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Old 21-12-2015, 05:05   #46
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

Is someone considered a cruiser if their broken down boat hasn't moved for a year and then suddenly their anchor drags? 😜

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Old 21-12-2015, 05:16   #47
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Maybe it's just us but we find Belize expensive.



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Originally Posted by mohave_steve View Post
We found Belize to be quite reasonable. BUT... to enjoy Belize on a budget we ate & drank more like the locals. Walking downtown San Pedro and having dinner from the vendors for $3-$4 was a regular thing for us.

We had to forgo our usual micro brews and premium bourbons in favor of Belikin beer and local rum.

No: Cheerios, paper towels or pretty much any US name brand products. Too expensive.

Not a big deal for us. When I travel I want to experience the place that I am visiting. It will be a cold day in Hell when you see me travel to another country and eat a Big Mac or drink a Budweiser.
A lot depends on how you choose to live. In any of these areas the typical local is living on a lot less than the typical cruiser.

You can live cheap almost anywhere if you live more like a local. In Belize: there are plenty of local food stands where you can eat cheap (rice, beans, a bit of meat), catch your own fish, buy local/regional goods, dont buy beer in gringo bars....

In Belize, if you live more like a tourist, and buy imported brand name goods...life will be expensive.
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Old 21-12-2015, 06:18   #48
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Originally Posted by Dulcesuenos View Post
Is someone considered a cruiser if their broken down boat hasn't moved for a year and then suddenly their anchor drags? 😜

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I don't know, but maybe the difference between a cruiser and someone living in a foreign port on a boat depends on whether they have been there so long that the anchor is so buried that it could only drag during a hurricane.
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Old 21-12-2015, 07:01   #49
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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In Belize, if you live more like a tourist, and buy imported brand name goods...life will be expensive.

I don't see how you avoid all check in fee's, the Marine Park fees, the constant need to renew your papers and those fee's, the daily fee for being in Belize the fee for checking out of Belize, the deposit on beer bottles. It seems to go on and on.
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Old 21-12-2015, 08:18   #50
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Saying "there's practically nothing wild left there" is just wrong and there is no way to sugar coat it.

Most of the West Coast outside of Tampa Bay and the condo infested cities to the South is just as it was a hundred years ago or more. Same for the back country and most of what is West of Key West.

You obviously have not cruised a lot in Florida.
Well. . . it depends on what you mean by "wild", I guess. Compared to the burbs of Chicago or Toronto or some other snowbird hellhole, I guess it might seem "wild". But there's nothing along the shore but private property, occupied by a distinctly cruiser-unfriendly demographic, or well-patrolled parkland. And swamps, of course. And those condo-infested sprawl-orgies called "cities" in Florida are grown together in one ugly, seamless mass anyway.

If you've cruised the Sea of Cortez, or the Caribbean, the word "wild", will never occur to you, in connection with Florida.

As to my personal experience sailing in Florida - it actually goes back to the 70's. With nearly 20 years of frequent cruising with my Dad after he moved there in the early 90s. We had some great times there -- hey, even a bad day sailing is better than a good day on land, right? Mostly anchored out as far from Condo Purgatory as possible; almost never, however, alone in an anchorage. In the Sea of Cortez, we shared an anchorage only once, and with only one other boat, with utterly empty wilderness sometimes for days at a time. Now THAT is "wild"

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Old 21-12-2015, 09:58   #51
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

Thanks for all of the good info!!!


Can you all give me some ideas of what an itinerary may look like if I wanted to leave San Carlos in November and head South at a leisurely pace and end up in Mazatlan or PV?
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Old 21-12-2015, 10:04   #52
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

Follow on question:


I have spent time in Rosarita, Ensanada, Cabo, San Carlos and PV. I have really enjoyed my time in the Northern areas but I am finding that one of my "likes" is the more tropical climate of PV.


At what point Southward do you begin to see more green?
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Old 21-12-2015, 10:06   #53
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Thanks for all of the good info!!!


Can you all give me some ideas of what an itinerary may look like if I wanted to leave San Carlos in November and head South at a leisurely pace and end up in Mazatlan or PV?
You gotta have this guide book which was written by cruisers and is the go to authority (at least in my opinion)
It will layout most of the great anchorages along the way and most people cross over to the Baja Side after Topolobampo, since there are not as many great anchorages on the mainland side North of Mazatlan. Then you cross the Sea of Cortez again further South, typically after leaving La Paz.

Blue Latitude Press - The most up-to-date and accurate Mexico Cruising Guides!

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Old 21-12-2015, 10:11   #54
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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At what point Southward do you begin to see more green?
You don't really on the Baja Side, if your cup or tea is the green jungle you may just want to stay on the mainland side and do a big hop from Topolobampo to Maz and then you are in green jungle land all the way to PV. San Blas and Isla Isabella are two can't miss locations on your way South.

