Cruising with Vida Dulce

22 October 2020
04 September 2020 | Loggerhead Marina, Hollywood, FL
22 August 2020 | Hollywood, FL
20 August 2020 | Greenville, AL
18 March 2020
09 March 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
29 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
13 February 2020
22 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
10 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
06 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
04 January 2020 | Islan Mujeres, MX
31 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
30 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
29 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
28 December 2019 | Isla Cozumel MX
26 December 2019 | Cay Caulker, BZ
25 December 2019 | Bluefield Range Cays

Uncertain Times

18 March 2020
We cruisers are used to "plans written in sand at low tide" yet this is a differnt thing all together. As the Coronavirus / COVID-19 spreads worldwide, countries are closing their borders to non-residents. Make sense to ensure the medical capacity is used first for their own citizens / legal residents.

This profoundly affects the international cruising community based in, and seasonally out of, Guatemala. The regular cruising grounds in this area include Belize, Honduras (Bay Islands), Mexico and some may come or go as far as Cuba, the Caymans, or the Colombian islands of Providencia / San Andres. There are open questions about whether cruisers who store their boats in the Rio Dulce, Guatemala will be able to bring them back in, if so when and what the quarantine procedures will be. If it's a no-return situation, many will have to make difficult decisions on what to do for this upcoming hurricane season. For former cruisers who call the Rio Dulce or other areas in Guatemala home but are not official residents - meaning the they must renew their visas on a regular basis - it is not clear how they will be handled in the near term nor when their current visa is up. Some of these folks no longer have a functional cruising vessel. And for those that "commute" between one of these countries and their home country during the cruising season, the question is whether they will be able to return to their vessels if they had returned home previous to these border closures.

What is certain, wherever we are, social distancing and extra diligent personal and vessel hygiene is a must. We'll just have to see how this plays out...

2019 - 2020 Cruising Season Itinerary

18 November 2019
As we begin our 9th Cruising Season we’re planning our next change of cruising grounds: early on it was the BVI / USVI then the Eastern Caribbean; then we spent a good amount of time in Panama; for the past several seasons we’ve explored the Northwest Caribbean, based out of Guatemala, Our plan for this season is to arrive in Florida where we’ll secure s/v Vida Dulce for the hurricane season, then use that location for our jumping off point to explore the Florida Keys and the Bahamas.

Between the Rio Dulce / Livingston, Guatemala and Key West, FL our route and tentative timing is this: work north through Belize and the coast of Mexico mostly in day-hops to Isla Mujeres, MX, arriving by the end of December. We’ll stay there (making trip(s) home as needed) until we make the run to Key West, probably in early May. Once in FL, explore the Keys a bit while continuing to move north to our new hurricane season location. We’ll need to be there, wherever that is, by late May. So lots of miles in the beginning of the season and at the end, in-between enjoying Isla Mujeres and its cruising community.

Belize Check Out

24 February 2019 | Placencia, Belize
Susan | partly cloudy, 85 degrees F
Our BZ passport stamps expired today so we’ve checked out (on Fri as officials are closed Sat / Sun) and are headed back to the Rio Dulce, Guatemala. A very short cruising season for us this year for a good reason: Jerry has been invited to present at SOT-10 in Hong Kong (April 1-4) on how his Mintaka Innovations weather instruments (Mintaka STAR and Mintaka STARX) are being used by NOAA / NWS for shipboard weather observations. How great is that! Of course I’m going along and we’ll spend a few extra days exploring. So back to the Rio Dulce we go to get Vida Dulce prepared for hurricane season.

Guatemala Check-Out

23 January 2019 | Livingston, Guatemala
Susan / mostly sunny, mid-80’s
Time to get our cruising season going! The Chris P weather forecast is a little dated since we’ve been out of cellphone / internet range however it appears we have a weather window to go North to Placencia BZ so once Tom is finished (mid-day) we depart Cayo Quemado, and head to Livingston to check out. Tonight we’ll anchor in Tres Puntas, then tomorrow morning we’ll head to Placencia for food & ice cream.

Let the 2019 Cruising Season Begin!

