Isla Cano

FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-28

  • Sponsors
  • Holiday's in Barra de Navidad, MX
  • Bocas del Toro Marina Parade, Panama PICTURE OF THE WEEK 
  • 2020 PANAMA CITY GUIDE for download
  • 2020 Barra de Navidad Guide for download by Tally from SV Raven
  • Bocas del Toro - Marina - Xmas Parade, Panama
  • SPHERES "bolas" @ Costa Rica at Isla de Caño
  • plundered notes on spheres
  • Cost Rica, Drake Bay
  • The world's noisiest land animals ...
  • Costa Rica Upper Golfo Dulce Anchorages near Golfito
  • LINE weekly call reminder
  • Updates
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1) the 2019-2020 Panama Posse is now at 140 vessels and growing and
A big thank you to all of our sponsors
- !

  • Marina Puerto Vallarta, Puerto Vallarta – Mexico 
  • Marina Puerto de La Navidad – Barra de Navidad – Mexico 
  • Marina Ixtapa, Ixtapa – Mexico 
  • La Marina Acapulco, Acapulco – Mexico 
  • Marina Chiapas – Mexico 
  • Marina Bahia del Sol – El Salvador 
  • La Palma Moorings – Bahia del Sol, El Salvador 
  • Marina Puesta del Sol – Nicaragua 
  • Marina Papagayo – Costa Rica 
  • Marina Pez Vela – Costa Rica 
  • Banana Bay Marina – Costa Rica 
  • Golfito Marina Village – Costa Rica 
  • Vista Mar Marina – Panama 
  • Shelter Bay Marina – Panama 
  • Red Frog Marina – Panama 

Official Panama Posse Sponsors

Official Panama Canal Agent

Official Panama Posse Ambassadors

Panama Posse Partners

2) Holiday's in Barra de Navidad, MX
Bookshelf sized decorations and lights on LUNA


BTW we have gone to Ramon's in Barra for most Seahawks games. They have 2 large TVs.
All of the fish dishes I've tried (grilled fish tacos, garlic mahi fillet dinner, whole snapper dinner, grilled shrimp tacos, octopus dinner) have been excellent!
Service is good, prices are right with each of the above less than 200 MXD pesos, and drink selection very good.


Av. Miguel López de Legazpi # 262, Barra de Navidad, Jal., Mexico

19°12'13.5"N  104°41'02.1"W

Kris & Bob


LUNA3) Bocas del Toro Marina Parade, Panama 

Xmas Boat

We had a great time participating in the Bocas del Toro Marina parade on Saturday December 21st.


Free night stay in Marina and party afterwards also I included the prizes. Just to let you know.


Happy Holidays

Pati and Eric


4) 2020 PANAMA CITY GUIDE for dowload
for download by Tally from SV Raven

Barra, Tally, Jan


5) SPHERES "bolas"  Isla de Caño - Costa Rica
(a wild goose chase which will be rewarded with a bottle of rum !) As requested, I am forwarding some info on the spheres found on Isla Caño subsequent to my diving tour there.
There was not a lot of info available, but I did shoot the attached photos of signage on one of the hiking trails on the island and I spoke with the park ranger.

Isla Historiacla Chart

Apparently, the island served as a burial ground for prominent members of a civilization that resided in western mainland Costa Rica before the Spanish conquest.
The stones were brought to the island by these ancient mariners, not carved in place on the island. The significance of the stones is not known.


Bob Ritner


get's an insane amount of ligthing strikes
maybe more than any other place in Central America
Starting from mid April through November

lights out

6) plundered notes about these spheres  from Adrián Badilla-  Archaeologist, Department of Anthropology and History
The stone spheres constitute one of the most unique elements of pre-Columbian Costa Rica and suggestive of the archeology of America. The stone spheres have been found in the southeast of Costa Rica, especially in the extensive alluvial plain formed by the Grande de Térraba and Sierpe rivers, but they are also found in the area of ​​Buenos Aires, Coto Brus, the intermontane valley of Pejibaye and the coastal area of ​​Golfito and Uvita including Caño Island. Its manufacture began in the Aguas Buenas Period (300 BC-800 AD), but it is in the Chiriqui Period (800-1500 AD) that the development and use boom takes place.

Since they began to be reported during the beginning of the activity of the Banana Company of Costa Rica (a subsidiary of the United Fruit Company) in the 1930s, many have cataloged them as a true enigma, generating various explanations and speculations, which It has caused an increase in interest in these particular pre-Columbian artifacts.


Arranged below the surface

On the other hand, various archaeological studies carried out since the forties relate them to the human groups that inhabited the area before the arrival of the Europeans, explaining them within the sociocultural dynamics that these societies had, and not as a product of natural formations or as an element of unknown civilizations.

