Feb 15, 2011

Overdue Update

Sea Story, with a fresh coat of bottom paint and swinging in the lift at the Baja Naval boatyard in Ensenada Mexico. Great yard with an interesting community just outside the gates.  We were here for a week in early January.

Sea Story is back in La paz after a long journey down the coast from San Francisco.  The trip was an eventful one.  It started in mid October, and featured California stops in Half Moon Bay, Santa Cruz, Monterey, Morro Bay, Santa Barbara, Oceanside and San Diego. The Captain damaged some ribs on a blustery night passage around Pt. Conception, and Sea Story spent a couple of months at the Chula Vista Marina while my ribs healed and we worked on repairs to the auto pilot and GPS.  I also crewed on a power-boat delivery to La paz during that respite, so the boat actually got a longer break than I did...
After a quick trip back to Wisconsin for a lovely, snowy holiday celebration; we left on January 4th for a liesurely trip down Baja.  This time I wanted to stop at some of those little anchorages I've always bypassed before;  time to smell the roses and chart some waypoints for future trips.
After a week-long layover and haul out in Ensenada, we overnighted down to the San Carlos anchoage at the top of the Bahia Sebastian Vizcaino (big open bay that often throws bad wind and waves at you!). 
Then it was down to Bahia Tortuga (Turtle Bay), the fishing villages of Ascunscion and Abreojos and the old whaling station at Punta Belcher on Magdallena Bay.  Luckily, this was also a bonus year for whale and dolpin traffic, so there was plenty of company all the way down the Baja.
After the simplicity and remoteness of our outside Baja anchorages, an overnight on the hook at Cabo San Lucas was a bit of culture shock.  Jet skis, parasails, overamplified beach parties and a constant procession of glass-bottom tour boats were a reminder of how much nicer it is to be off-the-grid in Mexico.  As if we needed a reminder....
Marina Palmira was only a couple of days around the Cape and up to La paz from Cabo, so here we are now, just a couple of slips away from last year's berth and back with our winter neighbors.
Next week, we will be heading over to Puerta Vallarta and more adventure on the coast of mainland Mexico.  I'll try to do a better job of keeping you all posted...

This is the rugged,early morning coast of Baja, looking south as we sail out of Magdalena Bay and head down toward Cabo San Lucas, 120 miles, and full day of sailing away.  Lots of whales in this area, so we have to keep a sharp lookout to avoid sneaking up on one.