Skip navigation

Category Archives: Welcome

Given time, I should be able to figure this out. I hope.

After the transmission repair, it was time to head South again back towards Bahia Concepcion. Dropping the anchor once more in Bahia Santa Inez, we took a couple of days to wait out a bit of blustery weather. Two nights of getting tossed around in my berth later, the winds abated and we up-anchored for an actual sail into Bahia Concepcion!

‘Bout time I got some sailing in.

In caleta Santispac, the northernmost beach in Bahia Coyote:

A throng ashore celebrating Semana Santa, a religio/mystical Catholic Easter thing. Probably a couple thousand people camped along the beach. Nice folks, becoming very quiet at night.

There are a couple of restaurants on the beach too. Afternoon beers at Ana’s place.

We made Santispac our home base for a bit over two weeks with dinghy rides to most of the other beaches in Coyote and a few hitch-hiking adventures into the scenic little town of Mulege (MOO-lah-hay) for beer, groceries and connectivity.

The history of the mission in Mulege:

One of the highlights of our time in Santispac was spotting a juvenile whale shark. I was rowing the dinghy like mad while Pam snapped these shots of the 18+ footer.

We got within twenty feet of this beautiful animal before giving up the effort.

Our anchorage consisted of around 10 boats, and we all got together for a community dinner at Armando’s restaurant. Unfortunately I failed to get a photo of the affair.

I was sorry to have to say goodbye to Santispac and all our good neighbors afloat and ashore, but we have promises to keep, and miles to go before we sleep. 😉

Leaving Bahia Coyote behind we tacked our way North up to the mouth of the bahia, where we turned right and headed straight for San Carlos, 75 miles away. We mostly motored until the wind filled in more from the northwest, allowing us to shut down that durned thing and save a little diesel fuel. About 16 hours later we anchored in Bahia Algodones, just outside of Marina Real.

I can’t wait to do it again. I learned an awful lot about transmissions, watermakers and the goodness of people.

Advertisements

After dreaming about the cruising life for a number of years, the dream became a reality, if only for a few weeks. Almost two years after acquiring Aegean Odyssey, we finally made it across the Sea of Cortez to Baja California Sur.

The responsibilities to our tenants in Tucson would be handled by a guy who’s done work for us in the past, we drained the swimming pool and had the mail put on hold for 30 days, the maximum that the USPS would allow.

Let’s do this!

Arrived in San Carlos in a car filled with a ton of stuff we thought we might need and got in touch with our buddy boaters Virgil and Juanita. They had a few things needing doing before we headed out also, which gave me a little time to make some alterations to the dinghy chaps that would somewhat disguise our brand-new inflatable. Then we waited on a suitable weather window that wouldn’t beat the heck out of us.

The Capitania de puerto in Guaymas had declared that the red flag would be flown for a few days as winds honked out of the North, but we had other diversions while we waited for the flag to be struck. A dock mate was directing a play benefiting the local rescate, so we got 4 tickets to the opening night’s performance.

Messed around with little stuff on the boat for a few more days, then all went quiet on the sea. Red flag gone, and it looks like we’ll be motoring this first leg of the trip, about 70 nautical miles of glassy water.

An overnighter with an early morning arrival at Marina Fonatur in Santa Rosalia, where we’d take some time to provision and explore the town.

It’s a mining town with a bit of history, boasting an Eiffel-designed church. Yep, that Eiffel, the guy with the famous tower in Paris, France.

Got to meet our dock mates during the couple of days we stayed in Santa Rosalia, mostly cruisers either heading in or out. Little did I know how much we would come to rely on the kindness of these strangers here.

With our boats geared up for the trip South to the anchorage at Punta Chivato (Bahia Santa Inez), I filled my tank with diesel and again we motored. Wind was either a rarity or right on our nose, so the 25-plus miles droned away as we skillfully avoided Isla San Marcos.

After a pleasant night on the hook in the bahia, leg three, down to Bahia Concepcion.

