How much can you forget over 16 months. We did pretty good but there were a few things.
Which line controls the different functions on each sail, how to fine tune the radar, where are the circuit breakers and where the heck did we stash the bungy cords. So much to remember and relearn and no time to ease into it.
Our first passage is from Puerto Penasco to Puerto Refugio. Its 107 miles and at a 6-knot average speed it will take about 18 hours to get there. You don’t want to arrive at an anchorage at night so that means leaving on your first passage in the afternoon, sailing/motoring all night and arriving at Refugio the next morning. In the famous words of Captain Ron, from the movie of the same name, “if it is going to happen, its going to happen out there” and sure enough it does.
Just as the sun sets, we flip the switch for the navigation lights. You know the red and green ones on the bow and the white one on the stern that let all the other boats know where you are and the direction you are moving. Nothing happens, no red, no green, no white. We are now a ghost ship. Quick diagnosis indicates low voltage to all the lights and not a quick fix. Quick thinking remembers we have a portable set we have for the dinghy. We put new batteries in them, lash them to the bow and stern. Not perfect but we are visible, so it works. The next day, after tracing lots of wire, we would discover a junction block connector, buried behind a cabin wall that came loose. Snap back in place and bingo we are good to go.
The next day we left Refugio. We were planning on another day, it’s a very nice anchorage, but the BoBos chased us out. Bobos are a small harmless fly common in Mexico. Normally not a big deal but if there is a recent hatch they can swarm in the thousands. While they don’t bite, having them swarm around you and go up you nose, in your ears and between you eyes and your glasses is none the less annoying as hell! So, we booked out of there.
We got out of the bay, between the island and the Baja mainland and set the sails, the winds picked up to over 20 knots. We heard a pop and we both said “what was that?” we quickly discovered that the outhaul on the main sail had blown. This handy little piece of the sail is what holds the bottom corner to the back of the boom. Without it the sail creeps forward on the boom, loses it shape and efficiency and makes it impossible to wrap on our roller furling. Derick must slide out to the end of the boom and “MacGyver” a new outhaul with some shackles, anti chaffing material and some new line. Barb’s job is to keep the boat pointing into the wind, so the sail doesn’t fill and launch Derick overboard. Sorry no pictures, we were a little busy. We have it working and will get it fixed in La Cruz when we do the head sail furler.
They say things happen in three’s so just to round out the count we had a nice day of motoring in calm waters when we noticed that the starboard engine was not charging the batteries. Some how we managed to blow a 100-amp mega fuse. Fortunately, this happened a few years ago and we remembered the symptoms and carry extra fuses, so it was a quick fix. I’m developing a dislike for Captain Ron even if I think the movie is a blast.
I think we are back in the groove again. The boat is back working normally. Barb and I have pretty much remembered how it all works and where we put everything. We had a day with a great 4 hour spinnaker run. The sun is out, the temperature is in the mid to high 20’s so its pretty darn nice out here.
After six anchorages, including a couple we had not been to before, we are in Santa Rosalia. It is about halfway down the Baja side. We have been here 3 other times on our way past. It was started by a French mining company in the late 1800’s. It’s a blue-collar town and not at all touristy, but Tonka’s has great burgers and ribs. We have not found the hot dog cart and hope he is still around because he used to do the best loaded hotdogs. I think we have mentioned it before but the church here was designed by Eiffel (yes, the same guy who did the tower) it’s made of steel and was brought over by ship and reassembled on the site where it stands today.
Heading further down the Baja coast and will update next time we have decent wifi.