Due West Adventures

The sailing adventures of Captain Kirk & Heidi, Tosh and Tikka Hackler . . .

01 May 2018 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
24 December 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco Mexico
02 November 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
11 October 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
16 September 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
29 June 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, MX
26 May 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, MX
07 April 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, MX
26 February 2017 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, MX
30 January 2017 | La Cruz, Nayarit, MX
24 December 2016 | Banderas Bay, Mexico
20 December 2016 | Banderas Bay
27 November 2016 | La Paz, B.C.S. Mexico
14 November 2016 | Bahia San Carlos Mexico
17 October 2016 | San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico
30 September 2016 | San Javier, B.C.S.
25 September 2016 | Puerto Escondido, B.C.S Mexico
12 September 2016 | Puerto Escondido, B.C.S Mexico

Sea Changes

01 May 2018 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
Check out more images in our Photo Gallery.

OK, we're getting a little gun-shy about making plans! As you've heard us say before, our plans are written in sand at low tide. But it seems that as soon as we write down any so-called plans, things start to go sideways on us. And this spring was no different.



If you read our last post, we were planning to race Due West in Banderas Bay Regatta, and then head back up to the Sea of Cortez for a few months this spring. But the week before the regatta, just as MEXORC (another regatta) was happening here in the bay, Kirk found himself back in the hospital again due to an intestinal infection combined with electrolyte imbalance. No bueno!

While it was a significant ordeal at the time, thankfully he's made another full recovery and we've learned a LOT about our own physiology, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies in the meantime. We've also learned about the MTHFR gene mutation (that may have played a part in causing Kirk's stroke last year), and that as we age the body doesn't always absorb all the nutrients it used to. Add to it all, that as soils become depleted of minerals many foods are much less nutrient rich than they used to be. Heidi wrote about all this on her Happy Well Lifestyle blog, which you can read here: Vitamin & Mineral Deficiency: Are You Deficient? If a holistic health coach and Capitán Kirk can be deficient, anyone can be. So we hope our experience and this article can help some of you.



As you'll learn from Heidi's recent articles, we found that we're both deficient in several key nutrients--vitamins and minerals, plus protein. So along with taking supplements to help get our nutrient numbers back up more quickly we've had to become omnivores again. This dietary change hasn't been easy on us after being vegetarian/vegan for 30 years (Heidi) and 45 years (Kirk). Happily Kirk is thriving on eating meat and says he feels 10-years younger in just a few weeks! The jury is still out for Heidi, but she's sticking with it for now. As Gandhi said, "Be the change you want to see in the world", and we have a lot of change left to affect in this lifetime. So although we both became vegetarians for ethical reasons, if we need to eat some meat to help us get healthy again, then that's what we'll do...for now.



These health setbacks along with continued engine issues has meant we won't be making another trip to the Sea of Cortez this spring after all. After the new timing belt was installed, and the freshwater and saltwater pumps were rebuilt and re-installed, the engine started right up. Yay!!.... Oh, wait... there's no water coming out of the exhaust?! Uh oh... And so when Kirk and our trusty engine mechanic Omar (and his assistant Tosh!) took another look, they found that our camshaft was broken--in three places!?! Something as strong as a camshaft should not break, especially not into three pieces! There is evidence to suggest that it was a faulty casting and was likely bad from the get-go, 28 years ago! So we're now working with Perkins UK, on getting a new camshaft. Until that happens, Due West is sitting in her slip, Jonesing to get out sailing again soon!! Thankfully Puerto Vallarta isn't such a bad place to be stuck...



Meanwhile, after 45-years as a meditator, and six-months of studying ancient Indian Vedic wisdom through the Chopra Center in San Diego (online), Kirk has just graduated as a Primordial Sound Meditation Teacher. Over 40-years of scientific research has shown that meditation is an effective way to reduce stress, improve health, and enhance intuition and decision making. Kirk is excited to teach anyone who wants to learn mantra meditation or deepen their existing mantra practice, so let him know if you're interested. He will be teaching online via Zoom, and in person where ever we are.



Heidi is continuing to grow her online wellness business, HappyWellLifestyle.com, and is super-excited about adding I Thought of You, fair-trade and sustainable jewelry, gifts, and accessories to her online shopping experience. Each purchase creates the opportunity of food, water, shelter, education, quality of life, and dignity to people in developing countries around the globe. I Thought of You dovetails perfectly with Neal's Yard Remedies organic, fair-trade, sustainable health and beauty products. Please take a look at these awesome products, and consider shopping with Heidi for Mother's Day gifts...it supports a great cause. In addition to her own blog, she's also ghost-writing and freelance blogging for several other companies. Oh, and she couldn't resist picking up a Dos Piños guitar at the market from this nice old Mexican guitar-maker...now she just has to remember how to play. It's been about 35 years!




