S/V INTREPID II - Cape Dory Intrepid 40

My photo
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 20, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014 to all our Family and Friends!


Hopefully one of those is appropriate for your choice of celebrating this season of generosity, caring and sharing, wherever our greeting finds you!  

The INTREPID II crew is still at home.  We will snuggle with our 'senior' kitties in front of a cozy wood fire, sipping eggnog, listening to new music or enjoying movies.  Our gift to ourselves is a new tv. Of course, we'll be reading the wide variety of books we've collected for our library.  There will be phone calls home to family and friends, enjoyment of opening cards and readingfamily updates; or receiving greetings online.  The thought is what counts.

Our weather is currently blustery and wet, the sun may shine from time to time; hope it does for you.

So many people have had to deal with challenges this year; health issues, injuries to selves or family or dear pets, hurricanes, workplace issues.  We hope New Year 2015 will bring healing, resolution and happiness to you all.

If our plans unfold as we'd like, the Captain will head to San Carlos mid-January to reconnect with our patient sailboat, biding her time in the storage yard, longing to be splashed once again. Perhaps INTREPID II will actually sail this year!  Kelly has his fingers crossed that this is the year to set sail for the South Pacific.  Our wishes for ourselves are that the planning and preparation do come together so he can continue to follow his cruising dream. (The Admiral is likely to continue to be a full time kitty sitter, flying off to wherever INTREPID II has made landfall for short visits.)

Let us know your plans - we appreciate staying connected.


September 21, 2014

Coping in La Paz area - post Odile

Thankfully we have now heard from our friend Henry, who makes his home outside of La Paz.  He managed to send out a message from a friend's home while power was on briefly.  From his update it is clear that coping with a Category 3 hurricane and its aftermath, even with experience, is daunting and exhausting.  He writes:

          "Everywhere you can see the damage and its like a horror show.
Walls blown down, house roofs gone, power poles and cables down, semi trucks blown over. 32 yachts grounded and 3 mariners missing and presumed dead.  Right now I am without all the modern conveniences of power, water, internet, cell phones, tv.  i am literally fetching wood and carrying water.  My friend down the street who is a Vietnam vet, says that this situation is equal to Vietnam, except that nobody is shooting at us.  No a/c means 30 - 33 degrees C. in the casa and 80% humidity with no fans.  It's dark from 7:30 pm until 7:30 am, at which time I read by candlelight or flashlight.   
Some of the stores are open by using using generators but there is no ice, no batteries, no water, no mosquito repellent (previous to Hurricane Odile, La Paz had a Dengue outbreak. After this it will probably be a Dengue plague!).
I line up daily and buy a few things for the day because nothing lasts very long without a working fridge.  There are a few restaurants open now so lunch is not a problem.
Gas stations have line ups 2 kilometers long and they are rationing. Walmart and Sorianas have already been robbed, so now they are putting security guards outside overnight.
Anyway it's an adventure here and I am thriving and surviving. I didn't realize that reading by flashlight could be so much fun and sleeping from dusk until dawn could be so difficult! "

The cruising community in La Paz rallied to meet the challenges of assisting fellow cruisers, tracking missing people, boats, and damage. They are requesting donations to aid in the ongoing efforts to refloat boats and related costs. The photos on the Hurricane Odile tab show the powerful impact of this storm and the sad reality for cruisers who now have to 'pick up the (literal) pieces' of their dreams.


Keep them in your thoughts.

September 18, 2014

Hurricane Odile Impact

We are having some extremely anxious moments here at home while we follow the projected and actual track of Hurricane Odile as it closes on the southern tip of Baja California and the Los Cabos area.  Choosing to leave INTREPID II on the hard, initially in Guaymas, and now in San Carlos, was largely driven by the area being 'out of' the historical hurricane tracks, but you never know!

These satellite images (via Club Cruceros via weather links) speak for themselves.

Information was and still is sketchy.  We learned yesterday that, with the exception of damage to some of the docks in Marina San Carlos, the boats in the water and on the hard at Marina Seca appeared not to have sustained any damage.  Marina Seca staff sent us a much appreciated email:

"This notice is to inform you that after the Storm Odile on September 15th/16th there were no damage report on any vessel in both Marina San Carlos and Marina Seca.  There are two of our Docks R and S presenting minor damages, due to this situation we had to relocate some of these vessels located there to another Docks, our maintenance staff is working hard on the necessary repairs to get them ready as fast as possible."

Our thoughts are with those directly impacted by this most devastating storm:  those people who call Baja California home, as well as the cruising community we have come to know.  There are now reports of loss of lives and boats sunk from La Paz cruisers' reports:

"Within the boating community, the most tragic news thus far is that well-known cruiser Gunther Trebbow perished during the storm after his boat Princess was blown ashore from La Paz' Magote anchorage at roughly 2 a.m. on Monday.  On the popular website www.bajainsider.com Tom Zyber refers to Trebbow as "a local fixture" who was a long-time Friday Net host, and Christmas story reader. According to Zyber, "Gunther's health had been failing for the last year or so, and after trying to save his holed vessel he was too weak to make it to shore. He will be missed."

