Due West Adventures

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

17 March 2019 | Puerto Vallarta
25 December 2018 | Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
26 August 2018 | Puerto Vallarta MX, ABQ, NM, and SEA, WA
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

¡La Vida es Chula!

17 March 2019 | Puerto Vallarta
Heidi & Kirk Hackler
Es la Vida...Life is what happens while you're busy making plans. So much for our plans to sail south for a few months, high tide washed them away...

Between a trip to the states for Heidi's dad's 88th birthday (where we had to wear WAY too many clothes!) and running into yet another engine glitch... Life is great!


The 88th Birthday King Verne and his wife Willa.

If we have to be stuck in paradise awaiting another engine part, at least we have visits from friends and family, and plenty of fun things to do! We had a fantastic time in February when two sets of friends visited us and we got to share whale watching in Banderas Bay with Laura & Will and Lal & Eric. Laura & Will also brought us some boat parts, and a few other items from the states that we can't find in Mexico. This week we have Heidi's brother Arne, sis-in-law Teresa, and our niece Annika, plus several of Anni's friends coming to hang out in Puerto Vallarta for spring break. Life is great!


Clockwise from left: Lal, Heidi, Judy, and Laura whale watching on a Juan Bravo Panga tour.


A lunch stop at Maraika Beach Club is always a delicious treat, and this time was no exception! Eulalie (Lal), Eric, Judy, Will, Heidi, and Kirk.

As you may recall, we had our engine water pump rebuilt here in Mexico last spring. Sadly the the rebuild was faulty... so BIG thanks Arne & Teresa for bringing us a brand new water pump this week! This is no small feat, as our 20 year old Perkins engine is no longer manufactured and spare parts are becoming harder to find. Luckily Kirk has a good stable of Perkins part dealers around the US, and when we need something he is usually able to find a part, but they are becoming fewer and further between, several times we've bought the last one available! With any luck at all, our trusty engine "Michael P" will be up and running, with leak-free oil and water pumps again by next week! Life is great!



Our most exciting news of late, is that Tosh is a medical miracle! He's recovering nicely from his nasal tumor, thanks to Homeopathic remedies from Australia! We have been extremely happy with the results from Holistic Animal Remedies, (another BIG THANKS to friends Wai-Lin & Terry for turning us on to them!) In fact, Tosh's vet here in Vallarta is blown away. He actually asked us for the information on what remedies we've been treating Tosh with, because he's never seen an animal recover from a nasal tumor like this. We've opted not to do another invasive biopsy procedure to confirm it's really all gone... but we are over the moon with Tosh's revived personality, increased energy levels, easier time eating, gaining weight again, and even the shape of his face is going back to normal. Kirk is excited to have his journeyman mechanic back helping him again! Tikka is also very excited that Tosh is back to chasing her around and pouncing on her while she's sleeping (NOT!), as siblings will do... We can hear her say "He's touching me!" Life is great!



Since we are currently short on time to write and long on photos this post is primarily a photo blog. A photo is worth 1000 words anyway, so sit back, relax, and enjoy! Be sure to check out our photo gallery for more photos of friends, family, and adventures around Banderas Bay!


A trip into PV wouldn't be complete without a stop at our favorite juice stand... on a street corner, they have a power cord running into a building, and run two blenders and a hand juicer making any combination of fresh juice to go. $30 pesos for a pint ($1.50 US) Heidi's fav is toronja, perejil, y jengibre (grapefruit, parsley and ginger, try it, it's SO refreshing!!) Kirk likes betabel, zanahoria, y jengibre (beets, carrots, and ginger, also super yummy and great for your heart!)


Another local attraction we love to share with visitors is the hike from Boca de Tomatlan to Las Animas. This 3-mile section of trail (one-way) winds up through lush jungle and open forest with ocean views, past waterfalls, and back down along the beach. Those who are more intrepid can continue another 1.5 miles to Quimixto, or 7-miles all the way to Yelapa. Water Taxis are available for the return for those who don't want to hike back. We recently hiked this trail with friends and fellow cruisers, Judy & Paul from s/v Grace, and Christina & Alex from s/v Blue Wind.


The trail is well maintained and well traveled through the jungle which would otherwise quickly take back the trail... Remember, just because you didn't see the Jaguar, doesn't mean he didn't see you!


The trail crosses playa Colomitas and winds up the hill giving an exquisite view back down onto Colomitas beach and the boardwalk trail along the shore we'd just walked on.


If you're thirsty at the end of your hike, fresh Cocos await! They'll machete off the top for you to drink the coconut water out of. Then when you're done drinking, they'll machete it in half and scoop out the coconut meat for a yummy snack!



What could be better than an old car show complete with Pink Cadillac and palm trees? Stay tuned for our next blog post to find out!

