Latest Entries »

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Boarding Ladder

We had these constructed while in Mazatlan, but now a friend wants to see them, so I'm posing the pics here. It's a great ladder, especially the seat that opens when it is fully extended, allowing us old folk to climb out of the water easily. It's a great place to sit to cool off on a hot day or to take off fins and masks before getting on the boat. Our friends on Daydreamer had one without the seat, a smaller version which Michael used as the genesis for this project design.

The first picture shows me lowering the steps. They can be lowered with one extension, which works for boarding from the dinghy or dock. With two extensions down, they go about 18 inches into the water, and completely opened, have the seat that you can see in the following picture, taken in Aqua Verde when Michael was cleaning the hull. That blue tube floating in the water is his hookah breathing hose.

For additional pictures of the ladder, see link to the right.

Posted by Picasa

View of Guaymas and Friend

I love herons. This fellow landed on a neighboring boat and soon decided he didn't like the view, so he turned around where he could watch the bay instead of the boat's windows. (Pictures loaded backwards.)

Michael's been spending a lot of time aloft recently, trying to deal with the Raymarine masthead wind transducer, the second of these to go south. This one didn't like the 50+ knots of wind it encountered off Isla Ceralvo back in May. Poorly made, it broke off and was hanging by I'm not sure what. He glued the broken pieces together for use until the back-ordered replacement arrives. On one of his trips, he took this picture of the cathedral in Guaymas.

Friday, August 14, 2009


We motored over to the Singlar Marina in Guaymas yesterday in the early hours before the wind piped up. It's hard to maneuver this old girl into a slip with cross winds. We're now moored next to our friends' boat, Thea Renee, whose occupants are at the moment enjoying their backyard pool and air conditioned house in California. We decided to enter a marina because Jesus, from Marina Seca, warned that the Chubascos coming in to Bahia San Carlos can hit 80 knots of wind and Sea Venture sat at anchor in the direct path of storm surge. We'd had no other choice there as smaller boats were moored all over the anchorage. Marina San Carlos offered us a more expensive slip on at outside tie, also in the way of the surge. We opted to wait for haul-out in Guaymas, perhaps not as picturesque as San Carlos, but within bus distance of stores and walking distance of restaurants. Hopefully, we'll search out an ice cream store this evening.

This morning, Michael took the photos of an osprey atop a neighbor's mast.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Isla San Marcos to San Carlos

These are the caves at the northwestern end of Isla San Marcos on Los Arcos. We snorkeled in the lee of the rocks. Lovely. As if we had our own aquarium of brightly colored fish.

Now we're in San Carlos. As Michael says, we've circumnavigated the Sea of Cortez. We left San Carlos in July of 2004 and we returned two days ago after almost five years of being in California or other Mexican waters. It's changed. We were surprised by the number of new waterfront homes built just north of Bahia San Carlos. We couldn't get close enough to see them, but we did take pictures of the lovely homes surrounding Bahia San Carlos.

We left Isla San Marcos at 3:45 AM, Sunday, with promises from the weather gurus of flat seas and 10-15 knots of breeze. Sweet Pea Cove was quiet in the early morning hours. We didn't want to bother with the mizzen cover in the dark, so we navigated by radar out and around. As soon as we cleared the north end of the island, the waves and wind hit us. Friends who left the day before had spoken to us on the Amigo Net and mentioned 6-8 foot seas at 10 second intervals, which would make them manageable. What we saw were 4-6 feet and 3-4 second intervals. Sloppy, choppy, and rolly...all the way across, mostly on the beam. We never could get that mizzen cover off; it would have been too dangerous in those seas, so we opened up the staysail and wasted more diesel. Thirteen hours later, we entered Bahia San Carlos, exhausted, but glad to be back.

The anchorage is crowded with boats on moorings and a few at anchor. Very few are occupied, which is why Michael kept watch last night when a chubasco came through with its high winds, driving rain, and thunder. He turned on the motor during the fiercest wind, keeping the boat pointed into it and watching for strays. That's the thing we worry about most in a anchorage. A boat that drags can run into us or uproot our anchor if it crosses our rode. With our 120 lb Spade and 250 feet of chain out, we weren't likely to drag unless some other force took over.

The fellows from Marina Seca came out yesterday. They'll fix our nonskid and do a few other chores needed on Sea Venture. Good men to stand by their work. But they can't start until the beginning of September, so we're moving tomorrow to Guaymas, to the Singlar Marina there. We like the Singlar/Fonatur marinas that line the Sea of Cortez. Each one is exactly alike: the same tower structure for offices, the same well built and maintained docks, the same pool/laundry/bath facilities. They always have a small tienda, and usually a nice restaurant on site. Our friends from Thea Renee have left their boat in Guaymas for the summer. It will be fun to see Erwin when he comes next week to check on the boat.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Iglesia Santa Barbara de Santa Rosalia

What a lovely service. A breeze wafted in the windows, but with the humidity approaching 100%, sweat drenched everything. Still, the music was enthusiastic, and the priest really got into his message. From what I could gather based on my limited Spanish/Italian, he spoke of not putting off a relationship with God. At one point, he discussed how short a time it really is between birth and death, and one fellow piped up with, "un ora!" An hour. The whole congregation laughed. The priest encouraged everyone to repent of the idle life of doing what feels good, and instead, to consider life eternal and a relationship with Jesus. A good word.

Note that the church was designed by Gustave Eiffel, of Parisian tower fame.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Santa Rosalia -- hot dogs and parties

We toured the town yesterday. Faye, Ken, and Michael scarfed down a few of the famous bacon-wrapped, coated-with-everything hot dogs at Chuyitas Hot Dog stand (open only after 6:30 PM, too late for me to pollute my insides with indigestibles), while I feasted instead on mango sorbet. At the church nearby, a family celebrated their daughter's quinceañera, or coming of age ceremony held on a girl's fifteenth birthday. According to Wikipedia, "The term Quinceaños refers to the birthday of the celebrant, and the term Quinceañera refers to the celebrant herself. Like many other coming-of-age ceremonies, the Quinceaños is associated with the Quinceañera 'becoming a lady.'" By the time we'd eaten, walked all over town, and returned by way of the church, the service was still going strong, with songs thanking God for the young lady and for all His blessings. We plan to attend there tomorrow, our first Mexican Catholic service.