I figured there was a reason why no one really ever launches from there, but I thought I'd ask. I'll stick to the slog from Crissy. Smile
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streetsailing



Joined: 10 Apr 2000
Posts: 234
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2009 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over the past 18yrs, I also have had a need to launch closer to the bridge due to light winds down the city front.
There are several possibilities but one must know the currents and tides very well before taking that leap of faith.
Another absolute necessity is a floaty board. Something that you can schlog in almost no wind. If you take these precautions, you'll have a blast. In my case, at 200lbs, it's usually a 5.0 or 5.7 and a 100liter board.
You can launch from Fort Point itself. Watch out for angry surfers. Or better is the beach just west of the warming hut about 100ft from the fishing pier. Preferably at low tide so that you have a beach to return to.
Another possibility is Lefts, which is just east of the fishing pier. Here you must have a floaty board due to the wind shadow. It's also a good place to return to if the tide is too high.
Sail with a buddy and a radio if possible.
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Epenrose



Joined: 05 Nov 1997
Posts: 403

PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Relative to your experience the North Tower is a superb launch.

Usually really quick to get into the wind line, tons of parking and no to little schlog.

Same old advice for any area, don't go further out than you can self rescue in. Know the tides and patterns, keep and eye on the launch and come in way up or downwind depending of a floor or ebb to compensate for the current. You can pretty much get in anywhere with a swim.
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diannesf



Joined: 19 Apr 2005
Posts: 74
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The beaches close to the warming hut at Crissy Field can be great to launch, but over the years people have gotten into trouble. The rangers don't like it if we launch from there, and have threatened to give out big tickets.

Just FYI, because I think it's a stupid rule. It's not posted either, but I know people have gotten hassled. This was at least two years ago though.

Does anyone know if the status has changed in the minds of the rangers?
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 8467
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The North Tower is an absolute dream, favorite spot in the Bay Area. You show up, take a peek at the wind, rig either a 4.7 or 4.2 , or maybe a 5.2 if its light, and then jump in, wind line is two seconds from the launch. No slog , and then dramatic OP when you reach your destination. Yeah, you have to pay attention to the wind line, and tides, but as Epenrose says, its no different than anywhere else.
Boggsman
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victor



Joined: 03 Aug 1998
Posts: 581

PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i've never heard of anyone being hassled for launching anywhere along the city front. not sure of where the warming ht is but i've launched dwonwind of the fishing pier. you ahve to carry our gear across the field.

it's pretty easy to get out when it's flooding becasue the current will take you thorugh the wind shawdow out to the wind line. there are times when it's dead dwonwind but plenty of wind around south tower.

re: No.tower/Ft. Baker. it ain't quite as casual as boggsman might lead us to believe. granted it is probably the best sailing you will find during the right conditions but I witnessed a very experienced sailer launching in flood while there were several guys already out ripping it up. There was a small lull just as he dropped off the rocks and within a 30 seconds he was around the point in the wind shadow. By the time the coast gaurd picked him up a half hour later he was almost to Angel Island. another friend ended up behind alacatraz after drifiting around for a couple of hours. they picked him up and dropped him off at sam's in tiburon so he had to get a taxi back to ft. baker.

personally i have never had a bad time there except the time i dinged a brand new board on the rocks. i don't launch there on a flood.
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Epenrose



Joined: 05 Nov 1997
Posts: 403

PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The warming hut is by the fishing pier on the south side of the bridge, San Francisco side.

I've launched jumping off the pier, no problem, from the beach and all along the stretch and no issue or any problem with the rangers.

On big swell days I often paddle from the pier to surf fort point as the rocks by fort point can be especially challenging when wet, fell once and had a few stitches.

I guess it is all incredibly relative to your experience and what you peg as a dangerous.

Swimming in on the North side is a real pain the ass as is anywhere else in the bay and if you sail anywhere like Embassy then it is a relatively easy launch.

The only place I've found a necessity to have a radio is mid bay sailing from Embassy solo. If you are 5 miles off shore and have a breakdown you can get fairly screwed as there is little to know know traffic. Using and spending money on a radio for Crissy is pretty much a waste of money. Tons of traffic and you can always get in somewhere.
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