Looking for a Catamaran Cruising Blog?

If you found this blog via a link from a cruising site ~ we did cruise Mexico on our Ocean 49 cat for a season. See the first text box on the right for links to our preparations, trip down Baja, life in Mexico, cruising and trip back up to SoCal. Unfortunately we are back to the grind in the USA...

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Costa Baja (Pool!) & Sunshade

Not too much new going on down here...

Other than Rob of "Ocean Fever" is here on his boat and needed some assistance from Jim.
"Ocean Fever" is at Costa Baja Marina...
Costa Baja is adjoined by The Fiesta Inn...
The Fiesta Inn has two pools!
So, Jim helped Rob and I enjoyed the larger of the two pools...
I cooled off and read in the shade.
Then they joined me.Remember this view, Mike, Cyndi, Stan, Marvin and Mom? And our sunshade is up!
Although the fastenings and lines aren't in a permanent state yet.
Still needs a little adjusting, but it's working!

Doesn't look like much, but it actually was a lot of designing and sewing...

And the big power boat left today, so once again we have breeze and a view!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Cooling Off at "The Mogote"

Ok, so the water by the marina is not something I want to swim in.
So we dinghy over to "The Mogote" to cool off on hot afternoons.
First we have to prepare...
Change into bathingsuits.
Get towels.
Put some drinks in the cooler.
Put lots of sunscreen all over.
Get hats.
Get two floaties (noodles).
Get the beanbags for the dinghy.
Lower the dinghy into the water.
Climb in, start the engine, untie and as soon as we are around the corner of the "big boat" we are instantly cooler!
Dinghy across the channel always looking for shoals and Jim with an eye on the depth sounder.
Find a place to beach the dinghy.
Drag the dinghy up.
Into the water and HEAVEN!
Cooled off!
Although today the water was at least 85 degrees (never thought I would hope for less...)

But oh the crowds...

Sunset, The Neighbor's Cat & Big Power Boats

We are in the first slip inside the marina blocked by a giant powerboat (over 100') that is on the endtie. We were so happy to see them gone one day - means we can get some breeze!!

Also means we can see the sunset instead of a white wall of hull...

So we enjoyed some dessert wine and watched our sunset!

The people parked behind us have this goofy cat - a clone of Scuppers, but he is a boy. So Scuppers, if you are looking for a boyfriend... this one even fishes for his meals! He does have a little help from his owner though.

Well the view and breeze only lasted one day...

Another behemoth came in.

They must run huge air conditioners all the time - look at all this water coming out!Oh well... there goes our view and breeze...
Guess we will have to dinghy over to the Mogote and swim again today!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

So Where Are We?

We are currently docked at Marina de La Paz - the marina right in town.
For those of you who were trying to find where we were on Google Earth, here are some photos of the area (obviously from a plane) ~ complete with labels! This photo runs pretty much East to West. The town curves around the "Mogote", sort of a barrier "island" that is connected to the mainland by a small strip of land.This is the City in relation to the peninsula that heads North into the Sea of Cortez and "aims" to the local islands. The Marina is just above the "M" in "Marina", and the tip of the Mogote is shown on the left side. This photo "looks" North.This is a little further out on the peninsula and shows "our" anchorage of Bahia Falso, where the beach restaurant "El Tesoro" is (Mom, Cyndi, Mike, Marvin, Stan, Tim, Pam, Alan and Susan will all remember being here!). We have been told we are the only boat to anchor there. This is where we swim and kayak in to have drinks and snacks. The large port to the left and above is Pichilingue, where the freighters and ferrys come in. The Southern tip of Isla Espiritu Santo is shown at the top of the photo.And one of the two closest islands, Isla Partida (the smaller island to the left) and Isla Espiritu Santo. The islands are actually only separated by a narrow channel of water at the anchorage of Caleta Partida. This photo is North to South. The South end (right side) is closest to the peninsula.
The anchorages we have been to this year are labeled:
1) Ensenada Grande ~ beautiful rock formations and clear water
2) No Name Cove #7 ~ wonderfully clear water and no one on the beach!
3) No Name Cove #5 ~ very shallow, but beautiful water and again, no one on the beach!
4) Ballena ~ center cove had good wind protection, but the beach was just ok...So now you can pull up Google Earth and find out where we are!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Life in La Paz ~ Week 2 or 3 ~ What Day is it Anyway?

