Where the heck is YOLO? Part 2 of 2
February 26, 2016
We returned to Mexico on December 30. YOLO was on the hard at the Fonatur Marina in Guaymas, right where we left her back in June. You never really know what you are going to return back to after your boat has been closed up and sitting in the summer desert heat of dusty Mexico. Fortunately, everything was just fine. We had a tremendous load to get onto the boat. This is not an easy task to achieve when she is sitting 15 feet in the air. The project list was lengthy prior to splash, including the assembly and installation of a brand new roller furler and headstay. It was a daunting job but with the help of my highly capable first mate Coco, we were successful in getting it done. We were back afloat after a week of hard work and then completed the remainder of odd jobs while in the slip at the marina.
We set sail for destinations south on January 15. Day one was nice and then it wasn’t. We had strong winds slowly build from directly behind us, peaking at 25 knots. You would think this would be a great thing, the wind just pushing you along. Well it isn’t. It creates a very uncomfortable rolling motion and is hard to hand steer and also hard on the auto pilot, as it gets confused by that same rolling motion. The sails don’t always know which way to fill so they tend to flop back and forth. This also means that we were all feeling the effects of mal-de-mer. Suprisngly, nobody vomitted. By day three the winds had moderated a bit and the conditions were somewhat nicer. We sailed (no motoring at all) for a full 36 hours. We hooked onto a sizable Dorado (Mahi Mahi) toward the end of day three as well. We were surprised by how damn cold the nights still were. Approaching abeam Mazatlan, we decided to push on, as we were still in sweatshirts and long pants. We wanted to get warm. Late in the afternoon on Day 4 we passed by Isla Isabel, an anchorage we explored last season. Our final night was the most rough- winds occasionally touching on 30 knots, seas of 6-8 feet and the occasional breaker over the stern. Fortunately, being a center cockpit, we were able to stay mostly dry. After making the turn into Banderas Bay, conditions eased up and we motored in calm conditions to La Cruz Marina. It was great to arrive and see so many familiar boats and faces!
As many have heard, Marina La Cruz is absolutely Kid Boat Central. There is even a marina employee (Katrina) who tirelessly plans and organizes fun events and activities for the kids to do. Movie nights, Camps, Arts and Crafts, Robot Building, Waiter for a Day, and the list goes on. Fun stuff. For the grown ups, there are a multitude of cruising seminars to attend. But after a few weeks in La Cruz, you kinda get tired of the schedule and we were ready to get moving south again.
We departed the la Cruz anchorage late in the afternoon with a small flotilla including s/v Enough and s/v Terrapin. We had a brisk sail across Banderas Bay but eventually the winds died down enough to warrant the old Iron Genny. We made good time around Cabo Corrientes and dropped the hook in the Perula anchorage of Chamela Bay. We had a fun beach day with our buddy boats. The kids had a blast getting slammed by sizable surf in the ocean. Good food and good times were had by all.
After two nights in Perula, we decided to check out some of the anchorages and islands the are not quite so frequented by cruising boats in the Chamela Bay. Our first island had a very inviting long sandy beach and some descent snorkeling. We also hosted the first ever Beach Olympics on this very beach. Competition was intense. Later that night, the Closing Ceremony festivities were held aboard s/v Terrapin. A shirt was ruined during the course of the evening but no other casualties.
The sweet spot in Chamela is actually an unmarked anchorage that even has some good surfing! I won’t post the location here on the blog but would be happy to reply to any emails if interested in this hidden gem’s location. We loved it so much it took us another 5 days to break away. Provisions were running low and YOLO made way for Barra de Navidad and all the comforts of a resort and marina.
We are currently on our 11th day here in Barra. The kids are in heaven with access to a 3 tiered pool with interconnecting water slides. There are also a handful of new Kid Boats that we have met here. The icing on the cake is “The French Baker” who literally pulls up to your boat every morning offering the finest in French baked goods. Life doesn’t suck. Tomorrow we head south for Santiago and eventually Zihuatanejo!