Monday, 13 February 2012

stuck in barra

Our companions on the way
to Barra de Navidad
"Only two sailors, in my experience, never ran aground. One never left port and the other was an atrocious liar." -Don Bamford
Inching our way into the channel
Our friends warned us about the channel leading to the lagoon in Barra de Navidad: Watch out, because boats go aground daily! While the channel is dredged, it can be a little tricky to get through. There is also the section without any markers at all.  We used the waypoints in Sean and Heather's Cruising Guide (the popular one), but, the channel is not carved in stone... I was a little antsy going into the lagoon. Rick was Mr. Chill. 

Until we went aground.

See? Not so bad...
Rick was surprised because a second before, the depth sounder was reading okay. Mm. Damn. Time to get unstuck. With the help of some nice fellow cruisers, (SV Island Wind, SV Voyager, and another nameless sailor), we set up a kedge anchor (to pull the boat toward deeper water) and we received a friendly shove off the muddy shoal from the dinghies. Once free, SV Voyager guided us into the lagoon with their trusty depth sounder, (they have one in their dinghy) We found a nice little spot to anchor. That's when a frigate bird shit on me. 

Don't worry, we recovered nicely with a beer in hand, accompanied by chirping birds and a rainbow. After all, what's a little mud and a touch of mierda. This is living!

Delicious goodness: Fresh mango, a
baguette and goat cheese
The next day was more mundane. The morning's highlight was the French Baker's panga making rounds in the anchorage. The French half in me was utterly delighted. (Who am I kidding, the Dutch half was just as thrilled!) Later, we took a water taxi to town (it would have been a long row), lugging dirty laundry, our boat papers, and garbage. Once we dropped off the various items and visited the port captain, we wandered around town. And around, and around. We accumulated many miles underfoot.  We finally decided on sitting down in the shade and feed our hungry bellies. Digesting our late lunch, we sat on a stone wall watching friendly Mexican guys hand-casting for fish on the beach. A few more errands later, we headed back to the anchorage in the dark.

Midday heat, in the plaza

I loved that tree! 
(And that's only half of the tree)

Giving our feet a rest

Fishing, the simple way

Someone's balcony
Tomorrow, we face that channel once again. No big deal, right?


  1. We have a 7-foot draft, so I'm anticipating a lot of running aground. Good times. Hope y'all make it through the channel with ease this go round!

  2. The whole area is shallow and unmarked. My outboard hit ground at a decent clip cutting into Barra too soon from the lagoon, luckily, no damage.

    All the best on your way north. I'm in Zihuatanejo and will be following you up next week. I may head straight to Puerto Vallarta if I get good wind. Possibly see you there if you will spend some time in La Cruz?

  3. Ah yes, well it's not so bad when it's mud, thank goodness. We made it out just fine today, Rick refined the route and I pointed at things excitedly... haha :)

  4. Jared, we'll be skipping Banderas Bay - going from Chamela to Chacala... and onward. Will you be going to the Sea? (I can't remember if you'd decided yet last time we spoke)

  5. Yes, I'll head into the sea, but just for April and some of May. Expect to leave banderas around the 18th of march and sail to la paz mostly direct.

  6. That bread looks soo good. neat how they deliver it to your boat. Such a different life. I love it



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