I just heard that a sailboat went aground near here this weekend. It was just a few hundred yards from where I was surfing on Saturday. Here’s a link to the local tv coverage WTMJ4 . A local surfer, Alex Guerrero donned his wet suit when he saw the boat and made his way out to help in the rescue.
Alex is a great guy. He also owns his own sail boat. He works for Cramer Marine and I’ve known him for several years. The ironic thing is that I was just talking to Alex’s boss, Gene Cramer on Sunday about how dangerous that very area is to boaters, how I can stand on large boulders with only knee high water over them that are 400 yards or more off shore. Earlier this year I was out in the line up waiting for waves and a large sail boat, a ketch if I remember correctly, was sailing right towards me. It seemed that all of a sudden the skipper must have seen me and he tacked right out into the lake immediately.
The boat that went aground was a boat that had been in the Cramer Marine yard for sometime as the owners worked hard to restore it into sea worthy condition. Their plan was to sail around the world. This may be a picture of the boat before it was in Cramer Marine Chinook 34. I’ll have to check with Gene to be sure if that is the very boat. If it’s not it is a boat that looks just like it. I found it on Cramer Marine’s Chinook owner’s page.
The area where the boat went down is near these coordinates: 43deg 3mins 57 seconds N, 87 degs 51 mins 59 seconds W. It is near what is known as North Point and use to be marked by a light house on the bluff above the point. The light house has been restored as an historical site but is not functional as navigation marker.
UPDATE 10/31/07 10:00 AM: Joe and I just got back from a surf check and saw the boat. It is hard aground just a few yards north of North Point. It’s on it’s port side in about 3 feet of water facing in shore with a jib still hanked on and partially up. We couldn’t see if the hull had been holed and it didn’t have the look of a lot of water inside. The wind is supposed to back around to the west then north west today as a cold front drops through. This could be good for the wreck, however recovery is going to be very hard. It may be too far in and could eventually end up onshore and cut up. What a sad end that would be.
I probably posted the wrong image in that link above about the very boat. But at least you get an idea of what the boat looks (looked) like.