S/V INTREPID II - Cape Dory Intrepid 40

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Intrepid II is a Cape Dory Intrepid 40 sailboat, hull #2, designed by Chuck Paine and discovered by the Captain in Blue Hill Maine in 2006. The crew are Kelly (Captain) and Carol (Admiral and Blogger). In 2009 INTREPID II embarked on her West Coast journey from Victoria to San Francisco, the Baja Sur Peninsula and into the Sea of Cortez. In 2010/2011, we sailed ifrom Guaymas, south to Bahia Banderas and back. In 2011/2012 she left Guaymas, headed south to La Paz, spent three weeks at anchor on our northward journey and rested on the hard in San Carlos. Her 4th, 5th and 6th seasons were Boat Projects related. Season 7 - we are hoping to cruise again at long last.

December 11, 2009

La Paz at last! December!

SV INTREPID II has earned a well deserved rest at a marina (as does her crew).

We hope to give her lots of TLC in the next few days,with a thorough washing, cleaning inside and out and major reorganizing of the cabin and lockers.  We are currently in Marina Palmira, just a few miles north of La Paz city centre, on Dock (Muelle) 4, slip 428 - having arrived Wednesday, December 9th -- three full months since we left Sidney and in some ways so long ago.

Our plans are to rest up - mind, body and spirit - and enjoy the sights and sounds and cultural activities of this city, which has history, a beautiful setting and a genuine Mexican ambiance - along with lots of cruisers coming and going.  At the moment we aren't certain if we'll change marina locations or anchor out a bit - time will tell.  Our outboard needs some attention, so until that's in good repair we don't want to be having to row in the longer distances against fairly strong tidal currents in the channel near Marina de La Paz, which is cruiser central and has a good dinghy dock.

While at anchor at Los Muertos, Kelly found us a weather window, checking several weather sites, tide tables and consulting all the guides that advised us to leave early in the morning before the winds picked up in the Cerallvo Channel, between the Baja peninsula and Cerallvo Island.  There was to be 'not much wind' and less than 0.1 metre seas - Ha!  Once again the short, square waves common to this area hit us within the first hour and a half (by 8:30 am).  We faced another 8 hours or so of not making much headway, no matter what combination of sailing, motoring, motor-sailing we tried and be none too comfortable for all that time.  Long story short- we endured, the seas eased up a bit to allow us to have some lunch, then started in again. By the time we were nearing Isla Spiritu Santos they were easing up and we knew we would make our planned anchorage in time.

A highlight of this passage:  Kelly was checking for a powerboat coming up on our starboard side to see if he recognized them.  Just as he turned, directly behind our boat about 50 yards away, a shark came straight up and out of the water spinning as though trying to shake a hook. No boats were nearby.  He appeared to be at least 10 feet long and his head was 15 feet out of the water - quite an unexpected sight!  We haven't seen much else for sea life here compared to our sightings on the way down the west coast.  We believe it was a Mako shark (Isurus oxyrinchus) and read that this species is often see leaping straight up out of the water - possibly to check for prey from above.

Our anchorage on Tuesday night, complete with a beautiful red sunset was at Puerto Balandra - INTREPID II and four other sailboats.  Not a  bad night - a bit rolly at 4 am, but a beautiful setting. Wednesday morning we motored south to La Paz through the well marked channel and managed to find dock space as we mentioned above by Wednesday noon.  Bluewater Cruising member John from Pender Harbour (SV Naida) helped take our lines and we've seen SV Marathon across the way (Hi Nello) and SV Kapuka  but not yet connected with the crews.  SV Tagish (Dorothy and Brian) shared the Balandra anchorage with us and we caught up with them today at the coffee hour at Club Cruceros.  It's great to see fellow cruisers and meet new people and find out where everyone is along the way.  SV Whiteshell II - nice to finally catch up with you again! Hopefully some new photos soon as this is such a colourful city at first impression.

Baja California Sur