Posted by: vlbyers | May 24, 2010

Made it to Mazatlan

Larry and I did our first overnight cruise to Mazatlan a few days ago, successfully got ourselves 120 miles from our starting point which was San Blas, to our destination. This may come to a surprise to some of you, knowing that we sailed down the coast, and have sailed across the Sea of Cortez, we have actually done many overnight trips but this is the first without any other crew. We were a bit tired when we arrived to the Mazatlan harbor but after setting the anchor and securing the boat we caught up with our sleep and were very proud of our accomplishment. Mazatlan is such a fascinating town, there is so much history, art, food, shopping, hiking, boating….and on and on, we continually find more fun stuff there to do. Larry and I took a hike to the Faro, lighthouse, which is reportedly the second highest in the world-we hiked up in the heat of the day, I think next time we’ll go earlier. Such a great view from the top and great exercise too, climbing the 250 or so stairs leading to the top.
This morning we woke bright and early, 0600, pulled the anchor after waiting for the ferry to dock, and headed to the Mazatlan marina, which is about 5 miles north of this harbor. Here are several marinas where we planned to leave the boat for about a week to take an inland trip to the Copper Canyon. The entry into the marina basin is quite narrow and is affected by the swell, sometimes causing the harbormaster to close the entryway if it is dangerous to cross. We are travelling with friends of ours on ‘Whatcha gonna do’, a catamaran who entered this channel a few minutes prior to us (yes they even motor faster than our monohull), they called us up on the VHF and cautioned us about the swell just about the time I (yes I was at the helm), called Larry to come up to help with navigation. Not only is the channel narrow it is difficult to see clearly with only a red and green post (no lights in the day) on either side-so 4 eyes are better than 2-especially early in the morning.
We confirmed that we were on track but were a bit uneasy about the swell, I had been watching the waves breaking on the breakwater and had seen 3 pretty big ones in a row so I figured I had a little window of smaller ones and decided to go for it. Thankfully we made it in, only had 1/2 foot of water under the keel (the bottom of the boat) at one point, but once we rounded the breakwater it was calm. I felt pretty good about my boat handling skills.
After docking the boat and securing the hatches we headed to the marina office to check in and then to the bus station to buy our tickets for Los Mochis. This is a 6 hour ride at the least so we thought we would spend one night and then take the 0700 train to Creel, the furthest stop we were going to on our Copper Canyon trip. See you when we return from this exciting trip.


  1. Wow! My heartbeat reved up just reading your entry into the marina. I am currently deep breathing to get my heart rate back down!!! If it were me, I would have celebrated with a mimosa or something after that entrance! 🙂 Way to go, guys!!!

    We have had lots of rain recently. I’m hoping this isn’t the way the summer is going to be.

    We are looking forward to having all the girls at home together the 2nd weekend in June. Family BBQ on Saturday night…we will miss having you there. Saturday morning all of us girls are going Wedding dress shopping with Anna. I can’t wait to have all my “chicks” home!

    I can’t wait to hear about your trek to Copper Canyon. Hope it was a wonderful experience.

    Love, Jeanna & Steve

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