Hold it… why isn’t my boat going forward when I put her in gear? Reverse works well, but no marche adelante! I get on the horn to Virgil, thinking I have a propeller issue and he turns around as I drop anchor. A visiting kayaker paddles up to us and says he can see my propeller clearly not rotating well at all. Crikey!

After a bit of fussing over the transmission linkage and manually shifting it between forward, neutral and reverse, we decide to make our way back to Santa Rosalia where this problem could be better diagnosed and possibly repaired. Light winds were somewhat favorable from the northeast, so I set sail. After my first two unsuccessful attempts at tacking the huge genoa between the staysail and forestay, Virgil talked some sense into me. He would tow my boat back to Santa Rosalia.

We radioed the marina office informing them that we were heading back in, and quickly became the talk of the docks. A relatively uneventful landing at twilight, and a sailor had some wise words for us. “Relax and go to sleep. We’ll look at your transmission in the morning.” That sailor’s name is Joe, and he’s a diesel mechanic from heaven.

The next morning’s activities consisted of reading the service manual, looking at my meager tool collection and welcoming Joe aboard to help diagnose the issue. Ruling out everything else, we decided that the forward clutch discs in my tranny needed replacing. After a couple of days scouring the internet I found a few retailers in San Diego who didn’t have any clutch discs for my particular model, and if they did have them, they’d be $100-plus per disc. I need 4.

The wholesaler in San Diego was contacted and said there were only 2 available in the entire western region of the US, but they’d put out the word to other suppliers in the states. Two more were finally located in Georgia. I got very lucky as a retailer was getting a shipment from Georgia and could just tack them onto his next-day-air order.

Also on the docks is another boater named Jimmy who took the time to help me out with the tear-down of the transmission, loaning me some hard to find tools and his knowledge.

I can’t overstate how helpful my dock mates were in literal blood, sweat and tools. Virgil, Jimmy and Joe are only a few of the supporters I found dockside in Santa Rosalia. Among others, folks’ moral support and advice on getting parts shipped down into Mexico was also welcomed.

After 10 days and about $600+ dollars later, I road-tested the transmission, making 6 knots under power. Yes.

Next, part two, Bahia Concepcion!

Uh, Clem, our adopted feline, has passed away.

It was twenty years ago today…well, not today-today, but twenty years ago we found Clem at one of the rentals in Tucson. We took him to a veterinarian for a check-up and neutering, and the vet told us he looked to be about six months old.

He outlived every other cat we’ve had, bar none.

He was once bitten in the head by a rattlesnake. Then a year or so later he met that same snake and got bitten on his head again! His noggin was the size of a softball and he just stayed under the bed for about 24 hours. Smart snake, giving out dry bites.

Clem would climb ladders wherever he found them.

Over the last two years whenever Pam and I traveled down to the boat in San Carlos, we’d wonder how much the house would stink if he died while we were away, but every time we spent our week in Mexico, upon return, a yowling would arise from the back of the house. Clem would certainly like some food from a can, rather than that kibble.

Unfortunately, he recently began to deteriorate, and I thought it best to put him down.

Thank you, Uh, Clem. You were a great cat!

On a recent visit to the boat, we were able to witness some of the spectacle that is Carnival.

With Virgil, Juanita, Wayne and Glenda, we parked our cars near Marina Fonatur and walked about 3/4 of a mile to where the parade would start. Info was that it would begin its procession around 1500 hours, but no. More like 1700.

First up were the baton twirlers and marching band.

From two vantage points, Pam’s being street level. I photographed from a perch on the other side of the street.
Pam got to talk with some of the kids who asked about her favorite color and taught her how to say “I love Mickey Mouse” in Spanish. The girls all had heavy eye makeup and false eyelashes.

After the marching band came a variety of floats, local dance troupes and some insanely loud speaker systems.

Ah, the black vinyl hot pants… my personal favorite.

Supposedly all the real “adult” stuff was to occur at the trailing edge of the parade.

I didn’t much care for “her” trailing edge.