We have had some pretty warm weather so far - up to 96 degrees, both inside and outside the boat.
So my current project is a sunshade / awning to go across the cabintop.
First of all, remember we are 24' wide.
That is a lot of material!
And so much fun to design, cut, pin and sew together in the cockpit!

We enjoyed discussing catamarans with Jean Luc & Emmanuelle of "Chogolisa".
Jean Luc said it was a turning point in his life when he saw us in Mag Bay...
He is now hot on getting a catamaran.
They are currently North of us in the Sea of Cortez and we look forward to seeing them on way back through La Paz.
We watched a local guy spear a huge snook a slip away.
Had our friend & sailmaker, Tony over for dinner and stayed up way too late!

I went to the AMPI meeting - a meeting for the La Paz realtors.
I have been out to a few realtor and project offices, but am waiting for my updated business cards to go back out.

Jim and John have been out at the La Torquesa lots with different people.

I watched Johnny for 6 1/2 hours one day. Quite interesting, as I don't always understand what he says, but what a good kid! We had fun playing games, doing a jigsaw puzzle, doing dot-to-dots and playing on the gym at Burger King (yes, I had to go to Burger King...)

We have BBQ'd a lot to avoid heating up the boat.
Found pre-marinated whole chickens for $24 to $26 pesos (around $2.50 US) that come out great on the BBQ.

We celebrated Bob Shaw's 60th birthday at Rancho Viejo with his wife Linda! Bob and Linda also celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in La Paz! Ricardo, John and some other friends from Oregon, Rich, Kim, Keith and Susan joined us.
A little Mexican boy thought Rich & Kim's daughter, Richelle was a princess.

We thought she was one too.
What a cute kid!

Met Mark, one of the captains from the National Geographic "Sea Lion" we saw in Magdalena Bay. He was the captain that called us when Stan's sister was onboard.

Ran into Gabriel who manages the Costa Baja Marina here - he was at Cruiseport Marina when we had our boat in Ensenada. Was great to see him again!

Had a skype chat with Tim and Pam, and they emailed this to us - the Ventura West Marina newsletter!We have also read a lot of books and taken a lot of showers!

Saturday, April 19, 2008


So Skype is really a wonderful thing!
We just had a half hour conversation with John, Caitlin and Evann and could SEE them on video. Way cool to see Caitlin's new braces - her teeth are going to be beautiful!
We have also had a wonderful half hour conversation with Meghan in Lake Tahoe, an even longer conversation with Renee in Paris, France (there is something just really cool about sitting on your boat in Mexico talking and watching your niece in France on the internet), and have had some conversations with my brother Gary in North Carolina.
Also, talked to several friends in SoCal.
Now if the rest of our family would just get hooked up...
HEEELLLLLOOOOOO!!! It doesn't cost anything and we did buy some of you cameras!
So hope to converse with the rest of you soon.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

"How My Car Got to La Paz" or "Visit with Alan & Susan"!

How did my car get here?
Well first it had to go to Big Bear for a month...That's it on the right. First time it ever saw snow!

Then it was kindly driven by Alan & Susan of "Toshal" all the way from Big Bear to La Paz ~ full of a bunch of our stuff and some goodies from them (new sea salt grinder - smiles to Pam and Stan, new Chipotle Tabasco - more smiles to Pam and Stan, boxed Chardonnay - smiles from me!)...

They spent a week and a half relaxing here with us in La Paz and at the islands.

This is what we did during their visit:
Caught up with Paul of "New Focus".
Bribed Paul of "New Focus" and Kevin of "Can't remember Kevin's boat name", and the crew of "Legato" with a bottle of red wine and asked if we could be members of "The Cat Clique" (what the monohullers call this group of catamarans that hang out together). They took a vote and said "ok". Must have been the bottle of California Merlot - certainly couldn't have been us...
Ate at Rancho Viejo.
Explored the "Bravo Central Market".
Went to the boatyard to get a price to haul "Toshal" - while the guys talked to the boatyard owner, Susan & I played with a really cute puppy. I managed to leave the yard without the puppy...
Had fish tacos at the fish taco stand.
Read a LOT!
Watched Alan take his "geezer" naps.
Talked a lot.
Went to Ensenada Grande, Ballena Cove, No Name Cove #5 & Bahia Falsa!Swam in the warm water."Allowed" Alan to tow us in the dinghy 1/4 mile over the shoal.Watched Jim enjoy Alan towing us...

