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  • Capt. Eric

Anchorages around La Paz

After slowly making our way down the Coast from Alaska down to the Sea of Cortez, we're now done with long passages. At least for the time being. Now we can enjoy the rewards of having made it down here.

With Di's and my trips coming up soon we've decided to stay in close vicinity of La Paz, jumping from one anchorage to the next as we feel like it, and as weather allows.

Enfin in a calm protected anchorage

There are a great many anchorages in the area, most well described in cruising guides, and as I'm getting more familiar with the lay of the land and getting to know which charts to trust or not, we're even anchoring in places not covered in these.

We're always trying to find the ideal anchorage, one that would be sheltered from all winds and waves, have a pristine sandy beach in turquoise waters, with easy landing by kayak. Of course, we want good holding grounds for the anchor, and hopefully not too many boating neighbors, while a few distant ones provide a sense of security.

If we push our luck and our wish list a little further, sometimes it's good to find a place with a restaurant, but a simple public trash can also makes our lives easy.

Beautiful waters and a public beach
A path in the desert. Enfin in the background

Obviously no anchorage has it all, but each one has its own beauty and charm. As we're getting to explore the area, we're starting to know which place is good for which weather conditions, where to find an ice-cream and which beaches have public trash cans.

My best photo of a marine turtle to date!

All have beautiful waters and plentiful sea life, often changing as a day goes by. In the mornings we often see marine turtles, although I am still struggling to manage to photograph one underwater.

In the evenings, around sunset, is often pelican feeding time, when swarms of pelicans dive in almost synchronized fashion around the boat to catch their evening dinner in a loud concert of splashing water.

Tropical fish are everywhere, especially visible when we get closer to shore by kayak. There, we have the feeling that we're paddling in an open air aquarium.

Crystal clear waters. Enfin in the background

Days go by with regularity, and the sea is warming up a little more each day. It's now a very nice 75f / 24c so swimming is enjoyable.

Some days are warm, but as a whole the combination of breeze blowing over the mountains and still temperate waters make the climate very comfortable, if dry. The real hot days are still ahead of us of course, and we fear a little bit what the end of summer heats will have in store for us. Luckily Enfin has air conditioning.

An evening walk
Rocky beach, but a stunning place nevertheless

First thing in the morning all 3 of us jump in the kayak to go for a good walk ashore. When Princess gets too hot, she swims in the water, and then runs and zooms around us once cooled down.

Back on the boat, after a long brunch style breakfast, most days we settle down for some boat maintenance. Mostly simple house work that needs done in any abode around the world. From cleaning to hoovering and polishing. Of course there are the more boat specific tasks that come with life at anchor as well: Making water, checking and cleaning the sea strainers for sea growth, keeping track of normal mechanical maintenance, oil and filter changes.

Keeping track of weather forecasts and comparing actual conditions with the various models to see which one is currently most accurate.

A morning walk

The boat is doing incredibly well, but my preventive maintenance program always has a ready list of items to do and check. Fire alarms test, thru-hull checks, hull and deck washing. There is always something to do.

Keeping track of our provisions and ordering spare parts as needed are two other constant and never ending tasks.

Vast empty bay

Then of course, shore life always finds a way to intrude, from banks, finances and insurances.

Recently I started cleaning the hull: We've been in warmer waters for almost 6 months now and Enfin's hull is beginning to look more like the walls of a beautifully appointed aquarium than a smooth slick and efficient surface. Time for a good underwater scrub.

Scraped keel cooler

I always joke that although Enfin is "small" in many ways, there are a number of tasks that will make that boat look absolutely huge.

Enfin's resident underwater hull cleaner

Scraping and cleaning the hull underwater is one of them, along with polishing the hull and decks. Suddenly little Enfin is a huge ship, and seems unending!

I started by scraping the important mechanical items: The keel cooler, all water inlets and outlets as well as cleaning the zincs and speed log.

Next were the rudder and large main propeller followed by the small folding wing propeller.

Di meanwhile has been catching up on inside work, especially the always needed work of cleaning and polishing the wood surfaces. Another one of these jobs where suddenly Enfin becomes huge!

Back ashore for our evening walk, we let Princess be our ambassador when there are people on the beach. She's getting a lot of attention here, and we're finding that a lot of locals are very familiar with Siberian huskies for some reason. Many want to get to know her and pet her, and we then exchange stories and get to know them. It's a fun way of meeting like minded people.

On the way back on a chilly morning
Magnificent mangrove

Days, then weeks go by. I've taken a new habit of announcing the date in full every morning so that we keep track of days that way. It's real easy for days to merge into one another and to lose track of time. Next thing we know, we have no idea which day it is, neither do we know the date! So a quick morning reminder helps both of us.

Or as I say, today is Sunday, which is lucky because yesterday was Sunday too!

Always smiling

One amazing thing about staying in beautiful anchorages is that it takes very little time before we have a feeling of having been there very long. They just are that relaxing. We'll stay in a place, and when I next log our move to the next one, we're often surprised to find it's only been a few days, and not weeks like our bodies tend to tell us.

Nice places and good anchorages have a way of both disconnecting us from time, yet make us live our lives more fully. It's hard to explain.

In the late afternoons and evenings, we often catch up on the international news, both in French and in English, and later Di and I enjoy spending time together watching a fun program or two on the TV or one of our screens.

The generator often starts for a little later in the evenings for a maximum of two hours to ensure the night is quiet. We often use that time to settle down in our cabins, watching shows, reading, or in my case studying the guides and charts to find our next destination.

Time for Di's upcoming trip to Puerto Rico is slowly approaching. We're already talking to our favorite marina in La Paz and are on a waiting list for a whole week around her departure date. They are not hopeful they'll have room, so we'll keep our fingers firmly crossed that something will open up last minute like the last two times we stopped there.

If not, we'll try another marina or end up at anchorage.

Public beach with ice-cream sellers later in the day
Our own open air aquarium

On her return we'll start making our way North: We have a slip reserved for the whole hurricane season in safe Puerto Escondido (the hidden harbor), and will aim to get there by the 15th May.

Pelicans splashing in unison on the left
Exploring empty beaches

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