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sv Code Blue – Bahia de Los Angeles 8-7-13 August 8, 2013

Posted by steveandjudy in Code Blue 2013.
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Sunset near BLA

Sunset near BLA

We decided to join the party and head for Don Juan. When we got here, we were the only three boats except two that were damaged on land from past weather events. So much for hurricane weather protection and for that matter a bunch of boats for a party. The winds were pretty good so 3 miles sailing and 2 motoring to get in and anchor. In Puerto Don Juan we had a couple of dinners with Kevan and Ken. The first one was started by Kevan going to the careening beach and got some clams at low tide. It didn’t take him very long for about 30 clams or so. He’s never cooked them himself so handed them off to us on the way back to his boat and told us where he got them. I then headed into the beach with a shovel and bucket, as there was enough for a small appetizer but we needed more.

The tide was fast coming in so I was only able to get another 26 and some of those were gotten in water about six inches deep and put them in a mesh bag and hung them overboard so the clams would spit out the sand and clean themselves. The next morning I was after the full meal deal and maybe more. I started using the shovel were the holes were but soon found that the holes had nothing to do with were the clams were. The holes seemed to be ghost shrimp and way deeper down. The clams were very near the surface and much faster and easier to claw with my fingers spread in the Hawaii type sand and when I felt a clam, pick it out. Sometimes I would get two or three in a double claw action. Soon I had a bucket full which was about 2 ½ gallon size. Hopefully more than enough for a clam party on our boat for the four of us. The first set of clams we kept in one bag and they had a full 24 hours to clean themselves. In Washington we’ve found they need at least that amount of time and sometimes two days. Here we had 24 hours for the first batch and about 12 hours for the bucket ones. We had our party on Saturday night the 3rd of August. Judy did a couscous with chicken broth, and onions with garlic we got from Kevan. Kevan brought some cream cheese and crackers with sweet and sour jelly topping. Everyone brought their own beer. We made the first pot with the 24 hour cleaned clams and they were great. We decided to go for a second pot of clams from the 12 hour cleaning as I had shook the mesh bag every four hours to help with cleaning them. We cooked them also with onion, garlic, dill weed and basil leaves and then drank some of the nectar. Only one clam was sandy from the second batch and I got it. We hear coyote yelping about 10pm that night also.

The next night, Sunday, Kevan on Entre Nous had a dinner party with a chicken sweet and sour with vegetables and rice. Judy brought the rice and Ken of Drifter brought the vegetables. Earlier in the day we had seen three more coyotes. Also about 9pm we heard coyotes yelping again. That night after getting back to our boat we had a mini chubasco, some call them chewbacas when they are less than 35 knots as in this case they went up to 33. A wind storm came into the anchorage with a little bit of rain at 2:15am and lasted about an hour.

Monday we headed for B of LA (Bay of Los Angles). We were totally out of fresh food and I was getting tired of not many people to talk with and not many new adventures to take on. We motored out of the anchorage just as another boat, an all white trimaran, came in to anchor. Kevan came over to him just as we were leaving as it looked like another single sailor. Found out later his name was Don and no name on the boat that Kevan could see.

As we were coming into BLA we noticed several common dolphins on our right, some close to the boat. Then we noticed several hundred dolphins jumping and cavorting around in a long line heading at a slight angle toward BLA and us. We slowed down took a bunch of pictures, it’s hard to get dolphins in the air pictures, and we took some video. Later, we saw a bunch of small birds on the water and in the air in a similar long stream with several hundred landing and taking off. Pitt from s/v KharmaSeas this is a pretty common site in B of LA. He heads up the morning net at 9am on Ch 68.

