Livin the Dream!!

25 March 2024
19 March 2024 | Tenacatita
13 March 2024
13 March 2024
03 March 2024
28 February 2024
28 February 2024
28 February 2024
28 February 2024 | day 2
13 February 2024 | LaCruz Marina
01 February 2024
01 February 2024 | San Juanico
25 January 2024
20 January 2024 | San Quintin (no not the prison!)
16 January 2024 | ensenada
13 January 2024
29 November 2023 | Back at Das Boat!

Back to the land of plenty! (My aching head….)

06 April 2024
Brian Wade
La Cruz: First day back H & P invite me to go shopping at the big store…I’m out of beer AND pesos so decide to pump the brakes on my morning power walk and go do some power shopping instead. Afterwards I springed for lunch and went back to store my treasures in the bilge!

Then, it began. Rooftop BBQ’s, parties, dancing at the club, pool time, dinners out….meeting new people of their condo assoc., and drinking…and not just water if you know what I mean? Fortunately, I have plenty of time to shake it off & get serious putting the boat to bed. AND…almost everyone I know here are leaving this week, either to go back home for the summer or jumping across the pacific to far off islands to spend the summer.

To help shorten my list, I’ve decided to hire a local guy to manage my boat while I’m gone…as an added bonus, he does detailing & bottom work, so mark polishing stainless & fiberglass off MY list and add it to his! You cannot beat the value down here for good work, allowing us boat owners to focus on more important tasks which may or may not include cold items in the fridge or possibly some local Tequila! I digress….

As a first project, Armando & his brother are here to climb the mast and clean all the rigging & mast & fittings with a soap & vinegar solution to remove salt & general gunk that gets built up while underway…this is something I am more that happy to hand off the baton to him…a zero on the fun meter :)

Howard had told me in the past about how to make a double filter in order to run the nasty dock water through my water maker and pump pristine tasty water back in the tank using the membrane…fortunately, he was willing to run me all over to hell & back trying to find all of the fittings to put it together. It works beautifully, and alleviates me from having to go out into the bay where the water is cleaner and spend 10 hours making water…AND it’s portable! Super stoked! Thanks again Howard…for saving the day.

So that’s about it folks! Pretty much gonna be groundhog day around here until I fly out on the 25th of April….getting projects done, purging the boat and removing everything off deck. OH! as an added bonus, H & P gave me the keys to the city! I have full access to the condo, pool & hot tub & a beautiful fully tiled & glass shower…oh my! Life just doesn’t get any better!!!!

All for now, gotta go pretend to supervise the boys on my mast!

Capt. Lazy Pants….

my days are numbered -

25 March 2024
Brian Wade
Carizal, wow, what can I say? Pic is of the actual place I put my pick down and did not move for a week. I watched as multiple boats came & went, even had a couple days totally alone with my thoughts and without other boats; BLISS!

My days consisted of swimming, paddling, high speed dingy runs to cool off, fishing (no joy) and the dreaded bottom cleaning. Let’s just say I was glad to have a multitude of instruments to remove the ecosystem that was growing below the waterline. Mini barnacles, worms, baby crabs, grass, brown scum that came off in a cloud of grossness (I had quite the audience of free loading fish grazing on the all you can eat buffet). Thinking I could get the whole project done with one tank (wishful thinking) the first day about 2/3 of one side pretty much wiped me out. I rewarded myself with one (spin control) icy cold Modelo in the cockpit before rinsing off all the gear and having a much needed siesta!….and I thought I was getting in good shape :(

Next day was recovery day…and new game plan for the finish line. With only 700 psi left in the tank, I did all the deepest stuff first knowing that the rest would have to be done while holding my breath combined with laying on the paddle board and scrubbing off the 6” of grass growing around my waterline…yes, absolute 10 on the fun meter! Alas, I finished the next day & did a repeat in the cockpit with aforementioned Modelo & siesta! Good times.

Because us sailors live & die by the weather, I saw a good window to get me north & had to make a tough decision to leave paradise and head back to the hot & stale marina while the getting was good. Knowing there was a change coming I decided to make the 32 hour trip straight thru at about 10 miles offshore, easy peasy.

