Cruising 2004 Living the good life

November, 2004

We departed Santa Rosilita finally and not too soon as the crew was ready to munity. The winds blew over 40 knots and covered the boat with dirt. Every thing on the deck is caked with dirt. The smell of squid was getting bad again. This is Rosilita's claim to fame Squid processing plant. The smell is over powering at times.

Any how departed today still on the south bound heading. The wind was blowing 25 and the waves where 2 to 5 feet. Not bad at all we averaged over 6 knots all the way to Bahia Conception. Anchored off Burrow Bay and went into Berthas for diner. Wanderer is with us still and they where both sick most of the day as was Pam. After we got RDreamz heading down wind with the head sail poled out the ride smoothed out and Pam went below and was able to do some odds and ends with out being sick so maybe she is over this sea sickness thing again.

We head south tomorrow after a quick snorkel to get Pam some free swimming scallops for the freezer. Departed Bahia Conception and sailed most of the way to Escondito. Anchored off Jucilito spelling? Had a great visit with Joe and Vicky on Cat House Palapya. We spent the evening with them and then had breakfast with the Hidden Port Yacht Club at Willies. The club is now doing breakfast on Sunday there to help support Willie. things are look pretty rough for the area since the Mexican government came in and started to charge steep fees to anchor there.

Time will tell what will happen there.

We where underway around noon and sailed to Auga Verde and spent the night there very nice and comfortable. We had a nice meal and a relaxing evening watching the sun go down and the water creatures swim around. The next day found us up and underway at day light. After clearing the islands we called Wanderer and finaly talked to them around 10 or so. The where way ahead of us and sailing towards Ensanda Grande. After looking at the charts we determinded that we could make it there also if we pushed a bit and the wind worked with us. The wind came and went and then just as we were 5 miles north of Esanda Grande the wind picked up to over 20 knots and caught us with all our sail up and we had to scramble to get the gollywobller down and the Geneker snuffed. We where doing 7+ knots coming across the channel. Yea ha neat ride. Any how we pulled in anchored with no more problems. Wanderer and found the wind and sailed into La Paz so we had the place pretty much to our selves. Raven called and they where do to head towards Cabo San Lucas so we decieded to meet them in Blandra bay which was about 11 miles south of us. We got up late and had a relaxing breakfast and sailed to Blandra bay. We anchored and had an enjoyable lunch and read a book waiting for Raven. Raven showed up at sunset. Looking like a dream as she sailed around the headland with the sun behind her what a beautiful ship she is. After much argueing about on which boat to have dinner on it was finaly decieded to eat on Raven. Little did we know the reason. We dingied over to Raven about an hour later only to find Wanderer on board to supprise us. Which they did. Had another outstanding meal on Raven and Brought Paul and Joanne back to RDreamz to sleep and return to La Paz with us. Raven left at sunrise and we will miss them but hopefully will see them soon when they come to visit us on our trip south.

Sailed into La Paz and got a slip on B dock and started the long and boring job of washing the salt off the boat.

Well Dan and Krista will be here in a few days to spend Turkey day with us so that will be fun.

October, 2004

Well here it is Time for an update and I don't have too much to say.

The time spent in Marina SECA was well spent I guess. We had air-conditioning so it was not all bad. We ended up spending over 2 months on the hard working on RDreamz. I now have a sea chest (that works. we can make water underway now.) RDreamz has a new 110 pound Bruce hanging in new improved rollers on the bow. (anchoring is a breeze now) Lots of new bottom paint and Pam spent many days working on the deck to bring it back to the new look. Boy rust is a pain on a steel boat.