 Rounded rocks have been reported in other parts of the world, such as those known in Hunan (China), Zavidovice (Bosnia), Hulín (Czech Republic), South Island (New Zealand), Ahualulco - Sierra de Ameca (Jalisco / Mexico) ), Onoto (Venezuela), Ischigualasto Geopaleontological Park (Argentina), Piauí (Brazil). For some of these, their cultural affinity is under discussion or simply studies have grouped them as products of geological activity.

In addition, some spherical rocks have been found in archeological sites in Mesoamerica: Cerro de la Mesas, San Lorenzo Tenochtitlán and Izapa (Mexico), and Benque Viejo (Belize). These findings are isolated cases and have no cultural relationship with those evidenced in Costa Rica. It also highlights an isolated group on Easter Island (Chile).

In Costa Rica, small boulders have been recorded with some degree of sphericity at late sites, such as Orosí (Cartago), Papagayo (Culebra Bay), Platanillo (Reventazón River Basin), Ta´lari (Chirripó), La Fábrica ( Greece) and Las Mercedes (Central Caribbean). They were perhaps made from contacts or influence of societies in the South Pacific.
However, the stone spheres of southeastern Costa Rica have attributes that differentiate them and make them unique.


A big one ( 10+ tons )

1. Its size. The size of the spheres ranges from a few centimeters to 2.5 meters and its weight ranges from a few kilos to 15 tons. Different sizes would have had different functions. Small spheres are associated with perhaps ceremonial structures, while those of greater monumentality were placed in open spaces and at the entrance of the main characters' homes.

2. Its almost perfect sphericity and surfaces with a fine finish. These finishes were the product of the work of specialists and not the result of natural events. They are sculptures, and as such they are identity artifacts

3. Presence of sets of spheres that sometimes form geometric figures or alignments. Doris Stone and Samuel Lothrop reported spheres forming clusters which could have an astronomical and ritual significance, associated with natural cycles and their relationship with the agricultural cycle, or other schedules of the groups that manufactured them. Currently, only two alignments with an east-west orientation are preserved at the Finca 6 site

4. Its association with other cultural elements (pottery, lithic artifacts, gold, architectural structures) within a complex system of social organization. The spheres were mainly used as rank symbols and identity elements supported by the contexts in which they have been found close to artificial constructions, mounds and squares. Investigations on the Finca 6 site have evidenced the use of the spheres: (a) forming two alignments in an open space, (b) placed at the entrance of artificial mounds that served as housing for the main characters, and (c) as an offering within a funeral structure. These spheres are in association with a local ceramic and statuary production.

The archaeological research activities carried out by the National Museum in sites with stone spheres seeks to exceed the simple descriptive and ordination level behind such a particular element in order to make effective a historical apprehension by recent societies. Stone spheres are not inert elements, they are heritage, objects with history


7) Drake Bay and the nearby location of one of the British pirate's fabled hidden treasures
Sir Francis Drake

1540 – 28 January 1596 was an English sea captain, privateer, trader,
naval officer and explorer of the Elizabethan era. ...
Drake's exploits made him a hero to the English, but his privateering
led the Spanish to brand him a pirate, known to them as El Draque.

- only a stone throw from Drake Bay  isIsla del Caño- Howler monkeys and much more ...
8) The world's noisiest land animals are
the howler monkeys (Alouatta) of Central and South America. 
They are also the loudest land animals on Earth, capable of bellowing at volumes
of 140 decibels, which is on the level of gunshots or firecrackers. The males have an enlarged bony structure
at the top of the windpipe which enables the sound to reverberate, and project their screams up to three miles
through dense rain forest.

Howler MOnkeys

Drake Bay Costa Rica - Anchor ⌖ 08° 41.807´ N 083° 39.959´ W @ 25 feet


Here is all the info

Watch for breaking waves just south of the entrance – hence the dogleg to enter this bay via dinghy

Dingnhy drake bay

– Costa Rica dinghy landing area  @ 08° 41.7006 N 83° 40.4448 W
– bring a long non floating line and a dingy anchor – drop the anchor into the middle of the river mouth
( there are a lot of tour boats in here ) and you can tie up to the tour out fit and then push the dingy into the center
– when you return pull the dingy back to the dock with the long line
– as always lock it !

Here is a link to a great guide by SV LIquid on Drake's Bay


Marc & Laura


9) Costa Rica Upper Golfo Dulce all near Golfito
Several stunning anchorages in the
a pristine deep fjord cruising ground which we will return to again !

