Duplo Legos are a mature persons Valhalla!

So one of us is moving on to our middle 50’s and we just need to wonder why the connections from your computer to the camera can’t be made more like Duplo Legos instead of like a science project requiring a telescope, stethoscope or microscope…Really we wear glasses and connecting your computer to your camera requires using your partners glasses placed over your own.  We hate it..

 

waiting on storm comAll right, Montrose, Sammy Hagar, “Rock Candy”, worlds best upbeat song….We are waiting on Tropical Storm Juliet to come though and even though we are on the most “Hispanic” dock we have ever been on , it is good to hear a little American music….

 

Currently we are in Marina Cortez.  This used to be called a virtual marina because it didn’t have docks and also because the last marine (Marine Santa Cruz) was destroyed by hurricane Juliet…We are just now waiting for the second coming of Juliet.  I am sure the bible foretold us of the coming but our comprehension is just not that good anymore.   Besides the waiting and preparing we must say the Cortez Marina is the most “Mexican” dock we have ever been at.   At 53’ long we are the smallest boat at the dock.

Typically when we do come in to marinas (reminds us of the commercial about “I don’t usually drink beer but when I do, I drink Dos Equis”). when we do, we often  find ‘70’s music wailing from almost every boat.   Here in the Marina Cortez, almost every boat is blaring some sort of Spanish music, the restaurants are playing Spanish music, even the elevator up to the second floor of the marina shops is playing Spanish music and it feels just like we are in Mexico, we love it!!!

 

Since 9 am we have been listening to every genre of Spanish or Mexican  music and it has certainly changed our feelings about taking slips in marinas. it has really been a nice change.  Although we typically enjoy each new experience together, here in the marina Lisa has enjoyed the Latino romantico music played by the dock eye candy much more than Bill.

 

About 10 pm we put the awnings up and strung the additional lines that would keep us tied to the dock.   The rum was flowing pretty well and we even took time to stroll, really we S T R O L L E D down the dock.   Life has a much different flavor and tempo on this dock than any other dock we have been tied too.  After saying Buenas Noches to all our neighbors  and finishing our drinks we returned and finished up preparation for the impeding storm.

 

Being tied into the marina we are not worried about much.  Many of our friends are still at anchor and we wish them well.  For now we are only worried about tomorrows activities which include draining the transmission which some how developed a salt water leak in the last day or so and then hopefully completing the engine oil drain and refill which will set us up for the trip north.  One purpose and one attitude about returning north is the way we roll.  We hate leaving the Baja and are actually enjoying the weather we have been getting and working through but, “California here we come” is out mantra.

 

Save room on the interstate for us.

//WL2K 46 miles to La Paz

We spent the night in San Everisto. We were both getting tired and didn’t see a reason to push things so we slept for 5 hours and are on our way again. Everything is running nicely. We caught a 10 lbs. Dorado yesterday so dinner was fresh fish, corn and beans. Our arrival time should be approx 4pm today, but Beyond Reason doesn’t like to arrive too much before cocktail hour so most likely we won’t get in till around 6. It was kind of interesting yesterday as we passed the islands of San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Catalina, San Jose and Havana, all places we hope to pass again on the other side of Baja or places we would still like to visit. It was kind of funny yesterday to be passing places with the names San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Catalina, San Jose and Havana, all places we hope to pass again on the other side of Baja. These were all islands in the central Sea of Cortez, but just the same, places we will pass in the next month again up in the States or places we would still like to visit.

//WL2K Left Escondido, on the way to La Paz

We are about on third into our trip to La Paz. We are currently passing all the places that we have planned to stop at last week. Agua Verde was passed about noon. Los Gatos is just now passing our starboard window and soon Rincon will be behind us as well. The plan for tonight is to get to San Everisto and see what the winds look like. We have another hurricane watch for the week and decided that we had time to make La Paz so this run will be straight through or at least close to that. With the exception of the huge thunderstorm that is standing in our direct path approximately 30 miles from us, all looks good. More to come. Since this is ham radio delivered most of the editing has been deleted.

Hurricane Season

We tried to escape from Escondido earlier this week.   All looked good and we actually progressed about 6 miles south to the Candeleros anchorage when we thought we might as well look at the weather forecast.   The winds all look to be alright but when Lisa read out the state of the waves we figure running to La Paz was not all the important.   The theoretical height of the waves was supposed to be in the 14 foot range and at about 8 seconds.   Even at half the height and the same period that would not be a comfortable trip.   To ease the pain of not moving south we decided to do a bit more diving and then come through on the promise to post our new video (seals and all).