But the hour was getting late and I didn’t want to be driving around after dark on unfamiliar roads, so Pam and I wended our way through the throngs along the parade route back to the vehicle.

Back at the boat just after zero dark-thirty.

Looking off to the South on Friday morning.

Hell has frozen over!

The Santa Catalinas the next day:

20190223_111212

Although I’m usually not one for superlatives, our last trip down to San Carlos was replete with superb conditions for both sailing and anchoring, besides the obvious dining ashore.

We showed up on a Wednesday afternoon to find the red flag flying at the harbormaster’s office. This was our first visit after tropical storm Sergio came through. Winds had been reported as up to around 50+ knots from the ESE (thanks Aaron, for staying in touch during the storm), and the only real damage to Aegean Odyssey was to her already ailing dodger. Some stitching gave way, but the remnants of the dodger are still acting the part. I wished I could have been there to ride out my second named storm. Unfortunately, Bahia San Carlos lost 4 boats to the winds, one of them being Captain Bob’s Valiant. She had sawn through her mooring lines and ended up on the beach.

I had doubled up on dock lines and wrapped up the mainsail and bimini canvasses with a couple of hundred feet of rope, and I think the huge powerboat just to windward is also to be credited, acting as a decent windbreak.

That evening we enjoyed the special at Tortuga’s restaurant, beef tostadas washed down with beer.

The next morning I took off all that storm prep and set to work messing about with boats. The docks are without water pressure 4 days a week, so AO got a spit bath that day. This was to go on for the next few days while we waited for Guaymas to strike that silly red flag.

Plenty to do however. Spent an hour and a half just trying to stop a small freshwater leak on the cockpit’s shower head. Brand-new sprayer head just wouldn’t stop dripping no matter how I installed the washers, so I finally persuaded myself to not let “perfect be the enemy of the good”. It’s down to about one drop per minute. It seems my freshwater tank’s leak is very near the top, so I can put that off until something catastrophic actually happens.

The heat has finally abated down here, and the new screened companionway hatch board allows warmth and sunshine to enter the boat during the day. In the evening we close her up and guard our day’s BTU accumulation. Seems like only last week we brought the little ceramic heater back to Tucson for the summer, and it’s getting close to being returned to the boat!

The morning cruiser’s net was much more active than before, with folks showing up to take their boats out of mothballs. There was talk of a bunch of folks making their way to Bahia San Pedro Nolasco on Sunday, and that’s where the title of this post takes its name.

That’s Virgil at the helm, with Juanita and Pam enjoying the sunshine. It was great to have Virgil and Juanita along for the overnighter to the anchorage. The boat just sailed perfectly on the relatively placid waters. Most of our sails down here have been like being in a washing machine, with seasickness just around the corner. This time a NW breeze of 10-12 knots made our sail to the bay a one-tack deal, and the swells were practically non-existent. Compared to our last visit to San Pedro the anchorage was quite still, providing good sleeping conditions.

Even my leaky dinghy was cooperating after dosing the tubes with a half-gallon of Slime tire sealant. Pam and I went ashore Sunday evening for a meet and greet with the fleet, Virgil and Juanita stayed aboard because Virgil was dealing with a coughing issue, possibly an upper respiratory infection. He could have been just as miserable back in San Carlos, but I think he chose wisely to come along. I know I appreciated his sailing savvy on both legs of the overnighter.

Dinner and drinks aboard that night.

The next morning Pam made me jump into the cool-ish water to help her clean the hull of sea life that had grown. There wasn’t really too much to scrape off, but while I snorkeled around AO with a putty knife, I scraped off some vengeful little barnacles that somehow raised stinging welts on my skin. Interesting phenomenon, that. Have to Google it.

We raised anchor and exited the bay around noon on Monday, and the SSW winds were promising as fine a sail as we’d had the day before. The only fly in the ointment was that they gave out on us about a third of the way back to the docks. \_(ツ)_/

So we fired up the Yanmar and motored our way back to Marina Real.

