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OUPV 25 Ton
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I've been sailing about 25 years mostly inland ie SF bay and Delta. I've recently purchased a 76 Cal 34 MK II and considering the Ba HaHa this year any tips for a first timer on this adventure? Do's and Dont's, gear choices, sail inventory etc.
thanks
 

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Sailing Guy
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Check out video documentary

You might want to view a documentary, "Whales, Gales and the Baja Ha-Ha" , which follows the 2009 event and includes tips.

Just Google it on YouTube to get the link.

Fair Winds,
Steve Szirom
:)
 

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My baby sister planned to go in 2013, but wasn't able to finish the improvements she wanted on her Cat 30 in time. So, she crewed on another (bigger) boat, with 4 others. That single trip hooked her on cruising - she now has a goal to cruise at least a couple of months every year. She also highly recommends doing what she did - crewing on a boat with prior HaHas under the owner's belt.
 

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Sailed in last year's 2013 Baja Ha Ha as crew. Highly recommend. Also have been a long time sailor, 30+ years, but almost all my expereince has been coastal and lake sailing experience.

The experience did therefore provide me a fresh lens on sailing as it involved off shore, night sailing, provisioning, equipment issues and crew dynamics among other things one does not typically address in inland/coastal sailing to the same degree.

Books written with lists of considerations and advice of course - so I won't start any new threads. My best two tips:

1. identify some off-shore sailors or distance cruisers to have the odd pint with and hear about their sailing experience - worth their weight in gold.

2. Have a really solid assessment of your boat and equipment completed. Getting some qualified eyes to look over your boat - like some off-shore sailors might be quite useful. Our skipper had numbers of little innovations made in his rigging for off-shore sailing that impressed all three of his reasonably experienced crew. We all left his boat after the race with nifty lists of improvements to make to our boats. Equipment failure did end the race for some, and for for others it was a constant annoyance at best.

Great sailing with a fleet as part of the rally as it provided an incredible community of knowledge, skills and help when required - and it was not without some great shore parties and fun.

Well worth the doing.....

Cheers
 

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Don't call me a "senior"!
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Just be aware that sailing down the coast to Cabo is MUCH easier, and more fun, than sailing back up the coast to "Alta California".
 
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Corsair 24
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we did it in 2000 on an old wooden ketch, smallest of the fleet at that time...I was 18 and my crew was 71 or so...

if we could do it anybody can

feel free to ask any questions...it was fun for a new offshore sailors
 

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Captain Wabamum, can you elaborate on your item 2? I am interested in the inovations, upgrades and modifications your skipper did to his boat. What was the make/model of the boat and what was the race? I did the Ha Ha back in '10 on a friends Nordic 44 that we also did the PacCup in '08. I am planning on doing Mexico myself in my Catalina and am always interested in helpful hints.
 

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George,

ARRRR....taking another stab...after penning long response last night looks like the gremlins in the system didn't allow the note to get posted. I am on the road for next little bit so no log book with notes in front of me at moment - some quick responses from memory from my mobile.http://www.sailnet.com/forums/images/smilies/smile.gif

Boat we sailed the Baja Ha Ha in was a Kelly Peterson 44. Beautiful boat that the skipper had put a lot of great work into over the past year or so since purchase. Improvements inlcuded new motor, radar, chartplotter and electronics to upgrading of rigging, easy release J-shakles, work around a second movable back/side stay for extra strength, removable below deck v-berth inner support stay, taffrail modifications inlcuding lower teak rails with ability to secure potable water container, cooler, outboard motor mount with mini-swivel crane, large easy snap carabiners startegically placed on the boom to enable man overboard retrieval. Have to get back home to see the rest of my notes. Another simple but useful idea I picked up from two of the other crew was attaching 4-5" lanyards with reasonably large beads situated on the harnesss shackle for line to the jack-line ...can imagine the value here if one went to the drink and needed to break-off the jack-line.

I think the Catalina 34 MKII may be one of the few Catalina's I have not had a chance to sail on. Something I may remedy in late May with a possible bareboat charter out of San Diego after a conference I am attending.

Cheers,

Barry
 

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It is a real fun to join this event. All you need to take care of small things. Just be connected, have a proper wetsuit, get informed about the weather and other basic stuff.
 

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From what I've heard the trip south can be fun. The trip back may be something different. IMHO, it's wise to prepare (boat and crew) for both before you start.
 

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Crew selection efforts by skippers in the race appeared from my observation and experience to have varied widely - as did the results. Our skipper received lots of requests from Crew from other looking to jump off boats after 2 days in the rally.

Personally had expereince with two boats I was slated to crew on having to cancel entry very close to departure due to crew jumping around/not able to honour commitment to skippers - real challenge for skippers dictating value/need for contingency plans.
 

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snake charmer, cat herder
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"I think the Catalina 34 MKII may be one of the few Catalina's I have not had a chance to sail on."

that is because it is not a catalina. it is a CAL. very solid lil cruiser. there are a few of those down here in mexico that have sailed from places north of here.
some of my best buddies sail cals.
cal is designed by lapworth and jensen and some are designed as well by wenk. catalina cannot say that.
nor are the lines at all similar. oops.
it is an excellent boat for this trip.
you will have fun.

you will not enjoy the bash north. not at all.
many folks decide to continue on rather than sail , err, BASH north against current and wind.
 

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Zee, I’m offended! And worse than that, my beloved “Freya” is offended! She is indeed a CATALNIA 34 MkII. She even won the Catalina 34 Nationals in 2002. I have competed against CAL 34s from time to time in PHRF racing and trust me, no comparison. Not only do the Cals have a higher rating, I have been able to prevail, at will, on corrected time. Catalina 34’s are a Gerry Douglas design dating from the mid 1980s.

Captn Wabamun, my Catalina has been a wonderful boat. But, being on the smaller scale, doesn’t have the tankage I’d like for a year in Mexico. I am working on a Starboard backerboard between to stanchions that I can strap a pair of jerry jugs to. I am also trying to figure out a way to “affix” a “luggage rack” across the coach roof so we can store a rolled up dinghy. Most of what you mentioned we have already done to the boat so we are well on our way albeit, our punch list is a little long, but I still have two years before 2016.

Zee, all kidding aside, I do have a couple of Mexico cruiser questions. How do you do oil changes down there? How do you dispose of the used oil?



 

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snake charmer, cat herder
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george i thought the boat being referred to was ops cal 34 mk II... TOO MANY MARK IIS!!!!!!!

oh and freya is waaay too new...... yipes and shiney!!! and ye can prolly wash off after swimming with fresh water....lol...mebbe even clean anchor chain as it comes up to deck... horrid boat....horrid......dont you guys get tired of chilling the beer for the likes of us, the slow ass cruisers in character boats????? (yeah ..mine looks like the character granny klampett should be sitting with shotgun on bow in rocker.....)

looks like you would have a great time sailing the down hill run....hell mine did and i have at least double freeboard...
 

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The Way Back North

Quite a few HaHa'ers make it a one-way trip: They simply pay a delivery crew to make the return run. For working stiffs, it often makes sense, financially.
 
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