Feb 14, 1997-Mexican Gold Coast
We weighed at first light, had the sails up before sunrise, and took our departure from Ipala heading 180, south, with a SE wind of 12-13 knots. We drank some coffee and watched the sun come up. It was an easy sail, close hauled on the number 4 jib and the wind vane steering. Judy fixed some fruit and cereal for breakfast and I got some weather off the fax: A big high north of us and a cold front south. That explained the easterly component to the breeze.
Later in a patch of sunlight astern I saw the mainsail of REFUGE, hull down, who'd departed Ipala some time after we did. I wondered if we'd see them again this evening in Chamela, 40 miles away down the coast. We dragged a fishing line, but no luck.
At 10:00 the wind shifted toward the south and we sailed into the knock for a half an hour then tacked. We were now laying the mark. I watched REFUGE inshore of us and wondered if we'd make out on her by being farther out when the wind shifted, at least we were well to weather of her. I took a bearing: 307 degrees. They never gained any and we had a great sail, moving well all day and after hooking a bunch of darn Black Skipjacks, which we threw back, we caught a nice Sierra Mackerel. Then at 3:00, about 5 miles from Chamela we got into some rain and the wind went right around to the north and kicked up a bit. We couldn't go into Chamela because we couldn't see a damn thing, and the wind was 22-24 knots, so we hove to for a half hour until the whole thing blew over, leaving just a lumpy sea and a spitty little wind. While we waited REFUGE motored up and beat us to the anchorage. Finally got the hook down at 5:00 PM, hung out our wet clothes, and had some rum. Another fine day in Mexico.
16:30 PM, February 16
Tenacatita, Jalisco. It's been a year, nearly, since we've been in Tenacatita. Today we dropped the hook here again, probably for the last time. It's gorgeous here. The light today is crystal clear. On the beach at the hotel you can see the day glow orange of the women's swimsuits and the white t-shirts of the men even when they are so far off you can't even clearly delineate their bodies with binoculars. The long Pacific swells roll in to Tenacatita and when they hit the shore you can hear them for half a mile. The spray goes up into the air and blows inland like a grey cloud. Then, after a delay, the sound. Thrrr-ump! We set the hook, folded the sails, and opened a bottle of rum.
I put on some Beatles and sat on deck with the long eyes and looked around the harbor: Nineteen boats including us. They all looked sharp in the clear air and bright sunlight following the cold front which came through yesterday and they all rose and fell in the swells, like some kind of quiet ballet. Nineteen fellow cruisers, all enjoying Tenacatita, and it's unbelievable beauty... and I realized again that life is good.
Fred & Judy, SV WINGS, Mexico