Punta Rincon - Anchorage @ 08° 41.764 N 083° 28.702 W -  24.00 ft - calm and 360 degree protection
( enter from center as the port side with the mangroves is very shallow  < 5 feet at low tide )

Bahia Rincon - N - In front of a lovely resort (please get us the contact info) Anchorage @ 8° 43.2163 N 83° 28.7257 W @ 24 feet

Monkey Bay - Stunning - Suzanne's favorite all year and we found it ourselves !
Saw Capuchin Monkeys on the Beach - Spider Monkeys in the tree tops  and heard amazing
amounts of Howler Monkeys with squadrons of Macaws flying by - absolute lovely lush and green backdrop !
Anchorage @ 08° 43.421 N 083° 28.009 W -  12.00 ft (at low tide )

Monkey Bay

Pargo's Cove - Anchorage @ 8° 44.014 N 83° 23.713 W in 10 feet at Low Tide - favor the center and don't go in too deep.
Still nicely tucked away - reefs on both side and lovely islets - and a flat inner sandy bay which we could careen our vessel on.

Pargo's Cove

OSA Wildlife Sanctuary - Animal Refuge - 2 hour tours $25 pp each day at 9 AM with Carol
Anchorage @ 8° 40.653 N 83° 19.5401 W @ 15 feet


Playa Cativo (5 star Eco Resort w/ pool wifi bar organic farm to table menu)
Anchorage @ 8° 40.2939 N 83° 18.4411 W - 15 feet


Call ahead for Lunch or Dinner reservations - 
GM - Allen Mairena +506 8302-1195 / +506 2200-3131


A neat lounge and lot's of blue butterflies

Keep in mind that the Fjord drops of quickly and deep
with each of these anchorages so you are anchoring on a shelf near shore.

Suzanne & Dietmar



10) LINE
Panama Posse Warm up     @ Monday's 15:45 UTC
Panama Posse Line Calls   
@  Monday's 16:00 UTC 
Counter Panama Posse
Line Calls  @  Monday's 16:30 UTC 
- go to download the app for iOS or Android
- use your vessel name as your account name / display name
- search for dietmarpetutschnig ( carinthia ) and send a message with your vessel name
- you'll get an invite to join the PanamaPosse line group
- mute your mike ( green line through ) when you join the group call


11) Please reply to this email with any updates - your vessel location -
contenders for picture of the week - your favorite song for our list -
and we'll include it in the next Fleet Update

The Panama Posse transfer of knowledge and learning process operates under the gestalt theory
We will not tell you what to do, when or how - we want you to to figure that out.


Dietmar & Suzanne
SV Carinthia

Panama Posse BUrgee

12) opt-out from the Fleet Updates simply reply with "REMOVE"

Golfo de Fonseca

FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-22

  • Happy Holidays
  • Picture of the week
  • Bocas del Toro, Panama
  • Marina Chahue, Mexico is open
  • Isla el Tigre, Amapala, Honduras
  • Marina Papagayo, Cost Rica - Clarification and Update
  • Drake Bay, Cost Rica
  • Costa Alegre, Mexico
  • Burgees' in Panama @ Shelter Bay Marina
  • Lithium Battery dangers got little attention
  • Thermal runway
  • Reply with Pictures and info
  • Opt-Out

1) Merry Christmas, Hanukkah Sameach and happy Kwanzaa and Happy Holidays to all !

Please email us your vessel decoration holiday pictures or put them on

Panama Posse

2) Picture of the week - Cost Rica
Monkey climbs by as sun sets at El Avion Restaurant

Picture of the Week

Dan & Angela



3) Bocas del Toro, Panama
We are in Panama near Bocas del Toro
and took a taxi to The Bluff Beach.

Eat some wonderful food at The View Restaurant it was great

Crewon Board



Mariah with Shearwater


Merry Xmas


Merry xmas

Eric & Pati


4) Marina Chahue is open - 2.3 meters observed !

Reservations VHF 16
or call
+52 958 587 2652


Marina Chahue

Details and comments at

(claimed 3.5m at high tide via call by the Panama Posse today )
Marina Chahue is open. We got in this morning. I witnessed 2.2 meters depth at min,
so caution is advised. It is not new but for 11MXN /ft/day, I guess it is just fine. 


It is full of hidden rules - nobody has a way to know about - until you have prepaid your stay.
(Municipal Marina) Security is a bit of a pest with the inforcement of their rules


There is a ‘no night ladies’ restriction (really). Also, no hull cleaning in marina.


5) Honduras, Isla el Tigre, Amapala

Avant and Anduril

This is a photo of the Avant and Anduril crew on the dock at Amapala, El Tigre, with our guide Bob.