We went back in the water on the first and went out and tied to a mooring ball and finished tieing up odds and ends spent a few days there and headed north with Paul and Joanne and thier trusty boat Wanderer. We did a couple of anchorages to the north before heading across to Bahia Los Angles. We stopped at Puerto de Muir in the middle and spent a couple of nights lishening to the sea lions back and make noise. Paul said it was a National Geographic stay. I said it was noisy. We did snorkel with the sea lions until the big bulls came out and swam around under us and we decided to depart and let them have their fun. Off to the BLA area. Stopped at Sulsoputos sp? island and spent about 4 hours until the wind and waves made the anchorage uncomfortable so we departed at 11:00 P.M. and headed on to Don Juan. Arrived before day light so we motored around for an hour til we could see the entrance then we cruise into a beautiful flat big anchorage. There was only one other boat in there so we had our pick of spots. The big Bruce did it's job and we sleep the day away peacfully. Next day we cruised over to the south side to see the whale sharks but no joy there. Could not find one to look at or swim with. Spent the night off the town of BLA. and departed in the mooring heading south. A cold front came through while we where in Don Juan and we had to find pants and coats. Where did the summer go. Oh yea in San Carlos. Oh well time to head south in search of warmer weather.

We planed to stop in Sweet Pea Cove on the way down and spend a couple of days but the weather and the wind decided we should go into Santa Rosilita for a few days and ride out the gale force winds coming down from the north. So we did. Sat at anchor for almost a week waiting for a break in the weather so we could continue our quest for warmer weather.

August, 2004

Boy this month is flying by I went back to the US to pick up Pam in Tucson AZ and then we drove over to LA and saw Ocean Rider and spent a very nice day and half with them then down to San Diego and spent two night there one on Locura a 72' Deerfoot owned by Don and Patty, They put us up for the night and let us use the phone and where just great people. We where suppose to take delivery of 10 gallons of paint while in San Diego and well as most thing this yard period it didn't quite go as planned. We stopped by the office and let them know that 10 gallons of paint was to be delivered to Locura and it was for us and we where here to get it. Well it came the next day but we where out shopping and doing all the fast food in town. Well the person in the office turned the delivery away "it was too heavy" was the excuse he used. Anyhow ten calls and several hours later we tracked the paint down to the terminal at LAX. So the next morning we packed the truck and headed back to LA. Found the terminal no problem and picked up the paint. Departed LA towards Tucson and back to MX.

On the way to Tucson we ran into the mother of all storms. Sand for the first half hour then rain so hard we had to stop. Then the detour. There was a bad accident on both sides of I-10. The one on the East bound was the worse so we got to get off and did some side roads for awhile. By the time we reached Gila Bend we called it a day and found a motel and checked out eye lids for leaks. Next morning found us on the road and in Tucson around 10 am. Scott Paul and Joanne's son was very helpful. Scott let us use his phone and fax machine and his office. Thanks.

After a quick stop at the grocery store and the Home Depot it was time to head into the Mexican frontier again. We got the green light and the customs check point was closed so we sailed right though with out a hitch. This was great as the back of the truck was full of boat parts.

Well we have been back now for almost a month and the work on the bow is done and the painting is getting done on the bow and the bottom is all prepped and sanded ready for paint. All that is left is to return the truck to Scott in Tucson and paint the bottom and install the sea chest and some touch ups and we are ready to go for a few more years.

July, 2004

The tip across the Sea of Cortez was pretty tame. We departed before day light and arrived in San Carlos about 1800. found a slip at the marina with the help of Fred on Sojourn and spent three nights in a marina the first one we had been in since departing La Paz in April. We pulled out and spent the remainder of the time on a mooring ball just out side of the harbor. The balls where being replaced and the chain and shackles where in good shape so we felt comfortable even when the wind picked up.

Pam found a ride back to the state so she left on the 25th or so to spend 10 days with her family in Everett WA. I hung out and worked on the boat. And then the 30th arrived. Well this is the SECA saga.

