So, backtracking a bit from our last post, let’s revisit the first hour of the journey, perhaps the scariest one, after we cast off the mooring lines in San Carlos.

We headed for the fuel dock at the marina, so we could top off our freshwater tank, and after about 10 minutes of filling (and thinking, hmmm this seems to be taking too long), Katie stepped down into the cabin and yelled “The bilge pump is turning on!” This, of course, meant that the water I was trying to pour into our tank, was actually filling up the bottom of the boat.

So we troubleshoot the problem, a leaky pipe at the top of the tank (not a big deal for now), but while we are doing so, we hear on the radio that a low pressure system is building south of Mexico, and that “conditions are ripe for tropical storm development.” Now, it’s late in the year for hurricanes this far north, but remember that hurricane season does technically last until November 1st. We ponder our circumstance.

Lots of low pressure systems come and go, with no development whatsoever.


We’re heading north, where the sea surface temperatures (a major driving force in hurricane development) have already dropped dramatically.

We’re heading toward Puerto Don Juan, a hurricane hole with better protection than Bahia San Carlos, where at that moment we sat.

The water tank could be repaired later, no threat to safety or water supply.

So away we went…

We weighed the options, knowing that we could get Single Side Band (SSB) weather reports each morning and tuck tail back to San Carlos if it looked like a storm threatened before we could reach Don Juan. Nothing developed and it appears that we made the right decision. Just another part of this big adventure, hovering over a little SSB receiver, trying to make out through the static if a hurricane was bearing down on us as we bobbed out in the middle of the northern Sea.