S/V Nereida sails around the world

Tuesday - Thursday 25th-27th April 2017 Los Muertos

A very pleasant but productive couple of days at anchor here - Robert ('Tillicum’) gave me a lot of help looking at the generator problem - removed the seawater pump and looked at the impellor - it appeared fine but on more careful checking, it became clear that the central metal part was often turning without moving the impellor flanges with it - so the impellor was damaged and not working correctly… Replaced it with a new one - need to buy a spare now. Robert also fixed back in place a switch he had given me in B.C. last year that occasionally helps when starting the generator. That had been disconnected when the motor had been rebuilt in San Diego and, inexplicably, not replaced…. Similarly, he made a hole in the new lining of the lower generator casing and poked the oil drain pipe through so I could drain the motor oil, ready for oil changes - another small job that clearly should have been done, but infuriatingly had not, in San Diego. At last, the generator is working fine - but the cooling water pump circuit had to be primed to expel an airlock before that happened. At least, now, I know how to do that.

Rose helped us inflate the double kayak Jeff had lent me in San Diego and I paddled it to shore with Robert & Rose following behind watchfully in the dinghy - it felt very stable and I didn’t have too much problem paddling it, despite quite a strong wind blowing. We enjoyed a meal and some cold drinks on shore with a wonderful view over this large bay with its vivid turquoise blue water and long golden curving beach backed by low mountains.

Thursday morning, we hoisted the kayak onto the stern deck and tied it down and, by 10 a.m. I was heading out of the bay towards La Paz - 55 miles away. 'Tillicum' will be headed towards Sitka, Alaska, via Hawaii very soon, so the next time I'll see my friends will be when they reach Sidney, B.C.

The wind was very light initially so I was motoring in a calm sea - and later, although it increased, it also backed from NE to NW, soon becoming on the nose as we headed up the Canal Cerralvo, so was of no use for sailing. We passed by arid rugged landscape and long sandy beaches - this is the S end of the Sea of Cortez.

Friday 21st April 2017 Up frequently overnight to check that we were OK. At sunrise, the fishermen were busy retrieving their pots - they called to me as they disentangled one of the lines from under 'Nereida' - a friendly, smiling trio. We chatted as they got their line free - no problema! Took photos of the sunrise and their boat as they were busy a little later... I'd had a good meal last night - steak and onions with Greek-style green beans (cooked with tomato and a touch of onion) and potatoes. Earlier, I'd finished up some delicious guacamole I'd made the day before - avocado, chopped tomato and onion. The only missing ingredient was cilantro but with a big squeeze of lime, it tasted fine. IRadio propagation last night was good - I talked to a boat on passage to the Marquesas and helped relay on the Pacific Seafarers Net - good to hear Glenn on Westwind Ii making good speed towards B.C. Had a chat with another radio ham from Rhode Island - amazingly clear to the NE of the USA! I'm enjoying the luxury of fresh berries with my morning cereal - normally I add dried fruit, so to have fresh is a real treat. I've cleared up in the galley and winds look light but favourable so I'll raise the main shortly and get underway towards Los Frailes -an anchorage on the Baja peninsula.

4 p.m. Wed Finally, the wind kicked in soon after 2 p.m. Lovely to get rid of the sound of the motor and sail for a while. Not far to go - San Blas is in sight ahead.... About one hour more and we'll be at anchor... Sunset... Clear sky still... Wind died but kept sailing - even down to 2.5kt as we approached the anchorage. About to have a nice deck shower - plenty of hot water! Eventually anchored 3miles off from all land around.... but in under 12m/ 40ft depth! Hoping not to be bothered by no-seeums. A few fishing pangas in the bay now... One just laid a crab pot nearby - a black flag on a pole above, showing where it is - at least it's visible. Buenas noches!

Dealt with boat speed impellor this afternoon. Took quite a time but at least now the wind info will be correct - or nearly so! The Propspeed I painted on the impellor itself worked well but I should have painted inside and outside the holder as well to prevent the growth there that clogged it up. Also replaced some damaged screws supporting one of the 'gate' stanchions - another good job finally done!

Gone sunset now ... Time for R&R and food.

Leave early tomorrow for Chamela... Wind is forecast to be light or maybe from S. It would be nice not to have to bash into wind and waves, for a change.

