Change of plans; the decision
18 November 2011 | Mazatlan
On our way to La Paz Sharon and I stopped at a beautiful cove called Auga Verde. While at Auga Verde Sharon told me that she thought it would be a good idea for her to do an overnight sail before we crossed the Sea of Cortez from La Paz to Matzatlan, a passage of somewhere between 2-3 days total. I completely agreed with her, as although she did do some night sailing from San Carlos to Santa Rosalia, it was not an all-nighter. So we changed plans, we decided that we would leave Auga Verde on Wednesday morning, sail down to another anchorage, stop for lunch, then leave for La Paz at around 1600 (4:00), this new plan would have us sailing all night, arriving in La Paz early Thursday Morning. We would then spend two weeks in La Paz before leaving for Matzatlan.
Although the weather had been forecast to be VERY calm all week, I decided to tune into the weather guru, Don Anderson, on our SSB radio before leaving....and a good thing I did. The new forecast by Don was "There is a high pressure system over Montana and the wind is going to start blowing in the Sea of Cortez any minute. The Wind is going to blow all day and all night and into tomorrow (thursday) morning, it's going to be blowing 20-25 knots and up to 35 in certain channels..so you better get ready cause here it comes". I looked at Sharon and said " change of plans honey", I think we need to skip the lunch stop, and I also think that we need to avoid the direct route to La Paz, which would take us through the San Jose channel. The San Jose channel is notorious for funneling dangerous winds through itself. I charted a course that would take us outside of the San Jose channel and several islands, when we were far enough out we would jibe (turn) and sail into Bahia de La Paz...it was going to be an epic day and night of sailing. Auga Verde is not very well protected from north winds and as we were raising the anchor the wind started up. As we headed into the sea we almost instantly had our sails up and were sailing along on a beautiful point of sail doing 7-8 knots (which is hauling ass in a sailboat).
I'm not really sure how the next plan change started.....I think I was muttering to myself something like "this would be a great point of sail for our upcoming passage to Mazatlan", Sharon must have heard me and said "so what are you thinking". I laughed and said "don't worry honey, my mind is always going". As we were talking I was flipping through GPS pages and when I zoomed into our map position I commented " look at that..We are directly on course for Mazatlan, nearly 300 nautical miles away". Well one thing led to another and as you may have noticed from this blog title....we are now in Mazatlan. What started as an epic day and night of sailing, turned into two epic days and nights of sailing. Tomorrow I will post about the 286 NM passage.
If you are following our spot locations on Facebook, tonight will be the last one I send out for awhile as I will be staying in the mega resort of El Cid until after New Years.....subject to change of course!