No doubt I've stayed at Benicia a few times. Very walkable from the marina lots of fun shops to visit and good eats. Even walked up to the Bocci ball courts and spent a few hours playing. Pittsburg totally different program there.
Only warning having had a friend who sailed out of Benicia for years and knowing about the roUck give the north shore line lots of space then some and approach the Benicia marina entrance at a strait in approach for a long way out! Or you'll find the rock and ding up your keel.
I've done the bay a bit... GGAC, Richardson, Angel, Clipper Cove - so I'm looking forward to exploring upriver.It's the week of Labor day... The plan is to leave early morning, and try to make Benicia or Pittsburg by dark. Tall order, but with a flood at 4:35 pm (Carquinez), I should get flushed through the straits if I can get past the Brothers by lunchtime. - or bail out to China Camp / Vallejo. Then probably San Joaquin way for a few days, getting back to Alameda on Saturday... should give us a couple days of relaxation. My nephew is flying out - he was with me last year during the AC, and it was Awesome!I've got a few toys; kayak, dinghy, fishing, etc.... but what things do people wish they'd brought?
So, if you leave Alameda on Sat August 30 at 8am, and avg 5.3 kts, you will be in Benicia by 2pm.
Tide at Richmond is low water at 9am, and at Benicia at 10:55am. So two hours of motoring from Alameda to Richmond, now tide has turned, and will push you all day towards Benicia. image.jpg145.69K4 downloads
And just like MOB, I'd recommend you bring plenty of beer and ice.
Just provision the boat and go, and look at the chart at night to decide where next. I do like to stop at Angel Island for it's beauty, and it's such a short trip from Alameda, but feels much farther away. If you realize you are missing anything, you can just sail (or leave the boat and jump on the ferry) across to Tiberon. Then it's an easy day sail to head up San Pablo bay. Next trip, I'm going to go up the Napa river, right into downtown Napa. Looks doable with 6 feet draft.
Check out the sailing instructions to get up the Napa river. Looks fun
The other was Dylan Winter. His website and video's are just great stuff. You get a really good idea of what sailing in some lesser sailed area's of the UK is like. His summer trip to Scotland is really entertaining, including his complete disrespect for certain motorboats (not old wooden fishing, but fiberglass ones with antennae really bother him http://www.keepturningleft.co.uk/
If Webb or Dylan can't motivate you to get out and sail, I don't know who can....