Monday, March 2, 2009

Arrival in Ensenada

Date: 3/2/2009
Location:Ensenada, B.C. (Baja California)
Lat/Lon: 31 51.317 N 116 37.320 W
Weather: 70° @ noon

Yesterday we had a near perfect cruise from San Diego to Ensenada. Blue skies, 70°, 2' swells, and a light breeze. Doesn't get any better than that. We were up and out of San Diego by 5AM for the 70 NM trip and arrived in Cruise Port Marina at 4 PM. No one was in the marina office on Sunday so we just tied up at a convenient end tie location. The marina is about 1/3 empty so there is no shortage of slips at this time. Word on the dock is that many people have taken their boats back to the states in order to try to sell them. Good luck to them in this market.

Monday morning we were up early to check in at the marina office and then down to the Centro Integrales de Servicios (CIS), the customs, immigrations, and Port Captains office for clearing into Mexico. The marina staff was very helpful in creating our Crew List forms, we had completed one before arriving but it's in Spanish and we mistakenly entered La Paz as our last port rather than as our next port of call, and other documents to get us started. Once we arrived at the CIS office it took about 2 hours to complete the forms and pay the fees. The people are very helpful and speak English so it's overall not a bad experience.

Note: For boaters going to Mexico, get Pat Rains 'Mexico Boating Guide' and follow her instructions on what documents and information you need prior to arriving in Mexico. For example, you do need to know the serial number of your engine(s) to get a Temporary Import Permit for your boat.

In the final step for getting the Temp Import Permit we had to fill out a form stating what basic equipment we had on the boat and then push a button that triggered a red or green light to come on. If by chance the red light comes on you have to have an in-person inspection on your boat, green, you get a pass. Linda pushed the button and, you guessed it, it came up red. We made an appointment for the inspection at 5 PM that day. At 6 PM the inspector had not yet arrived and I went up to the marina office and talked to a clerk that was working late. "Yes" she said, "the customs agent called and said he would not be here today but would come tomorrow morning."

Too be continued...

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