We rowed in to shore but first had a small mishap when I put the dinghy wheels in the dinghy, the arm of one of the wheels turned over and the double pin locking device dropped overboard. We marked the spot right away with a weight and line. We were in 27 feet so I used scuba gear to find the double pins but gave up after a while. The bottom was covered with growth, tons of fish around and big clumps 1 to 2 feet in diameter of a seaweed growth like bush. I tried clearing away the bottom growth but it stung some on my hands and I didn’t see anything plus when I did that, a bunch of fish would come around and see what was on the bottom looking for food I guess right where I was trying to look and churned up the bottom. Eventually I found two ¼ inch s/s bolts with nuts about 2 ½ inches long in my miscellaneous box and used them for the pivot point on the swing arm, then used one pin for each side and attached a float which I water tested for floating ability. This set up worked great. At the end of the dive, I did notice Code Blue’s bottom paint is not holding up at all since my last bottom cleaning of July 3rd, lots of soft growth. The prop seems OK but the shaft strut and strut bearing have this weird white hair Einstein look also. We headed to town.

We stopped at several stores and such, ran into s/v Odyssey folks at one store and they gave us info on a new restaurant with internet that would work, plus they have cruiser specials on beer and drinks. We had lunch at Casa del Sol with internet that worked but I had to use Gmail on slow speed connection status. While Judy used the computer, I walked around checking out other tiendas and restaurants. We decided to head to the main Mercado Xitlali which was a pretty well stocked grocery store. Fruits weren’t in the best of shape some of them. We came back to the boat and fixed up a dorado and couscous dinner. We had gotten the dorado from some fishermen from California that were cleaning their fish in Don Juan.

Today is Tuesday 8-6 and Kevan on s/v Entre Nous came into the anchorage just now at 9:30am. He must of gotten up early this morning to be here already from Don Juan. Kevan’s on a mission, seems he volunteered to get a new supply of groceries for Ken and himself as they were both getting very low at least on fresh stuff. He took off and hit the same spots we did. Costa del Sol, Mercado Xitlali and Guillermo’s restaurant. Guillermo’s internet was too slow, not moving, so he went to Costa del Sol that was much better, until a bunch of people moved in with their Ipods and such then it came to a crawl. After getting groceries he took off back to Don Juan. He said this anchorage is too choppy, too windy and exposed to elephantes which are like chubascos but from a different direction and different reason. Elephantes are hot dry winds from the mountains and Baja here and come roaring down to the sea up to 50 kts from the west, usually only lasting an hour or two. If you are close to shore you don’t get much wave action and you don’t have much fetch due to the short distance from shore. But you do have high wind action for a while from the opposite direction of the normal on shore winds. Chubascos are from the mainland with thunderstorms, giant cumulonimbus clouds, rain usually lightning and thus come across the sea toward the Baja with high winds for one to several hours at night.

The lady owner of Costa del Sol says the whale sharks are in the area down by La Mona, about 3 or 4 miles from here. Kevan also mentioned they are in the area too as he was leaving. We hope to swim with them this time in a day or so. Friday we heard is the day fresh produce comes into town.

Calm seas last night with light winds. The International Space Station was visible for a while in the north and saw some shooting stars.

The golf scenes are from Chavato area July 6th near the airport were we finally found the restaurant and pool.

Drug Raid picture is from when we were in Santa Rosalia Harbor and the truck was on the ferry from the mainland.

Just to let you know how slow things are around here internet wise. I did a speed test at Lucy’s internet, called Guillermo’s very near our boat in Bahia de Los Angeles. Download was 2.5 Kbps, Upload was 0.5 Kbps, I tried for about ½ hour to get on my regular Gmail account. We are at Costa del Sol Restaurant 12.9 Kbps download, upload 16.9 Kbps. These are per Speakeasy.net speedtest. Now about an hour later and speed is 15.9 Kbps download, 22.3 upload. Usually upload is slower than download. Lucy’s is supposed to have their internet upgraded maybe as soon as tonight, 8-7-13 to the same as Costa del Sol. Theremay be a big party for this but no one is saying what date until we confirm the working installation.

Steve and Judy
s/v Code Blue

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