So great to see Jimmy & Robin, has it really been 20-years since we'd first raced together on s/v Charisma!?

We've loved all the visits from friends and family this winter and spring. So much fun to hang out with our tribe, sailing framily Frosty & Patti, and April & Zak, and we're looking forward to seeing John & Carol here soon too! Our long-time racing friends Jimmy & Robin were here for Banderas Bay Regatta. Gratitudes to Kirk's old work buddy and mentor Roger and his wife Kay who kindly brought down our mail and some Amazon.com items from Seattle when they visited last month. And we loved our quick hug and lunch at the airport with our nephew Tate and his Dad Mark when they flew through on their way to Sayulita. Kirk also had a couple of high school friends visit PV, and it was fun to meet up with them as well. Puerto Vallarta is a mecca for people from the Pacific Northwest, and as we were waiting for our nephew at the airport, we randomly saw another Seattle acquaintance who happened to be on his same flight.


Great to catch up with our nephew Tate as he backpacked through Central America on his gap year. Check out this cool experiential program Carpe Diem Education that he participated in volunteering in several countries.

Spring is the time of year that sailors typically leave Banderas Bay to continue cruising. Many of our close cruising friends have set sail across the oceans, to the South Pacific, and the Caribbean, or back north to the Sea of Cortez before hurricane season starts up. One of the difficult things about the Cruising lifestyle is always saying goodbye as friends sail off to distant lands. But thanks to the Internet, we can keep up with them via their sailing blogs and social media. And a few friends are summering in Banderas Bay as well.



To celebrate Earth Day we started the day with 22 Sun Salutations, then walked the docks at our marina scooping out lots of trash with a fish net. Although there's certainly some intentional litter, the majority of litter in the marina comes from people setting plastic cups or water bottles on the dock, likely intending to take them up to the basura (trash), but invariably the wind blows them into the water first. So we always carry a trash bag with us walking the beaches and pick up trash when ever we can. Mexico is a lovely country full of brilliant colors, delicious food and drinks, and wonderful people and festivals...but also a HUGE plastic problem. At least many local restaurants are doing their part to stop using plastic straws. Americans use 500 MILLION plastic straws a day, and many of those end up in the ocean. So if you must use a straw, check out this cool re-usable straw that fits on your keychain!


A refreshing reward (sans-straws!) at El Barracuda with Judy & Paul, after a walking the beach, picking up trash.



We'll be condo-sitting for friends on the beach again this summer and are looking forward to our daily beach-walks, watching sea turtles hatch, and picking up more trash along the way. We LOVE our yoga practice at the beach three times a week, plus Pilates reformer classes which are the best workout we've ever done. A Pilates reformer class is a must-try if you really want to get in shape!



We still hope to sail south in November, but we don't want to jinx our plans, so you didn't hear it here. Happy Spring to all of you. Tikka and Tosh would love you to come and visit any time, PV is a wonderful town!





