Hurricane Odile

Message from the Commodore

October 15, 2014 Update!

It has now been one month since Hurricane Odile pounded the Baja Peninsula and Sea of Cortez. The pain in our hearts is starting to subside and things are beginning to get back to normal. Most everyone in La Paz now has power and internet back on, but several areas in Cabo and San Jose are still waiting. But CFE has a huge team here working on that, so they should be getting the lights on soon. The SJD airport reopened this week too!

I am happy to report that the majority of the boats that went aground in La Paz estuary are now floating or have been removed to a haul-out facility. The last three just this week, with the big high tides from the full moon. The others may have to wait another month for the next big high tides. Also happy to say several boats in the Atalanta boat yard by Marina Palmira hired cranes to stand them back up where they had fallen over.

Since the storm we learned many boats were damaged up and down the Sea of Cortez in Puerto Escondido, several sunk and many washed ashore as well. Most of them have also been raised or floated by now. The old marina in Santa Rosalia was once again destroyed and the boats in the Singlar marina had some damage, but not as bad. San Carlos had several boats go ashore from the anchorage, but I was told most of the boat yards and marinas did fine.

Almost $20,000 US dollars has been raised by generous donors, some of them may have been you. Thank you so much for your kindness. Members should by now have received a letter from me and the Club on applying for receiving some of those relief funds. If you did not get one please write an email to the club. These funds are available to anyone damaged in the storm until they run out, but club members will have priority. If you are not a club member and wish to join, please email for a membership application. The deadline to put in your relief fund application is November 10th, 2014.

October 11th we had a thank you party for all the volunteers out on Guenter's Mogote beach. Oh how the beach has changed since the storm. The old Fisherman's anchor has been washed away along with lots of the sand dunes. The water is quite shallow much farther out from the beach now. And silly me tried to wade out for a swim and stepped on something sharp, sting ray maybe?!? Be sure to shuffle your feet in that sand!! We had a great time enjoying the beauty of La Paz, a spectacular sunset, and most importantly remembering why we will continue to live in this amazing city.

We are getting prepared for the incoming “newbies” (people who are sailing down to Mexico for the first time.) Some folks are planning to use one of Princess's masts from Guenter's boat to re-mark the crossing area for anchoring. That will be a great memorial to our good friend as he will continue to look after us, keeping us off the sand bar. The city is getting cleaned up street by street, as large piles of trees and debris are cleaned by each neighborhood. This storm really brought people together, both cruisers and land lubbers and it is amazing to watch what people can do when they help each other.

For me personally, that is what Club Cruceros is all about; helping each other. Whether it is pulling a boat off the beach, helping someone find a part in town, or offering advice on which islands to anchor in the Sea of Cortez. No matter what you did in life before you bought your boat and went sailing south, we are all in this same boat together! So lend a hand, or a peso or two and keep an eye out for the guy anchored next to you. It could be his first time being anchored in the 3 knot current that creates the La Paz Waltz. And for you “newbies”, I hope you will decide to become a member of Club Cruceros when you come to La Paz.

I will be sailing down this year, for the first time doing the Baja Ha Ha with Patsy aboard TALION. If you are registered to sail down with us, feel free to look me up and ask me questions at one of the great parties I have heard so much about. I am so looking forward to getting back on the horse (boat) and riding (sailing) down the cape! Nothing like a little good sea time to clear one's head!

See you in La Paz this winter!!

Your Commodore,
Shelly Rothery Ward
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