Me and Julio down by the school yard…..

Aug 24-25, 2008

Remember that song?

We have been on weather watch for days as tropical storm Julio is heading
our way. Not sure when we will go \”OUT\” next. Our next \”OUT\” will probably
be our last. This is the trickiest weather month, we must watch for our
weather window to get the boat across the sea to Marina Mazatlan for our
scheduled trip to Los Angeles on September 9th.

11 am

The weather report indicates that tropical storm Julio is due to affect our
area about midnight tonight. Seems like weather challenges always occur at
night. We are anticipating AT THE WORST 50-60 knot gusts, maybe sustained 35
knots for a few hours. I was in that amount of wind in Gibraltar so I know
what it feels like. I am very calm & even feel somewhat excited. You should
hear the chatter on the radio & group hysteria that is brewing.

Because of the geographic peculiarities of the Baja Peninsula & Sea of
Cortez we cannot anticipate which direction the wind will blow from. Our
best guess from the info we have right now is that it may come from the
South & East. So we moved Beach House closer to the mountains enclosing this
mooring area on the S & E side to get some wind protection from those
mountains. Scott scuba dived on this mooring & secured the bridle lines (one
from each bow, like reins on a horse) to the mooring float ball. He is
confident that we are secure. As the day progresses we will do a thorough
scan of everything on the boat that could potentially blow overboard or get
shredded from strong winds.

A local problem is many boats are tied to a mooring & left unattended for
months or years. No maintenance & no one watching if the lines are chafing.
Two days ago one of these neglected boats broke loose from its mooring.
Luckily it did not hit another boat, so no damage, but it jacked up the live
aboard community & they are pretty irate with these negligent boat owners.
Many of them now live in homes in Loreto which is 20 miles away. The owners
of these boats should just sell or sink their old boats. Now with this storm
coming, the ante is up & tension is high. The unattended boats in the area
near us seem well secured. Our closest boat neighbor is now Ray on s/v Adios
who has been down here 4 yrs & through 2 hurricanes. He is very mellow & I
am hoping he will be a calming influence as the night progresses & the wind
picks up. The spa radio is a good seratonin drip, usually Scott is content
to have it on. It is a sign that he is really worried when he turns it off.
The sky is dark & cloudy.

3 p.m.

Just after I wrote the above the rain started coming down. Scott zoomed back
from shore in the dinghy. We secured everything outside, including the
dinghy & got soaking wet. Several other boats came scurrying into the
mooring area. Scott uploaded some large satellite images via Satellite phone
(which can handle much large files than our HAM radio connections). The
satellite images look pretty impressive. Sure glad we aren\’t in Cabo. We are
tracking the barometer, wind speed, direction & trying to get some rest
since it could be a long night with the most action expected then.

August 25 morning

We are happy to report that the anticipation was much worse than the actual

It is overcast & there is some wind, but the weather is almost back to
normal. It turns out that Julio brought far more rain than wind, which was a
big relief. We got a good soaking: 8 inches in 24 hours. Scott & I were both
up several times during the night, but never saw wind speed over 25 knots.

So now you know the story of \”Me (we) and Julio down by the Marina Yard\”……

Scott & Cindy