It was bitter sweet leaving my little secret hideaway but hell, that’s just cruising man! Motorsailed mostly, making water & power, reading books, napping at 30 min intervals at night, same ol M.O.

My last night at sea was a cali da scope of emotions. The white hot moon combined with a thousand blinding stars created a symphony of fiery ricochets on the inky black surface of an otherwise nondescript sea. As my yar little ship sliced through the void it left trail of excited bioluminescence in her wake…this truly magical experience marked my last night at sea, like Aladdin, it was my magic carpet ride back to civilization.

Once I rounded the cape (FISH ON!….) another catch & release, all sails up I was able to get some rockin time behind the helm as a final hoorah before checking into my new slip at Marina La Cruz.

Howard & the security team were waiting for me at the new slip…blowing 26 knots outside the marina & gusting inside the breakwater, I pulled a bonehead move & went down the wrong fairway…SHIT! How the heck am I gonna stop this turd…AND back out of danger without hitting anything?!??…needless to say, with a little luck and my expert helming skills (sarcasm) I made it back out safely and into my slip….oh, yeah, and more of those Modelo beers left my fridge.

Thanks for reading-
Capt. LB!

Carizal HEAVEN! Off grid at it’s finest!

23 March 2024 | Carizal
Brian Wade | amazing!
Hello All! It was a fine few days in Melaque…as rolly as it was, the silver lining was NO BOATS!!! I literally had the place to myself…guess everyone else saw the ocean swell and said…”that dude is NUTS!” Clearly they didn’t see my dual flopped stoppers deployed, more about that in a sec!

Alex left at the butt crack of dawn…no goodbyes…just the way we cruisers do it! I stuck it out another day and left for Melaque in the morning….this is a place less travelled due to proximity to Barra de Navidad…most people go there…but, as you know, I prefer the lesser travelled spots. It was a non eventful motorsail in light winds, Making water, power via the fossil fuel burning “back up” Kubota (thank goodness for the repower!) and listening to some cool jazz, reading a new book (#10) and just letting the boat do all the work.

Arrived Melaque early afternoon…it was an empty bay….on the way in...my eyes bugged out at the biggest freaking surf I have ever seen from this boat….I mean….like Hawaii type big breaking monster waves on the shoreline….uh oh….the waves from my viewpoint…had the sun illuminating from behind, the shellacked vibrant green angry waters were topped with a fluffy sweet cream froth that was intoxicating….I could not take my eyes off of the ocean’s fury….literally the energy and power of these breakers could be felt thru my hull….yikes, respect!

As I was hand steering around the outer break…it crossed my mind how badly this could end for me and my ship if anything failed at this moment….gulp…saying a few hail mary’s I trusted my hand at the helm and went for it…spoiler alert, everything was fine…in fact, I had to get over myself as I was pumping up my chest and letting out Tarzan yells…swinging from the rigging in my underwear….I look over and see a lone panga fisherman…like…ho-de-dooo….no biggie…it’s good fishing….get over yourself poorly tanned white guy with the shiny sailboat….u ain’t nothing special :). I just cracked open a cold Modelo and kept on with the fantasy that I was Captain Cook discovering new lands, come on, makes for good content!

Well, I spend several days here, doing surf landings, eating amazing beach palapa food, go for long beach walks, shop at the “Hawaii Store” (go figure, in Mexico?) It’s just a name, but damn!, they had everything any cruiser could yearn for! Two trips later, I was fully stocked to head out.

0800, everything is stowed, Kubby warmed up, route set, I’m ready! No drama, I’m underway in 15 min. Both fishing lines deployed and water maker going, we are off to the races. It is only a 17 mile trip with little wind so again we are motorsail it. I am blown away at all the new mansions (casa grande) along the beaches…so much development down here. One strike and two gray whales later, I am rounding the corner to Carizal…my Dads favorite anchorage in all of Mexico when he used to come visit me on the first trip in 2009-2012. It did not disappoint. Still undeveloped, raw and absolutely gorgeous! I find a great spot in the middle of the cove in 32’ of water, only one other boat…SCORE!…..well, for now.

