Baja Ha-Ha XXV 2018 Cruisers Rally
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Baja Ha-Ha XXV


Turtle Bay

Turtle Bay Could Easily Accommodate 1,000 Boats

With Profligate, the Ha-Ha mothership, due back in San Diego from La Cruz on Monday, the Grand Poobah - that would be me - would like to give everyone a little update on this year's 25th Anniversary Baja Ha-Ha.

HOW MANY BOATS: As of today there are 130 paid entries. Based on that number, I'm going to estimate that by the time the starting gun fires on October 29, somewhere in the realm of 150 to 170 boats will have entered. This is a typical number of Ha-Ha entries.

But I can all but guarantee you that about 15% of the entries will miss the start for one reason or the other. This happens every year.

As of today, I have completed writing 61 of the boat bios for the Meet the Fleet booklet that every entry will receive. Man, what a great group of people we're going to have!

WHITE SAIL BOATS: Based on the 61 bios I've written so far, 25 entries will be sailing with 'white sails only'. So if anyone is worried that everybody will be flying chutes and leaving them behind, put that worry to rest. While a few boats try to sail really fast, the overwhelming majority of the fleet is interested in a safe and comfortable trip to Cabo. The Baja Ha-Ha is not a race. The idea is to sail 'with' friends on other boats, not 'against' them.

MULTIHULLS: Based on the paid entry list, I can report that this year's Ha-Ha will have the greatest number of multihulls, most of them cruising cats, in the history of the event. Nineteen multihulls have signed up already. If you haven't sailed side-by-side with a similar multihull, you've missed something great, and a terrific opportunity to learn how to improve your sail trim.

MOTOR YACHTS: Also extrapolating, I estimate there will be five or six motor-yachts in this year's Ha-Ha.

ROOM IN THE ANCHORAGES: A lot of first-timers to Mexico worry about how much room there will be in the anchorages at Turtle Bay and Bahia Santa Maria, and how much room in the marina at Cabo San Lucas. The anchorages at Turtle Bay and Bahia Santa Maria could both easily accommodate 1,000 boats. Ask anyone who has been there.

Bahia Santa Maria

Beautiful Bahia Santa Maria - Lots of Room for Ha-Ha Boats

BERTHING IN CABO: Dock space in Cabo San Lucas isn't as plentiful. How much will there be? We don't know until the day before the fleet arrives in Cabo. That's because the marina saves every empty slip for Ha-Ha boats, but they don't know how many there will be until they walk the docks that day. Some years there is lots of slip space, some years there is less.

Ha-Ha boats are assigned slips in the order that they signed up for the Ha-Ha. Usually we get through the first 60 or so boats on the first day, but sometimes 100. If you don't get a space in the marina the first day or two, you can for sure get dock space after that.

People should remember that in the old days there wasn't a marina and everybody had to anchor out. While not as convenient, there are advantages to anchoring out. You can jump over the side into the clear warm water. It's beautiful watching the sun rise out of the sea. You don't get asphyxiated every morning at 6 am when the fishing fleet takes off. And it's not as bloody hot as in the marina. Finally, if you do get in the marina, your boat will be packed in as tightly as possible.

THE PUERTO LOS CABOS OPTION: However, if you signed up later than 100, and really, really, really think you need a slip, you might try the Puerto Los Cabos option. That's another marina, about 20 miles further along the Cape. In the past, 15 to 30 Ha-Ha boats have taken this option. You don't have to miss out on any Ha-Ha events in Cabo, because transportation between Cabo and Puerto Los Cabos is frequent and easy.

The thing about Puerto Los Cabos is that the harbormaster, Enrique Fernandez Castillo, the Grand Poobah's old friend, might be able to give you a reservation, something they can't give you at Marina Cabo San Lucas. You can get the phone number from their website, but remember to tell Enrique that the Grand Poobah sent you.

KIDS: Cruisers with kids always want to know how many kids there will be in the Ha-Ha, because 'kid boats' are happiest when there are other 'kid boats' around. Extrapolating from the bios I've written so far, I estimate there will be 15 'kids' under the age of 18, and most of them under 13, in this year's Ha-Ha.

The 'kid boat' number can vary dramatically, however, for if there is 'critical mass', there might be over 20 kids.

Kids love doing the Ha-Ha. In fact, in years past they've sometimes created a sort of 'kids mafia', where they have their own radio channels and activities ashore.

A REMINDER: The Ha-Ha starts in less than 2.5 months. We can't wait.

SOMETHING TO WHET YOUR APPETITE FOR MEXICO: A couple of days ago I had dinner at the El Coral restaurant, which looks out on the Mexican Malibu surf spot and the popular anchorage at Punta Mita. I had a great chicken lunch, with chips, salsa, a huge serving of chicken, garlic bread, rice, veggies, salad, and a mineral water. It was delicious - and it was less than $8. What kind of full on dinner can you get in the States for $8?

Looking forward to sailing south with all of you!

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