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The Cruisin' Life Begins Anew

November 22, 2010 – Banderas Bay, Mexico

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Profligate, floating in the mystic about half an hour before sunrise at Punta Mita, Banderas Bay. Sunrises and sunsets have been fantastic, and the days have featured cloudless blue skies and warm -- but not hot -- temperatures. The water temp has been in the high 70s, meaning you can surf for hours without thinking about a wetsuit. The surf has been off and on, but with some good waves. Coming soon, sailing trips to Yelapa, P.V., and La Cruz, as well as next week's Banderas Bay Blast. What's the color of the cruising season to date? Serene. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

It's a bright new cruising season in Mexico. While a bunch of the Ha-Ha fleet sailed up to La Paz and the islands for the festivities and fun, we and several other Ha-Ha boats cruised across to beautiful Banderas Bay. Here's a little photo story on how life has been around here:

Evenings are wonderful on the Vallarta Coast. No matter if you're at Chacala, Punta Mita, La Cruz, Nuevo Vallarta, or Puerto Vallarta, strolling around looking for dinner with friends is always a rewarding experience. This little street taco stand in La Cruz is new this year, and doesn't even have a name. The choices are limited, but the tacos are killer, and cost less than a buck each. Best of all, the vibe is sooooo mellow and friendly. As one cruiser who just returned said, after popping the top on a Corona, "God, I'd forgotten how much I love this place!" As for the number of cruisers worried about their personal safety in La Cruz, the total was minus zero. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

On Thursday nights cruisers from all up and down the Vallarta Coast come to Philo's Music Studio and Bar in La Cruz to listen to the former cruiser sing and to dance with other cruisers. Philo's songs are about Mexico and cruising his Mendocino-based Cal 36 Cherokee across the Pacific -- and missing Mexico while he was doing it. Two Thursday nights ago there weren't too many people at Philo's, but last Thursday it was packed, what with all the new and returning cruisers in the area. Having been in Mexico for a few years, Philo has his FM3 status, which means he gets medical insurance for $300 -- a year!!! He says the quality of IMS hospital health care varies in different parts of the country, but in Vallarta, it's great. Sample price: EKG, done with first-class equipment and by first-class technicians, $35. Just like you'd pay in the States, right? Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

A ubiquitous and mischievous presence at Philo's -- after he's finished playing poker -- is Leon, the best dang 79-year-old washboard player and sculptor you're going to come across anytime soon. Leon -- we think it was Leon -- told us that the first whale and calf have been spotted in the bay. Many more are expected soon. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

If you were in the Ha-Ha, you probably remember David Bloom of the Long Beach-based Vector 39 Thee Amazing Grace. He's the one who had a hip come out of its socket. He got it worked back into place at Guerrero Negro in time to make the last two legs of the Ha-Ha. Last Thursday night he was his exuberant self at Philo's, up on the dance floor trying to shake his hip out of its socket again. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Lots of people go to church on Sunday mornings in Mexico, but others, like John Foy of Punta Mita and Alameda, get in the bosun chair and go to the top of their Alameda-based Catalina 42 Destiny's mast. It's just, we suppose, another way of getting closer to God -- while maybe repairing a masthead light at the same time. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Slipping between the palm trees at the beautiful Nayarit Riviera Marina in La Paz is David Crowe's M&M cat Humu-Humu, perhaps the biggest outboard-powered vessel we've ever seen. If we're not mistaken, she'll be doing charters on Banderas Bay this winter -- plus all the normal regattas. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The torrential rains of summer are all over for Banderas Bay, but there is still evidence of the time it rained 20+ inches in one 24-hour period. There's the bridge that fell down on the main road just to the north of the P.V. Airport, as well as what you see here, a 100-ft wide by 30-ft deep section of the Punta de Mita to Sayulita road that was transformed into a river bed. Motorists, as well as the cruisers who do the Sunday morning motorcycle ride from La Cruz to Sayulita and back, had to detour across what is now a small stream. Between the hillsides coming down, riverbeds being created, and the jungle in full glory, the road from Punta Mita to Sayulita is proof of how powerful and beautiful nature can be. Photo Latitude / Nick
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

If you'd like to share a photo story of someplace great you've cruised to, we'd love to share it with our readers. Email Richard.

