Skip to main content

Pebble Beach Landfall

Weather interrupts our passage from Juan de Fuca to San Diego and we find ourselves anchored just beyond the kelp in the prosperous shadow of the Pebble Beach golf course. Coming from the sea, one never knows how the natives will react. We know how jealously they guard beaches on Long Island, so we half expect a greeting of dimpled artillery launched from the seventh hole; we’re well within

Weather interrupts our passage from Juan de Fuca to San Diego and we find ourselves anchored just beyond the kelp in the prosperous shadow of the Pebble Beach golf course. Coming from the sea, one never knows how the natives will react. We know how jealously they guard beaches on Long Island, so we half expect a greeting of dimpled artillery launched from the seventh hole; we’re well within range. But a swimmer on a surfboard, elderly and fit, assures us that we can safely go ashore and even (carefully) walk the links. So we land at the Stillwater Yacht Club and enter a world as foreign to us as a Mexican fishing camp on the Baja peninsula.

Our ragged shore party is soon surrounded by people the likes of whom we’ve never seen before: women, thin and exquisite, glowing with a moonlight pallor that is almost frightening; men, equally exquisite, coiffed, manicured and perfumed, their faces lit an unearthly orange by artificial tans.

As we wander the grounds and marvel at the price of T-shirts in the pro shop, the faces are welcoming and pretend not to notice our faded clothes, gritty fingernails and dearth of fashion accessories.

Our walk to Carmel along 17-Mile-Drive, a road wholly unsuited to pedestrians, takes us past houses with names—Wit’s End, Pinewood Edge, Lucky Strike—and we witness a parade of fenders and chrome as impressive as the diamonds in the resort’s gift shop. We pick up the Carmel Pine Cone and read the police blotter for light entertainment. (We’re used to Baltimore.)

Back at The Lodge, the doorman invites us in to peek at a wedding. On the lawn we see the happy couple exchanging vows with our boat, Momo, perfectly at ease in the background. Later, aboard another boat, we meet a resident who offers us the use of his Mercedes SUV so we can tour the area. We decline the offer, but change our minds the next day, only to learn that he’s left for his Nevada ranch. When we leave Pebble Beach, we take with us an unexpected fondness for this place, and steel ourselves for San Diego. – Bernard Heise & Michelle Elvy

Related

00-LEAD-210918_11HR_AZIMUT48HRS_AMO_00411

11th Hour Racing Team's Green Mission

“I’ll admit, it’s still hard to watch the boat leave the dock sometimes,” says former Volvo Ocean Race sailor Mark Towill. Since meeting during a Transpac campaign over 15 years ago, he and his teammate Charlie Enright have sailed thousands of miles together aboard two Volvo ...read more

D61_JKELAGOPIAN-3

Boat Review: Dufour 61

Dufour, long one of France’s most well-respected builders, has been producing sailboats in La Rochelle since the dawn of fiberglass boatbuilding. Having recently merged with another La Rochelle-based builder, Fountaine Pajot, Dufour has now joined other European mass-production ...read more

m138123_14_00_210609_TORE02_SE_2152_2504-2048x

The Ocean Race to be “Climate Positive”

The 2023 Ocean Race intends to be one of the world’s first climate positive sporting events, offsetting more greenhouse gasses than are produced. The two-fold effort means cutting emissions by 75 percent and investing in ocean projects that sequester carbon and restore ocean ...read more

01-LEAD-Ancients-3-2048x

Cruising Lake Superior

Almost anywhere a sailor drops the hook someone else has been there before. We are hardly ever the first. That remote Maine harbor without a soul in sight: there’s a lobster trap. The south coast of Newfoundland: the crumbling remains of a fisherman’s cabin lie hidden among the ...read more

01-LEAD-Tablet-Holder-4

Fabricating a Tablet Holder

During the pandemic, I was stuck aboard Guiding Light, a Lagoon 410, in St. Lucia for over a month. During that time, as I worked on the boat, I started by doing a spring cleaning in my spares locker and finding some parts and material that I forgot I had. As soon as I saw them, ...read more

00-LEAD-AdobeStock_486335954

A Catamaran for a New Era

Anacortes, Washington, is an unassuming sea-salty town near the San Juan Islands of Puget Sound, and the Betts Boats yard is easy for a passerby to miss. But within Betts’ facilities, the dawn of an era in Pacific Northwest production boatbuilding could be breaking with the ...read more

X5_plus_slide-01

Boat Review: Xquisite X5 Plus

The Xquisite X5 Plus is a major update of the boat that SAIL awarded Best Large Multihull and Best Systems titles in 2017. The changes were not just cosmetic, but genuine improvements to an already fine boat, making it lighter, faster and less dependent on fuel. The builder’s ...read more

01-LEAD-AdobeStock_40632434

Cruising: Offshore Prep Talk

When I began preparing Minx, my 1987 Pearson 39-2, for extended Caribbean cruising, I had to balance my champagne wish list against my beer budget. Every buck spent on the boat before leaving would be one less frosty can of Carib down in the islands. On the other hand, I had to ...read more