The SEA RAVEN is a two masted 21 gross ton schooner which makes extended overnight cruises on the Northern and Central California Coast and on San Francisco Bay. She is similar in design to the coasting schooners that carried on commerce off the East, Gulf, and West coasts of America throughout the 19th century and up until the 1930’s.  In those days before railroads and highways there were no container trucks, No Fed-Ex, no UPS; instead, coastal schooners were the delivery system. Schooners were also employed in the fishing, lumber & freight-hauling business as well as delivery of passengers.

Aboard SEA RAVEN everyone “learns the ropes” by hands on doing

SEA RAVEN continues this traditional form of sailing while also providing coastal cruising experience to Bay area sailors by making day and overnight cruises on San Francisco Bay, and offshore 3 – 4 day cruises on the Northern and Central California Coast and annually a two – three week cruise to the Channel Islands off Santa Barbara. Berthed in Brisbane Marina, Brisbane, California, she is 45 ft 9 in (length on deck) and 57 ft 3 in (sparred length), spreading nearly a thousand (992 sf) square feet of sail, and also has a reliable 75 hp diesel auxiliary engine.

Crew reefs foresail as wind pipes up in the PM aboard SEA RAVEN

She currently has complete overnight accommodations for up to 6 passengers and 2 crew (besides the skipper) and has been authorized by the Maritime Administration to operate as a Small Passenger Vessel on all California Rivers, Lakes, Bays and Sounds, and all California Coastal Waters.

SEA RAVEN reaching Southward  on SF Bay, city and Oakland Bay Bridge

SHARED EXPENSES COASTAL CRUISING: SEA RAVEN makes day cruises on San Francisco Bay, to Angel Island, and  overnight cruises to Clipper Cove (Treasure Island) and Richardson Bay (Sausalito) to anchor out overnight. She also makes 3 day coastal cruises to Drakes Bay, the Farallone Islands, and Half Moon Bay, as well as longer cruises to the Channel Islands in Southern California. Participation is open to all who want to join the crew in maintaining the schooner and keeping her ready for sea.

CRUISING CREDITS: The ship holds regular monthly work and sailing days, and for each 8 hour day of helping the crew (lunch is provided) maintain the schooner,  one 24 hour day of overnight cruising is earned. A crew member that shows up on three Saturday or Sunday work days earns 3 cruising credits and is then qualified to make a three day overnight cruise out through the Golden Gate to Drake’s Bay, the Farallon Islands, Half Moon Bay and back through the Golden Gate to SF Bay.  The only additional costs on any cruise will be the crew members share of the food and diesel used on that cruise.

INEXPENSIVE FUN: It is inexpensive and loads of fun, to find out more contact: Captain Alan Hugenot (Alan@captainhugenot.com), or Chief Mate Maciej (Michael) Grebowicz (maciejgrebowicz@gmail.com) Michael organizes the crew.

SEA RAVEN’S Master (and owner) Capt. Alan Hugenot, USCG Licensed Master, Inspected Coastwise Passenger Vessels, Steam Motor & Sail, since 1988.

Schooner SEA RAVEN is privately owned and membership in the crew is solely at the Owner’s (Captain Hugenot’s) prerogative,…. but we’re pretty easy going, so long as you are also.

Schooner American Eagle (1929), a typical early 20th century Coasting schooner similar to those that SEA RAVEN is patterned after.

COASTING SCHOONERS: These eco-friendly coastwise commercial vessels evolved in 19th century America to take advantage of the diurnal breezes that occur every day in coastal waters. The on-shore sea breeze blows in daily, starting about 11 am, and the nightly offshore breeze blows out to sea nightly but begins about 11 pm, so most people don’t now about it. When you are sailing up or down the coast these beam winds (blowing across the ship) encourage a rig designed to maximize sailing on a beam reach, which is the coasting schooner’s fastest point of sail. The schooner rig uses these on shore and off shore breezes to great advantage sailing well up and down the coasts and going in and out of the small sea port towns to deliver passengers and freight. All done fore free using the winds. Most coasting schooners sail at 6 to 8 knots (7 to 10 miles per hour), but sailing day and night 24 hours becomes a passage of 168 to 240 miles, noon to noon.

SONOMA-MENDOCINO “DOG HOLES”: On the Redwood Coast, the Sonoma-Mendocino coast of Northern California the “dog hole” outports used by the logging schooners are difficult to maneuver into and out of under sail alone, and so the Steam Schooner evolved as a hybrid on this coast to serve the lumber trade on the Redwood Coast just North from San Francisco during the 19th century. Steam Schooners used their sails for long distance transport, and their steam engines for close in maneuvering into the “dog holes” (not enough room for a dog to turn around).

