Wednesday, March 5, 2014

We made it to 19!

Chillin' above us at a taco stand in La Cruz
We were sad to leave La Cruz/PV area but it’s time to move on to new adventures. It’s too easy to stay in a place we like so much, and where we see so many of our friends! As we travel, we have a wonderful time renewing with friends we’ve met along the way, many we met on the Baja Haha journey to Mexico in 2011.
Pura Vida boat cards

Upon our arrival in La Cruz, our Canadian friends gifted us this very cool wooden box they engraved with our name on it, for boat cards!

Play on, Leon!
Happy 83rd, Leon
It’s also great to make new friends, and we've befriended a very nice couple hailing from Portland! The 4 of us recently attended Leon's 83rd birthday party at Philo’s. Leon is the very talented washboard player in Philo’s house band and he rocks that washboard with its add-on musicmakers, donning his signature black knee socks with shorts, and derby hat. Dancing and a good time had by all.

And now to the 19! It's the latitude of our position -  we achieved our goal of traversing Cabo Corrientes (Cape Currents) making it south of Banderas Bay (Puerto Vallarta). Our 92 mile trip from La Cruz to Chamela started at 5AM with crescent moon and Venus lighting our way until the 7AM sunrise. Variable winds came from several directions during our 16 hour passage. We switched sails accordingly and enjoyed a broad reach from both E and W as the afternoon passed, with mostly northerlies.
Wing on wing is great

Otto at the helm
Wing on wing is a beautiful sight and kept the sun from beating into the cockpit. We saw whale spouts near shore during another amazing red sunset before night fell and innumerable stars started poking through the immense black fabric overhead.

At 9PM, we arrived at the very dark bay at Chamela, peeling our eyes in the darkness for the best access. We create danger waypoints and in this case, a clear route waypoint to follow in the dark. Aiming out and around the rocky point to enter the bay, we cleared rock outcroppings, small unlit islands, a moving panga/fishing boat, unlit fish pens, and various anchored bobbing boats, while looking for the best place to set anchor.

It’s always a relief when we turn off the engine and can relax. However at every anchorage, we are keenly attuned to our boat’s position to be sure our anchor is well set. Dragging is a bad thing and we awaken during the night to ensure our position. We bought a new iPad app called Drag Queen, a $4.99 tool to notify us if the boat drags the hook. (Interesting what comes up on your app search under drag queen, by the way.)

Experiencing the New
Don't know what this guy is,
caught with our cedar plug
As with exploring new anchorages, I’m all about new experiences. Some more memorable than others. Recent forays include cooking Pez Vela/sailfish from the fish market ($2.80 for two fillets), attending a celestial navigation seminar (although we have a sextant, I am thankful for GPS technology and associated redundancies on board!), cleaning our hull with new, sturdy wooden spatulas, getting my hair done by a not-yet-complete transsexual (not that I care, it was just the start of her beard that threw me off while getting my hair washed), and that tripe taco (the greasy texture still gives me the shivers).

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