That night we dined with our ship mates at Piccolo’s, an Italian eatery. The proprietor is an older woman who runs the place with great attention to detail, it seems. We asked the wait staff for menus and to take our drink order, but they wouldn’t think of usurping the owner’s assumed responsibilities. She explained the various dishes, took our orders and only then allowed her staff to fulfill their duties. Deliciously prepared tenderloin with a few shrimp alongside, and some signature desserts of tender crepes with your choice of fruit compote or caramel sauce and ice cream.

The next day we closed up the boat and made our way back to Tucson. That election thingy would be just about over by the time we pulled into town, and I’m looking forward to much fewer phone calls asking whether I plan to vote R or D.

I’m like, OMG! 🙂

I’ll combine the last two trips into this one post. We drove down to San Carlos on the 17th of July during a lull in rental stuff. Thank goodness for Mr. Carrier’s invention, the modern-day air conditioner.

While we’re used to temperatures above 100-ish degrees, sometimes even working in them, we’re not at all used to the humidity.

Opening up the boat, it’s a bit of a race to get the shore power hooked up, open all the through-hulls and get the AC going. By the time cooling airflow is achieved I’m drenched in sweat. Go back up into the cockpit for the breeze and a beer, closing up the companionway.

A while later it’s down to a much more bearable 84 degrees, with Pam bitching whenever I open the hatch, just like at the Ranch.

A respite is only a walk to the car away, driving into town for dinner with the AC on full blast. We left the dogs aboard with their bowls of kibble and water.

The next morning was a good time to deal with any outdoor activities such as dog walks and deck/solar panel cleaning, but it doesn’t take long until I’ve soaked another tee shirt.
Back down into the boat.

Pam decided to walk over to the nearby beach for a swim, and I tagged along with my snorkeling gear, again leaving the dogs cooped up in the boat. There are still a few ticks aboard to guard against, but we’d doused the dogs with permethrin and kept up the inspections numerous times every day.

Later that day I set about replacing the pump body on the toilet. Should be quick and easy, right?
Well, lol.

I’d purchased a new pump body for the Raritan PHll thinking I had everything else aboard in the spare parts supplies laid in by the previous owners. After closing the relevant through hulls I began tearing down the existing pump. Replaced the joker valve, greased the O rings and piston for installation into the new pump body, then noticed that there was one more part to transfer from the old one, the air intake valve used for the “dry” flush option.

Whip out the wrench and it turns the head of the old valve right off. Crikey!

Of course, there’s not-a-one in the big bag o’ spares. My only luck was that Raritan didn’t use proprietary threading. A 1/2 inch threaded/barbed plastic plumbing fitting was employed to close the valve, and we had a partially functioning head on the boat once again.

The new $28.00 air valve was installed during our next visit a couple weeks later.

Hey, why don’t we take the boat out into the bay, set the anchor and clean up this hull? It’d be a perfect time to utilize the new diving hookah.

Anchoring in about 20 feet of water, I pulled out the small compressor and 100-foot air hose from the locker and payed out the hose into the water. Showed Pam how to read the voltmeter and ammeter to keep an eye on battery usage, as this thing can supposedly draw up to 40 amps. That could kill a battery fairly quickly, even with the solar panels’ output on this sunny day.
I was being overly cautious. The battery bank had no trouble keeping up with the draw of the compressor, dropping only a few 10ths of a volt over the few hours I spent in the water. With the hull looking good, I climbed back aboard looking like a prune. Next time I’ll replace those zincs on the prop and shaft. They’re getting close to 50% eaten up by electrolysis.

That’s pretty much everything that happened on the July trip, except for one item; Pam had placed an ad in our local Craigslist to re-home Ziggy and Gilligan, and had gotten a response from a guy who lives in the Rio Rico area. On the drive back to Tucson we stopped by to interview him and check out his 40 acres.

The place is fabulous, his 4 pugs and heeler are in good health and he works from home, allowing him to tend to his animals very well.

We left Ziggy and Gilligan there for a trial period. Pam was pretty distraught.