We made reservations two months in advance to be hauled out and put in the work yard. I called Tony at SECA Marine the day before and he said that they might want to haul me out at 9 am and to keep the radio on. OK fine. I got up at 6 am and took Paul and Joanne,s Dink to the dock and locked it up then returned to the boat I was watching their boat while they returned to the US.. Took down the awnings and took off the line that Garth let use then put our long line on the buoy so I could drop it and cruise up to the dock by myself. Put the dink away and was already to go at 8:15. well I waited till 9:30 and Tony from Marina SECA didn't call so I called him. He said no problem the guys where on the way. I asked about the dredger that was tied up to the ramp dock where I would have to tie up to be hauled out. He said hold on and he would check it out. I waited for 20 minutes and he never called back to I called again, he said the dredger was out and there was room. In the mean time Hans from Zanadu showed up to help with the lines on board. Came out in Wanderer's dink as there car was on the boat in the yard. Well we got under way about 5 minutes to 10 and as soon as we arrive at the entrance to the Marina I could see a trimaran in the middle fairway just sitting there, so I called and called with no response. Just then the tri turns left and departed down one of the fairways. So we are off again but wait we only get to the first dock "A" when I realize the dredger is on the far side of the ramp for haul outs and the discharge hose is floating across the fairway to the ramp, so I stopped and about this time we can see that the dredger is backing up and trying to get out of the way. OK so now the wind picks up and is blowing us sideways towards Gary's dive boats. I hit reverse and get out a ways so I can maneuver. Now the dredger is tied up so I head back in about this time a big 45' power boat comes out of a fair way and heads right at us. I go dead in the water (diw) and he fly's by, 3 knots must just apply to sail boats, I start forward again only to find a panga is now between the dredger and the dock pulling a piece of dock over to the crane. Once again I hit reverse and stop. Finally I get up to the haul out fairway and the dredger is blocking part of the fairway so I had to do some fast maneuvering to get around the dredger to the dock by the ramp for haul out.

OK so far so good but now the fun starts. Once they get the boat on the trailer and get it pulled out they find that it is not on right so they call SECA Marina and have stands brought over and block RDreamz at the top of the ramp, pull the trailer out straighten it out and reload the boat on the trailer. Now its miller time right? Wrong. The trip to the yard was uneventful. But as soon as they pulled into the yard they went to hour later they show up to pressure wash and that went fine. Juan does a great job but half way though this other man comes over to finish and does a Piss Poor job. A this time I find out that they can not get us down along the back row which is the true work area, the trailer will not turn sharp enough to put us there. So they put us up next to the head which is not necessarily a bad thing. After working over an hour on getting us level the office person comes out and tells Juan he has to move us as they are going to start using the gate for dry storage that is behind the boat......Juan moves the boat over 20 feet (closer to the head) He is trying to get us level when the office calls and he has to go move another boat.....So here we sit, still on the big trailer not quite level fore and aft or Port and Stbd. Juan said he would return in the morning to level us up. Just when you thought it was safe to go to work. I still had not paid the 47 dollars to the San Carlos Marina office for the mooring ball. I didn't have enough money in my pocket and the boat was on the trailer so I will go tomorrow or Monday and pay that. I did return Monday and paid the your man (Felipe I think) only it was 41 dollars now not the 47 Eve said... Maybe I should have waited a few more days and they would have paid me to be there...

They came this morning and leveled the boat out perfect and just as they where taking the trailer away the owner came over and said they will have to move us again this time to the back lot a.k.a the work area......this I find out about noon will not happen til Monday.....Life is interesting in Mexico. Well here it is Sunday and they are moving a lot of boats around so I go to the office and see if I am to be moved today. Tony said yes you will be moved at 11:00 So I goof off which I am becoming quite good at I must say. At 13:00 I stop by the office and see if I will be moved this afternoon? Yes Tony promises me at 14:30 or 15:00 They will move me to the work yard. Monday morning finds RDreamz in the same place as Friday Evening. I am getting a bit put out at this time so as soon as I see Ed Grossman and Jesus, I ask if they could possible find out for me if anyone knows when and where I will be moved. Jesus comes back an hour later and says it will be Wednesday for sure. He also tells me if I am in the middle of doing something they will put that off until I am ready up to one or two days. Well Wednesday arrives and I am still waiting for the welder to show and give me an estimate on redoing the bow to accommodate my new 110 lbs Bruce. Wednesday afternoon about 15:00 I am inside doing something and feel the boat move and hear noise outside so I go and look and they have the trailer under the boat and taking the stands away so I am moving now ready or not. No big deal off we go to the work yard. They level the boat and are gone in an hour. So now I have no more excuses to get to work. Although after all the false starts it is hard to get motivated to go to work. There is power and water and air in each place in the yard so that is cool. stuff even works. Trails and tribulations of modern cruising in a Mexico.