La vida es chula! (Life is Great!)

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

xo
Heidi & Kirk, Tosh & Tikka

PS. Check out our photo gallery for more photos of friends, family, and adventures around Banderas Bay!
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 - We Get By With A Little Help From Our Friends...And Family
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Niece Noelle ran into John, Paul, George and Ringo visiting us on her college spring break! She and Heidi checked out the Galerias El Triunfo in PV, a local display and crafts store like Seattle
Dr. Valadez, Kirk
Captain Kirk practicing Tai Chi to help regain his balance and coordination.
Kirk
Niece Annika, visiting on her college spring break, got to transit Banderas Bay on Due West (motoring, as you can see there was no wind!) as we moved her from Marina La Cruz, to Marina Vallarta to be closer to where we are staying.
Sister-in-Law Teresa (Heidi
Teresa & Annika at Margarita Grill where Anni gave the Margarita a Thumbs UP! In Mexico the drinking age is 16, which all the visiting teenagers happily took advantage of! :-)
Fun to have niece Noelle with us for a few days of her college spring break (thanks Dad!), before she flew off to perform two dance pieces with her University of Montana dance company at a Dance conference at U of Oregon. Check it out here: http://bit.ly/2oRv5ri and here: http://bit.ly/2nN3Z2O
Heidi & Noelle visiting Due West in her new summer home, Marina Vallarta. We miss our boat a lot, but now that she
Heidi
Lunch with the Watson family (clockwise): Heidi, Chloe, Laren, Spencer, Ted, and Captain Kirk.
Puerto Vallarta is full of hills (kinda like Seattle and San Francisco) and the views from the hilltops are breathtaking! This is the view from the top of a Lighthouse tower over looking downtown and the Cathedral of Guadeloupe wearing her crown. You can also see a parasailor in the sky along with some frigate birds!
The Merman and Mermaid sculpture along the Puerto Vallarta Malecón, just one of the many beautiful, whimsical, sculptures that decorate the waterfront. Teresa, Annika, Noelle, and Heidi all took the free Tuesday morning Sculpture Walk Tour where a local gallery owner talks about each sculpture and gives the history or background on each piece. We learned so much! Although the tour is  free, they ask for a donation at the end to help support the local non-profit Bibleoteca Los Mangos ("Mango Library" because it
Danza de los Voladores, or Dance of the Flyers...according to Wikipedia: "is an ancient Mesoamerican ceremony/ritual still performed today, albeit in modified form, and mostly for tourists. It is believed to have originated with the Nahua, Huastec and Otomi peoples in central Mexico, and then spread throughout most of Mesoamerica. The ritual consists of dance and the climbing of a 50-foot pole from which four of the five dancers then launch themselves tied with ropes around their ankles to descend to the ground. The fifth dancer remains on top of the pole, dancing and playing a flute and drum. According to one myth, the ritual was created to ask the gods to end a severe drought. Although the ritual did not originate with the Totonac people, today it is strongly associated with those in and around Papantla in the Mexican state of Veracruz..." These dancers travel to Puerto Vallarta as ambassadors of their craft, hoping to inspire people to visit Veracruz too.
Mexican streets are often decorated with "Papel picado", cut paper banners including themes of birds, floral designs, and skeletons. They are used to decorate for any Mexican holiday or celebration from Easter to Dia de los Muertos (and Mexico has a LOT of holidays...It seems like they have something to celebrate every couple of weeks!) This particular street in downtown PV also has nautical forms hanging from the papel picado, making it even more festive.
This exquisite iguana is an excellent example of the Huchol ("We-chol") native art that is very abundant around Banderas Bay. Huchol (known as the "Peyote People" because peyote is sacred to their tribe) include many animals and symbology in their designs. Brilliantly colored tiny glass beads are hand pressed one-by-one into a thin layer of bees wax covering art forms made of wood, clay, or polymer. The green "flowers" along the hind leg of this iguana and the blue one of the front shoulder symbolize peyote buttons.
The Fur-kids, Tosh & Tikka love licking almond-butter off the spoon when Heidi
Trevor cooking up a storm in our rented kitchen, 14 meals for their passage to the Marquesas, pre-cooked and frozen.
...While Trevor was cooking, Viviane and Kimi were the seal-a-meal gals, Scott was making cocktails, Kirk was napping, Stephen and John were chatting, and the rest of the gals were working on NYR Organic catalogs!
Glue-dot party sticking Neal
Lest you think Neal
Kimi & Trevor
Due West Vic-Maui Yacht Race Crew 1996: (back row left to right) Dick, Jim, Captain Kirk, Heidi, Marty,  Pat, (front row left to right) Karyn and Mark. Hard to believe it
 
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