As there was some residual rolling swell coming into the anchorage I decide to put out the flipper stoppers….these things are SO cool! Thanks to my buddy Johnny the fabricator I have these STAT cool racks these things just hang on my rail….all lines at the ready. One side I put out the main boom, tied fore & aft….drop the unit over the side and tie it off….other side I use the spinnaker pole the same way. Takes like 5 minutes compared to 30-40 min’s before….they are stabilizers that flow up & down with the boat movement….like two hands making a church and then the steeple and here’s the people…seriously…they actually work like that! It reduces the boat roll by 2/3, thanks Dad!

Only one boat besides me, turns into 5, and 3 local tour boats with drunken locals and loud music…one bachelorette party (no, I didn’t go over there…..or maybe I did?) and others were just snorkeling and drinking. they left before nightfall.

I will leave you with this visual, I have never experienced before, ever.

I’m in a gorge, open to the ocean from the south, surrounded by big hills otherwise. The sun goes behind the hill to my left (west) early…like 6pm….but, I see the moon…mid sky, I mean, there is no mistaking it is a full moon, but a waxy, sexy orangish red brown, due to all the burning going on around here….I’m transfixed by it’s awesomeness when I realize the show is just beginning….the hillside to my east looks like one of those crazy artists who crank heavy metal music…dance around in bare feet and coveralls with a huge canvas on the wall…with bare hands launch gallons of fluorescent orange paint tinted with earth tones at the hillside…BAM!….the sublime colors are literally dripping from the trees and granite walls of the cove….only sentineled by the moon….it was the most moving thing I have ever experienced from the decks of my mighty little ship.

It only made sense to salute this majestic experience with my last rib eye steak, roasted garlic & rosemary potatoes and my last few sprigs of mexican asparagus….any maybe just a couple glasses of Vino Tinto!’

Thanks for listening to my introspection….sometimes it just flows.

Be well my friends!
More to come :)
Capt. Humble.

Tenacatita, home of the Jungle River Tour!

19 March 2024 | Tenacatita
Brian Wade | Blowy!!
It was a great stay in Chamela. Seemed like 3 days, was actually 6! How time flies when you are not watching the clock or calendar. It is a new dynamic for me, not being in a hurry! Did lots of long hot walks on the beach, eating at palapas…delicious fresh seafood for a song…I mean, a big fat fresh shrimp burrito, salad and 2 beers for $13.50 USD? Oh, yeah, I’m all over that! Feet in the warm sand, looking out at the surf, little kids squealing with joy, cold beer in my hand….what’s not to like? I do love how the Hispanic community cherishes family time, always engaging with their kids….albeit there are those with their noses buried in their IPHONES….even down here there are millennials….kinda sad :(

I fill my time with daily walks, paddle boarding, swimming, working out, reading & generally just zoning out looking at the world going on around me…unnoticed by most….just embracing this great life I’m blessed to take part in.

Time to go. Ready for a new room with a view….Tenacatita is only 6. hours away….due to the lighter winds I decide to motorsail in order to top up my batteries as the wind and solar have a hard time keeping up with my power hungry ship….It’s an enjoyable sea, gently rolling my world as the coastline slips past…huge mansions built into the cliffs, majestic copper brown hills spattered with green-ish undergrowth and the occasional planted palm tree around homes….a shellacked, deep blue sea full of fish, in which none are interested in my Lures….except one spicy little skipjack who did his best to bite me as I let him go…”tell your big brothers to come back and punish my lures little boy!..I was nice to you”
evidently they didn’t get the memo…no more action.

As I sailed into the anchorage I counted 19 boats. The most I ever saw here in the past was 8 or 10….still not crowded my eyes focus outside of the mass of boats all anchored up close to the headlands for wind protection…no thanks…I will take my lumps out in the open for privacy, been in the same spot for days, endured tow blows in excess of 30 knots, easy peasy…more privacy for cockpit showers :).

It takes a couple days but I finally get decent conditions to launch NO_TOE (the dingy) and head to the beach. Basically abandoned, not a sole on it…great time for a walk!! Rinse, set, repeat…next few days it is my daily routine…coffee, water, read, rubber band workout, walk on beach, paddle board & swim….starting to get into the groove of taking better care of myself. The days, though should seem long and boring, fly by.