Fishing Pangas

Fishing Pangas Leaving from El Tigre


Alice & Greg


6) COSTA RICA, Marina Papagayo Clarification and Update

1. Playa Del Coco is the port of entry.    Clearing in there has no cost when owners clear in themselves.  To clear in at the marina all boats must use a clearing agent.   The arrangement for the clearing need to be made a minimum of 48 hours in advance of their arrival to Marina Papagayo in order for the agent to set up the logistics for clearing on site.   The agent fees range from $450 to $550 depending on size and if the vessel arrives on the weekend.  
It is important to note the decision to use or not use an agent cannot be done once they arrive to the marina.   If the boat arrives to our docks and then decide they do not want to use an agent it is a real mess because technically we are not permitted to let the boat sail back to Coco because they have no paperwork.    If they arrive without advance arrangement from the agent and decide they want to pay fee then the vessel is subject to quarantine until the agent can arrange the clearing.   in some cases this may be a minimum of 24 hour and could go to 48 hours.  
2.  Bonding:  At Marina Papagayo it is not possible to Bond a vessel.  All of the official Marinas were given the benefit of offering duty exoneration or what is called a two year MOPT permit in order to populate the marinas.   This exoneration process has a cost and we offer a dockage credit on the cost depending on how long the boat stays.  
Bonding can only be done in Golfito at Banana Bay and Fish Hook marinas.   These marina were grandfathered in when the new Marina Law was passed some years back.   Therefore these locations were given the option to Bond vessels which essentially freezes the Temporary Import Permit.   But again, Bonding can only be done at these two facilities in Golfito. 

Best Regards, 
Gerente, Marina Papagayo
t +506 2690-3602


note from Singularity :
We’ve been in Marina Papagayo for about 10 days.  We rented a car for two days and visited Liberia and stayed in a lodge at the Cañón de la Vieja park.  Very nice.  The marina concierge is offering free trips to some locations, but not a regular thing.  Saturday they took four cruisers and some of the crew of a big yacht to Tamarindo which was very cool.  So if you come to Papagayo, ask if they have anything planned.  Marina Papagayo Costa Rica recently has been offering free spontaneous shuttle trips.  They hire a van and driver to take anyone in the marina to a destination.  The first trip was on 12/14 to the surf meca of Tamarindo.  It’s about a 90min drive from the marina and we spent the day walking through shops and lounging in seaside restaurants.  Witch’s Rock was especially cool with a live band and great craft beer from their brewery.

The second on 12/18 was to the Rincón de la Vieja National Park.  Several hiking paths were available from easy/medium to tougher.  We took the former and our driver, Marco, doubled as a guide through the park.  He earned a nice tip from us.

After the excursion on both trips we were offered an opportunity to stop in a supermarket for provisioning.  Bonus!

We don’t how often or if this will be a continuing service, but we sure hope so!

Marina Papagayo

7 ) Drake Bay, Cost Rica
Blue Oasis loves Bahia Drake, on the OSA Pennisula, CR.
The little town up the hill has 2 small markets plus fruiteria.
Plenty of little restaurants. We took a delightful hike to the beaches today. Get out your stern anchor.

Drake Bay

note: here is a link to a great summary form SV Liquid about Drake Bay

Barry & Kathy


JO downwind sailing back to Barra De Navidad from Tenacatita


Phillip Jay & Kelley


9) Burgees' in  Panama @ Shelter Bay Marina


TALIESIN ROSE & SONOMARA got their burgees !

10)  Lithium Battery dangers got little attention from Coast Guard despite red flags before Conception fire


SANTA BARBARA — (LA Times article)

Nearly a year before 34 people were killed in a fire aboard the dive boat Conception, a second vessel owned by the same charter company began a three-day voyage around the Channel Islands.
Divers on the Vision charged numerous lithium-ion batteries installed in cameras, phones, computers and even underwater scooters with an array of power outlets in the salon area. At some point, one of those batteries began to smolder as it was charging. An alarmed crew member quickly tossed it into the water, preventing the fire from spreading, a witness and several sources told The Times.
The fire underscored the potential dangers of such batteries, which have been banned from cargo areas of commercial planes and become the subject of tighter regulations by the U.S. Navy.
But the U.S. Coast Guard didn’t sound major alarms about the fire risk of the batteries until after the Labor Day fire aboard the Conception, the worst maritime disaster in modern California history.

Officials are still working to determine the cause of the fire, investigating whether it was arson, an electrical or battery fire or some sort of malfunction on the vessel. But some boat safety experts have pointed to the batteries — which have become a staple for divers who use them to power underwater equipment such as lights, cameras and scooters — as a possible starting point for the blaze.
Coast Guard inspectors in California didn’t know about the previous fire aboard the Vision until The Times requested details about it this month.
“In hindsight, it would have been nice to know about it,” Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Kroll told The Times.