The next trip down was in early August. It seems that the dogs are doing well, except Ziggy got lost once while out rabbit hunting. She made it to a nearby ranch where the neighbors gave her water and put out the word on a found dog. Smart girl.

We stopped by to deliver the remaining dog food and treats, toys and whatnot, causing Pam to go all teary-eyed again.

Anywho, onward to the boat!

Same-old, same-old; heat and humidity. After getting the boat’s internal temperature down to a reasonable level, the new toilet air valve took only a minute to install.

Next day, we tried to sort out the shade cloth system the previous owners had used, ending up with this:

After tying the outboard edges to the lifelines, we retreated back into the cabin and found that the AC was able to keep the temps down to about 81-82 degrees.

I had hoped to run up to Bahia San Pedro to anchor out for a couple/few days, but the winds were forecast to be from the West, making the anchorage a swelly mess. So, ignoring the harbormaster’s red flag, we motored our way out onto the sea for a day sail. Guaymas is from where the red flag notice is dictated, and sometimes that darned flag is up when there’s absolutely zero wind.

Anytime I get all 3 sails up and drawing, the winds are perfectly acceptable. Still, it was hot, and Pam wanted to take a swim while we were out there. I told her it wasn’t a good idea, even with a line tied ’round her neck. I mean “waist”. She kept on with the haranguing though and I relented, heaving to.

We were still moving maybe about 1 knot, and we didn’t see any sharks.

Every morning at 0800 there’s a cruisers net on VHF channel 74. Good weather info, local happenings and such. This was where I received my verbal reprimand for violating the red flag.

I guess awhile back there was a charter fishing boat that put out from San Felipe in the northern Sea of Cortez with 43 souls aboard. They got caught in an unexpected windstorm that capsized the boat, spilling everyone into the water. 7 or 8 of the fishermen and 1 crew member died. Considering this is Mexico, a country not known for litigiousness, the Mexican government decided to implement a safeguarding system.

I wonder what the penalties are?

Also on the morning net was a fleet-wide invitation to the birthday celebration of a lovely lady, Shirley.

Mmm, cake.

I had wanted to work on the dinghy’s floor panel as it was allowing water into the boat. After purchasing some fairly expensive 2-part Hypalon glue, by the time I got around to the job the rains spawned by some storms out in the Pacific had shown up. Nope, not gonna happen this trip.
Instead, we lugged the leaky dinghy back to Tucson in the back seat of the car where the dogs used to languish. I can control the workplace environment much better here.

I do miss the dogs. What I don’t miss is the fur, the bugs and the responsibilities that come with dog ownership.

We still have ancient Uh, Clem, meowing incessantly for whatever reason.

Why do I always wait until Summer to do these things?

Every day for the last week I’ve been at one of our rentals starting around 700 hours, digging post holes every 8 feet or so for this new fence. About 4 days ago Pam and I started hanging new fence panels, and just as we start getting into the groove of the work, noontime rolls around with its oppressive heat.

We’ve got about 30 more feet to go, along with a gate and its associated hardware. Should be done by July 7-8 if we get to work early enough.

The new neighbors to the South seem happy enough with their side of the fence. Nice folks.

Dang, I miss my boat. Even if it is more work.

One of the highlights of our recent trip down to San Carlos was hoisting Pam up the mast to perform a bit of wind indicator maintenance.

Much easier than her winching my lard-ass up there I guess. She removed the Raymarine ST50 wind transducer from the masthead and lowered it to me for an inspection and possible rehab. While she waited up there, she got to witness a small boating accident over on the next dock. Some sailboat drifted gently into another boat. No harm, no foul.

I tried just spinning the cups on the shaft to no avail, then removed the cups and attempted to rotate the stuck pin that they were mounted on.

It began to loosen a little bit, what with me turning the pin back and forth. Adding a spray or three of silicone lubricant seemed to help too. Soon I had the cups back on and the unit back in Pam’s hands. After she bent the pins trying to re-mount the thing, then the subsequent trips back down and up again, we had wind velocity readouts at the cockpit display.

