Swells, whipping wind and overnight rain met sailors competing in the 67th annual Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race that that is usually a calm jaunt down the coast to Mexico.
"From 6 o'clock on, it was hold on and don't fall over," said Dennis Jensch, who sailed on his boat called Patience.
Jensch said winds reached up to 38 knots and the rain was harder than he had ever seen before. At its peak, he couldn't see the end of his boat.
The first two boats to arrive in Ensenada after a Friday morning start were a pair of trimarans, who finished the 125-nautical mile trip within two minutes of each other.
The Orion arrived after 7 hours 40 minutes and 38 seconds, followed by the Mighty Merloe after 7:42.23. .
After correcting for handicaps, their times will be compared to other finishers to determine a winner.
Only eight boats out of about 170 had not yet arrived by noon Saturday.
— Emily Foxhall and Jeremiah Dobruck