After the Conception fire, the Coast Guard for the first time recommended that owners of passenger vessels immediately urge crews “to reduce potential fire hazards and consider limiting the unsupervised charging of lithium-ion batteries and extensive use of power strips and extension cords.”
Glen Fritzler, whose Truth Aquatics firm owns both the Conception and the Vision, believes the batteries were the cause of the Conception disaster.
“I’m telling you the batteries are the issue, and we were never warned,” Fritzler said in an emailed statement to The Times. “I have had top level professional photographers dive with me and they did not understand the dangers.”

Conception 2

The smoldering wreckage of the Conception at dawn in September (Ventura County Fire Department)

Fritzler and his attorney declined to comment further about the fires aboard the Vision or the Conception, citing the ongoing investigations by the National Transportation Safety Board, the U.S Coast Guard and the FBI. He also declined to comment on why his company didn’t report the earlier fire to authorities. Operators are not required to report fires that cause less than $75,000 in damage.
A preliminary investigation of the Conception fire found major breakdowns in required safety procedures on the vessel owned by Truth Aquatics, including inadequate crew training and the absence of a roving night watch at all times while passenger bunks are occupied to alert passengers below deck of an emergency.
Truth Aquatics has also come under scrutiny for how it handled battery charging on boats. Divers who used the Conception previously told The Times that the operator used numerous extension cords to handle the high demand for power to charge various devices.
Passengers often angled for limited charging outlets nestled behind foam-filled, L-shaped benches in the salon areas to power strobe lights, cameras, flashlights and video power packs.
“Stuff is plugged in everywhere,” said Ben Wolfe, a retired Los Angeles County fire captain.

Alarm in aviation
Much of the concern about the dangers of lithium-ion batteries has come from the commercial airline industry.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation have expressed concerns because the batteries pack large amounts of energy and can overheat or self-ignite if they are defective, damaged or overcharged, experts said.
The batteries are used in consumer products such as cellphones, laptop computers, power tools, cameras and countless rechargeable electronic devices. Manufacturers each year make millions of devices powered by the batteries.


Passengers sleeping below deck when the fire on the Conception broke out were trapped. The design of its escape routes has come under scrutiny.

Lithium-ion batteries create heat when they charge. If not properly vented, the heat from one cell or battery can set off a chain reaction with other batteries, said Thomas Barrera, a scientist and consultant who advised NASA on the topic.

To protect against short-circuiting, batteries contain a thin strip of polypropylene to prevent electrodes from touching. If they short-circuit, heat can be generated rapidly, and once oxygen becomes involved, things can turn bad quickly, Barrera said.

Such fires also burn hot — up to or more than 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit — and could exceed the capabilities of an aircraft’s fire-suppression system and lead to a catastrophic failure of an airplane, the FAA said. Internationally, regulators have attributed four deaths and the total loss of three aircraft to incidents involving fires started by lithium-ion batteries being transported in cargo, in 2006, 2010 and 2011.

After advising global airlines in 2017 to keep the batteries out of cargo holds, the FAA and the U.S. Department of Transportation this year adopted rules allowing passengers to take them only in carry-on luggage. In cargo holds, passengers and airline employees cannot see if a battery fire starts and spreads to other baggage. In the cabin, crew members and passengers can at least see and smell smoke. 

The number of lithium-ion battery incidents nationwide remains unknown. But several groups now track the problem. As of Oct. 1, the FAA had logged at least 252 cases since 2006 in which batteries smoked or caught fire inside the cargo hold or passenger area of an aircraft.

Among other things, the fires involved laptops, chargers, e-cigarettes and cellular phones. In at least one case, headphones have exploded on a plane. Aircraft personnel in the U.S. have had to extinguish a device with a smoking lithium-ion battery inside a cabin at least once a month this year.

Airline employees have taken action to prevent catastrophes. In September, a passenger’s bag with a portable speaker on an American Airlines luggage cart caught fire in Dallas. The fire was extinguished, but it burned several other bags, FAA records show.


A drone photo shows the 75-foot Conception on May 3.

In August, a passenger’s portable battery charger began to heat up and would not turn off on a SkyWest flight between San Francisco and Texas. A flight attendant placed the device in a battery containment bag and monitored it, FAA records show.

In June, a fully loaded Southwest Airlines plane was evacuated and taken out of service after a passenger’s carry-on bag, with an e-cigarette battery charger and two batteries inside, started to smoke under a seat. A flight attendant used a fire extinguisher to douse the device, according to FAA records.

