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29 Dec

Heavy Metal gets hauled out and a new arch!

Published by Deborah

Heavy Metal was hauled out in La Paz to get a new bottom paint.  While in La Paz we also got an arch built.  It took a lot longer than expected but turned out pretty good.  We are happy with the results and it is nice to have solar panels up and out of the way, not to mention we doubled the amps we can make.

23 Dec

Passage from La Paz to La Cruz

Published by Deborah

Crossing the sea again

For the second time, we are making the crossing from la Paz. Last time our destination was mazatlan but this time we are heading directly to isla Isabella.  We pushed away from the dock this morning around 10 am. When I say push I really mean pulled. Between the end and the current, HM really didn't want to move away from the dock. But from a little help from the dinghy and some other boat captains on the dock, we were able to make our way into the channel. Destiny, Cat2Fold and Ayla May are in our fleet for this crossing. We rallied up the troops and start up the channel to Costa Baja Marina to fill up the diesel tanks. 
We spent our last night in La Paz saying goodbye to some friends that we are leaving behind. As with most times spent at the pub, grand ideas were discussed of which most tend to not seem like such a good idea the next morning. However this was not the case. Ayla May was not intending to make the crossing with us because of projects they did not get to. We all wanted them to join us and convinced them that all of their projects can wait until PV. Then for some reason. dawn from destiny suggested that dawn from AM switch with Katie (who has been visiting destiny for the past few weeks). Dawn unfortunately is very susceptible to sea sickness while underway and was not too anxious about the crossing. So dawn could relax a bit by joining the destiny crew on a big boat while katie jumps ship to AM were Brian can push his boat to the limits. Zyon and Hunter overheard the conversation and also wants to join the destiny crew. Albeit mostly because of the puppy crew aboard. 
So the next morning it still seemed like a good idea so we shuffled some people about. This left Rigo and I alone on HM for the first time in a while. 
HM, destiny and am reconvened at the fuel dock while Cat2Fold passed us with a head start.  After fueling we were on our way. It didn't take long to get to the channel. Sailing was pretty smooth as we rode the ebb out of la Paz. In the channel became a different story. The swells increased and the was on the nose. After catching a dorado We motored our way through as we communicated with the fleet as to what direction we would go. C2F turned right down the channel and eventually the fleet followed. Light winds most of the way until we got past the island. It is now dark but with a bright beautiful moon. We all sailed/motored for the rest of the night.
Then around 4am while I was on watch bob decided to freak out with an alarm about a rudder resistance failure. Immediately Rigo jumped off the couch and I ran back to the wheel. At this point we were only sailing without the motor. We had a pretty good angle of sail with the wind and the waves but without the auto pilot it was hard to hold a heading. Rigo took over and I took a nap. There wasn't much we could do until it was light out which was only a few hours away.  Once the sun came our maintenance man Rigo came to save the day. The shaft had somehow got disconnected. Rigo puts things back together and we are in our way again. The next day of sailing was awesome !!! Only 5-10 knots but with he spinnaker up we could average +6 knots.
We arrived first at Isla Isabel where we met Mary, Peter and lucy the dog on Neko and Lazy Days. Mike and Holly on Waunaskan was already there as well so we had a little cocktail party on HM while we waited for the rest of the fleet to arrive.  The next day we spend the day swimming, jumping off the arch, snorkeling, SUPing and just hanging out.  We at dinner on Destiny then headed out in the morning for Matanchen Bay.  The sail across is good at first then the wind died and we motored the rest of the way.  Matanchen Bay is a beautiful bay but the whole area is know for the no-see-ums, which are really annoying and small mosquitos.  We suffered through dinner on shore and made plans for the jungle tour the next morning.  Sand Dollar has now joined us as well as Neko so we had 2 full pangas for the tour.  The Jungle Tour was up the San Blas river where there is an oasis at the end with a small restaurant and swimming hole.  After the tour, we all headed to the city of San Blas for some provisioning and some lunch.  Then back to the boat.  Some people and dogs spent some time on the beach afterwards but I was not interested in getting bitten.  That night and the next day, the whole fleet headed toward Bandaras Bay.  Our original fleet, HM, Destiny, Ayla May and Cat2Fold plus Neko stopped in Punta Mita for a night before heading to La Cruz for the holiday festivities.
30 Nov