MODERN SCHOONERS HAVE MOTORS: Like the Steam Schooners, SEA RAVEN uses her sails for the long passages and then has an auxiliary 24 hp solar/electric inboard motor & battery system for maneuvering into the “dog hole” outports of the San Mateo, and Sonoma-Mendocino coast. One of Captain Hugenot’s favorite “Dog Hole” outports is Caspar, just a little South of Fort Bragg, CA.

Schooners have always been fast, maneuverable and require only a minimum of crew. Some of the fastest sailing vessels the world has seen were schooners and it became the rig of choice in America for yachts of the rich and famous during the early part of the 20th century.

Although the modern schooners replicate the great sailing traditions of the past, the use of modern materials and equipment makes them much stronger, safer, and easier to operate and maintain than earlier schooners.

SEA RAVEN, built in 1972, is not intended to be a replica of any particular vessel from the past, it may have the grace and beauty of a two masted gaff headed schooner, with bowsprit, clipper bow, and trailer boards. But, it is also a well designed (William Garden, n.a.) modern vessel.

Below one finds all the modern devices the make today’s cruising so interesting, pleasant and safe, yet still reminiscent of the yachting in grand style of the past.

Sea Raven’s well appointed interior (those are sails stowed on the starboard pilot berth.

The SEA RAVEN’S hull and rig were designed in March 1970, as the “Porpoise” design no. 574, by Canadian Naval Architect, the late, William Garden. The design concept was to be a world cruiser, able to store immense amounts of supplies required for distant waters, and yet to be a real home on the ocean, designed to carry her crew in comfort wherever they may wish to wander. The SEA RAVEN was then built in 1972 by Tom Rigby at Anderson Cove, East Sooke, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada.

HULL DESIGN: Ruggedly built but without excessive weight, she is registered with a cargo capacity of 21 gross tons (18 net tons) Her frames are 1-1/4” by 2-1/4” steam bent oak on 12” centerlines, she is strip planked with 1-3/8” yellow cedar Sparred Length 57′-3″, LOA 45’-9”, LWL 33”-4″, BEAM 13′-4″ Draft 5’-8”, Dry (light) displacement of 34,000 lbs, which includes her  BALLAST 8,700 lbs. (outside), 1,000 lbs, (inside). Fully loaded for a world cruise she displaces about 60,000 lbs. FUEL CAPACITY. 200 Imperial gal (2oo gal., WATER CAPACITY. 240 gal. , BUNKS 9, She is also equipped with a 10 ft rowing dinghy, and a USCG certified 15 person life raft.

SAIL AREA (992 ft design working sail), 1,080 sf of cruising sail, including Gaff Mainsail = 462 sf, Gaff Foresail = 300 sf, Genoa = 230 sf, Fore Staysail = 87.5 sf.

Schooner Sea Raven boils along at hull speed of 7.7 knots in a 25 knot breeze, under reefed fore, double reefed main and 2/3 genoa.

SEA RAVEN MYTHOLOGY Celtic People once believed that when someone dies, a raven carries their soul to the land of the dead. But, sometimes something so bad happen in the life just ended and a terrible sadness is carried with it and the soul can’t rest. Sometimes, if the need is great, the raven can bring that soul back to put the wrong things right.”

The SEA RAVEN is such a sanctuary of healing energy, where mediums have often delivered messages from the departed. Also,  like the mythological celtic raven SEA RAVEN also occasionally carries souls to the land of the dead, by performing AT SEA ASH SCATTERINGS of the deceased. The Farallone Islands are a favorite place for this activity.

The SEA RAVEN in HAIDA MYTHOLOGY: the Raven (Yelth or Hoya) is known to be a complex reflection of one’s own self. Often described as a “trickster” Raven can be a magician, a transformer, a potent creative force, and always a cultural hero. He is responsible for creating Haida Gwaii (the islands of the Haida), releasing the sun from its tiny box and making the stars and the moon. In one story he released the first humans from a clam shell found on the beach, at Rose Spit (the Northeast Point of Graham Island). Raven also acquired such things as fresh water, salmon and the house for humans.

Captain Hugenot, and Maciej (Michael) Grenowicz, Chief Mate in the Schooner’s crew, have each sailed on separate cruises to the fabled islands of Haida Gwaii.