- latitude / rs

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Classy Deadline the 15th

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Annual ARC Rally Begins

November 22, 2010 – Atlantic Ocean

The ARC 'sold out' three months earlier than usual, a testament to how popular this rally is. © 2018 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers

The 25th running of the granddaddy of all cruiser rallies, the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers, got underway yesterday from the Canary Islands with a massive 233-boat fleet bound for Rodney Bay in St. Lucia. Though it looked as if the fleet would be greeted with rain at the start, boats from 26 nations sailed out of Las Palmas de Gran Cranaria under bright sun and light reaching conditions. Thousands of spectators gathered on shore and on the water to send off the fleet, which included the following American boats:

  • Bambochip, Pierre Bausset's Florida-based Shipman Seaway 80
  • Glass Slipper, John Martin's Michigan-based Moody 46
  • Herceg-Novi, Nikola Kovilic's Chicago-based Roberts 58
  • Moonshadow, George Backhus & Merima Dzaferi's Sausalito-based Deerfoot 62
  • Neki, John Noble's Oyster 655
  • Time Warp, Peter Nelson's Seattle-based Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 45.2
  • Westwind, Josef Kol's Ferretti 12.0

The lead boats should make the 2,700-mile crossing in 14 days, with the slowest boats taking as long as 21. Keep up with rally news — as well as read a variety of entries' logs — at the ARC website.

- latitude / ld

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Ad: WinchRite

November 22, 2010 – Your Boat

Electrify your winches for the holidays!
© 2018 Sailology /

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Cruisers Gather at Papas and Beer

November 22, 2010 – La Paz, Mexico

Last week, in the aftermath of this year's Baja Ha-Ha rally, some cruisers headed to Puerto Vallarta, others went to Mazatlan and still others sailed on to La Paz — encouraged to do so by the promise of an elaborate welcoming fiesta.

dancers at Papas
The city of La Paz rolled out the welcome mat for cruisers last week. Among the entertainers was a troupe of young folkloric dancers. © 2018 Lic. Ana Ma. Esquivel

Patsty Verhoeven of the La Paz-based Gulfstar 50 Talion gave us this report: "The city of La Paz welcomed Baja Ha-Ha cruisers with open arms at the Papas and Beer Beach Club Thursday night. The first 50 Ha Ha’ers got in for free, and were given free margaritas, beer, fish tacos, and raffle tickets!

"Papas and Beer is a great venue right on the beach off the Malecon. We were entertained by the Ballet Folklorico, and the dancers even invited cruisers to join them in one number. A mariachi band played next, followed by an evening of dancing to fabulous rock 'n' roll played by the Baja South Band.

"The event was put on by the local marinas and the La Paz Hotel Association, with the additional support of many other local businesses which helped with both organization and the donation of raffle prizes. A good time was had by all!"

- latitude / at

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Support the Cup, Save the Dates

November 22, 2010 – City Hall

Turn-out was good for the last AC34 meeting, but we'd like to see even more for the next one. Photo Latitude / Rob
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

If you were one of the dozens of people who showed up October 4 for the Board of Supervisors Land Use Committee meeting to support San Francisco's bid to host America's Cup 34, then you know the impact your presence made on the tenor of the public comment. If you missed it, you have a second chance. The Host City Agreement is in the process of being shepherded through the channels of City government and the next step we'll have access to is a special Port Comission meeting tomorrow (Correction, the meeting will be a week from tomorrow, November 30) at the Ferry Building's Port Comission Hearing Room located on the building's second floor at 9:30 a.m. The next opportunity will be the Board of Supervisors' Budget and Finance Committee meeting a week from this Wednesday, December 1 in Room 263 at City Hall. The agenda has not been issued yet, so we don't know the exact time. We will keep you updated in 'Lectronic Latitude. In the meantime, plan on bringing as many people as you can; six of the 11 Supes have co-authored the HCA, which bodes well for its acceptance, but we'd prefer a greater margin for error. So come on down and show your support!

- latitude / rg

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