On one of the smallest islands in California’s least-visited national park, my daughter, Grace, and I went in search of splendid isolation. We found carnage, heard shrieks and wandered the topography of an acrophobe’s worst nightmare.
I recommend it — so long as you know what you’re getting into.
The island is Anacapa, part of Channel Islands National Park. To get there from Los Angeles, we got up early and drove an hour to Oxnard’s Channel Islands Harbor, where concessionaire Island Packers runs daily boat trips to Anacapa, about 12 miles out.
On the way, there’s a good chance you’ll spot dolphins alongside your vessel, as we did.
Question: Is this really a good time to board a ship?
Answer: The Vanguard, which usually can carry 81 passengers, is now capped at about 30 passengers, whose positions are closely monitored by the small crew. No more than nine people at a time are on the upper deck. Masks are required. Passengers are urged to use and carry hand sanitizer.
We went on a Monday, looking for day-trip consolation after the pandemic trashed our plans for a road trip up the coast. (Though many hotels and campgrounds have reopened, state officials continue to warn that Californians should avoid gatherings and “should not travel significant distances for pleasure or recreation.”)
Our trip took us less than 70 miles from