The Jungle Tour: An estuary that goes from the anchorage through a lush thick mangrove, 2.5 miles up to a lagoon. There…you land your dink, walk across the beach to the “Aquarium” where there are tons of palapas & places to eat. I picked up a couple hitch hikers on the beach after doing a textbook landing with my wheels down (serious! My dingy has fold down wheels!), jump out in one fluid motion, grab the handle and run up the beach dingy in tow to higher ground. Alex & Terri ask if they can come with me as their dingy is way too heavy to drag around to the other side of the sand bar…of course I accept the company, way more fun than going alone.

We saw MASSIVE Herons, Snowy Egrets, Red Rock Crabs, other loud birds which I don’t know what they were…and smelly gross water….brackish…not anything you would want to swim in :(. Lunch was ok at best…considering the great luck I have had with food lately I was ok with it. On return trip back they invite me over for dinner as a thank you, of course I accept as they are on a GORGEOUS Amel 54 like the boat “Delos” you youtube…we agree on 6:30.

Let’s just say we punished a bottle of vodka (me & my new swiss friend Alex…Terri was a good girl….) talked story and ate a delicious stir fry…end of a great day of adventure on the water!!

Now, I sit in the cockpit, writing to you fine folks the next day, it is 84 degrees, wind is howling…I’m watching a dude kite foiling, making me wish I figured out a way to cram my kite boarding stuff somewhere on this ever shrinking island I call home….bygones.

It’s a good life either way :)
Capt. Chillaxn’

Let’s go sailing!

13 March 2024
Brian Wade
Ok, I need a break! A break from my vacation….to another vacation!…Boat is right & tight, provisioned up, fueled, water & fresh laundry. Why the heck am I sitting at the dock? I decide to check out with the port captain, pay my bill at the marina and GO!!! I have about 3 weeks before I need to start putting the boat to bed in preparation for hurricane season and going home for the summer. H & P invite me up for a farewell dinner on the roof garden, of course I accept!.. Oh, man, I get doggie time AND RIB EYE STEAK!!! What a great night we had.

Early the next morning, at first light, I cast the lines and head out….next stop is 100 nm south to Chamela, a place I’ve been before many times. After carefully considering weather predictions, time to destination, current etc…I calculate a morning arrival based on the information at hand. Motoring first thing, I get the water maker going without drama, and head for the cape. Wind predictions show no more than 15-18 knots NW so that’s perfect I think! PERFECT! I start with all sails up and doing a respectful 5.0-5.5 knots SOG (remember?..speed over ground!) Things are supposed to stay just like this all day & night….I’m thinking I’m a pretty smart captain, look at me….making all the right decisions! Then, the wind starts to build.

Before long, I’m reefing the main, reefing the Headsail (making smaller for better control) speeds building in winds to 20+…..22, 25….30? WHAT? Ok, I gotta slow this bus down or I’m gonna get there WAY to early…I have a rule about making landfall in the dark….call me conservative…you won’t hurt me feelings :)

Eventually, I have only a whisper of a storm jib out and I’m flying! 5-6 knots SOG in 36 knots of wind….what a ride! Let’s just say there wasn’t much sleep to be had. Seas were about 6-8’ and breaking. Impressively Wades was just going with it….moving along effortlessly not giving a rat’s ass about the conditions….and the auto pilot ditto…everything was in concert, waiting for the conductors next move.

It’s 0400 hours. Based on my route and lay line…I need to tack, start heading towards shore…I’m 20 nm out to sea….and can’t miss my waypoint at the outer point or I will get up close and personal with some very unforgiving rocks….no bueno!…Making the turn…we now start to roll heavily because the seas are on our beam and not from behind. I play with the sail plan a bit and calm things down as best I know how….and make the point exactly at sunrise…who’s the man?!??….ah, it’s all luck. :)

After rounding the rocky point I can see a ton of masts…like 18 of them! The bay is big and lots of room…I decide to anchor outside the mooring field for privacy and less panga traffic…good move. All I hear is pounding surf on the beach, a few sea birds…and in no short order…my own snoring…a 3 hour power nap was MONEY! I was beat. The rest of the day was getting my little island ship shape, planning a great dinner and opening a bottle of wine after diving into the 78 degree water for a quick swim….ahhhhh…back at anchor, my happy place!

Dog Days….of Winter?