Back to the US for some work and Thanksgiving

Published by Deborah

Heavy Metal is scheduled to come out of the water for a bottom paint so the kids and I left Mexico to spend some time with my Mom, my sister and the cousins.  Rigo stayed behind to keep things moving with the building of the arch and hauling out of the boat.  We rented a car to drive from La Paz to Cabo to the airport.  Rigo dropped us off and drove back.  The kids and I flew to Phoenix by way of Denver.  The kids went home with my mom while I continued on to San Francisco.  I spent 3 days back in the office at Blue Coat to meet our new hire and to touch base with the rest of the team.  The last day I met Jacob and Mario (old Blue Coat employees) with my manager Josh and our new web developer, Anthony.  After a nice lunch and finishing up a few things in the office, it was back on the airplane to Phoenix.  Donna and her kids were supposed to arrive at the airport around the same time but the rain in the area delayed and cancelled flights so she didn't arrive until the  next day.

With the 4 kids, we had to plan some activities to keep them busy.  We went to an Ostrich farm, a musical museum, a boat ride, bowling, trampoline jumping and a little shopping.  Then on Thanksgiving we had a huge, fabulous meal with a little help from all.  It was even warm enough for us to eat outside.

30 Oct

Back to the Baja

Published by Deborah

After crossing the Sea from San Carlos, our first stop was at Isla Coronodos. Our fleet was just HM and Perm Temp with Steve and Sheila aboard PT while they visited for a few weeks.  (Destiny was unable to join us due to some boat issues.) This anchorage was so beautiful.  The water was clear, the Internet was great.  We had fun snorkeling, swimming and exploring around.  We celebrated Rigo's birthday on the beach.  After a few days we took the short trip over to Loreto for the day.  We did a little shopping and ate at the <NAME HERE> which was recommended by Jack and Mary from Oriana.  At the end of the day we moved over to Los Candeleros where there is a resort.  The anchorage is nice and great for snorkling and paddling but the resort was a bit pretentious.  I'm not sure why the hotel thinks it is so great but we paid the all inclusive fee so the kids could play in the pools.  We tried to eat and drink our money's worth.

21 Sep

Living Life in San Carlos

Published by Deborah

Getting ready to swim across Martini CoveThe America's Cup is responsible for most of the socializing we have been doing lately. It is a never-ending race. I'm not really sure how they determine who wins. Anyway, it is fun to hang out at El Mar Restaurant to watch the races. It is air conditioned and it has a swimming pool that you can use as long as you spend a hundred pesos per person, which really isn't that hard to do. We go there so often now that they don't even care. After the races, a party usually starts to form just as a tropical storm would. There is a little build up then grows as it moves. Well maybe not exactly like a tropical storm.

I have managed to get out paddling on a regular basis. I have been trying to go as early as possible (6 or 7 am) so it is not as hot and not as wavy. The other day I got out around 7:30 and the wind was already 15-20 knots. I paddled straight into the wind. I didn't get very far even though I was out there a while. After I got almost to the south buoy I duck off under the rock for a drink and some pictures. I wasn't really able to do any yoga or exercise that morning since the conditions were not so calm. The way back to the boat was really fast. I had the wind at my back and the waves behind me. Occasionally I was able to surf a wave for a few seconds. It really made me want to get to Punta de Mita or somewhere where there are waves. This morning when I went out, it was absolutely beautiful. There was enough wind to keep it cooler but it didn't really make it hard to paddle. I paddled around to the right this time instead of Martini Cove where I had been going. Martini Cove is nice because there is a place to put the board on the beach and go swimming. I like to swim across the cove but I get kind of freaked out. I wear my snorkel and mask so I can swim across without having to take a breathe. But it is weird to be swimming with all of the other wildlife in the sea. Today I didn't want to go swimming because I wanted to paddle to the South. It is a big open bay. There are houses on the hills and small caves all around. I went to a cave that had an opening through the rocks. I hung out in the shade of the rock. I was able to do some yoga and some other exercises. Listening to the sounds of the water howling and splashing on the rocks was serenity.