We’ve technically been back in the Sea of Cortez since the last day of March but we’ve only been back up here in the central sea area since May; having made the decision to stay in this area once again vice going north to the Bay of LA area like we originally wanted to do. This morning my tiny little brain started reviewing what we’ve done since we arrived in the area in May, which has become the genesis for this post for this hot Saturday morning.
May saw Tulum thankful for the warming weather once we arrived here in the Loreto area from La Paz, hanging with our buddy boat before they needed to take off south and prepping for our planned June road trip to the US to get our vaccinations. We knew in advance we would have some specific maintenance and “dock” projects which I mentioned in a previous post (Improvement As We Go) so we spent a few days in Puerto Escondido in May. May also brought a surprise for us in the form of our first during-Covid guests. We were stoked to have our first vaccinated guest come onboard and spend three days out on the hook with us, enjoying the disconnect from the world and the lack of schedule. It was a great distraction for us and set us up nicely to prep for our road trip home.
June seemed to be road trip month. We rented another adventure van, drove the dog all the way to La Paz to her favorite kennel then drove back up Baja to the US. Once back in the States, we immediately got vaccinated and visited immediate family and a few friends. [What a wonderful welcome home it was to get vaccinated for free in a clean and welcoming clinic, knowing we were helping to protect others who might catch the virus without us even knowing it.] Importantly for this trip home, I was able to collect some of the specific and hard to get parts I had ordered from American and Transatlantic Diesel and hone in on other parts and consumables I wanted on Tulum to complete my parts inventory. Still in June, we were able to update our visas at the border and zoom back to Tulum, knowing we had two full days to knock out projects before we started our next road trip…. which was to drive all the way to Land’s End (Cabo San Lucas) so we could finish the road trip all the down the Sea of Cortez by car and boat. During our two days back on the boat, we installed new countertops in both heads and the galley and I managed to get two full coats of TDS (Teak Decking Systems) down into the decks (our teak decks are in good shape). On the way back from Cabo, we picked up Ms. Quincy Dane and came home to our boat, happy to be done with cities for a while. Back at the boat in June saw a flurry of repair and improvement work as I now had parts for specific fixes….like how to update our B&G Multi-Function Device. The update took and worked perfectly, I swear the machine thanked me when it was all said and done.
July saw Tulum out and about. We celebrated the 4th of July in style sitting in an anchorage where we could see the bottom and the HelmsMistress was able to get lots of video for her newest short film, Mobula Ray Madness, and we visited anchorages we skipped last year just to try them out.
A Lesson, Reinforced: Writing for the website is a goal of mine at least twice a week, but in order to publish we need to be somewhere with cellular signal or WIFI. One of the places we go with really good signal is Candeleros Bay, sitting in front of a 4-star hotel right on the Sea of Cortez in the middle of the Baja Desert. We had a mellow day and had set the hook well in 17-feet of water (with about 125 feet of chain out), with the weather telling us it was going to be a mellow night with variable breezes to cool the boat. Later in the night the HelmsMistress and I were awaked to the sound of the wind generator going off and coming out of our stern “owners’ cabin”, I knew we were in for a blow…..you could smell it coming and hear more wind as the wind generator picked up its tempo. By the time I got to the bow to check on the snubber, my snubber knot had come apart (shredded) but the chain hook I always throw on the chain just in front of the windless was holding the load so the windless was not taking the brunt of the force. I quickly pulled the snubber apart at the chain end and redid the knot, making the knot out of at least four wraps pulled tight then letting that bit of chain out so the snubber pulled tight. This did the trick the rest of the night; but the gusts kept coming up, meaning we’d go from 15kts to 28kts in seconds, really testing setup of the rode I had set. Like other nights in this same bay when we had lots of wind, I slept in the cockpit and kept an eye on things, but didn’t need to. The lesson reinforced to me on this night was that with a proper size anchor, enough scope out (in the water and OUT of the chain locker) and a snubber actually on and working…..Tulum did great.
July is also the month we put Tulum on the market. This is both a rational and emotional decision for us. Our kids are growing….fast. We don’t want to give up this lifestyle and we do want to continue adventuring but feel like we might just need more boat room. We know this boat will be perfect for a couple or a family with younger children (or one child) and we’re confident in the boat since we’ve touched/improved and modernized just about every system on the boat, making her into a safe floating home rather than just a boat. So, we’ve been busy thinking through what needs to be photographed and what folks will want to see and figuring out the logistics involved with putting a boat on the market. Thankfully our broker, Rich Boren (La Paz Cruisers Supply) also cruised with his family and they still own their boat…so he understood the difficulties involved and helped us to get Tulum on the market, while we’re still out cruising. July here in the Sea of Cortez is hot and a bit humid. We come to Puerto Escondido to get specific help improving or modernizing Tulum and to give the crew a bit of a break that usually involves pizza, pool and ice cream. While we’re still uber safe here (masks at all times off the boat)….if we’re gonna wait out hurricane season in Baja, we’re ok being on the dock occasionally.
We’ll see what the rest of the summer and fall brings us. In October, we’ll probably make our way back to La Paz and decide how long to stay there, keeping in mind that Tulum is on the market in one of the world’s best cruising grounds. Although I never imagined this when I wasn’t cruising, I now know what a gift it would be to buy a boat that’s already been outfitted for cruising AND is sitting in the middle of the “World’s Aquarium”.
When either the HelmsMistress or I publish on the website, we want to write fresh and real content and we don’t specifically write just for our family and friends to read. I’m not sure how my contemplation about summer in the Baja (so far) will come across as I wrote in a more free-flown form than from a structured idea in my head. I count us very lucky when we splurge on a dock spot that has both cellular and WIFI….and allows me to knock out projects that I wouldn’t always get done at anchor. After this short stint on the dock, Tulum is looking good and I think she knows that we continue to improve her as we go.
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PS: Happy Birthday to my Dad. Veteran, Entrepreneur, Circumnavigator, Sailor, Author (18 Endless Summers Of Sailing), Father