13 March 2024
Brian Wade
So, Marina LaCruz has been an absolute riot! I’ve attended seminars on weather, medical emergencies, sail trim, boat maint. provisioning for the south pacific, electronic charting & on & on! Live music any night of the week, great eateries, fun people, it’s a mecca of distractions in the highest order!

I get a text from Howard & Pam….Hey! would you be able to watch “Bula” for a couple days as we have to return to the US and sort out legal stuff for our residency blah blah…I’m like YEEES!!!!….finally, a break from the hot marina & hot boat….what’s not to like!…I’m jacked. I get to stay in the kick ass penthouse with a view, sweet pool and amazing kitchen. What’s not to like?…oh, yeah, plastic poop bags, not a fan, also not a fan of idiot pet owners who let their dogs off gas shitty pet food into disgusting piles of shit that they don’t pick up, in which I step. Not a big fan of that either!…so off we go

Howard shows me how to install this harness thing that looks more like a cross between a chastity belt meets full face muzzle like Silence of the lambs….all the buckles & leaders…two leashes? Ok, I can figure it out. Thankfully Pam left a very detailed list (at my request) of walking times, routes NOT to take, meals etc. Let me tell you, this dog eats better than I do! Human food, prepared kindly for a dogs health. At first I rolled my eyes at the prep, but then realized this dog is super healthy, shiny healthy thick coat and tons of energy….we should all eat better :)

They left, Bula didn’t even notice….door shuts….we both look at each other for a minute…then at the same time yell out “PARTY!” Wooo Hoooo!!!! I threw her toys, wrestled with her…goofed off…we were having a blast…then - she just stops. Looks at me, and sits there…staring….oh, shit….literally…it’s time. Uh, oh god, that buckle thing…good god…how did that thing work again?

After fiddling with the damn thing for 10 minutes, she finally looked at me with those eyes like, “DUDE!…you idiot….it ain’t rocket science…..this goes here, that goes there, buckle the goddamn thing and lets get on with it!!!…I’m like, “thanks dog…ur a big help”….off we go down the elevator to the garage level…I wave to the security guard, go through the gate….and she is off! Now, I don’t have to tell her where to go, she’s on a mission…first stop, pee break, on a strip of otherwise burnt out lawn (thanks to her!) and off down the dirt road toward the next stop…..when will it happen? I’m hoping she’s constipated until they get back, could I be that lucky!??….uh, NO! abruptly she stops, assumes the position …..and out comes this absurdly huge pile of…yeah….she looks at me like…”come on dodo…pick the stuff up!…I got more shit to smell and bark at!”…..Thankfully (due to aforementioned diet) It was pretty firm….so after gagging while picking up….it was done…I’m now broken in :)

Back at the condo, she gets fed, brushed, sang to, read to, walked one last time…and it’s off to la la land…or so I thought :(. Dog can’t settle, on it goes…toys on my bed…licking my face…playing around throwing her toys in the air…finally gets bored and goes out on to the deck to sleep…..1am….barking starts…she sees some mexican dudes walking on the street below….I squash this bad behavior in a New York minute by closing the screen door and telling her to LAYDOWN!….enough said.
Oh…I paid her back…at 0600….TIME TO WALK YOU LITTLE>>>> :) Let’s just say she wasn’t impressed….but we got along famously, so fun to have a dog again even if only for a day or so. And…the chicks dig the dog! HaHA…everyone’s gotta have a dream, LOL!

They come back the next night….I vacuumed up 10# of dog hair, did my laundry, ate their food, took long showers & read…on the deck, looking out at the magnificent view, total win in my book!…My job is done here.

I hope they have me back for more dog dates…such a nice diversion from the boat…

Vessel Name: wades aweigh
Vessel Make/Model: 1974 Irwin 37
Hailing Port: anacortes, wa
Crew: Captain Lawnboy!
About: Me? well, retired pseudo landscaper turned worldsailor and adventure junkie….chasing new horizons one ocean at a time
Extra: I bought the boat from mom & dad in 1999 and have been restoring her to current glory ever since. It's a work in progress. This blog is an accounting of my travels raw and uncut.
wades aweigh's Photos - pics from our trip south Sept 09
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Added 23 September 2009
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