Check out more images in our Photo Gallery.
Vessel Name: Due West
Vessel Make/Model: Passport 40
Hailing Port: Seattle, WA
Crew: Captain Kirk & Heidi Hackler + Tosh & Tikka
About:
Captain Kirk grew up sailing on Lake Washington and has been boating his whole life. He has been racing sailboats for about 40 years, including two Vic-Maui races (from Victoria, BC to Maui, Hawaii), one in 1990, and the other on Due West in 1996. [...]
Extra:
You can see pix of our boat here: Due West Interior Photos and in the Photo Gallery. Our racing friends call us "The [...]
Home Page: http://svduewest.com
Due West's Photos - San Carlos & Guaymas
Photos 1 to 45 of 45 | Main
1
Shrimping is a huge industry in Guaymas, Mexico. This was one of the largest marinas for shrimp boats and you could buy shrimp directly from the fishermen in the buildings on the shore in front of their boats. We
Fishermen
You could buy shrimp on the beach for lunch at this bright-and-colorful shrimp-shack.
Cruisers Heidi, Kimi, Scott, and Viviane descend on the Guaymas Weekly Market, carrying everything from used clothing to tools to tamales and aguas frescas, honey, meats, fried pork rinds by the ton, and eggs, but not much produce  to be found. Kirk
They were even selling shrimp at the Guaymas Market, this whole bag of large camarones only cost $100 pesos, or about $5.50 US.
The sandia display was beautiful and we wanted to buy one, but lugging a watermelon back in our backpack on the bus was a bit daunting so we passed this time.
The market is full of food vendors selling everything from aguas frescas: fresh juices from jamaica (hibiscus), tamarind, piña (pineapple), and horchata (almonds and rice) to tamales, empenadas, and more.
Mexicans are huge carnivores and you can find every type of meat (or animal part!) at the market. Here were coolers full of pork and chicken pieces. We didn
Fried pork rinds were big business at the Guaymas Market. Take a 8"x10" size piece of uncooked pork rind and drop it into the vat of boiling fat...
...and a minute or two later out comes a piece of fried pork rind the size of a whole pig!  They were selling like hot-cakes as fast as they could fry them up.
Need a tool, any tool? They have everything from brand shiny-new to left-out-in-the-yard-in-the-rain. Just name your price to determine which one you
And then there are the household goods, everything you could ever want or need, in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes...
..including a larger-than-LIFE-size bag of cheetos that could substitute as a life-raft and provisions all-in-one, or a beanbag chair and snacks for the beach... and the cost of this behemoth? $3.40 US. Sadly it
Due West at anchor in the stunningly beautiful Bahia San Carlos. Mountains surround the west side of the bay... (Photo credit: Viviane s/v "Juniper")
...and cliff-side Mediterranean-type villas adorn the "San Carlos Riviera" to the east.
San Carlos has more pelicans per capita than we
The San Carlos Catholic Church at Marina San Carlos (note sailboat masts in the far-right background) has beautiful stained glass windows in cobalt blue, yellow, and orange. But we couldn
We pass this restaurant with its white stallion (bronco?) silhouetted against the bright blue sky every time we walk from the San Carlos Marina to the grocery store and back. It always looks deserted like it
Mexican PSA: "COVER your Cistern... so that you don
San Carlos Marina has a Saturday Market with a variety of fresh produce, baked breads, and Mexican handi-crafts. Here Heidi is shopping for some little goodies to take to her Neal
The working stiffs, Heidi, Boni, and John. We might be living the dream but some of us are still working our businesses from any wifi-cafe we can find. Hammerheads at San Carlos Marina has good wifi and limonadas mineral, but their A/C makes it too cold in there! John
San Carlos is a cross-roads for lots of cruisers and it
We also stopped by the boatyard in Guaymas to commiserate with our friend Jim on s/v "Anore" about Hurricane Newton. "Anore" was one of the unlucky Guaymas boats where the jack-stands tipped canting her so that her mast hit another boat. Luckily both boats are now fixed and back in the water. Jim is a NOLS instructor leading hiking, kayaking, and sailing expeditions in Baja, whom we first met in Ensenada almost a year ago.
And after six long months, we FINALLY met up with our old friends Maryalice and Rick from s/v "Notre Isle" for dinner at Tortugas. They spent the summer motorcycling and RV-ing around the US and are now back in San Carlos getting "Notre Isle" ready to sail this winter. We first met these guys and their dog Harley in Santa Cruz, CA in September 2015, and then met-up with  them again in Monterey, San Diego, Ensenada, and Puerto Vallarta...looking forward to more fun times together this season!
John
Birthday Boy John laughing with Kimi & Trevor.
Our Green-eyed Lady Tikka steels our heart daily, just look at those eyes!
Tosh, our "cat-dog" (who fetches, and follows us everywhere!) trying to decide which book to chew on next. He says "The Zanzibar Chest" and "One Spirit Medicine" are both pretty tasty! :-D
Breakfast smoothie time, Tikka holds space for the Vitamix when it
Kirk
Shrimp boats hunkering down in Bahia Aldodones during a couple of days of 6-8
The kite-surfers were out in full-force taking advantage of the winds as we arrived in Bahia Algodones. Exciting day!
"Due West" anchored in Bahia Algodones, with palapa beach bars, an amazing long sandy beach, and big sand dunes. LOVE it here!! :-D
The lights shining across the water from the palapa beach bars made for beautiful evenings at Bahia Algodones. Luckily they had some great bands playing great music too, cuz the music floating across the water went on
We watched the truck zoom past the "No Horses or Motorized Vehicles on the Sand Dunes" sign to make these tracks, then get stuck, and have to back down... Duh!
Captain Kirk climbing the 30
Heidi was here... Leave only footprints, take only photos...
...unless of course you
Who knows what food, drinks, and music lurk in the palapa beach bars at Bahia Algodones? The Shadow knows...
Speaking of shadows, Kirk caught this photo of Heidi stealing the sunbeams on Playa Algodones.
Sunsets at Bahia Algodones were phenomenal...
In Mexico the dead visit in November: Dia de Los Muertos (the Day of the Dead), on November 2nd.
Amazing! The richly colorful detail and intricate design in the Day of the Dead face paint on this student.
The University of Guaymas Hospitality & Tourism students all decked out in their Dia de Los Muertos finest face paint.
Most businesses and homes in Mexico set up shrines to honor their deceased loved ones during Dia de Los Muertos. This particular shrine was set up on the malecón at the marina in front of one of the restaurant/bars, and was to commemorate the founder of one brand of tequila!
 
1