Well we stayed in Escondito for several months and after Loreto Fest decided to head back to the Hot Springs for a couple of days to relax and enjoy our new friends. Joe and Vicky from CAT HOUSE invited some of their friends Martin and Robin on The Cats Meow and Carolyn and Dave from Que Tal to go with us. We all spent an enjoyable day and had a great meal aboard TCM that first night and well the rest is on the "The Cats Meow Rescue page".

Royce did go down to La Paz on the M/V ARGO to handle the lines for the owner and once TCM was tied up spent the night there and caught a ride back to RDreamz the next day.

We finally departed Escondito and headed north to enjoy the cruising grounds on the Baja.

We did enjoy several coves and anchorages on the way up to Sweet Pea Cove located just off Mulage. We ended up spending several days there and really enjoying the snorkeling. Only interesting thing that happened there was one night the wind picked up and we started dragging anchor. Well guess what was going through my mind. You guessed it TCM. I would not move till the radar was warmed up and I am glad we did. The night was one of those no moon no stars kind of night. I thought I had a course all laid out but by the time the anchor cleared the water we had spun around and where heading in the opposite direction. If I had not watched the radar we would have been on the shore. So in one respect TCM helped us out.

Since we had a haul out date of 30 July, which was coming on fast we decided to head across the Sea to San Carlos.

June 2004

We stopped in the Marina Palmeria and ended up staying there for over a month. I have to fly home and take care of the business and Pam stayed on the boat and enjoyed the sunshine and the Carnival that was going on in La Paz at the time. She had George from Northern Dream and Emil from Raven to keep her company as their wive had to fly home also for various reasons.

Any how when I returned to the boat we decided to move over to the anchorage "Magote". As we back out of the slip the engine quit and we started heading toward the rocks along the shore I yelled at Pam to drop the anchor. She got it out in record time but to no avail. RDreamz was heading for the rocks and I started calling the marina to see if they could send over the work boat they have to hold us off the rocks or at least push us back into the slip which was only 50 feet away. Well a couple of cruisers heard me and responded like the coast guard. They came over in their dink and tied a line to our bow and held us in the channel while I went below and through a couple of valves to put the fuel polishing pump in line to the engine. I started the engine and all was fine then.

I had built a fuel polishing system and installed it on RDreamz while in San Diego. It has been a life saver several times.

Anyhow we motored out to the anchorage with our too much effort. I did go aground on the soft sand as I was following another cruisers directions. Some times you are the windshield some times the bug.

We spent a couple of enjoyable weeks at Magote and Finally headed north into the sea.

We had some really great anchorages up the coast of Baja on the way to Loreto. Too many to try and remember now.

We arrived in Puerta Escondito about two weeks before the Loreto Fest, and decided to stay. Mickey came down and spent about two weeks with us and we had a great time.

Our watermaker decided to take a vacation so when the opportunity came up for a ride back to San Diego I jumped at it. I went home with a ton of stuff (that included the complete watermaker)and returned a week later with two tons of stuff. I did some shopping at West Marine and Trader Joes and well you know how it is. I took the bus back from Tiquana with the repaired watermaker.

April 12, 2004

Wow where did this year go. Seems like just last week we departed San Diego, CA. but it has been almost 10 months since we left the security of the USA. We departed Turtle Bay after an extended stay to work our a few bugs on Northern Dream and Raven. We worked our way south stopping in Ascencun sp? and several other anchorages each with their own special kind of flavor. Once we got to Mag Bay it is an overnight to Cabo San Lucas and I was in no hurry to to that so we goofed off in Mag bay for a day or so with Raven. Northern Dream had commitments in Cabo so the pushed on and we heard they arrived the next day after a great day and night sail fair winds and following seas. Raven and RDreamz departed the next morning around 0830 or so. We left late so we would arrive after daylight in Cabo. The sail was uneventful and we arrived in Cabo San Lucas tired but safe and in Good spirits. From past experiences we knew that the weather warmed up after Cabo and we where in search of warm weather.

We ended up spending several days in Cabo just the way things worked out. But no one wanted to spend more time there than was necessary. We feel it is for the tourists and we wanted to see how the rest of the world lived. And after the trip from San Diego to Cabo and all the nice villages we spent time in we realized that Cabo is not Mexico but a tourist trap.

