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Old 07-09-2008, 08:30   #1
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cruising basics question

Not sure if this is the proper place to post.....I am new to sailing and this is my question...I have a boat in San Diego. If I were to want to sail down the coast of the Baja how do I know where there are places to stop. To visit, spend the night, refuel, get food, etc.

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Old 07-09-2008, 08:37   #2
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You want a book called a cruising guide. I'm not a west coast sailor, so I can't recommend a specific one. But, there are cruising guides for just about everywhere that cruisers like to go.

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Old 07-09-2008, 08:49   #3
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Check out Downwind Marine's website: . Since you live (or have your boat here) in San Diego, stop by and chat with them. They are a terrific resource.
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Old 19-10-2008, 02:06   #4
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THE book,I'm told for cruising the Caribbean, was mentioned to us on Off The Grid last winter, but I don't know what it is! It was over a dinner and drinks, and a 'oh ya gotta get book'. We're planning on heading to Panama. "Grid" is presently in Spanish Wells. Any suggestions on best guides, charts? Chart kits even? We have nearly four months to sail, but would like her safely berthed in Panama before next hurricane season. Would you savvy sailors send me some ideas? Jennifer on OFF THE GRID
To study the phenomenon of disease without books is to sail an uncharted sea, while to study books without patients is not to go to sea at all.
Sir William Osler (1849 - 1919)
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Old 19-10-2008, 08:41   #5
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Downwind Marine is a great place to start. San Diego has a wonderful boating/cruising community. Within a few blocks of each other is DWM, West Marine and a wonderful little bookstore that carries only boating books...every topic for every region! And start picking up a copy of Latitude 38 every month. It's the best sailing magazine on the West coast, and it's free!

You'll love Mexico but do sail the islands off CA before you leave. You'll get good experience and see some beautiful spots. Not just Catalina but go up to the Channel Islands!
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Old 20-10-2008, 05:33   #6
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Hi, Jennifer,

You asked about sailing guides. If you plan to sail to Panama by way of the Lesser Antilles, then Chris Doyle's sailing guides are the ones to buy for the Leewards and Windwards. Nancy Scott's guide for the Virgin Islands is pretty good. You can find some info on sailing west from Grenada or Trinidad to Panama along the north coast of South America in the archives of Caribbean Compass (links toward the bottom of the page).
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Old 20-10-2008, 08:38   #7
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Charlies Charts are good guidebooks,there is one that covers west coast of Mexico.
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Old 20-10-2008, 09:31   #8
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Besides the big three of Magdellena Bay, Bahia Santa Maria next door, and Turtle. I have had to duck into Ascencion, Abrie Ojos, and next to the inlet of San Quintin there is a fine anchorage. Ensenada does have a fine boat yard, if you run into any problem quickly........BEST WISHES in getting south safely.....i2f
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Old 20-10-2008, 10:39   #9
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Before doing anything else, I suggest you obtain a copy of:

and read it cover-to-cover. It was written by a couple of members of our yacht club in southern California that are accomplished sailors/racers and contains a wealth of knowledge. My wife found it very helpful and I suspect there are more than a few subscribers to this forum that could benefit by a read.


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Old 20-10-2008, 10:56   #10
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Charlies Charts used the be the one for going down. Realistically, there are only a couple of well protected spots going down. Cedros Island, Turtle bay (better) and Magdalena bay. maybe one more. All the others are marginal and rolley. Fuel used to be avail in Turtle bay as well as minimal food. Maybe more there now. Realistically, you dont need much until you reach Cabo unless you have really small tanks. Charlies lays it all out for you.

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