Isla Grande Tues/Wed 21/22 March 2017
What a lovely time I've had here!
After a short passage around from Zihuatanejo yesterday, it was still busy with day-trippers enjoying the sandy protected beach but, well before sunset, they all disappeared in the many 'taxi' pangas (sturdy open boats) that had brought them across from Ixtapa. Some were no doubt celebrating the National Holiday in honour of national hero Juarez's birthday.
I anchored in 5m/16ft, fairly close in, which gave protection from swell. Nearby was 'Arcane' and Ken on 'Gitane' was not much further off. Ken had kindly given me a lift over to the town 'muelle' earlier, so I could check out with the friendly Capitania, but his outboard engine failed on our return so we used a local panga to get us both back on board our boats, ready to leave.
A fresh fish meal, with cerveza, on an almost deserted beach as the sun got low, was very welcome and the view over the small bay to mountains beyond the distant coastline was fabulous.
Late this morning, Ken came over to help try to sort out the genset cooling seawater problem, but after spending quite a time making sure the inlet was clear of sea creatures and growth the problem was still there on powering up the generator. Even poking a long flexible wire up into the opening made no difference. The filter housing was full of water so all should have worked fine - but it still overheated with very little, if any, water coming out. Maybe I need to check the impellor again...?
Avoiding that hassle, I decided to snorkel and clean the hull instead - the several fishes under the boat increased in number rapidly as they enjoyed the food I released for them. A Margarita onshore was a welcome reward for my lengthy efforts, with Jean and Jacinthe coming by to provide my transport to shore.
Today, more friends arrived - Tim and Donna and company on board 'NorthWest Passage'. The only downside for them was that they had planned to stay the night while their four friends took a panga back to Ixtapa - but the swell there was so bad that the pangas weren't operating - it was too dangerous at the landing jetty - so they all had to leave together, later in the day, to go back to Zihuatanejo the way they had come.
In our little protected bay, we only saw a very slight increase in the swell - nothing much at all - but we had been wondering why there were no day-trippers being brought over. The bonus was having the place completely to ourselves all day long.
An amazing and unexpected sight was seeing a small, young armadillo wandering around on the beach. Clearly thirsty, it headed for the sea and began to drink the seawater - but a local restaurant owner (one of the few there today) gave it some fresh water. Wow, but it was thirsty! Its tiny pink tongue worked overtime... A curlew was another visitor - we (and they) were clearly benefitting from so few people around.
Tomorrow, I'm up very early to make for Manzanillo, as is 'Arcane'. It's a one-and-a-half-day passage so we need to leave early to make landfall in daylight. There's a 'weather window' of sorts - in this case, meaning a slight wind from abaft the beam for just two days, rather than the usual prevailing 10kt headwind - so it will probably be a motoring passage, with a small chance of using the sails to help our speed occasionally.