Anyhow we finally pulled our anchor and set the sails for the southern tip of Baja. The first 4 hours where great nice seas and fair winds. We knew as soon as we rounded the corner, the seas became confused and the wind picked up to 25+ knots and we reefed in the sails and hunkered down for a wild ride. We made port in Las Frailis and it was a welcome sight. Raven tore some wood off of his main boom during the ride but through superior seamanship he was was able to bring Raven and the crew to port with no problems.

The trip next day to Los Muretos was a bit bumpy but very nice. Helen on Northern Dream had an appointment in the states so we where pushing for La Paz soonest. But after hearing the weather report (thank you Don on Summer Passage) I decided to wait one more day at the anchorage in Los Muretos. Northern Dream and Raven took off before light and returned just after light, they got out there and it was too uncomfortable so they both returned to the anchorage. We spent the day going ashore and looking around at the sights. Not much to see here. There is a motel and several homes owned by gringos.

The next day we departed early and with good winds and fairly flat seas we made good time till we got into the north end of Cerallo Straight. The wind sifted to the nose and the seas built to 8' and somewhere around 10 seconds apart. Made for an uncomfortable sail. We caught the tide and current and soon we passed through in the Sea Of Cortez and then it was a 3 hour down wind run to La Paz.

March 4, 2004

Well it's been awhile since up dating this web site. There has been a lot happening with us and I've just been lazy in keeping the web up. On January 7th we left San Diego Ca. in route to Ensenada Mexico. Sailing with us is Emil and Susan Doepera on Raven and George and Helen Carter on Northern Dream. We arrived in Ensenada with little fan fare and all three boats were able to get slips in the Baja Naval Marina. Thanks to Roger at Baja Naval Marina we had no problems with importing the boat, he made it very easy. Roger made the check in and check out so easy all we had to do was stop in and throw our money at him. Kind of a way of life in Mexico. As soon as we got our import permit and our FM3's stamped we were ready to head off into the sun rise. At 0430 on the January 14th we left Ensenada harbor clear skies with 2 to 4 feet swells. I heard that there was a big storm over in Hawaii and it caused the seas to be confused on this side. The weather was beautiful but the sea's kept you rolling. After a long day and an over night trip we arrived at Isle San Martin, we got in after dark so didn't see much getting in. The bottom has a lot of kelp and grassy bottom so it took a couple of times to set the anchor (CQR). Once we got it set we went to bed and died. We were very glad to stop moving.

Once we got rested we went exploring the Island. There is a small fishing village on the island and that's about all there is. We did find a sail boat on the beach. The sail boat was Koinonia out of Brookings Oregon. We were able to look her over and found her to be stripped . All winches and hardware had been removed. On the beach we did find several things that we were able to salvage. The boat didn't appear to have been there very long as the things on the beach were not weathered. We took several pictures of the boat so we could report it. We didn't know how it got on the beach and wondered if the owners had gotten off OK. A couple of weeks later we did meet up with a couple from the boat Sea Pilgrim, Brian and Terry Johnson out of Seattle WA.. We found out from them they were with Koinonia the day it was beached and hulled. It was December 24 and they were in the anchorage at Isle San Martin with Koinonia and one other boat. As it got dark the winds picked up. Sea Pilgrim was concerned about the anchorage and moved their boat to the other side of the Island to try and get more protection. They kept in radio contact with the other two boats. All three boats were being banged around but were holding there own. At some point Koinonia came on the radio and said there anchored had pulled and they were on the beach. There was some talk of putting a dingy in the water to try and pull the boat off the beach but some how that didn't work out. Sea Pilgrim was unable to help as they were just holding there own where they were. Later Sea Pilgrim heard that the boat was taking on water and they were off the boat on the beach. Once the storm was over and Sea Pilgrim was able to get back over to where Koinonia was they found the boat was unrecoverable with a big hole in it's side. They helped the owners get what they wanted off the boat and then they took them to a port that they could get back home. It was very interesting talking to Brian and Terry about their experience and very sad thinking about what the owners of Koinonia had to of gone through. It was a stark reminder what can happy to you out here. Would like to think that with a steel boat we could have weathered the storm better.

