Of course our first year on this adventure and we pick an El Niño year with predictions for a greater number of hurricanes. Hurricane number one, Andre, developed in May before hurricane season even started. That didn’t cause us any problems, however Blanca, is another story. We were in Cabo getting ready to head around Cabo Falso and on to Ensenada when the predictions for Blanca got bleak. We stood in the marina office with the Director of Marine Operations and the Dock Master looking at the predictions on a big screen TV for Blanca to make a direct hit on Cabo five days from then. We had two choices. Strip all the canvas and sails off Sereno II, tie her down and find a hotel that would take us in or get the heck out of there. Looking at all the wreckage still around the marina from Odile, the Cat 3 hurricane that hit Cabo last September, and talking with people whose boats were damaged made the decision a no brainer. We were out of there in an hour and sailing full speed way out of our way east to Mazatlán over 200 miles away on the mainland. The peninsula isn’t that wide so there was no where to go closer. We briefly considered trying to make a run up the coast ahead of the storm but would you want a Cat 4 storm coming up behind you? At best we would be doing 5 knots. And if the engine conked out, we would be in some serious trouble.
So here we are after a 30 hour beautiful full moon sail tied up at a marina that is a bit inland to protect us from the surge expected as the storm moves north. We will stay here until early next week and then return to Cabo and try again. Unless of course another storm is brewing…….
Growing up on the east coast, we learned the power of hurricanes and how unpredictable they can be. Californians don’t need to worry or think about them much because the sea along the coast is so so cold. Another sailboat from California decided to stick it out in Cabo. And another sailboat from California left La Paz and was heading to Cabo while we were underway to Mazatlán. Her and I had a conversation on the VHF radio and I was able to warn her. Hopefully they diverted. We really hope Blanca continues to move in a more western direction so Cabo does not take a direct hit. Odile destroyed many homes. The road between San Jose del Cabo and Cabo is lined with mega resorts. Almost all are still closed from Odile and just a few have reopened. This put many people out of work. It cost more to restore the electrical system then any other event in Mexico’s history. As I am typing this Gary told me Blanca is weakening. Hopefully that continues and they get nothing more than a good rain.