The U.S. Navy also has severe restrictions on lithium-ion batteries, and in 2017 it banned all vaping devices from its vessels after they sparked numerous fires.
In 2008, lithium-ion batteries being charged ignited a blaze aboard a Navy SEAL mini-submarine in Pearl Harbor. Since then, the Navy has carefully controlled and vetted lithium-ion batteries as larger ones have become part of more equipment on vessels.

The Navy recently established the Navy Battery Development and Safety Enterprise to advance the fleet’s lithium-ion-enabled capabilities. The Navy’s research wing is regarded as among the most advanced when it comes to developing safer batteries to avoid fires. 

Two trade groups representing battery makers, developers and suppliers urge caution when transporting the batteries on airplanes, according to their websites. “The industry obviously has an outstanding record for safety. There are millions of electronic devices that people use every day and the record reflects that,” the Rechargeable Battery Assn. said in 2017.

But restrictions on devices that use lithium-ion batteries have not extended to passenger boats.
Until the Conception fire, the Coast Guard had not issued any widespread guidelines regarding their use, although in 2016, a Marine Safety Alert warned boaters about a recall of Samsung phones and provided ways to minimize risks from those batteries overheating.

On Sept. 11, nine days after the Conception fire, the Coast Guard issued a safety bulletin for passenger vessels instructing boat operators to — among other things — “reduce potential hazards from lithium batteries, power strips and extension cords.”
Asked why it issued the alert, the Coast Guard told The Times it wanted to “provide an immediate reminder to owners and operators about regulations related to firefighting, lifesaving, preparations for emergencies, and means of escape.”
A Times review of nearly 20 years of Coast Guard records found the agency repeatedly rejected some recommendations by the National Transportation Safety Board for tougher safety rules.
Last week, three California members of Congress introduced federal legislation to require small passenger vessels to have at least two escape exits, strengthen standards for fire alarm systems and create mandatory safety rules for the handling and storage of phones, cameras and other electronic devices with lithium-ion batteries.

More batteries on diving excursions
Boats such as the Conception and Vision were built decades before the boom in personal electronics and high-end diving gear. On dive excursions, passengers now carry cameras, computers, lights, underwater scooters and cellphones — almost all of which are powered by rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.
Albert Vogel, a 73-year-old from Durham, Calif., was on an overnight trip on the Conception the week before the deadly Labor Day fire. He said the electrical outlets were “dangerously close to the seat cushions.”

“If one of these devices had overheated … it could have easily set fire to the cushions,” he said. “We were not told anything about being careful with charging or any issues related to that. We were just on our own on that, and people used them.”
Don Barthelmess, who taught diving at Santa Barbara City College, said many divers brought power strips to plug in their devices.
“Anywhere there would be a 110-volt outlet, divers would commandeer an outlet,” he said. “People pretty much fight.”

Burned Hull

The burned hull of the Conception is brought to the ocean surface by a salvage team for investigation in September.

But Barthelmess, who called Truth Aquatics “the Cadillac of diving operations in California,” didn’t think the charging setup — or any other aspect of the boat — raised safety alarms.
“Being on a boat is inherently dangerous, and these are the risks that we accept as people that go diving and go on boats,” he said. “Fires are no exception. No amount of regulations or laws can prevent accidents.”

Greg Lousignont, 70, a former police officer from Peoria, Ill., said that he has been taking trips for three decades on Truth Aquatics vessels and that Fritzler, the owner, is a friend.
When he first started, few divers carted loads of electronic equipment. But that changed in recent years as manufacturers flooded the market with cheaper, mass-produced equipment, he said.
Barrera said these products bring risks, saying that cheaper knockoff cables and plugs don’t have a power management system to stop the overcharging of a battery.
Wolfe, the retired fire captain, was aboard the Vision when the battery caught fire last year. He didn’t see the fire, but other passengers told him about it. Wolfe recalled seeing areas around electrical outlets filled with other items.
He said the batteries and chargers were often stored on seat cushions crowded with other items.
“The space down behind the cushion often had T-shirts, towels and bottles of wine because it was a place to store them and stop them from rolling around,” he said.
That scenario could be problematic, Barrera said.
“If a lithium battery is buried while charging under clothes and on a surface that does not help dissipate that heat, a perfect storm of events can come into play,” he said.
Barrera and other experts emphasized that nothing is inherently unsafe about the batteries as long as precautions are taken. He said that astronauts on spacewalks depend on the batteries and that NASA is able to operate them safely even in the extreme environment of space.