As we continued south we got as far as Isla San Benitos when the alternator stopped working. We anchored for several days while Royce and George replaced the alternator with our spare. The anchorage had a large surge and the boat was rocking all the time but it was nice to be stopped for a while. The Isla San Benitos is suppose to be one of the best diving spots in the Baja. If it had been a little warmer and the water hadn't of been so rough and murky we would have stayed here several more days to do some diving. It's a beautiful Island and well worth stopping at.

After departing Isla San Benitos we sailed to Turtle Bay, the seas where confused most of the way and had us confused by the time we arrived. It was and easy in and out lots of space so we where not too worried about finding a place to park (anchor for you sea faring types). We ended up spending a week there and working on Ravens generator and Northern Dream generator problems.

Feb 10, 2004

We spent three days in Cabo (three days too many) one day to check in and out and two getting the provisions and relaxing. Under way to Las Frailies on a beautiful day sunny and calm seas. just enough wind to keep the sails full and warm enough to be on deck without a shirt. This lasted till we turned the corner north towards Las Frailies. the wind picked up and the seas started to churn and we ended up having to tack to make any time into the wind. All the way to anchorage it beat us. Oh well take the good with the bad. The next day found us still sitting in Las Frailies as the weather took a turn for the worse. dingied ashore and checked out the sites not too much there. Hotel and some houses that some Americans built and and RV park. The next day Raven got up early and departed and Northern Dream departed soon there after. We decided to wait another day as the weather report didn't sound all that great and I had had enough bouncing for awhile. Not too long after they departed Raven and Northern Dream returned to the anchorage. We spent another night there. The next morning we where woke up by Northern Dream shinning their spot light in our port hole. We over slept. Retired people can't trust em to rise and shine on time....... Anyhow the engine on RDreamz decided it didn't want to play today. So after much sweating and talking nice nice to it, I found that the fuel pump went south with out us. I flipped a couple of valves on the fuel manifold that I installed prior to departing San Diego and used the fuel polishing pump to get the engine to make noise again. We got a late start and Raven and Northern Dream where well ahead of us. But we are used to that it has been that way since we departed the USA. We are heavy and slow but we get there, so no big deal. We had a nice cruise till we turned into the Cerravo straights. The wind was on the nose and the waves and current plotted to slow us down. We tacked back and forth all day till around 1300 or so then we go a line on the pass and then the current turned and we where doing 7+ knots for several hours. Once we got through the pass into La Paz Bay the wind was at our back and we had a great down wind sail into La Paz. Kind of confusing the first time into here. But we made it and all is well. We spent the first two weeks in La Paz at the Marina Palmira, very nice place a bit expensive but nice. It was the same price we where paying in San Diego. We are now anchored in the bay at the Magote anchorage which is across from down town La Paz. 3 minute dingy ride. Our plans are to remain here till Helen returns then wander north towards San Carlos.

Jan 30,2004

Found us leaving Punta Abreojos we arrived her a couple of days ago hoping to find whales. No Joy there we have only seen a couple of whales blowing in the distance since we departed San Diego, guess they are shy and don't want their picture taken. We did try and go ashore here but after looking at the surf and the trouble the local fishermen where having getting their Pangas ashore we decided to pass on the surfing lessons. Our next stop was Bahia San Juanico nice anchorage but we only stayed the night and up the next day underway to Mag bay.

Arrived Santa Maria and spent a couple of days here waiting for the weather to clear. Northern Dream set sail on 2-2-04 to Cabo San Lucas. Helen had an airline ticket to fly out so they had to go. We hung around til the 4th then made our way to the inside of Mag Bay to Punta Belcher and set anchor there for the night. Raven needed fuel so they made their way up to the town and checked in and took on fuel and spent the night up there. The next morning we where under way at 0800 destination Cabo San Lucas. This will be an overnight. So we left a bit later than normal so we would arrive in Cabo during the day light. We set our sails once we cleared Mag Bay and sailed till after dark that day averaged 6.4 knots all day. ONE GREAT SAIL!