Gone Floatabout

Sailing, Photography, Wilderness

La Paz, Mexico: Desert hiking and boat projects (Early March 2018)


La Paz is quite a useful spot for cruising sailboats – a big anchorage, a bunch of marinas to choose from at different prices, almost any shop or service you might need. As the capital of Baja California Sur, it’s actually quite an extensive city but has a fairly relaxed atmosphere and a lovely waterfront area.

Statue on La Paz Malecon

Statue on the La Paz Malecon

After Seth’s parents flew home, the two of us did a few small boat projects. The wiring to one of our solar panels was pretty well shot, so we took that panel off and soldered on new wires.

soldering the solar panel

Soldering the solar panel connection

We also installed a big net to store our fresh fruit and vegetables. We do have a very small fridge, but we like to stock up on more fruit and veggies than fit in it. In the colder latitudes, we had simply stored the vegetables in bags in an open compartment just aft of the galley, but that area is too confined a space for the high temperatures of the tropics – the veggies need more air circulation to stay fresh in these latitudes – so a net of the sort we had had on HERETIC during our voyage around the world was most necessary!

Fruit net

Fruit net installed on CELESTE, filled with mangoes, citrus, avocados, and tomatoes

I was also really excited to catch up with some friends from Alaska! We had met Marta and Travis on Baranof Island up at the northern end of Alaska’s Inside Passage in 2016. They’re from Juneau and were living aboard their boat in the marina there full-time, getting ready to make a sailing voyage to the South Pacific. We had hit it off right away and stayed in touch over the last couple of years. We’d been leap-frogging each other down the West Coast all autumn, but we finally connected in La Paz with dinner on each of our boats and a fun scramble through the desert above one of the beautiful beaches nearby.

Hiking with friends

Hiking near La Paz with our friends from Alaska

Hiking with friends-2

Seth, Ellen, Marta, and Travis on our hike (No, Seth didn’t go to UCLA – a friend who’s a professor there gave him the T-shirt!)

Classic Cactus

Me and a big cactus!

All too soon, it was time to put CELESTE to bed again – we had to go away for another couple of months to work. But we were looking forward to returning in the spring and seeing a bit more of the Sea of Cortez!

Marina Cortez

CELESTE’s home in La Paz during our time away working

(Once again, I scheduled this to come out while we’re sailing, so apologies in advance for not responding to comments sooner!)

14 thoughts on “La Paz, Mexico: Desert hiking and boat projects (Early March 2018)

  1. Pingback: Sea of Cortez, Part 2: Sailing, diving, and hiking (May 2018) | Gone Floatabout

  2. Pingback: La Paz, Mexico: Preparations for the Pacific + Fun with Photography (Early May 2018) | Gone Floatabout

  3. Hello, I just found your blog and I have to say it is amazing!
    I just wanted to ask, what type of boat is Celeste? Like make/year/length? /i tried to find info on your blog but couldn’t

    • Hi Costa,
      Thanks for getting in touch! I’m sorry not to have responded sooner – we’ve been away sailing with no internet for a long time! I’m so glad you like our blog – thanks for reading!

      Celeste is a unique boat – she was custom-built, designed in 1985 by Francis Kinney as a one-off project for a sailor who wanted a classic cutter that could also sail fast and handle ocean crossings. She was built by a small wooden boat yard in British Columbia – Jespersen Boat Builders – and was sailed and loved by her original owner until we were lucky enough to buy her in 2013. She’s 40 feet overall, but only 28 feet on the waterline, so much smaller than a modern 40-footer.
      Thanks again for your interest!
      All the best,

  4. Happy Anniversary wherever the two of you adventurers are in the world! And, … Ellen, thanks for another good read!

  5. Thanks for your update. That was great you meeting friends from Alaska. I liked you and the cactus waving to each other! Take care!

    • Hi Don,
      Thanks for all your great comments this summer! I’m so glad you’ve been enjoying our Mexico posts – hopefully I can write more now that we’re back with good internet! Cheers,

  6. Boating sounds so much fun. Unfortunately, I get sea sick so that life is one I live vicariously through others!

  7. Dear Ellen and Seth, thank you for all your most interesting blogs, we have always enjoyed reading them! Sadly George passed away after a brief illness.We just had a celebration of life for him inMay at the yacht club and of course his last resting place is the Ocean! Keep well and happy and “good Sailing’ and store those memories. Memories are keeping me going .Eva

    • Dear Eva,
      We are both so sorry to hear about George’s passing. In the short time we got to know him, we were struck by his great enthusiasm for life, especially life on the water, and his evident great love for Celeste and the memories he and you created aboard her. I hope that Seth and I keep his spirit alive in our own voyages on Celeste. I’ll write more to your email.
      We are keeping you in our thoughts,
      Ellen and Seth

  8. A bit different to see you in shorts and t- shirts! Mexico looks amazing.

    • Hi guys!
      We are back in the land of internet so just saw all your wonderful comments from this summer! Yes, it was a bit of a change to put on shorts and t-shirts again – one that we’ve happily gotten used to this summer!
      Looking forward to catching up on your adventures!
      All the best,