We had the opportunity to chat with Gunther at 'coffee hour' at Club Cruceros and are saddened to hear of his untimely death.  While the La Paz marinas appear to have come through unscathed, the dry storage yard near Marina Palmira has once again seen boats toppling and falling.  This is reminiscent of Hurricane Marty some years past.  There are reports of damaged or sunk vessels in Puerto Escondido and the loss of the old marina in Santa Rosalita.

Latitude '38 has been providing electronic updates gleaned from satellite phone calls and other reports from cruisers who were able to send out information:

For certain we will be determining just what supplies and resources we might be able to bring down with us later this year to assist in the cleanup efforts.

August 24, 2014

HE INTREPID II CREW - activities this summer

Bee on vibrant Sennetti
While INTREPID II endures the heat of a San Carlos summer, her crew are focusing on that long list of land based, home focused projects.  We've been so fortunate that this summer has been predominantly sunny and warm, with some very hot days at times.  Rainy days have been few, so there has been no excuse to put off painting, gardening, building woodsheds, modifying the watering systems as well as the day to day house chores. The camera is always close at hand to capture the special moments when a butterfly or bee lands on a blossom and stays long enough to focus!  We also appreciate visits from the Anna's Hummingbirds who announce their presence with the buzz and zooms of mini helicopters (not fast enough yet for a photo though).
Tiger Swallowtail on Bowles Mauve
While our property does not  have the necessary sunny exposure for a full size garden, we do enjoy planting and harvesting on a smaller scale, in pots.  We have a rewarding crop of cherry tomatoes from two trailing baskets as well as salad greens, baby kale and of course catnip!
Small-scale gardening - trailing cherry tomatoes
Rosie - enjoying her lounge chair
All is not hard work however.  We find time for a refreshing Gin and Tonic or other refreshment by late afternoon and relax on our deck with the furry ones.  
Sebastian in the garden - what Summer is all about!

The Captain taking a well deserved break - Sebastian ignores the comfy cushions
The bbq is our favorite means of preparing dinner.  Rresh salmon, ling cod, halibut, rib eye steaks, corn on the cob, chicken, all tastes so much better.
The Chef at the bbq - Cheers!
In early July, 'intrepid' family members arrived from Alberta to tackle the challenging West Coast Trail.  They returned a week later with minimal bumps, bruises and a well deserved sense of accomplishment after completing the 75 km hike in 7.5 days.  

Our home was the staging area on the Friday evening once they arrived; rechecking packs and equipment after we'd enjoyed a family reunion around the dinner table.  It was a very early morning wakeup call - 4:30 am.  Kelly delivered the hiking quartet to the West Coast Trail Express in downtown Victoria, which in turn delivered them to Pachena Bay near Bamfield over 6 hours of mostly bumpy, logging road. 

The hikers started their trek with one of those few days of rain, unfortunately.  There were no glorious west coast sunsets as by evening the fog tended to roll in. The initial section was in the trees; sometimes on boardwalks, sometimes on logs, in various stages of repair or decay.
Trail in the trees from Pachena Bay southward
A sample of the beach sections - sometimes hard packed, sometimes not easy walking.

The ladders!  And every now and then a rung was missing!

Sea Lions have their own opinions about what is going on!
Sea Lions watching the hikers
If you are curious about what this experience entails, here is the website with planning advice, maps and how to reserve info:
Map of West Coast Trail - 75 kms of challenge and amazement!
Our own summer pursuits were not as ambitious, but geared to more leisurely options:
Extravagant blooms at Glendale Gardens
Bike riding, walking the trails around Rithet's Bog, meandering up the Saanich Peninsula to check out the farm stands filled with fresh produce, stocking up on reading material at our favorite bookstore - Russells, taking day-trips in the area and discovering our own 'backyard'; attending the Artists in the Garden event at Glendale Gardens.
Heron in Japanese Gardens - HCP
Mallard couple at Rithet's Bog

Red winged Blackbird

Quiet marina near Sooke -  Olympic Mountains in the distance
The Captain and some adventuresome mates headed north to the Campbell River area in mid-August for a day of salmon fishing off the beach.  Some tall tale fish stories.  Sadly, no fish this time. Lessons learned, equipment tested....ready for next time.
Not quite the size the Captain hoped to catch
We recently attended an excellent reunion with many cruising friends and friends of friends courtesy of Fran and Jean-Guy of S.V. Gosling.  They generously provided the setting for a pot-luck bbq, as well as the main courses. Hopefully we will continue to cross paths with all these cruising friends.  August is coming to a close; time to plan the next cruising adventure!

April 12, 2014

Homeward bound - Adios amigos! Adios San Carlos!

A quick update from the Captain:

"Woke up at 05:00 this morning, motored out of the slip around 07:00 to head to the haul out dock, with just enough time to flush the engine before the marina crew arrived.  Thanks to the helpful friends who assisted; always much appreciated! Our stalwart S.V. INTREPID II is once again on the hard in Marina Seca San Carlos.  She's resting up, hopefully for future adventures of the passage-making nature."

