The Bar – Inward

Bahia Del Sol is a bar port, the marina provide a pilot to guide boats in and out.  Bar passages are done at high tide so we had to wait for about 4 hours so we anchored.

At 1130 the pilot boat called up and we steamed over to where they were waiting. The pilot’s instructions were quite simple – follow me at full speed. I can live with those instructions. Here is the pilot boat, the pilot is driving and Bill, from the marina, is doing the talking and taking photos.

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Off we go, being chased by a wave. The pilot did a zig zag course, we were in hand steering so it was hard work keeping up with the course changes. Could have used the NFU with the hydraulic assist but being old fashioned I like the wheel and the feed back you get.

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Kapowai with a bone in her teeth, full speed and staying close to the pilot boat.

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Over the bar, never less than 12 feet below the keel.

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Shore side shanties, we had a very good lunch here a few days later

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The beach on the other side, very popular

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The marina further up the estuary. We were greeted like royalty with cocktails on arrival.

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Fun had by all.

Passage to El Salvador

Short overnight run to Bahia Del Sol in El Salvador so we left late in the afternoon. It was a pleasant stay, quiet and restful.

Farewell to the marina & hotel, the staff were nice and unobtrusive but you never felt neglected.

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Fishermen in the estuary

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Looking back at the mountains of Nicaragua

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After a beautiful overnight cruise in perfect weather we arrive off Bahia Del Sol, El Salvador. With 5 of us on board we only do 3 hours each at night so it was a nice easy trip.

Dawn while waiting to get in touch with the marina.

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Nicaragua

The next day we took the courtesy bus to the beach for a walk and a swim in the pool there. The beach had dark sand which was too hot to walk on without shoes. Those who had flip flops had to do a dash to the sea. The beach was very clean with only the odd plastic bottle top. It is a popular beach for surfers.

A lovely spot.

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Nature unspoilt

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On our return to the Marina we walked to the village to Joe’s Place for lunch.

The hotel’s dairy herd

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The estuary, looking both ways

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Joe’s Place, didn’t meet Joe but he is well known and has circumnavigated more than once. The place was full of surfers, mostly Australian. The food was good, the beer cold and the company friendly.

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The guard taking his duties seriously

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Nicaragua – Arrival

We had a pleasant two day cruise to Nicaragua. The doldrums, flat calm, lazy swells, towering cumulus and a fridge full of cold beer. Perfect. Sails, who needs them.

We arrived off the port early in the morning,

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The entrance is in there somewhere

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The reef to the south

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North, the beach and shallows

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The channel buoys appear

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The local fleet

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And next thing we were tied up to…….

The Bar! They must read this blog!

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Christopher at rest, his natural state.

 

 

Quepos

Our destination in Costa Rica was Quepos, named after the local Indians at the time of the Spanish arrival.

It was a busy port at one time with pictures of fridge ships loading fruit in one of the pubs but it was quiet when we were there.

The marina, Marina Pez Vela, was nice but orientated toward game fishing rather than cruisers. Nice eating places though.

We had a walk into the town and lunch at a local fisherman’s bar, left on the photo below.

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The estuary

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Loving the sun

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The path

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Close by is the Manuel Antonio Park

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A short stay in a nice place.

Passage to Costa Rica

Our time in Panama had come to an end, we lost a good crew member as Sol left us to return to Glasgow.

We sailed from the marina to a bunker barge and took on fuel for the passage north. Then down Bahia Panama and up the coast.

Next morning doing a bit of rock hopping through the islands we came across a whale and calf.

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The calf was very active with a lot of tail slapping, possibly a tantrum of some sort but Mum did not seem bothered.

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I don’t think it would be no swimming for at least an hour after lunch in this case, which was always good for a performance from our children.

The next day we picked up a hitch hiker, the first time I have ever seen a Gannet do this.

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It was very calm and we walked close by with no signs of alarm.

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It was a pleasant 2 day cruise.