Catalina Island Circumnavigation: Re-Cap

54 miles. 3 girls. 3 days. 1 unforgettable journey and adventure.

Two months ago, SeaVibes team members Jaysea, Natalie and Emily made the bold decision that they wanted to take on the challenge of paddling around the island of Catalina. After months of planning, training and preparing, the three set out on their quest with high hopes and calm seas. Their original plan was to cover the distance (54 miles in total) across the span of four days, pushing themselves beyond their limits, as well as bringing awareness to the amount of plastic waste that is used and that ends up in the ocean. As part of their preparation for the journey, Natalie, Jaysea and Emily took care to take and use almost exclusively reusable materials, limiting the need for single-use plastics as much as possible. 

They did all of this with the amazing support of companies like Sanük, AvaSol, Progenex and Changing Tides Foundation

On the second day of the journey, a predicted hurricane swell threatened their safety and forced the trio to skip a stop and double their distance truncating it by an entire day. Despite this unforeseen hurdle, they girls forged ahead with positivity and all kinds of paddle power, knocking out an epic 20 miles in one day, after already having paddled a lengthy 18 the day before. Crystal clear and sea foam-colored water, warm skies and friendly sea animals encouraged the 'sea sisters' along on their trek, and they soaked up the beauty of their surroundings. 

After spending their second night with friends in Avalon, the girls found themselves in the home stretch of their venture. A brilliant sunrise greeted them the next morning and, along with glassy seas and some serious stoke, guided them along the home stretch. 

Read their third and final log below for all the details!


Journal entry 8/10/18

The last Day!

Before we talk about the last day, we have to talk about the last night. We had an amazing dinner at Johnny’s house then decided to talk a walk downtown to see if the predicted swell picked up. We got there about half an hour from high tide and the swells were rolling in and bouncing off the sea wall sending a wave back out into the harbor. Johnny brought a board and Fisher and Jaysea jumped in. Fish caught a couple and then passed the board to Jaysea who killed it. It was so fun to watch her out there! We got home around 9:30 that night and passed out!

We woke up early this morning to the sound of our alarms at 5am. We were out the door and headed for the pier at 5:40 ready to grab our boards and get to it. The sunrise was gorgeous and we followed the rays of sun as they lit up the water creating a perfect path out of the harbor. 

Jaysea and I got in the zone within minutes, determined to get to Long Point as quick as possible to avoid any westerly winds. Emily was cruising behind us and we all regrouped once we got to Long Point. We knew once we got there, the hardest part was over and that we’d be in the home stretch. Once again the island’s beauty captivated us and we paddled, paddled, paddled toward Blue Caverns. 

We LOVE the caves and we were so excited to arrive there, for one, because they’re insanely gorgeous and two, because that meant home was right around the corner.

We paddled through the caves and of course decided to do a cliff jump. We bailed on our boards and swam to the rocks to climb up to the ledge. Jaysea jumped first, then me and Emily conquered her fear of heights and took the plunge.

We left the caves soon after and the stoke and endorphins set in. We were almost there! 1 mile to Two Harbors. We had almost come full circle. We couldn’t believe it.

As we rounded the point the notorious “isthmus fan” turned on and we hit the first winds of the entire trip. We were so blessed by the ocean and wind the entire trip, and as the wind smashed the water in our faces, we were so thankful. We were so happy, so excited.

Our friends and family gathered on land and sea to welcome and congratulate us as we entered our home harbor. We felt so much love. So much gratitude. The local lifeguards sprayed their fire hose creating a bridge of water as we entered the beach. There’s no words to describe the joy we felt. It was amazing how we felt zero pain from the paddle. All the sore muscles and ribs were no longer and replaced by pure bliss. It was almost surreal and hard to fathom what we had accomplished. But we did it!

54 miles. 3 girls. 3 days. 1 unforgettable journey and adventure. 

it was so sweet to see all our people waiting on the beach with love and hugs for us. They say it takes a village and there’s no way we could have done it without all the support from our friends, family and sponsors. 

Sitting here now, tonight, after sharing a meal and conversation together, we are all so exhausted but so filled with love for everything this paddle manifested. An amazing island, a beautiful ocean, incredible friends, and an experience we’ll never forget!