Tonight Tropical Storm Ivo is rolling through the anchorage so we figured it would be a good time to get a bit of homework done before the WiFi antenna at the port office blows over.   The anchorage could be flatter, but the winds have stayed down below 20 knots so far.   The storm is still about 100 miles south and west of us but the predictions show that what we have now will be what we have for the next 24 hours.  We hope the weather predictors are correct.

 

Sparky made a couple of cameo appearances in the video so look for him amongst all the other creatures.   He was sure proud of his dance moves and wanted to be sure all his friends got a chance to see him.   Lisa is a bit over done in video but being the better half of Bill we thought she should get a bit more camera time.

 

Our tanks on the boat are filled and we are ready to depart as early as Monday for La Paz.   As usual it will not be an easy departure as there is already rumbling of another storm or hurricane coming up the coast by Friday.    La Paz is an overnight trip for us, so we will look for an appropriate window and let you know when we make the jump.  Till then, check the video out.  It is a tad long (about 10 minutes) so you will have to check the hallways and perhaps the boss’s personal calendar before you use up more of the company “web bandwidth”.   Keep the volume down if somebody is in the next cubicle that you don’t trust.

Active week

We’ve been active this week.   Our new camera came in two days after visiting some remote caves on the east side of Isla Carmen.   To inaugurate the camera we decided to do a little swimming with the sea lions on the back side of Coronado Island.   We hope to have some video of that a bit later on in the week or perhaps in two weeks when we arrive in La Paz.  snapshot_001 The camera is working great and the ContourRoam2 would have been great to have had during our first two years here in Mexico.

The Dude has posted a new blog and Sparky is making threats that he is leaving the boat if we don’t do a bit of dictation for him, so watch for that update coming.   He has also suggested that he gets a little video time.  Pushy dog but he knows what he likes.

Lisa has been keeping the internet alive with connectivity to Telcel just about everywhere we go so we are pretty connected to Facebook and email.   It has been a nice change but the Dude is ready to go back to the old school of using Ham Radio for everything.   The Chick is keeping quiet and casually staying in touch with family while the boon of electronic airwaves is available.

Stay close as the weather is changing and the sea has warmed up to almost 90 degrees, should be good breeding weather for hurricanes.

If you get a chance check the other pages for updates as they could happen at any moment.

 

New Yotreps tracking

Yotreps is a tracking software that helps people keep in touch with where there friends are at on their boats.   We have used Yotreps for a long time but haven’t had a link  associated with the website for a while.    If you are interested in where we have been in the last month or so take a look at the bottom of the page.   On the page footer you will find a link to “Find Us”.   If you click the link you Lisa Dive prep comwill be transported to the Yotreps site and our tracking.  The name you will see associated with Beyond Reason is SALTYGPA (Salty Grandpa for my Grandson Shane).

A map will come up and you can either enlarge the area or zoom down to a level that is almost on the beach.    We are not good at updating this site when we are not underway, but once we start moving it will be updated daily around 5pm.

Got to go as our friends are ready to go dive on Isla Danzante.   Have fun at work today we are taking Friday off to go play.

Mantas and Space Stations

Flying Manta Rays over OPI – 1

It has been another good week here on the Baja.   The thunderstorms are starting to light up the evening sky each night and we have had two fly-bys of the International Space Station (http://spotthestation.nasa.gov/sightings/#.UgLB7KwXL6J) during waking hours which is always a treat since it is another reason to toast life and get us out of the boat.   Although we rarely stay up late enough to see them there is even a meteor shower that is beginning to show and will come to it’s zenith sometime around the 11th or 12th of August.   It is nice to be able to watch all that without the interference of artificial light.

The Dude has posted a new blog with a lot of pictures that we have taken over the last week or so.   The Chick is recovering from a big birthday week and hopefully will find the pen soon for another update.  Sparky is enjoying the more temperate weather that we have had and often needs to come in and sit beside the warm exhaust air of the refrigerator to keep his old bones for stiffening but claims it is much better than last years summer in the Northern Sea.

We are looking forward to more diving with Terry and Dawn this week and one last get together with our “Mid-Sea” friends before we head south for La Paz in the next week or two.

If you get a chance you might want to track the space station to your location.   It is very bright and fairly easy to see when it comes across.  If you happen to be in the desert, hills or in a dark park (I know some of our friends are lurking there) the viewing will be even easier to see.

