Memories of Marty

By Carolyn Shearlock © 2011 • all rights reserved

I wrote this article for the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Marty hitting the cruising fleet at Puerto Escondido near Loreto, Mexico.

But Hurricane Marty didn’t just affect cruisers in one hurricane hole.  It raked the Sea of Cortez from one end to the other, as shown in the NOAA map at right.

Many cruisers in the Sea of Cortez hadn’t really done any hurricane planning prior to Marty.  With the west coast of the US and Canada not being in a hurricane zone, unlike the eastern coast of the US and cruisers likely to be in the Caribbean, few had any experience with hurricanes.

While the devastation was dramatic, Marty provided the impetus for several marinas to upgrade their facilities and update their hurricane policies.  And Marty publicized the fact that south of the border, hurricanes did in fact occur and cruisers needed to plan for them — whether they were cruising in the summer or leaving their boat at a marina.  Unfortunately, cruisers lost boats in marinas, on the hard and anchored in protected “hurricane holes” during Marty.  But when hurricanes hit the Sea of Cortez in following years, there were almost no losses as cruisers had “Memories of Marty.”

In contrast to the other articles I wrote, which were more of a “how-to” and “what we learned” nature, this is more of an overview of what happened during and after the storm.

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