Greater awareness of fire dangers
While divers continue to plunge into the waters off Southern California, boat owners are taking extra steps to limit fire dangers aboard vessels.
Andrea Mills, an education coordinator at Island Packers in Ventura County, said the boating company imposed new safety rules after the Coast Guard issued the warning about lithium-ion batteries in September. Island Packers never encountered any battery fires, but it banned all electronics, not just those with lithium-ion batteries, from gear stored below deck on its four vessels, Mills said. It went a step further than the Coast Guard warning to create an additional safety measure for passengers, she said.
“We are way more aware of the problems in cargo holds,” Mills said. “We did research and read about all the fires in airplanes.”
Ralph Clevenger, who shot photos and videos for Truth Aquatics, said there needs to be heightened awareness about charging devices on boats. He said he is part of an email group with dozens of photographers who have discussed how to educate boat owners about battery dangers.
We “have said, you have got to change things, it’s too dangerous,” he said.

from LA Times Dec. 15, 2019 5 AM


11) Thermal runaway of the lithium-ion battery initiates an unstoppable chain reaction.
The battery becomes gaseous, and a fire erupts that can hardly be extinguished by conventional means. Liithium ion batteries perform optimally, and will last longer, if they are kept at temperatures between
-10°C and +30°C. This range is consistent with findings by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE).

In very cold temperatures, batteries don’t achieve their full rated power until the battery cells warm up.

As the accompanying EERE graphic shows, batteries exposed to hotter average temperatures lose their ability to store energy; the hotter the temperature the faster they lose their storing ability. So in the tropics or in hot climates those whose will likely be looking to replace their batteries faster than owners living where the thermometer doesn’t often reach 110°F.

The C (−) temperature rate and cell voltage of LG HG2 and Panasonic NCR GA (at 100% SOC) versus C (−) temperature (top).
Temperature rate of C (+) and vessel pressure rate of LG HG2 and Panasonic NCR GA (at 100% SOC) versus C (+) temperature (bottom).

12) Please reply to this email with

– your updates
contenders for picture of the week links to your favorite SONGS
– relevant blog posts – and of course your valuable suggestions

and we’ll include it in the next FLEET UPDATE – Keep em ‘coming


The Panama Posse philosophy is to pass on nautical knowledge via the gestalt theory...

Dietmar & Suzanne
SV Carinthia

13) Opt-out from Fleet Updates simply reply with “REMOVE

Panama Posse Burgees

FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-15

Protected: FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-15


  • call Monday @ 16:00 UTC
  • 'tis the season for Long Lines
  • Marina Pez Vela, Costa Rica
  • CrossRoads, Farewell
  • Marina Chahue, Mexico
  • Official Panama Posse  Sponsors, Partners and Ambassadors
  • We need head shots
  • Carnival of Desamparados & Festival of the Little Devils, Cost Rica
  • GoodNautical is mobile friendly
  • Safe Esteem - get your free personal risk barometer app
  • Flare Night
  • Please reply to this email with updates and pictures
  • opt-out

1) - live fleet line calls on Mondays
 @ 15:45 UTC  Warm up  @ 16:00 UTC  Panama Posse call (mute your mikes)
 @ 16:30 UTC 
Counter Posse Call(mute your mikes)

 Remember to practice muting and un-muting your microphone 



White mike is OPEN & we can all hear you

– Register using your vessel name as the USERNAME (example Carinthia or CARINTHIA_Dietmar)
– the LINE system allows for up to 200 live conference call participants  !
– Search for dietmarpetutschnig and become a friend – wait and accept your panamaposse20192020 GROUP INVITE – send us your position via the message system and listen to the vessel check instab > +   Location  - adjust the blue marker - tap the grey box

2) 'tis the season for Long Lines

... I trust that sailors will not take my attached sketches as absolutes, but rather a documentation of my observations:  
After un-charted rocks and lightning, the thing that sends shivers up my spine is the thought of long lines. We have seen many, hit 4 or 5 and had to dive on the prop 3 times to cut loose/unwrap them from the shaft. Unfortunately the marking standard for these nuisances seems to vary from country to country. What we learned in one country caused us to hit lines in another country. For instance in Mexico we would run parallel to the long precession of spaced flags and do an end run around the last. When we tried this maneuver in Costa Rica we consistently hit the lines because in that country, it turns out, many of the fisherman only mark the middle of the line with a black flag. There are no end markers.Through our encounters with the lines and with one with a fisherman whose long line we had to cut off the prop we think we have learned a few things about these obstacles that we believe is worth sharing. I am sure there are other variations and not all fisherman follow these unwritten standards but it is at least a documentation of what we have experienced. I have attached the various marking conventions we have seen on our trip south. We are only in Costa Rica now so I am sure we will have more learning to do in Panama !

Mexico Long Line Observation
The long lines in Mexico were anywhere from ½ mile long to 4 miles long but seemed to be pretty consistently marked in the below manner. We did not encounter any at night. We do not know if this was dumb luck or if they were pulled in before nightfall. Perhaps someone else has more insight.