Tuesday 4th April

Anchored off the beach in Tenacatita - surprisingly few boats here for such a popular Bay. One came in a short while ago to make a total of four of us.
10÷14 kt of wind on the nose getting here so a motoring few hours. Fortunately only 15ml from Barra de Navidad so not too long taken.
Peaceful now .... Only sounds are of waves breaking onshore and birds calling as they go to roost.

Amazing architecture at the hotel behind the marina here in Barra de Navidad. 
It has been good to meet up again with Ben &Lucie - stuck here until they sort out Georgia's transmission problems - and also to meet Sally and Stan on 'Illusion', as they paused here for a few days on their way south to Chiapas.
Useful two days were spent servicing my windlass - now working beautifully - rewarded myself with a lovely swim in the pool here once finished.
Wasted a lot of time Sunday trying to get Internet access working in the hotel -gets very frustrating when so much time lost and little progress made.
Plan to move on to Tenacatita in a day or so.
More boat jobs and buying of fresh food today.


More reading.... Decided to get through two Ruth Rendell paperbacks - three detective novels in all...  Not bad ...but I'll be pleased to get the books off Nereida... Been on board and around the world more than twice since Guernsey, June 2009! 
Enjoyed my ceviche last night - don't know what fish it was but they're very common here.
Another very pleasant day except for a Mexican phone problem... Can't make calls using Mexican SIM card. Being told 'outgoing calls barred'..... checked in Settings. .. They should NOT be... Grrr!!! Stymied. .. No phone calls & no Internet - all paid for but presently unavailable... Frustrating!


Crossed the main Bay around noon to reach Ensenada Carrizal -a lovely protected small bay with rocky sides and small beach at its far end.  Excellent snorkelling and sea caves to explore. Unfortunately too deep for my ground tackle, so on to Bahia de Santiago, with its long sandy beach, to anchor in 6m.  Several large dolphins came close, with distinctive blotched backs and light undersides.
While underway here, I was pleased to have managed some overdue cleaning of rusting screw heads under the hard top - looks so much better when it's all clean again.
Went to get out my swimsuit from the basin I'd left it in after hull cleaning off Isla Grande. ... Yuck...! Full of tiny creatures....
Peaceful sunset and evening, after lots of noisy Mexican beach fun reaching out to the boat.


Cargo vessel 'Atlantic Rainbow' overtook us well off the coast heading NW towards the sunset, just as we are. 

A few hours with the genoa giving a boost to our speed but otherwise solid motoring since leaving the anchorage at Isla Grande at oh-so-dark 5 a.m.. A tiny crescent moon as we left but plenty of stars to enjoy. Clear sky all day.

I was pleased to get some useful boatwork done this afternoon since the trip would have been totally boring otherwise.

Expecting to make Manzanillo early afternoon tomorrow - hoping the present good-sized swell will not make the anchorage in Santiago Bay too rolly.

Time for food - buen provecho!


Great evening of music last night at El Canto de la Sirena with Jose Luis Cobo & guest musicians.
Underway north now - left Zihua for Isla Grande in company with 'Gitane' - need to clean the genset inlet and check the prop, shaft & hull while in clean water.


Zihuatanejo Bay, Mexico Monday 13th March 2017

Genset overheated the other night so I'm needing to check the seawater pump impellor - but pump has to be removed to access the cover plate and see inside Big struggle, working in awkward position. Drive belt came off fairly easily to give movement of the unit so now final step is to remove pump from inlet and outlet water pipes - one off, one more to go. But, I have to say, the thought of relaxing with music over a glass of wine in company is far more attractive!

Once impellor is dealt with (replacing is a strong possibility) and all is back together again, next step will be to check whether seawater strainer needs priming to ensure no air lock in the system preventing water flow - tomorrow’s jobs. But for now, sunset beckons - with a Dark n Stormy and some suitable music…

Cheers!

Lovely to spend time with 'Fantasia' friends Karen & Stuart at the Guitar Fest on Wed... Dinghy to shore.. Children's afternoon Concert - great to meet up with Juanito & family there . Relaxed over lovely Margaritas with nachos and guacamole before walking up steep hill to evening 'gala' concert followed later by beach concert. On to 'La Sirena' to enjoy Jose Luis's playing. (Very late to bed!) Has been ten years since last chatted with Jose Luis and Juanito here!

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