08 December 2008
Updates sent to family and friends:
We arrived in Mexico on Friday, November 21st at 6:00 a.m. via the Mexican bus from Tucson. We left Boise on Thursday, November 20th at 3:00 p.m. and arrived in Tucson at 8:30 p.m. Kari Olson met us at the airport and took us to this awesome Mexican restaurant which we had hot dogs that were the best (seriously)!!!!! Our plans were for the Olsons to come with us to San Carlos for the weekend and sail around but Sven was sick so they had to change their plans. Next time though. Sven is now probably
in Germany on tour for a year. Hope you are doing well Sven and also Kari and the boys! ;) Kari then took us to the Tufesa Busline. We boarded our "Evecutivo" bus around 11:30 p.m. The bus was really nice, very comfortable. We had a great trip down as we had to get off the bus once for customs and luckily we didn't have to open any of our luggage as we had 3 crammed duffel bags and 3 large stuffed boxes with supplies for the boat. We boarded the bus again and fell asleep. There were some other
cruisers on the bus and one was actually from Boise. The next time we woke up we figured we were at another check stop but was surprised to find out we were already in Guayamas, our destination at 6 a.m.!!! You have to pay attention because no notification is given by the driver as where you are. The cruisers we met on the bus had a ride to pick them up and they offered to give us a ride to the boat yard. We then got the boat ready and it was in the water by noon - 21 hours after leaving Boise.
We hung around San Carlos for a few days and then sailed over to Guayamas to have the boat hauled out of the water so that Kelly could work on the keel for a few hours. We stayed at the marina for 2 nights and walked around Guayamas (population 35,000). We stayed until Thanksgiving evening and left for La Paz at 5:45 p.m. We had a great sail across the sea with about 20 knots of wind the entire 42 hour trip. Kelly put the fishing line out and actually had another nice dorado on the line and had
it all the way to the boat before it slipped off and swam away!!!! We are taking notes from other cruisers on how to land them so the next one will be dinner!!!!
We arrived on Isla San Jose around 9:30 a.m. Saturday, November 29th. It was so calm when we anchored. There was this large lagoon with mangroves that we explored with the dinghy. One of the channels in the lagoon ended on the other side of the mangroves and a nice sandy beach. The tide was going out so there was this nice current running out so Kelly and I went swimming and ended up on the beach. We stayed over night at this anchorage and then went to this island (Isla San Francisco) that we
spotted on the airplane when we went to Cabo a couple years ago. Isla San Francisco is a half moon bay with white sandy beach. We are still here! It's now Thursday! We've been hanging out enjoying ourselves. Kelly has been successful spearing fish and catching land crabs! No it's not a disease! They are the sweetest crabs we've ever eaten and they are really easy for Kelly to catch! He jumps out on rocks at low tide and stocks them. They aren't very big but there's surprisingly a lot of
meat in them. Our first contact that we had with them we were walking on the beach and one was just standing there. Kelly played with it for a little bit and then "WHACK" he hit it in the head with his hand. Poor little crab. But after I tasted him I was ready for more! Mark & Susan have you guys tried these where you are? If not, definitely worth it.
We just headed out now on our way to Isla Partida, which is 20 miles south/southeast of Isa San Francisco. We were on this island a long time ago with Mark & Susan with our 18 ft. Four Winds ski boat. This is the island where we actually decided that we wanted to retire on a sail boat after a couple sailed into the anchorage one night. We are planning to dive off a sea mount where giant mantas and hammerhead sharks frequent. We actually dove this a long time ago and didn't see anything. Maybe
this time . . . we will let you know.
Until next time . . .
Just wanted to let you know that we made it safely across the Sea of Cortez! We left Guayamas (mainland Mexico) on Thanksgiving at 5:45 p.m. and arrived on the south end of San Jose Island just north of La Paz at around 9:30 a.m. on Saturday. This was the longest sail we've done as of yet - 218 nm and took 42 hours. It was a great sail the entire way. We had 15-20 knots of wind the entire trip. Kelly again caught a dorado that would have been perfect for us. Notice I said "would have been".
As we were getting ready to bring it on the boat it fell of the lure! Ok the next one we'll actually land and get to eat - I know it! We really should have a net on board! That's on our list of "must haves".
It's absolutely beautiful over here. We haven't been this far south with our sail boat so we are excited to explore all the area has to offer. We took a dinghy ride through some mangroves this afternoon. The temperature was really warm when the sun was out. We even went swimming and was very comfortable. When we were here this summer the water temperature was in the 80's and now it's cooled into the 70's.
Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. We had tacos that were very delicious! I'll update more soon.
Still having a great time! We have been around the town of La Paz for too long. But on Monday afternoon we were able to get away even though it was only around the corner to an anchorage near the ferry's. High winds kept us over in that area for a few days. We went to this one beach where I found clams!!! They were kind of like razor clams that we use to dig growing up but smaller and skinnier. But they had a lot of meat on them and I fried them up. Kelly wouldn't eat any! He doesn't have
adventure for clams or oysters! Oh well more for me.
Yesterday we came back out to Isla Espiritu Santo. We are anchored on a 2 mile beach that is amazing. Yesterday we walked the entire beach. As we were walking we found signs that large turtles have been coming up onto the beach and either sunning themselves or laying eggs. Not sure about the eggs as there were holes in the sand where they had been laying. Kelly is out this morning looking for them. I think he might have found something as I haven't seen him in about 45 minutes now. Their tracks
were about 2 1/2 feet across so they have to be pretty large. The holes were pretty amazing that they made as you could see the indentation of their shells. We'll get photos!
We never did dive the sea mounts as we are going to save them for the next trip when the water is a little warmer. It is much more comfortable this time of year. It's in the 80's during the day and the 50's - 60's at night.
Our plans are to leave the boat in La Paz in a slip at one of the marina's here in La Paz. Then we'll take the ferry to the mainland.
Update #4 (didn't send out to friends)
We left La Paz Thursday, December 18 on the 3:00 p.m. on the Baja Ferry. We almost didn't make it on the ferry as it was "sold out". Kelly was told that it was sold out until Tuesday, December 23rd. We were put on a wait list (#20 & #21). Luckily Kelly was really friendly with the girl at the ticket counter and as he was back in line to check the status he was waved to the front of the line and she sold him our tickets. We found out that there were 1,200 people on this ferry.
We arrived in Topolabompo at around 10:00 pm. and jumped into a taxi for the bus terminal. We were hoping to get on the "executivo" bus at 11:15 pm. We arrived at 11:00 p.m. to find out that it was sold out. Talk about bad luck. We were then scheduled to leave at 1:00 am. There was a couple there who helped us out with our tickets as the woman at the counter didn't speak much english. We didn't leave until 4:15 am due to a bad accident south of Los Mochis that backed up all traffic going north. No buses arrived until about 4 am. We had a good time visiting with this couple while waiting for the bus for 5 hours.
Once we were on the bus we made it about an hour before the traffic stopped to go through a checkpoint. We inched our way to the checkpoint and after about 2 hours it was our turn. We had to get off the bus and after about 10 minutes we all boarded and continued on our way north. We arrived in Tucson at around 10:00 pm and Kelly's parents were waiting for us.
We spent the next 2 days with them in Casa Grande, AZ. We flew back to Boise on Sunday night.