The Official Magazine of the Bluewater Cruising Association

Tropical Storm Sergio Aftermath

Carol Arnold

Intrepid II
Cape Dory 40, Sloop
January 13th, 2019

This was the cruising season Intrepid II was at last heading south to all those inviting anchorages south of Banderas Bay. We would arrive in mid-November, give our 40 foot Cape Dory, Intrepid II, a thorough cleaning and TLC. We would then splash, spend a few days in Marina San Carlos to provision and be on our way! So we thought.

Before we left for Mexico, we anxiously monitored the track of Hurricane Sergio as it crossed the Sea of Cortez and became Tropical Storm Sergio. Heavy winds and rains passed directly over San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico and the dry storage yard where Intrepid II was secured with extra jack stands, and for the first time, between hurricane poles.

More stands please!

When we left the yard last March, she was solidly secure between two sailboats.

Ensuring stands are set in place securely

October 14

We were reviewing our notes and lists and continuing our mostly organized approach to all we needed to order, pack or pickup for our drive to San Carlos. An email, followed by a phone call from concerned cruising friends, suddenly meant an entirely different mode – drop everything and find out what happened to our treasured vessel. A cruiser on site had posted photos online of toppled boats. Ours was in the midst, on her starboard side with a toppled boat to her port. The dreaded ‘domino’ effect. Calls and emails to the dry storage office went unanswered – communications were still down.

Calls to start an insurance claim ensued, followed by calls to a marine surveyor we had worked with in the past, who was in the area. How bad was the damage? How would we cover the deductible (which kicks in when there is damage from a named storm)? How quickly could the Captain drive there to see for himself? So much for our measured, organized, thorough efforts at home before we headed south.

October 22

Kelly left on October 22 and arrived late in the afternoon October 25 after long days of driving and very little sleep. At least San Carlos is a place we know fairly well and he was able to find accommodations and focus on assessing the damages to Intrepid II. The dry storage yard staff were helpful, although it took several days to move our boat into the work yard.

The marine surveyor sent an initial assessment, with the provision that additional damage may still come to light. Among many damages, the boat has bumps, bruises, dings, gouges, splinters, bent stanchions, rigging issues and our Furuno radar no longer works. It’s still to be determined if repairing or replacing items will go above our deductible. So an expensive “cruising” season awaits us.

The Captain has patiently contacted welders and riggers and tracked down the one man in Guaymas whom ‘everyone’ advised could assess the radar issue. Fortunately, he makes boat calls. Now our dilemma is finding a magnetron for a discontinued radar system.

Back home, the Admiral focused on completing all the outstanding preparations that are necessary before leaving home for many months. Another expense, which will not be covered by insurance, is having to travel separately. Thank goodness for cruising friends willing to tuck a spare part into their vehicle, sparing me the difficulty of carrying it in my luggage.

The question that cannot be answered at this time is whether we will get everything repaired in time to allow us to splash the boat and set sail. We are at times hopeful, frustrated, discouraged, but will work on staying optimistic! I am looking forward to updating our cruising blog, whether it includes travel by sea or by land. So many others have weathered these challenges and Intrepid II and her crew are indeed “intrepid”.


  1. Jean Fenger says:

    Carol and Kelly,
    So sorry to hear about the damage to your boat and certainly hope you have been able to get back to enjoyable sailing .
    Best wishes for 2019!)

    1. Kelly & Carol says:

      Thanks for your encouraging comments. We continue working on several projects and remain hopeful that Intrepid II will see some cruising before we head homeward. Wishing you well for 2019.

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