The Sea Trial
04 January 2012 | Guaymas to La Paz
In October 2011 we sailed the Sea of Cortez..completed the sea trial ....finally signed the papers for La Condesa Del Mar and locked her safely in the Marina De La Paz awaiting our return in February 2012.
I knew we would learn a lot on this trip and the working systems of the boat were just part of the journey. We learnt a lot about the eclectic community on the water and the wonderful people living on the coastline of Mexico. Couple of lesson, most important was to back up my computer. Log lost! Actually more than a couple of lessons but that is boating. Yeah?
The 350 nautical miles from the 40 degree heat of Guaymas across to the old mining town of Santa Rosalier and cooling down as we made our way south to Marina de La Paz. After a week on the hard stand we headed out for a shakedown across the sea. An initial hiccup, with a few vital screws not replaced on the fuel injector and reverse gear where mechanics had been previously. Once they were identified and sorted the sail was problem free and we set sail again 24hrs after our first attempt. The ying and the yang of the sea produced a myriad of situations to test our skills. With a journey of the warm-winded days with magical sunsets on a daily bases, the crystal clear night skies easing silently into the crisp fresh sunrises. I wondered how many photos of the breaking of day and setting of the sun one could have before you have doubled up. There were days of little to no wind in contrast to the days filled with adventure and full sails to keep us hopping across decks and up and down to the serenity of below. Sailing the most eerily quiet nights crossing open flat waters to the big northerly's giving back slapping 35knt wild seas through narrow passages that put the fear of God in most of us and eventuating with sea sickness for a few of the crew. However, Condesa stood up to everything that she was faced with and the beauty of her lines and big sails added to her power on the sea.
The rugged Mexican coastline of craggy mountains dotted with the 'compulsory' cacti's and miles of orca rocks were interrupted with unexpected stretches of white beach and aqua waters that became whiter and clearer the further south we sailed. This sea trial was turning into more of a holiday as we ate freshly caught seafood and relaxed as we discovered the land and the sea together (ex owners and new owners). The more we got to know each other the faster the days were passing enjoying their company and the quiet moments equally. The ex-owners (Bill and Karen Gates) have poured their love and attention into this boat and shared stories about what they had achieved so when the conversation came to an unexpected halt we realised that parting with Condesa was not easy. This made us love her even more and determined to take her further afield to places she deserves to sail, waters she will lap up, winds where she can fill her every sail . From the first moment we saw her sitting proud on the hard stand in Guaymas we saw she was better than we had remembered from 5 years back.
So as I sit here in the midst of Christmas aftermath and the packing up of our life as it is in Brisbane. I feel the effects what we have started and the excitment of what lies ahead ~ The contrast of our lives from inner city living with friend and family at our fingertips to the vast blue ocean crossing adventure is a reality check ~ just us and the big blue wonder.