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Calou's Blog
Cruising with the crew of CALOU on the Baja Ha-ha and Pacific Puddle Jump
Fresh Blackberry Margaritas
04/22/2009, Las Hadas

We enjoyed delicious margaritas made with fresh blackberries at the "Paradise" restaurant in Las Hadas. The owner there raises his own blackberries. They also make a coconut shrimp that is out of this world.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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Calou at Las Hadas

Here's a photo of Calou taken from shore at Las Hadas, Manzanillo.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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Sailing to Manzanillo
04/20/2009, Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico

We finally decided to spend the rest of the summer season in Mexico. We'll head to Panama after the hurricane season ends in November.

Not wanting to just sit around in the marina, we decided to sail south to Manzanillo. We had a beautiful sail with about 6 knots of breeze on a beam reach, we were able to do about 5 knots of boat speed.

In this photo Pascale and Antoine are enjoying being at sea again.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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04/20/2009 | Papa
Sounds like a wonderful summer. Would love to be there!
04/20/2009 | Papa
P.S. - I hope you don't mind, I added a link to your blog in ours. I will remove it if you wish.
04/21/2009 | John
Looks like you are doing some serious sailing. Even with the Christmas lights still up.. Haha. Looks like fun!!
04/22/2009 | Bruce Powell
Papa - of course we're glad you linked to us. John - LOL you spotted the Christmas lights! Those are LED lights and we use them to light up the cockpit at night when we're at anchor.
Preparations and random thoughts

We have been getting ready to depart Barra in fits and starts over the last week. It is really hard to get motivated to leave such a wonderful place.

There have been some projects. One would be that we had to test the windlass since I upgraded the power supply leading to it. We took the boat out into the bay today to test the anchor windlass, dropping anchor in 40 ft of water and raising it again. Success! It works like a charm!

I'm replacing the starting battery, because it's 6 years old and was starting to show some sluggishness.

We unloaded the anchor chain onto the dock today to paint new stripes on the chain every 20 feet. This way, we can know how much chain we have let out.

We got a book of charts for the entire Pacific coast between San Diego and Panama, to help us navigate in case our instruments get fried by lightning, for example. We ordered this in the US, and had it Fedex'ed to the wife of a fellow cruiser, who was flying down the next day. That's the best way to get anything into or out of Mexico.

Pascale and I have been feeling our oats about leaving. It's so nice and comfortable here. Cruising can be scary and a lot of hard work. It's so tempting to just stay here forever and enjoy the cushy resort life. They call it 'the velvet rut'.

But no, I think we'll test the waters and head south to Manzanillo, then to Zihuatanejo. After Zihuat we really have to make a commitment because it entails a new and very expensive insurance policy that will cover us all the way to Panama and into the Caribbean.

I'm leaving open the back door, that is, we can always bail out and reverse course back to Barra and spend the summer here. It would be so easy to do. Barra is so nice!

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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Dinner on the terrace at Grand Bay
04/17/2009, Barra de Navidad

Pascale and I enjoyed a great Thai dinner on the outdoor terrace on the 5th floor of this fabulous hotel, the Grand Bay, in Barra de Navidad. This is the view from the table, towards the hotel.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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CYC burgee in Barra
04/17/2009, Barra de Navidad

There's a funky little palapa bar on the beach here called Piper's Cruiser Lounge, it's open air with a thatched roof. The band plays all the great rock and roll songs from the late 60s and 70s, like Credence Clearwater, Jimi Hendrix...

What really caught our eye however was an ancient looking life ring in this bar. It looks like it's been around many years. The ring has a Corinthian YC of San Francisco [CYC] burgee painted on it along with the yacht name "Magnifico" and the port name "Portland". Does any club historian know the story behind this CYC flagged boat?

Perhaps a CYC club historian knows the story. It would be interesting to know the rest of the story of 'Magnifico'.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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Adding a battery for the windlass
04/09/2009, Barra de Navidad

Today I installed and wired in the new battery, it's a 4D deep cycle battery mounted under the bed in the forwaqrd cabin. This battery has its own 150 amp circuit breaker, and it's connected with X00 cables to the main 12v connection at the windlass (at the bow). This battery will serve as an additional battery for the house bank, and also supply high amperage when necessary directly to the windlass. We hope this will solve our windlass problems once and for all.

I shopped for a "battery box" for the 4D battery , but the ones I found were huge (more than six inches bigger than the battery all around). I found the perfect solution in a 13 gallon holding tank, which when you cut the top off, is the perfect size to house a 4D battery.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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Going to Maria's Tienda

We head out to Maria's Tienda on our dinghy to reprovision prior to our upcoming departure.

Mexico Sailing Trip 2008-2011
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04/07/2009 | John Thompson
Thanks for the great video!!! What a nice way to remember the cruising life. That background music is perfect. I also see you have a nice dinghy cover. Nice to I have I bet. It just turned rainy and cold here again. Nice for a few days - it cleans the dust off my car. I hope your preparations for the onward journey are going well. - John
04/20/2009 | Papa
Yes! We did enjoy the little slice of life :)
Reminds me of Xcalak! (QRoo)

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