Where, oh where has the “Z” mark gone?

For the non-sailors, or just those of you not familiar with Coyote Point YC’s racing program, the Z  mark was a white floating buoy marking the location that we normally start (and sometimes finish) our sail boat races at.  A few weeks ago the buoy broke free from its mooring gear and was reported that an unknown vessel picked up the buoy somewhere around the #8 channel beacon.

So, what to do?  The buoy and its anchoring gear are expensive items.  We contacted all the yacht clubs in the South Bay to see if perhaps one of their members had recovered the buoy.  A member from Sequoia YC thought he saw what might have been a white buoy somewhere in the area of channel beacon #12.  So just in case the report of a boat picking up the buoy was incorrect Mark Liddell and I set out in Mark’s newly acquired Whaler in a death defying salvage mission.  Sorry, different story for another time, we went searching for the lost buoy from CPYC to Redwood City and everywhere in-between.  I’ve contacted the US Coast Guard, Sheriff’s Marine Unit, and every other agency hoping the Z mark buoy would be turned in with no joy.  Retrieving the old Z mark is a lost cause.

Mark and I also dredged Z mark’s location trying to snag and retrieve its chain and anchors, two 22# anchors, with no luck.  I have again dredged with no luck and plan to once more in hope of at least getting the anchors.

Where does that leave us?  Well, we have two buoys in the Club yard which we can use but not the necessary anchors, chain, shackles, bottom paint, etc.  I looked into West Marine possibly sponsoring the mark.  Sounded promising at first but I found out West’s funding for donations and such is gone for the year.  Plus our need probably won’t meet West Marine’s criteria for a donation.  Now we are looking for funds to replace the missing gear.  Staff Commodore Steve Basuino volunteered to donate two smaller anchors which should work fine for the buoy itself, but they are too small for a committee boat to then moor to the buoy.  We would like to go with larger anchors if at all possible keeping it convenient for boats to moor in order to attract boats to serve race committee.  The bigger ticket items we need are bottom paint, chain (min. of 100’ heavy duty and heavy galvanized 3/8”), and of course anchors.  The bigger the better.  If you have any of these items that you’d like to donate it is most appreciated.

In the meantime George Suppes is planning to put out a temporary mark using buckets or jugs and line.

That’s it for now.  Hope to see you all on the water.
Fair Winds,

About Coyote Point Yacht Club

Coyote Point Yacht Club is located at Coyote Point Park in San Mateo, south of the Bay Bridge and north of the San Mateo Bridge. Views of San Francisco and the San Mateo Bridge/Oakland provide a pretty setting for events in the club house and outdoor activities in our backyard. BBQ facilities, showers for men and women, and free ice are available.
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