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Work-San Blas MX and Mantanchèn

Internet

No WiFi. No 4G in the bay. There was 4G in San Blas

Voice

Verizon via Telcel: Caroline called me several times on 3g. The calls were very clear.

Other

Depending on what tower your phone talks to you will be in Mountain Time or Central Time. India’s phone was on MST, everyone else’s was on CST. Confusing to say the least.

Airport and Airport Transport

2 choices: Guadalajara (GDL) or Puerto Vallarta (PVR). I think GDL is closer and it appears to be a hub of some sort for Volaris as many routes have a layover there.

Caroline arraigned a taxi at one of the restaurants in Mantanchèn to have me whisked to PVR. The cost was $1500MXN.

The morning of my departure out of PVR a man in a private car picked me up and started driving me to Guadalajara. He spoke no English. Using Google translate and my Sesame Street level Spanish I explained I was going to PVR.

The driver called his wife to tell her we were going to PVR. While listening to their discussion I could tell she was a bit upset about this and he was talking her down. We joked about this universal spousal conversation.

It is at LEAST a 3.5 hour drive to PVR. Remember that PVR is a different time zone from San Blas.

The PVR airport is very much like Cabo. Lots of tourism related hawking of wares.

Work-Mazatlan ElCid

Internet

$2/device/day. Use a rocket or other receiver to rebroadcast to the boat to save monies.

Reasonable speeds during the day, slow at night. Fairly consistent.

Skype for business worked well.

Voice

Verizon via Telcel: pretty bad. 4G until a call was made and then 3G took over for the call. The voice quality was like being underwater. *sigh*. No idea how well a telcel SIM would work.

Airport

Tiny. Make sure to give yourself at least 1 hour for the $320MXN cab ride to the airport.

Back in Mexico

The Waponi Woo crew is back in Puerto Peñasco.

We have not seen her yet. Tomorrow we start putting things away, putting in the new alternators, drilling new through-hulls and getting ready for bottom paint.

We had a great time in the US. We saw some old friends in Phoenix and are glad to be back south.

Life is good!

6.3knots dead down wind with the parasailor. 88F with 65%RH. 


Whales 15 feet off the beam have stinky breath. 
We are in route to Santa Rosalita after an expensive evening on a dock washing off salt, salt and more salt. We also turned on the AC because 95+. 

Carolines phone has a tan line. 

He sun in Mexico is pretty intense. Caroline’s phone lives in a lifeproof case. The case has a clear section in the back to show off the Apple logo. 

We just changed the sun-damaged case out for a new one. 


Note the square tan line around the Apple symbol. 

Yes, that is a Telcel SIM taped to the phone. 

Stanley and Phil

You know you have been in the marina too long when you have developed a personal relationship with the large birds who frequent the dock. 


This is Phil. He likes to hunt from the starboard bow at night. We have made eye contact at 2AM on multiple occasions as I look up through the porthole in the starboard head. He likes to make it known my presence is a terrible inconvenience and I have no business being on his boat. I suspect he has anger issues but our pre-dawn talks haven’t led to him seeking the help he needs.


This is Stanley. Unlike Phil, he is a pretty mellow dude who enjoys solitary walks on the dock at dawn and dusk. We like Stanley. 

When you want to stay put…

Waponi Woo came with two anchors. The one we used up in Puget Sound, a 22kg bruce, and a 40lbs Fortress, which we have never used. The bruce worked well in Puget Sound; we could usually get it set in one try without too much trauma. It held well on our way down the coast as well. We did a little bit of dragging in Santa Cruz and had to re-anchor, but it was a relatively empty bay and the conditions were calm. When we hit Cabo at the end of the Baja Ha-Ha and encountered our first time anchoring in a real sandy bottom, we discovered our old reliable bruce was not the anchor we need for Mexico.

We turned to our fellow cruisers for advice and were told Rocna or Mantus was the way to go for what we would soon be encountering. After performing some additional independent research, I realized not only did we have the wrong type of anchor, we also were using an under-sized anchor. Incorrectly, we assumed the ground tackle used by the previous owner was adequate. There was the complete set-up for anchoring in northern waters, but not the conditions we were heading towards.

In the end, we decided on a 65 pound Mantus. The deciding factor between the Rocna and the Mantus came down to the cost to get it to Mexico. I ordered it online directly from the manufacturer and had it shipped to the marina in La Paz. It arrived in about one week from the States.

Mantus anchors ship in two pieces so it didn’t seem two unusual for two boxes to be waiting for India and I at the marina office when we went to haul it down the dock. India and I managed to get both boxes loaded into the cockpit and I promptly opened the first box. It contained one complete anchor. I slowly lifted the corner of the second box and took a peek. It also contained one complete anchor. We only ordered and paid for one.

At first, the manufacturer told me to just take the extra anchor to the nearest UPS facility to have it shipped back to the States. I gently informed them I am in Mexico and don’t have a car. They kindly told me to use whatever means of shipping it back would work best for me and to let them know. I didn’t ship it back. Instead, I talked to my neighbors on the dock.

They were also in the process of deciding which way to go for a new anchor and this one now had the advantage of being here. We worked out a deal with Mantus for my neighbors to purchase the extra anchor saving me the hassle of getting it back to them and my neighbors the cost involved in getting the Mexico.

This is a considerably larger anchor than what we previously had. We had to do a little creative engineering with the bow roller to keep it from hitting the fiberglass but it fits. We added some tape to the roll bar for under-water visibility and then waited for other projects to be complete before heading out.

Several months later I am still quite pleased with this purchase. Nine times out of ten it sets on the first try and has held in up to forty-one knots of wind. My confidence sleeping on the hook grows each night we spend with our Mantus firmly planted in the ground.