It was a clear, sunny day when we departed Santa Barbara, and we had a fantastic sail across to the Channel Islands. With just the headsail up, we were flying along nicely in a steady 20-knot sea breeze that blew until the sun went down. Santa Cruz Island is the largest of the group of steep, craggy isles that lie on the south side of the Santa Barbara Channel. We anchored in Pelican Cove, a pocket-size crevice in the sheer cliffs that make up the north coast of the island. The anchorage is exposed to weather from the north, but even a mild westerly swell wrapped around and in to our spot, giving us a slightly rolly night. Pelican Cove has no beach, so getting ashore is hazardous. Instead, we pumped up our inflatable kayak and explored the bay from the water, paddling among dramatic caves and sea arches.