Kelly advised he made time to provide one more feeding to the feral cats who congregate at the top of the Dock B ramp.  He will really will miss these furry, shy friends.  Thanks Ken, for carrying on looking after them while you are there.  This month went by quickly. Looking forward to seeing all out cruising friends again.  Don't forget to stay in touch.

Somehow all the 'coming home' items were squeezed into Rojo Grande.  Kelly was on the road out of San Carlos by 10:00 am and headed north on Highway 15.  This time he chose to cross the U.S. border through Nogales, Arizona, hoping that border delays would be reasonable.  In fact they weren't bad at all.  He reached Tucson about 04:00 pm, sttopped for gas and drove on towards Casa Grande.  That small community is about half way to Phoenix; a good location to over-night and plan the rest of his route homeward.

April 5, 2014

Swap Meets, Northers, Marina Cats

The Captain's efforts to clear out the store room are showing some results! This morning's swap meet had many more browsers than buyers, but in the end our air conditioning unit went for a disappointingly low amount of coconuts.  Better to pass it along now than have to store it one more year. Also great to see cruising friends who came up from Guaymas to check out what was for sale.

It was helpful when the store room next to ours became available to rent for a month.  Much better to be able to sort out the treasures we'd been keeping and really see what was still useful and what can be donated or given away.  Having "Rojo Grande" to store things in transition has been a bonus as well, as expected.

Now the only question is .....where will we put all these boat items once they are back home?

The latest Norther, which becomes a 'Wester' in the San Carlos keyhole harbour,  made for some tricky times walking along the dock on Thursday.  Quite the gusts!  Having turned INTREPID II around with the stern into the wind to defeat the efforts of Evil Birds made for much more pushing around at the dock.  Today was not quite as gusty but quite noticeable.

Marina Cats:  they are shy but so eager for any food and attention.  Fortunately some cruisers and, it appears, a very generous Mexican man try to ensure they have something to eat.  Kelly says there is a particular sweet little one which a few of the cruisers would love to bring home  She is the friendliest and least shy of the clowder (Carol looked that up).  For so many reasons, such as allergies or other cats at home, it hasn't been possible so far.
Gatita - a sweet but shy amiga - hope she stays safe and well!
Sadly, although this group of felines all seem to support each other and stay together, one fellow has been in a fight and has a very bad eye wound.  He won't let anyone get close to pick him up so far. Hopefully someone might be able to do that soon as it really needs to be cleaned and dealt with. There is an active group of people in San Carlos who raise funds to spay and neuter feral cats and we appreciate their efforts.

The haul-out date for INTREPID II has been arranged for next Saturday,  April 12th; bright and early! The logistics of finalizing everything on board, managing to leave enough space to sleep, getting up real early to look after all those last minute things, then motor INTREPID II out of B14 and over to the haul out dock are a bit daunting.  The Captain will have a very busy week.

March 23, 2014

Living on Dock B Marina San Carlos

Kelly says he has a routine now, having spent just over a week on Dock B.  There was a dock party the afternoon INTREPID II arrived, which is always a great way to meet new people as well as catch up with all those we have met during other cruising seasons.  He's been making room in a very crowded cabin to sleep, make coffee, but not do much cooking.  Playing that familiar game of ...where is..... and sometimes actually locating the item!
So if we want to use the dining table......
The new head is installed; of course a trip to the local Ferrateria was required for an adapter.  A certain sea cock which will remain unnamed is protesting about opening and closing.  A visit to our nearby storeroom had him debating what to do with all these things which were too important to throw away or donate the last time.  We cannot keep paying store room fees forever.

The cruisers net is active in the morning; a great way to hear who has arrived or is leaving, catch the swaps and trades and any updates or news.  There are the sweetest cats who gather near the dock gates.  They are all feral but well behaved. It appears they are being fed by some of the cruisers.

Kelly mentioned being disappointed to find that some restaurants had closed, including the casual gathering spot at the marina.  It attempted to go upscale apparently and did not succeed.  However, there are enough places to ensure he will not go hungry.  It is always enjoyable to share a meal with cruising friends.
An excellent meal - too bad that restaurant closed
Another dock party last evening.  Kelly made his excellent guacamole from a recipe passed down from his father - always a treat.  There is a fund raiser for Castaway Kids today (Sunday) and perhaps it is time for a new T-shirt after all.

Hasta luego on behalf of the Captain!

March 16, 2014

Boat projects underway in San Carlos - March 2014

At long last, S.V. INTREPID II is getting the TLC she deserves.  After almost a year on the hard in Marina Seca, San Carlos, with a few updates from cruising friends that 'she looks fine', INTREPID II is enjoying the feel of cool water against her hull.  All went well for the 'splash' in Marina San Carlos. Once I clears bit of space in the cabin to eat and sleep the boat projects can begin!

I'm looking forward to seeing cruising friends once again, making new ones and hearing all the stories from this past season.  Looks like a few people have had to postpone their travels for personal reasons, like the INTREPID II  crew, while others are already here to begin putting their boats on the hard.  Communications glitches are still popping up.  There are less than ideal wi-fi connections here at the marina, but that's not unusual.

If you are in the neighbourhood of Dock B, drop by!  Now it's time to get back to work....Kelly