12 January 2019 | Rio Dulce, Guatemala
Susan / mostly sunny, 80 degrees F
Let the 2019 Cruising Season Begin!

We're back in the Rio Dulce and, as usual, this start is alot of work getting s/v Vida Dulce cleaned up, set up, and doing annual maintenance. In addition to the usual stuff, she'll be getting all new standing rigging before we head out to Placencia, Belize on our way to Roatan. These are our only two planned destinations this season due to timing of other commitments.

2017-18 Cruising Itinerary Update

21 May 2018
Plans written in sand at low tide…., that’s the cruising life!

This cruising season is quickly coming to a close so we will not travel to Panama this season as planned. Instead we’ll secure Vida Dulce once again in the Rio Dulce, Guatemala for the hurricane season. Yes, not what we planned for this year yet the best thing to do given the consistently unfriendly eastbound weather conditions all season long and the time spent State-side. Beside, our bar fridge IS STILL being held hostage by Guate SAT…. !! Finger’s crossed it’ll get released before the anniversary of its capture.
Vessel Name: Vida Dulce
Vessel Make/Model: Lagoon 440
Hailing Port: Seattle, WA
Crew: Jerry and Susan Barber
About: Jerry and Susan moved aboard Vida Dulce in late October of 2010. We are currently in the Caribbean.
Vida Dulce's Photos - Main
26 Photos
Created 20 October 2017
17 Photos
Created 2 September 2017
4 Photos
Created 15 December 2016
9 Photos
Created 17 October 2016
20 Photos
Created 1 September 2015
North Coast, West section 2015; Havana to Baracoa Bus Trip 2016
100 Photos
Created 15 May 2015
38 Photos
Created 11 March 2015
50 Photos
Created 25 December 2014
The road trip included 7 States: WA, OR, ID, WY, CO, UT, MT
16 Photos
Created 3 August 2014
Hurricane Season 2014
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 14 June 2014
Pictures of our stay in Honduras 2014
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 4 January 2014
10 Photos
Created 18 October 2013
4 Photos
Created 20 September 2013
Our Dec 2012 - Feb 2013 visit
55 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 31 December 2012
Happy Holidays from Isla Providencia, Colombia
11 Photos
Created 31 December 2012
Photos of my on-board garden
16 Photos
Created 28 September 2012
4 Photos
Created 26 December 2011
Pictures of our time in Panama, Sept 2011 - Dec 2012
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 29 September 2011
Pictures of our visit to Columbia, May-Oct 2011
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 15 July 2011
Photos of our series drogue and May 2011 practice deployment and retrieval
24 Photos
Created 13 May 2011
Pictures from our brief visit to Bonaire, Curacao & Aruba in May 2011
35 Photos
Created 11 May 2011
Pictures of our short stay off Isla Pelona in May 2011
17 Photos
Created 11 May 2011
Pictures of our time in Grenada, April 2011
48 Photos
Created 23 April 2011
Pictures of our island stops in the Grenadines, April 2011
36 Photos
Created 4 April 2011
Photos of St Vincent, April 2011
11 Photos
Created 2 April 2011
Photos of St Lucia March 2011
46 Photos
Created 15 March 2011
68 Photos
Created 7 March 2011
Photos of Dominica 2011
3 Photos
Created 7 March 2011
Photos of Iles des Saintes, Feb 2011
12 Photos
Created 17 February 2011
Photos of Guadeloupe, Feb 2011
49 Photos
Created 13 February 2011
Photos of Barbuda, Jan 2011
15 Photos
Created 14 January 2011
20 Photos
Created 30 December 2010
2 Photos
Created 26 December 2010
Photos of Red Hook, St Thomas and Vida Dulce getting a new bank of batteries and the installation of her new custom made arch which will support 4 solar panels.
28 Photos
Created 9 November 2010
Haul out of Vida Dulce in November of 2010.
23 Photos
Created 9 November 2010
Lots of photos of various places not in other albums. Most are included directly in a blog entry.
27 Photos
Created 31 October 2010
15 Photos
Created 11 September 2010
A "Working" Trip with Jim to start outfitting the boat for cruising.
31 Photos
Created 10 September 2010
11 Photos
Created 5 April 2010
34 Photos
Created 5 April 2010