Monday, December 31, 2018

La Cruz de Huanacaxtle

After a month or so with no word from us - we do need to let you know that we are still here.  December has been a relaxing/fun/exciting month.  We've spent some time reacquainting our love with La Cruz.  She's 12 years older, but still feels comforting to us.

We've been out at the anchorage taking most days to explore the area.  One day brought us back to San Pancho - a great little town if you are looking for a vacation from the rat race.

We've been attending Spanish classes, and running errands fixing little things aboard Pura Vida that need attending.  Currently, we do have another project going on.  Ever since we purchased Pura Vida, we've been wanting to upgrade her dodger (the blue windshield looking thing on her which is made of fabric) to a hard dodger.  We intended this before we left, but called enough on spending money.  Enough time has passed and we are moving forward with the plans.  We are having one fabricated here in La Cruz and hopefully, we'll have it installed in a week or so. This is a big labor-intensive job, so getting it done here in Mexico makes a lot of financial sense.

About once every week, we've had a day out of the anchorage to pump out, run the watermaker and shake out the sails a bit.  One of the highlights was sailing over to Los Arcos on the other side of Banderas Bay......  super beautiful but crowded with day-trippers.  We checked out the rest of the Bays heading South till we came to Quimixto.  The other bays were deep and creepy to bow and stern in, whereas Quimixto had a nice little shelf we felt could comfortably hold our anchor with some swinging room.  So we dropped the hook to stay awhile.  As the evening grew, we felt comfortable with our little shelf and decided to spend the night.

Then, as the night grew on...... Mother Nature decided a little lesson was in order to remind us of our night at anchor in Yelapa and why we should trust the internal rules we make for ourselves aboard.

You see - last time we were here, we spent an uncomfortable rolly night at Yelapa (though that time our swing had us in depths of 30 ft to 70 feet).  Old hands of this area will tell you the Southside is not a good anchorage - uncomfortable and rolly.  Of course, we love to test the old salts......As morning rose in Yelapa - We vowed not to anchor on the South side of Banderas Bay again.

Now, here we are testing those guidelines again.... and yes, here we are in the morning, renewing our vows to not anchor on the South Side of Banderas Bay - No matter how enticing the calm sunset is.....

Los Arcos

Sketchy Bow and Stern try had us about 40 feet from shore.....

Another beautiful cove


Other highlights are exploring the area with new friends, enjoying live music _ Tatewari is a standout - wonderful night. 

We put the boat in the marina to return to the Bay Area to spend Christmas with Greg's mom.  Everyone in the family headed to Kim's house to spend the holiday and her 80th birthday with her.  Special bonus: Rick brought Clewie so I got to get some cutest little girl time.

A Quinceanera celebration (a girls' 16th birthday) - total of 4 bands playing till 3 am.

We all know this love of my life - Clewie.

Greg and his brother, Rick.

We spent a day getting Christmas gifts for a little boy in an orphanage...  Greg got to pick out a remote control car

Beach play time with cruiser dogs.

Loving the music with Leon the washboard guy standing in.

Don't think street dogs (whether owned or not) will ever grow tired on me

The jollyist Great Dane ever.....  Love to see him sauntering down the street toward us. And yes, he has a home.  Most of the dogs we see now, do have homes - they just run free during the day.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Magdelana Bay

Magdelana Bay is a sweet little surprise.  We had watched some of our favorite You Tubers talk about the mangroves and that really lit a fire with us to add it to our list to check it out. 

** If you are enjoying the cruising tales, we highly recommend Adventure Adrift:
Check them out.

We had already met them previously in Berkeley, so they knew we were headed that way, so while in Man of War Cove we sent them a facebook message that we had made it and were heading into the mangroves the next day.  To our surprise, they offered to send their tracks to us and their anchor spots.  Since the mangroves are basically uncharted (you can see the mangroves on a chart, but no depths and identifying marks as to where the deep spots are) - this was much appreciated.  Their tracks overlayed onto a google earth image gave us confidence as we motored off of our charts.

The next few days was a "Chronicles of Narnia" experience.  

The beautiful powder soft sand against the flat water along with the green mangroves with the only sound being from the ringing in your own ear.  Stunning doesn't come close.  Magical and otherworldly is closer to the feeling.

To our surprise dolphins were also in the mangroves and regularly swam and fed along the shore as the tide went out.  

We got the boat toys out to play - though only at slack tide

It was beautiful to just watch the tide go down - the scene changed dramatically as the waters ebbed out and flooded back in.

Fun Videos:
Greg playing on the sand dunes:

End of the line of the mangroves:

Stillness and Quiet of the Mangroves:

Planing in Buzzy back to Pura Vida:

After a few days, we headed in to check out Puerto San Carlos.  For adventurous folks, we highly recommend it.  It was a stark change to any other town we've been in because no one spoke English.  We needed to really buckle down and prepare for our conversations.  We did find one person who spoke English who remembered our You Tube friends fondly - so we were able to pass on their good wishes.

We anchored just north of the town and landed the dinghy on the beach just behind the makeshift breakwater (notice the overturned hull of a ship strategically placed).

And when we got to shore and spoke to the dockworkers, we mentioned we had been out exploring the mangroves.  We were met with the response, " oh yes, I heard you were out there".  This little area gets so few sailboats, when we visit - we are literally the talk of the town. It was a fun experience that everyone seemed to be aware of us and where we were.  Also, Fishermen out with their kids would follow along with us as we motored back to San Carlos.  Fishing boats would also snap photos of us as we were anchored.

We stocked up with veggies and decided to ride the flood out one afternoon and keep going to La Crux de Huanacaxtle about 3 and a half sailing days away