Our New Home in La Paz

November 27, 2012
New Home – Marina de la Paz

Given a favorable weather window, we decided to leave on Sunday the 25th to cross over to La Paz, with a rest stop in Ensenada de los Muertos. The crossing was another Emma Jo night of magic, with winds less than 5 knots and seas less than 2 feet, dropping off to nothing in the very early morning hours. Coupled with an almost-full moon, we were enchanted.

The sea was like glass, the ocean swell disappeared about halfway across the Sea of Cortez (sheltered from the swell by the Baja Peninsula), and the water shone like a mirror.  We dropped anchor in Los Muertos about 10:30 a.m., had our first anchor dram (the Emma Jo tradition upon our safe arrival) from a bottle of Norwegian Akavit called, oddly, Anker Dramm.

We passed a beautiful, calm afternoon and evening,  then hauled anchor for the remaining six hours north to La Paz. The wind picked up a little, but the seas remained manageable, and when we rounded the point into Bahia de la Paz, the wind and sea followed us in.

The exciting part was locating the channel markers close in to the shore. First there was a huge tanker anchored to the Pemex dock stern-to, and it wasn’t until we were almost on her bow that we saw the buoys marking the turn. Add to that two sailboats right smack on our waypoint, stopped to play with a whale shark right in the middle of the fairway, and the navigating in wasn’t as carefree as it could have been.

Finding Marina de la Paz was easier than we thought, and we were directed to the fuel dock to wait for a slip. It was a little iffy, as a week ago we were assigned a slip number but it was occupied when we pulled in. And a month ago, when I corresponded with them, they indicated they were full-up for the season.

As luck would have it, we were shortly assigned a slip that we can keep for as long as we like! The marina is the most full-service place we’ve stayed since we left Florida, with more chandleries, hardware stores, and marine services in walking distance than even in Fort Lauderdale.

Sure, the marina is full. Many, if not most of the tenants have been here for years. And the staff were kind, helpful, and friendly. I think we’ll like it here.

Now we’ve got to tidy up the boat and get ready for a visit by Dale and Linda Bixler, who helped us transit the Panama Canal and babysat Emma Jo from Panama to Costa Rica. We’re eager to show them the improvements we’ve made, and Dale wants to gift Ole with charts from San Diego to Alaska that he’s collected over the years.

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