Posted by: Sailing Camelot | May 10, 2011

On the way to Mazatlan

This is our first post to the LOG via Ham Radio. Unfortunately, the radio modem is slow, VERY slow. For those of you that remember back in the 90’s when we all had dial-up modems operating at the amazing speed of about 1400 kbs and thinking we were high tech… Well that is the speed we are operating at through the radio modem. What it does allow us to do is update you on our location and highlights of the trip, but no pictures. Those will be added once we get to Mazatlan.

We are currently anchored in Jaltemba, Nayarit, Mexico, about 35 miles north of Puerto Vallarta and the jumping-off point for Mazatlan. This is mostly a tourist area, frequented by Mexican and other Spanish speaking people. The beach is lined with palapa’s and hotels, of various colors. The bay is large and calm, with a large island just off shore. This morning the bay was filled with fishermen and their famous boats, the Panga. It’s really pretty out here, we’re the only boat in the Bay. Tempted as we may be, it’s been decided to skip the customary dinghy explorations due to our limited time.

Our night on the anchor was calm, but it will be a little while before we get used to the ever present noises that occur when the boat is gently rocking on the waves.

After staying in La Cruz for exactly two months, we departed La Cruz on May 9th at 10:30 (Local). Lori said that her “nesting instinct” was starting to kick in and if we stayed any longer she would have started to look for a place to plant flowers, cook huge meals and entertain friends Things that make her happy on land! But it’s too soon to think about that, many more places to discover and more adventures to be had. We made wonderful friends in La Cruz and look forward to returning on December.

The trip from La Cruz to here was uneventful, passing through the narrow channel around Punta Mita at the north end of Banderas Bay and then onto Jaltemba. The total trip was about 37 nautical miles by water and took about 5.5 hours motoring the entire distance, with either winds on our nose or too light to sail. The currents were in our favor though and we averaged well over 7 knots. Along the way Lori spotted several groups of Manta Rays and flying fish. The whales are gone to their summer feeding grounds and it makes things a little quiet but easier without them.

We are now in a new time zone, Mountain Time I think, which is one hour ahead of California.

Today, at about 11am local we will get underway again for Mazatlan. The trip is about 150 miles and should last a little over 22 hours. Of course this will take us through the night and past Mexico’s version of Alcatraz, Islas Maria Madre. This is a maximum security prison colony holding some of Mexico’s most notorious criminals. There is a five mile restricted zone around the island with Naval Patrol boats standing by ready to intercept anyone who strays too close. Needless to say, we will be giving this island a wide berth. We will stay pretty close to shore at about 10 nm and hope there will be enough wind for sailing.

Once in Mazatlan, we have reservations at the Marina El Cid, a combination boat harbor and luxury hotel. The nice thing about this place is you get full hotel privileges while staying at the Marina. So I suspect there will be a couple of days lounging by the pool drinking cold ones. We will be in Mazatlan for three days and then cross the Sea of Cortez for the Baja peninsula and La Paz.



  1. Looking forward to hearing you on 40m Baja Net soon.

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