Thursday, March 2, 2017

Puerto Chiapas: Now We Wait

Saturday's wind forecast for the Golfo of Tehuantepec

Intermezzo is in the water and pretty much ready to sail. We launched yesterday after finishing the bottom paint and changing the lubricant for the saildrives. Today I washed the boat while Renee unpacked and organized the cabin.

But now we wait.

A gale is forecast for the Golfo de Tehuantepec over the next few days. I’ve posted a screenshot from our weather routing software showing the winds predicted for Saturday at midnight. The dots show our planned route, hugging tight to the coastline of the Golfo. The colors and little stick arrows show the wind speed and direction. The dark red area indicates sustained wind speeds of 40 knots, with higher gusts possible. That’s more wind than we want to sail in so we’re waiting until Sunday evening to depart. If the wind prediction models are correct, we should catch the wind from the end of the gale for good sailing and only have a short patch of 20-25 knots towards the end of the passage.

I’m kind of bummed that our departure is delayed for this many days, but it will give me a chance to get over a cold from which I’ve been suffering and for us to finish getting the boat set up for the next couple of months of cruising.

We’re going to sail “purposefully” north, not stopping anywhere for long along the way, just enough time to get rested for the next passage. There is a good Italian restaurant in Huatulco I would like to eat at again and some little bays  that we didn’t have time to visit on our way south that I would like to see. We’ll pick up fuel and provisions in Huatulco, Ixtapa and Puerto Vallarta. If my friend Juanito is available to wax the boat in Puerto Vallarta, we’ll spend a few days there, see if Mark and Marci are around to visit.  Other than the goal is to get to the Sea of Cortez as quickly as we can so we have time to explore the northern part of the sea.

But now we wait.

Painting Intermezzo's bottom

Nice new paint, polished propellers and new anodes

Intermezzo being gently lowered into the water