Enjoy another week of work.  

Our website; Our endorsement.

Every now and again we like to give endorsements for the things that have worked out well for us during our travels.  As you know we are not afraid to talk bad about companies that have not been willing to work with us or who have put out products that just don’t work (ICOM).   Before we left for our second trip to Mexico Lisa subscribed to a company called Predict Wind, (www.predictwind.com) which is a weather forecasting company..

 

Predict Wind was predict windsupposed to give us full time weather information that we could use on our travels throughout Central America.  While we were in the marinas Predict Wind worked just fine.   The files were a bit large and slow to load but otherwise we could get fairly good forecasts for the Sea of Cortez and good forecasts for the rest of Mexico and just about anywhere else we wanted.   The Sea of Cortez is difficult since weather here (exactly where we are now) is quite different from the weather 4 miles away from us.

 

The fact that we had to have internet made the weather downloads difficult as we are often gone for two weeks at a time and many times are away from the internet for thirty days or more before catching up.   For our $19 subscription we really did not get our moneys worth, or perhaps what we got was worth $19 but not much more.   The fact that we did not get our moneys worth is not the purpose of this blog though.  Today we are very satisfied with the service and it all started with a feedback questionnaire that we sent in at the end of our subscription.

 

Predict Wind had asked for feedback and as I said at the beginning I am not shy about telling what I think of services good or bad.   I would not say that I was kind in my report but I did tell the truth and stated that most of the programming that I was aware of (sometimes we don’t read all the instructions) was good for weekend sailors or folks that are moving from one marina to the next.  For people that are a bit off the beaten track (and this would include those that are traveling the intercoastal waterways of the US) the one week weather report that could be down loaded was almost worthless, thus the main reason we were not re-subscribing.   We added a bit more information about what we needed to make the service important to us and to our disbelief Tracy Pemberton from Predict Wind contacted us by email, upgraded our service and asked us to use it again free of charge with a couple of suggestions for getting what we needed.

 

The first issue that I had about programs being slow was overcome when Predict Wind came out with a mobile application for cell phones.    Lisa was able to download this report without any trouble on both her phone and her Kindle (3G).   The only remaining trouble was that once again we needed to at least have a telephone signal to get the reports and we needed to create our weather requests prior to traveling outside of internet coverage.   On the good side we were not moving far during this summer and after loading up 5 weather request points we were able to travel safely within a 100 mile range.  It was not long before  forecasts soon started to come in via phone/Kindle and we didn’t feel quite so alone anymore.  On the very good side, the weather reports were much more accurate than those that we usually take from the Ham radio.   The big problem with most of the Ham radio broadcasts is that they are very Broad.   The Baja being a series of hundreds of different micro climates left the “broad” casts almost useless unless you were crossing to the other side.   We really liked the mobile application that Predict Wind had created and so we started to check some of the other features that Tracy had told us were being developed or already on the web.

 

The Email version of Predict Winds Trip Planner sounded interesting but we hadn’t used it before.  The program requires a bit of knowledge about your average boat speed both to weather (going up wind) and sailing downwind.   From this information it actually plans your voyage based on the date you want to leave and gives you waypoints for where you will turn or when you should expect certain winds.   It all looked very good and when we did the planning on the computer with full internet hookups it worked great.   Since we don’t have internet at sea we wanted to try the program with the Ham Radio email service.

 

Setting the email up with Ham was pretty simple.   We entered our name and password and the coordinates of our passage (start and stop) and sent the email.   We got our response within about 4 minutes.   The message had been received but something was not working with the attachment that was sent.   We discussed the problem with Tracy and the next day she said the issue was already corrected by Predict Wind and to give it another go.   We did but with the same results.   I figured that would be the end of the contact with Predict Wind but amazingly they contacted some of the folks who created Winmor (our Ham email program) and 4 days later Tracy recontacted us to give it another try.  Viola!

Today we have routed weather from the Ham radio (I assume SSB, Sailmail and others work very well also).    The cool part is there are 3 routings which you can compare with.  This helps to determine if the forecast model we are using is accurate.  Additionally there is a Google Earth overlay so you can see your route and even a download of waypoints that can be entered into your GPS so you don’t have to enter them manually.

 

We are very please so far and will continue to test the programs for the next couple of weeks before we use it for real on our way down to La Paz.

 

Thanks to Predict Wind for working with us and making the proper programming changes to create a usable product.