Point San Pablo to Castro Point Row 2/20/11

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I took advantage of the one sunny day on Presidents Day weekend and rowed from Point San Pablo Yacht Harbor down to Castro Point and back again.

I took the very funky frontage road off I-580 that runs along the west shore, then over the end of the point to the Yacht Harbor.  It gets worse every year, with huge muddy potholes large enough to have their own zip codes.

A photo from last year's visit, looking west from the road over the point.

A photo from last year's visit, looking east from the road to the Point San Pablo Yacht Harbor.

Once at the beach, I decided that rather than risk getting stuck I would just drag the wherry down to the water.

Dew sublimating off burned timbers as rowed past the ruined whaling station at the point.

Rounding the point and another ruined pier.

I rowed past the East Brother Lighthouse, then pulled up on the beach for a break.

Heading south towards Point Molate is Winehaven, an abandoned winery and WWII Navy base.  100 years ago it was the largest winery on the West Coast for 12 years - until Prohibition shut it down.

Not a lot of brick castles with crenelated towers in Richmond!

A somewhat exaggerated view of Winehaven at its peak.

This gaff-rigged schooner was towing a dinghy, and I thought the view of it with military jets in formation above was interesting.

This is Point Castro and the base of the Richmond - San Rafael bridge, so I didn't row any further into the restricted zone, just turned around and headed back north.

I decided to row between the two Brothers and get a good look at the lighthouse, now a trendy and expensive B&B.

Here's a panorama assembled from two photos.

The tide was turning from slack high tide to ebb as I rowed between the islands, with some interesting tidal rips pulling me through.

A photo from the east, showing the clouds beginning to move in during the afternoon.

Another shot of the ruined whaling station as I head east around Point San Pablo.

I rowed against the ebb tide, past the whaling station and Point San Pablo Yacht Harbor.  There is another yacht harbor around the small point near the Chevron refinery.  I went about halfway to the landfill point you can see in this photo, then went with the tide back to the beach and pulled my boat out.

A very old aerial photo showing the Yacht Harbor built by sinking hulks out into the bay, and Point San Pablo with sardine and fish factories before the whaling station was built in the 50's.

Here's a photo from the 1970's showing the whaling station at the end of the point before it burned.

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