Tuesday, November 22, 2011

To Mexico on the FUBAR rally

After two busy days working with our crew, Iain and Sandra, we headed out of San Diego at 0530 underway for Ensenada, Mexico. It was a good trip; the log records 8 blue whales and a dolphin pod. We had already pre-cleared into Mexico and so all we needed to do was moor at our slip and head off for supper. It was great to see friends Kevin and Anna on the next dock with their Nordhavn 62; it was hammering down with rain and Kevin kindly shuttled the six of us to the Brazilian restaurant. A few caipirinhas later everything was looking good!

We took on some fuel at Ensenada since it is cheaper than in the US; the fuel dock gets a truck a day - 5,000 gallons - so they were hard pressed to deal with the thirsty FUBAR boats - 40-odd boats getting a thousand gallons each................anyway, we survived a bit of rationing. There was plenty of time for us to explore the town, and we were pleasantly surprised. Plenty of good restaurants. Very friendly and courteous people. A wonderful famous bar which has been there since 1864. An HSBC Bank. And an internet access SIM card from Telcel which worked first time (ran out pretty quick however).And our first en-route rally function, there was a communal supper so we were able to meet up with the folk who had been to the seminars and find more travelling companions. Probably around a hundred and fifty people in all.

After getting our Mexican paperwork we were underway for the long leg to Turtle Bay, some 290 miles, and the first overnighter. We were sort of travelling in a long convoy so there was plenty of radio chatter through the night. Weather was calm and there were more whales, minke and grey, and the odd turtle. Turtle Bay was quite a sight with the FUBAR rally boats all arriving and getting their anchors down. Actually the village there has seen better times - there used to be a cannery here but of course that went out of action and now the villagers survive on fishing. At this stage of the rally the weather forecast started changing for the worse and captains elected either to run from the storm or go to the beach party at a local bar and ride it out here at anchor. Pangas took us to the shore; the skill of the drivers was pretty impressive since they needed to land us at a rusty old ladder on a fixed pier. After the tacos and margaritas the sea had come up even more and the pangas ferried us back, with great difficulty, it was a major effort getting on board. During the night the storm was relentless; it was reassuring that we had set the anchor hard and laid out a hundred and fifty feet of chain. And in the morning, the storm had passed.

More later...........

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