It worked for about a day. Since then I’ve been looking at the intricacies of a tear-down and rebuild.

It’s getting hot down here in Mexico, so daily walks over to a small beach nearby seemed like a good idea at the time…

While the dogs waited in the shade of a small palm tree, we’d snorkel out and back along the breakwater. We may want a waterproof camera some day, as I spotted what I think was a sea cucumber, about 10 inches long.

I’m not touching that thing!

There were lots of small sting rays which gave Pam the willies. They’ll bury themselves in the sand in the shallows, so you should shuffle your feet as you walk out to snorkeling depths.

Another bit of beach life we quickly learned about were the small ticks waiting for fur-bearing critters to lay down in the shade of a small palm tree. Oh, great.
Their discovery was followed by three days of intensive grooming on the dogs. Pulled all of the small carpets and seat coverings from the boat, inspecting high and low for tiny, blood-filled bugs everywhere the dogs hang out. This put the kibosh on any more trips to the beach for Ziggy and Gilligan at this time.

We dined out almost every night of the trip, twice at La Palapa Griego.

I can heartily recommend the scallops.

Guess who’s also in town? The Tucson Sailing Club was having it’s biannual regatta, and the new owners of my old MacGregor had trailered her down to store on the hard at Marina San Carlos. Larry and Amy graciously allowed us to enjoy one of the regatta’s buffet dinners at the yacht club, and the next morning I gave them a hand in rigging up the boat for the day’s race.

0600. After installing the reefing lines and topping lift, we fired up the little Nissan outboard. Well, heck, the motor isn’t putting out it’s stream of cooling seawater for more than a minute, so it looks like it’s time to check on the water pump’s impeller.

We turned the boat around in its slip and popped off the lower unit over the dock. Yep, the impeller was a goner, but I had sold the boat to her new owners with two spares. Fishing around in the cabin, we located the spares, put one of them to good use and the motor was back up and running, peeing as it should.

Somebody in power had put up a red flag at the harbormaster’s offices, but the Tucson Sailing Club was undeterred. “We’re not driving all this way to just sit at the docks!”

They passed by the red flag on their way out to the race, where they enjoyed fair winds out in the bay.

Better to ask forgiveness than permission, huh?

Oh, one last thing. I noticed my bilge pump spewing about 30 seconds of water out the transom every couple of hours. It was fresh. I had refilled my water tank just the day before, so it looks like I’ll be returning to either an empty tank, or a dead bilge pump, with the remainder of the tank sloshing in the bilge.

This means I’ll be replacing the 90 gallon tank in the near future. May as well replace the 48 gallon fuel tank while I’ve got the sole torn up too.

Boat repairs in paradise.

Update: July 18, I learned that there’s still water in my tank, which means either the leak isn’t at the bottom or debris has effectively plugged the fault. I could refill the tank to determine its capacity, but why waste the water?

Technically good news!

After a few weeks of waiting for Ziggy to heal from the presumed coyote attack and a couple of rental emergencies, we were finally able to get down to San Carlos for what would be our first foray into the “cruising” life. Okay, it was only an out-and-back over-nighter.

I’ve been dealing with a leaky dinghy. Longitudinal cracks had developed on the underside of the large tubes on either side, and when I floated it, water would seemingly boil from underneath. Not good.

We’ll need this bit of equipment in order to get to shore, never mind the dogs’ needs. I had brought along a couple of pints of bicycle tire sealant and put half a pint into both tubes. Upon re-inflation, they appeared to be holding air! Yay!

$17.00 spent to save a $1,200 dinghy from the scrap heap felt pretty okay, until I noticed that the floor was starting to separate from the tubes as well. We’ll get wet feet, but at least we won’t sink for now. I’ll either have to purchase some Hypalon glue in order to rehab this old dinghy, or just bite the bullet and go brand-new. My web browsing is littered with dinghy sales pitches.