Walked the malecon.
Picked up a lot of real estate info and got amazed at some of the new incredible projects!
Alan polished some stainless.
Susan & I enjoyed cooking together.
Alan & Jim did some boat projects.
Did laundry.
Alan did a lot of dishes.
Dinghied over to "The Mogote" to swim when it was too hot in the marina.
Anchored in some beautiful places!

Drove out to the "Rodriguez" property and saw the entire rancho is now fenced.
Had Johnny along for a day sail.Had an awesome dinner at La Boheme (our last night...)
Chatted with Emmanuelle and Jean Luc of "Chogolisa" and got a tour of their beautiful aluminum boat.
Met up with Jonesy & Terry of "Niki Wiki".
Susan gave Jim a great haircut!

Kayaked and swam into El Tesoro for drinks and snacks.Jim drove Alan, Susan & Emmanuelle to the airport as they were all on the same flight... Jean Luc went along for the ride and to make sure Emmanuelle got on the plane ok. Sad to see them go...

And a few words for Alan & Susan:
"Make it Happen" right back at ya Alan!
Thanks for bringing my car down! And keeping it in one piece! Oh, and showing it what snow is (it will certainly never see that again!)...
Thanks for making us part of your vacation.
And you are "welcome for the welcome"!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

First Week in La Paz

Our first week was HOT! Had some days in the mid 90's and we aren't quite used to that yet...

Saw a boat that we used to see in Ventura and knew that the owner, Mike was the brother of several of my clients. Gave him a call on VHF and invited them over so we could meet. Mike and his wife, Lisa came to our boat for a visit. She looked familiar... but she figured it out - Lisa & I went to Balboa Jr High and Buena High School together! Our last names were both started with "Sta..." so our lockers were always near each other. We went to dinner with them one night and two other couples - had a great time catching up with Lisa and hearing about Mike's family.
Mike & Lisa (Stadler) Dobson, Heather & JimWent out to see how John, Brad & Ricardo's spec house is coming along. It's going to be a cool house!Washed all the sheets, towels, rugs etc and got the boat ready for Alan & Susan's arrival!

Monday 03-31-08 Arrival in La Paz! And the Four Days After.

A little lumpy in the middle of the night, but not bad!
Still a fun place to anchor.

Guys scrubbed the deck and we got the boat ready to head in.

Had that Catana catamaran behind us again and "Profligate" in front of us.
Saw another catamaran and asked him about anchoring in the bay (it all looks a little different than 8 years ago)...

Anchored in the line of boats, with 3 other cats (called "the cat clique" by the monohullers...)
And this is what we did for the next four days:

Jim got us hooked up on internet - yipee!
Emailed and blogged.
Arranged our slip with Marina de La Paz.
Walked along the malecon.

Had drinks as La Perla.
Walked around town and checked out a beautiful book store.
Had fish tacos.Had ice cream (hadn't had that for awhile).
Saw that "Tequilas y Mariachis" is closed (very sad - had to email this important news to Marvin)...
Watched the sunsets over the Mogote.

Watched the sunrises over town.
Listened to the "pre-net" or "conspiracy" net on vhf - a bunch of crusty ex-cruisers trying to solve the world's problems - made me want to go back to Ventura. Jim promised me we would NEVER listen to that again!
Headed in to our slip.
Had a few beers.
Played on the internet.
Naps, showers, laundry.
Burgers at The Dock Cafe.
Arranged flights for the awesome crew.
Watched mullets swim alongside the boat.Went to Salispuedes for drinks and to meet John.
John talked politics with Tim, which made Stan, Jim & Heather want to hang themselves.

Had wonderful arrachera at Rancho Viejo.

Stan was happy to listen to the old guy at Rancho Viejo play the guitar and sing.
Ate a wonderful "last supper" at La Boheme, complete with awesome dessert!The crew packed their stuff.
Sent the crew off in a taxi to the airport.
Sad, sad faces...
I had to keep my sunglasses on due to teary eyes when we sent them off...
A few words about you ~ Stan, Tim and Pam:
You were wonderful!
We loved having you aboard on this "trip of a lifetime"!
Thanks for the fun and help.
We miss you.
You are always welcome!