It looks like it’s shaping up to be a strong El Nino year, which means, among other things, that the weather is a bit unpredictable and that this year’s trade winds may fail. If you live in
California you’re getting the brunt of El Nino, the Christ Child—the jet stream, which normally passes over B.C. and Alaska, has moved way south and the lows are coming fast and furious over and the northern Baja. California
As cruising sailors our lives are linked in a very direct way to the weather—every move we make is a response to weather faxes and forecasts. We watch isobars the way some people watch football. We move when the forecast says to move. But still, we’re caught off guard sometimes. El Nino’s are like that, they bring weather that no one quite expects.
Right now we’re hunkered down off the little
with wind shuddering through our rigging and the first rain in months washing away layers of accumulated dust and grime. Around us are four other cruising boats, beyond that are nine big fishing boats—the kind that almost never leave the fishing grounds. On shore it’s quiet, the little village is still and dark while we wait for the oh, so, rare rains to pass. village of Magdelena
Outside the safety of our harbour is the kind of weather you expect up in B.C., 20' waves, gale force wind and driving rain. But as the boat rocks in the wind waves we stay inside--cozy and warm, sipping hot chocolate and eating popcorn and imagining that a faraway winter has come for a (hopefully) brief visit.