The old cockpit speakers are now in my wood shop, living out the rest of their lives in anonymity. The holes that were drilled for the original speaker wiring in the cockpit got a down-and-dirty sealing up with a couple of bolts, nuts and trim washers.

The problem:

And the fix:

The new speakers are mounted on either side of the cockpit’s aluminum arch supports.

They’re older Jensen marine-rated 2-ways with 150 watts of capability and sound great with the new Pioneer Bluetooth-enabled stereo.

Besides the dinghy and sound system work, I was also looking forward to getting the watermaker out of mothballs for an acid test of its functionality. But before that, I needed to secure the Clark pump to the shelf on which it resides. A bit of yoga was needed to hash out the holes for through-bolting, then a check of the entire system’s plumbing arrangement. The previous owners were in the middle of some medical issues so they had some friends do the installation. The only problem I’ve found (so far) was a mis-routed pressure sensing leg. It had been installed after the pre-filters instead of before them, so an easy bit of plumbing awaits my next visit. Then I’ll check every connection for tight band clamps and threaded fittings, hoping that no leaks develop.

For our first “cruise” we’re going up to Bahia San Pedro, about 10-12 miles as the crow flies from our home base at Marina Real. Pam’s been haranguing me to get away from the polluted harbor, but the dinghy’s been holding me back from just doing it. Now that we’ve a relatively serviceable dinghy, let’s do it! The outward bound route (in black) was interrupted by the GPS getting knocked loose from the iPad.

We put out on a Saturday morning, motoring past the red flag that’s supposed to keep us safe in the harbor from the heavy winds and seas. We had a decent wind from the SSW with swells about 1 meter high. About 2/3rds of the voyage was with these swells rolling us from side to side giving Gilligan a reason to puke up his breakfast 3 times. The other tack was with the swells on our starboard quarter, a much better ride. So it goes.

About 4 hours later, we spied what looked like a small bay with a sandy beach. Upon entering the bay, there are two sailboats anchored in the lee of a small spit of hilly terrain on the South side. One of them is our buddies Virgil and Juanita aboard Halcyon Days!

First, I anchored too far out, exposing ourselves to some decent swell radiating around the point. Then I anchored too close to the other sailboat that was already there.

Third time’s a charm, and when my rode got put out I was in a reasonable position relative to both of my new anchor mates. Let’s pump up that dinghy.

Now for the hard part: getting the dogs into the dinghy for their afternoon ablutions ashore. Not without some consternation, both of ’em ended up in the little inflatable and I rowed the whole gang to shore about 150 yards away. This being my first dinghy landing, I sort of lost control just as we reached the beach, and the boat turned 90 degrees, dumping Pam out into the surf. Success! 🙂

Getting them back aboard required a bit of finesse, dealing with the swells still present in the anchorage. Just short of hanging the dogs from their leashes, we got their forelegs up onto the step, with one person pulling from above and the other pushing from below. Timing is everything.

Some photos of our anchorage. The first one’s of Halcyon Days, a 40+ foot Camper & Nicholson ketch.

Pam got a shot of some old white guy with a drywall knife trying to clean the hull of sea life.

It’s nice to be able to see your entire hull when diving.

We got invited over to Virgil’s boat for dinner that evening, which we accepted gratefully. Taquitos and lentils with rum and cokes. We reciprocated the next morning after a rolly night at anchor with leftover chili and egg burritos, sans the alcohol.

Another trip to shore and back for the dogs, then it was time to button up the ship for the sail back South towards San Carlos. The winds had dropped and shifted to the Northeast, giving us an almost dead downwind run with calm seas. When we finally reached Bahia Algodones we pointed the boat into the wind to drop the main, and then let the breeze turn the boat around towards port while re-deploying the foresail.

After docking in our slip without a hitch (there’s never anyone around when that happens), we celebrated with dinner out at Don Lalo’s taqueria. Unfortunately, we need to head back to Tucson tomorrow or the Mexican immigration authorities will charge us 500 pesos each for overstaying our free 7-day visas. That would be about 55-60 bucks that would PO old Pam to no end.

Can’t have that, can we?