Santa Barbara Channel Jump Time?

bobswimsbobswims Santa Barbara CACharter Member
edited February 2013 in General Discussion
For those in the know, what are the thoughts on the best jump time when crossing the Santa Barbara Channel heading due south from Santa Cruz Island? Leaving aside the chance of bad weather weather, do people jump at midnight as is done for Catalina? I'm going to swim from Santa Cruz Island toward Santa Barbara in September. Any thoughts?

When I swam Catalina, I failed to execute my sleep plan and paid the price through the night. I am a night owl and would have no problem swimming into the night. I have been told that I can jump whenever I want. I have spoken only to the pilot's wife that runs the business with him, and their experience with channel swimmers appear top be crossings from Anacapa. As the swim from Santa Cruz is typically to Oxnard, I don't know how much info is out there.

Also are their any tidal issues that should be considered which day you swim when swimming from Santa Cruz as there are with Catalina? I am ready to book my date and have the contract in hand. I just want to make sure I have the right time reserved.



  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    edited February 2013
    Bob, I know you know how to contact me off-forum, so this is more for the benefit of others who might be interested.

    - For a Santa Cruz swim, you will increase your chances of success by jumping at night. That's because there is a higher probability of high winds & big seas in the afternoon and early evening, compared to late-night and morning. Of course, on any given day there can be crappy conditions at night, or beautiful conditions in the afternoon.

    - If your boat pilot has only escorted Anacapa swims, he may not be familiar with the notion of night-swimming. Anacapa swimmers can afford to leave at first light, because their swims generally finish before the afternoon winds.

    - One difference between swimming due south from Santa Cruz rather than ENE (toward Oxnard) is that the prevailing winds will be coming across you rather than from behind you.

    - If there are tidal considerations for Catalina, then they would be roughly similar for this swim.

    - From personal experience, I don't recommend swimming on a new moon.
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