You would also want the Pacific Mexico Guide Book for the mainland side
Blue Latitude Press - The most up-to-date and accurate Mexico Cruising Guides!

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Old 21-12-2015, 10:31   #55
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

I have been reading cruising guides and articles on Lattitue38 as well as the great info presented here. With that I am leaning towards the Mexico option.


Our evolving plan includes buying a boat in the vicinity of the cruising grounds that we will be spending time. I have been looking over a number of boats currently for sale and see a pretty good selection of 32'-35' boats in San Carlos, La Paz and Mazatlan.


We are looking at dry storage in San Carlos as it appears to be reasonably priced and the most easily reached point from Seattle.


One concern that has come to mind as I look at boats that appear to be a bargain. I believe that I am looking at boats that were purchased by their current owners with a plan similar to mine and have found that they are unable/unwilling to use the boat as planned.


Any thoughts or suggestions that may help us stay within the ranks of successful Mexico Cruisers and avoid joining the "motivated seller" group?


Thanks again Everyone.
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Old 21-12-2015, 10:35   #56
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
A lot depends on how you choose to live. In any of these areas the typical local is living on a lot less than the typical cruiser.

You can live cheap almost anywhere if you live more like a local. In Belize: there are plenty of local food stands where you can eat cheap (rice, beans, a bit of meat), catch your own fish, buy local/regional goods, dont buy beer in gringo bars....

In Belize, if you live more like a tourist, and buy imported brand name goods...life will be expensive.
^^^^ +1

It drives me nuts to see the folks who travel to a unique destination and then start throwing $$ at it to make it more like where they came from....
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Old 21-12-2015, 10:41   #57
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mohave_steve View Post
One concern that has come to mind as I look at boats that appear to be a bargain. I believe that I am looking at boats that were purchased by their current owners with a plan similar to mine and have found that they are unable/unwilling to use the boat as planned.


Any thoughts or suggestions that may help us stay within the ranks of successful Mexico Cruisers and avoid joining the "motivated seller" group?


Thanks again Everyone.
Oh it happens EVERY DAY....
San Carlos/Guymas is known in the SOC cruising community as the place where Dreams go to die. The dream turned nightmare, but those folks are not as quick to post about what they view as a failure and disaster so you don't hear a lot of their first hand stories.

How do you NOT be another one on the long list?
If we had that answer we could save all the other boat buyers with the dream and never leave their marina slip in the States also...no different...The dream/idea didn't fail because of the LOCATION of the boat...it failed because of the People.

Rule No 1
The Boat will Never Be Ready
Rule No 2
The Boat Does not have to be Ready
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Old 21-12-2015, 10:48   #58
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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You don't really on the Baja Side, if your cup or tea is the green jungle you may just want to stay on the mainland side and do a big hop from Topolobampo to Maz and then you are in green jungle land all the way to PV. San Blas and Isla Isabella are two can't miss locations on your way South.

You would also want the Pacific Mexico Guide Book for the mainland side
Blue Latitude Press - The most up-to-date and accurate Mexico Cruising Guides!

Thanks for the great info!!

I have put this guide on my Christmas list

It is unlikely that we will be seeing the Pacific coast of Baja as we will likely be buying our boat somewhere on the Sea of Cortez.

I am beginning to see a plan take shape:

November: San Carlos & points South
December-January: Mazatlan-PV
February: Meander back to San Carlos
March: Seattle (Can we go back to Mexico now??? )


Hmmm... That raises another question.. Northers in February? Will I hate myself for trying to make PV to San Carlos in February?
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Old 21-12-2015, 11:05   #59
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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Thanks for the great info!!

I have put this guide on my Christmas list

It is unlikely that we will be seeing the Pacific coast of Baja as we will likely be buying our boat somewhere on the Sea of Cortez.

Hmmm... That raises another question.. Northers in February? Will I hate myself for trying to make PV to San Carlos in February?
The Pacific Mexico Guide refers to Pacific Mexico Mainland, not the Pacific side of Baja....

Northers....
It's why I always got the heck out of the Sea of Cortez and headed for Mainland Mexico South of Mazatlan for the winter...it's too damn cold!

Good Luck
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Old 21-12-2015, 11:07   #60
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Re: Budget cruising grounds: Sea of Cortez vs Florida/Bahamas?

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The Pacific Mexico Guide refers to Pacific Mexico Mainland, not the Pacific side of Baja....

Northers....
It's why I always got the heck out of the Sea of Cortez and headed for Mainland Mexico South of Mazatlan for the winter...it's too damn cold!

Good Luck
Thank you.

That is why the Pacific Guide is on my Christmas list.
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