Leaving La Cruz and Banderas Bay

Underway for Mazatlan

The Dolphin Statue in Puerto Vallarta

We spent a pleasant four days at the marina in La Cruz, and Ole was in pig heaven wandering around the downtown chandlery Zaragosa Marine, saving me thousands of dollars by not buying everything that caught his fancy.

The bus system makes all kinds of sense here – for 16 pesos, the equivalent of a dollar and a half, we were able to take a 45-minute trip into town for supplies, lunch, and a much-needed haircut. Neither of us has been here since the mid-80s, and the development is astounding. [Read more…]

Well, THAT was fun.

Marina Riviera Nayarit,
La Cruz, Mexico

When we left Chamela last Monday morning, we saw the only “hole” in the weather around Cabo Corientes would occur between 6:00 and 10:00 pm, when the winds would theoretically die down to less than 15 knots.  The forecast for the rest of the week was 20-25 knots for days. [Read more…]

Dolphins for Breakfast and a Raft-Up Dinner

Departing Bahia Tenacatita

Calm Anchorage in Tenacatita

What a wonderful few days it’s been here at Bahia Tenacatita, just over 30 miles northwest of Manzanillo. As far as anchorages go, this is one of our top 5 so far.  We’re snug as a bug behind Punta Chubasco and nestled among about 15 other boats (most of them with sticks). Afternoon breezes have come up, nothing past 10-15 knots, and at night, the wind lays down nicely and leaves us with a gentle “wrap-around” swell – just enough to rock us to sleep.

Both mornings have featured company for breakfast – dolphins feeding among the anchored boats. Way too unpredictable to snap a photo, so you’ll just have to take our word for it. [Read more…]

Anchoring in “Pudding”

At Anchor, Barra de Navidad

Fresh-baked French Croissants, Anyone?

We woke this morning to mirror-calm water, a spectacular sunrise, and fishermen casting large circular nets in the shallows. During the second cup of coffee, we were offered an offbeat treat: fresh-baked French pastry delivered right to our swim step with a hearty, authentic “Bonjour, messeur/dames.” (Cue Homer Simpson voice…yummmmm). [Read more…]

Arrived Safe and Sound in Barra de Navidad

At Anchor, Barra de Navidad

Morning in Barra Lagoon

It’s been a wonderful few days here in Manzanillo, and it’s amazing how quickly we can settle into a routine once we’ve found a great place like this. Mornings puttering around getting chores done, then afternoons by the pool, with the obligatory margarita for me and Negra Modelo for Ole.

One of the best things about this lifestyle is connecting with people who share our passion for cruising…making new friends at each anchorage, and reconnecting with those we’ve met along the way. We’ve shared dinner and boat brand knowledge with Ron and Sheryl from Lazy Days, a 44+5 DeFever. We’ve reconnected with Barb and Gary from Hurrah, a Taiana double-ender we originally met in Bocas del Toro. And we met the wonderful Christophe and Marianne, Swiss friends of Gerry and Chris whom we’ve heard so much about. [Read more…]

Life is Brutal (Not)

At Anchor, Las Hadas Marina

At Anchor, Las Hadas Resort

If things get any worse, we’re going to have to file a complaint!

We’ve been at anchor off the spectacular Las Hadas Resort since last Monday. A small fee of 200 pesos per day or 1000 pesos per week gets us all the resort privileges…swimming pool, beach towels, gym usage, and discounts at the bars and restaurants. And nice staff who deliver poolside cocktails and snackies. Plus a great little marine chandlery with more stuff than we’ve seen in one place for the last 5 years! [Read more…]

Smooth Sailing to Manzanillo

Underway from Ixtapa to Manzanillo

Easy Cruising

We’ve been underway since 2:00 p.m. yesterday, and are currently about 4 hours from our anchorage in Manzanillo, where we expect to arrive some time between 4:00 and 4:30 p.m.

Our principal weather sites, Magic Seaweed, PassageWeather, and BuoyWeather, indicated we’d have little to no wind, and very small swell today – and that conditions would begin deteriorating tomorrow. So off went the lines, and out we went, planning on a passage of about 27 hours to travel the 180 or so miles.

So far it’s been a great trip…with no wind beyond the normal onshore/offshore daily pattern, and swells less than 2-3 feet. Last night we worried we were the last people on earth, as we saw nothing on the radar for hours at a time (fine by me).

It’s been so quiet, as a matter of fact, that this morning until about 10:00 it was like glass…not a ripple on the water. There hasn’t been much in the way of sea life – but we’re noticing different birds here than just 400 miles south:  Caspian terns, brown boobies, and the occasional gull cruise by to have a look at us. More often than not, we’ll identify the location of a sea turtle because we’ll see a bird standing on its back to rest.

Exploring Zihuatenejo

Marina Ixtapa

Ixtapa Bus

Today we decided to mount an excursion by bus to Zihuatanejo, just a short 10-minute, 9-peso bus ride away. Neither of us had been ashore there since the mid-1980s, and we felt like an adventure.

We took the mini-bus from the marina lighthouse to the end of the line, near the craft market and waterfront in Zihuatanejo. We felt compelled to support the local economy, adding to our hat collection and chatting with a Huichol artist, from whom we bought an exquisite beaded vase. [Read more…]

Peace and Quiet in Marina Ixtapa

Marina Ixtapa, Mexico

Emma Jo in Marina Ixtapa

After a long day of doing absolutely nothing in Zihuatanejo Bay, we spent a night with zero wind – which means the swells had their way with us all night.

And since we’ve got to repair the anemometer (requiring a trip up a ladder to the top of the mast) and the galley hot water, we decided to move 5 miles along to Marina Ixtapa.

It’s a lovely, sheltered place that requires a bit of surfing to get in – but once in, there was barely a ripple for the two nights we spent there. [Read more…]

“Repairing Your Boat in Exotic Locations”

At Anchor, Zihuatenejo

Zihuatenejo Anchorage

Ah, boating.

We hadn’t even cleared Isla Roqueta off the entrance to Acapulco yesterday when we heard a mysterious bang (not the kind of thing you really look forward to hearing on a boat while you’re underway).

A quick run through the salon and the sound of rushing water…under the sink!  The hose between the hot water tank and the kitchen sink blew, and fresh (thank god) water was spraying all over under the sink. That wouldn’t have been so bad, but it has to GO somewhere, so it went down, through the acoustic overhead in the engine room, and under the cabinets and into the carpet in the salon. [Read more…]