Saturday, January 1, 2011

The dinghy dilemma (David)

Power boaters often go to Mexico with their Pacific Northwest dinghies. Typically these are heavy rigs with electric starters, center consoles and big outboards -- stable, comfortable and fast, but quite impossible to bring through the surf and haul up the beach in Mexico, even with wheels. Many of the great anchorages on the outside of Baja and the mainland require surf landings, so the question was what do do?

For this trip, I decided to also bring a lightweight dinghy: an air-floor Walker Bay with an old 8HP motor and wheels. Either of us can haul this rig up the beach with one hand and no back strain. We still use the big Avon in protected anchorages in the Sea of Cortez, or places where there is a dock to tie up to. Although the Walker Bay can easily be deflated and stowed, most of the time it rides on top of the Avon. Mounting dinghies this intimately in public is against the law in Arkansas, but no problema in Mexico!                        

The wheels have it (Bahia Tenacatita)