Black Flags at various intervals up to several hundred yards apart. Last flag indicates end of line.
Intermediate floats: water bottles, milk juts, oil bottles, fishing floats etc. between flags.

Guatemala Long Line Observation
The long lines in were poorly marked and the black flags at each end not always easy to see. Any time we saw a floating plastic bottle ahead we approached with caution and a string of them indicated the presence of a line. Like Mexico, we did not encounter any at night. We averaged about 15 miles off-shore as we passed Guatemala.

Guatemala Longlines

Black Flag at both ends of line.

Intermediate floats: water bottles, milk juts, oil bottles, fishing floats etc. between flags. Spacing between floats was inconsistent with sometimes large spacings

Nicaragua Observations
We did not encounter any long lines off the coast of Nicaragua, however we encountered many fishing pangas both during the daytime and at night. They seemed to work in groups and I do not know what type of fishing equipment they were using. We passed well outside the mouth of the gulf of Fonseca , so perhaps there were longlines there; we do not know.


note: Here is a long-line marker off the coast of Nicaragua

Costa Rica Long Line Observation#1
The long lines were marked in the middle with a single black flag and typically extended 1 kilometer in each direction from the flag (according to a fisherman whose line we ran over and tangled in our prop.) and there may or may not be a panga on station at one end of the line. We encountered quite a few lines, particularly outside the mouth of the Gulf of Nicoya. We day-hopped between anchorages in CR so we do not know if they are out at night.

CR 2

Black Flag at center of 2 km long line.
Floats: water bottles, milk juts, oil bottles, fishing floats etc. with perhaps 40 to 50 meters between floats. The last float will be about 1 km from the flag. Watch out for a string of floats cut off from the main flag by another passing boat.

Costa Rica Observation#2
This line is only a couple of hundred meters long and drifts parallel to the wind. It usually has a large black flag and small black flag on a float on the downwind side and a small float on the upwind side. Usually a panga is on station at some point along the line. We are not sure if this is a net or line. This was only encountered in bays and close to shore

CR 2

Large black flag and small black flag a few meters away.
Floats: no observed intermediate floats; just the down-wind flag and an upwind float, mostly with a panga on station.

Costa Rica Observation#3
This line is only perhaps a hundred meters long and seems designed to drift perpendicular to the wind. It usually has a black or some other colored flag at each end and single float ½-way between. We do not know if this is a long-line or net. This was only encountered in bays and close to islands and shores.

CR 3

Black Flag on each end of line Floats: One intermediate float between flags.

Bob & Joan


note from Panama:
Beware of entering or exiting Vista Mar Marina, PANAMA  or sailing in the area at night. Our prop was fouled by an unlit fishing net cast directly across the entrance 60 meters after exiting. Captain Fabio & Lisa



3) Marina Pez Vela, Costa Rica

FYI, we are a little ahead of the game. They asked for 48 hrs notice but bent over backwards to assist.
We pulled into Quepos, CR and we're going to have issues until I mentioned the Panama Posse and the doors flew open.
Received discount at the marina and the agent was great. Marina Paz Vela was fantastic! 


We had to motor most of the way in 5 knts of wind.  Quepos,CR and Pez Vella Marina were fantastic-said the magic words "Panama Pose" and the doors flew open.  Flamenco Marina was good, but our agent Erick Galvez was tremendous. Made it so easy. We transited Canal in one day-had to maintain 7 1/2-8 knots and we just made it.  Will also forward the name of a rigger and sail maker as we had a few minor repairs. Will wait until they are done to recommend. Saved a few hundred $$ by mentioning the pose. Tough but great trip. Off to Cayman and then Ft Lauderdale .
Bruce & Kirk


4) CROSSROADS - Farewell


Thursday was a bittersweet day for us. After 14 years, 3 Nordhavns and many thousands of miles at sea the money hit the bank and the best of the bunch, our beloved N57, CrossRoads, was gone and we exited the family of Nordhavn owners. It seems like the end of an era for us and we are wondering what’s next. Is there another Nordhavn in our future? Maybe....maybe not. Is there another boat in our future? Probably.
It’s been a great ride and we have made some incredible friends and acquaintances from all over the globe along the way. We’ve met and enjoyed laughs and liquor with folks who have done incredible things, like the GSSR group who took three Nordhavns to Russia and beyond, a great young couple who put their careers on hold and took an N43 around the world, entrepreneurs that brought their love of boating and their skills to organize new events like the Panama Posse, a woman who at nearly 70 years old is completing her single handed circumnavigation on a vintage 50 ft. sailboat and so many others who have ventured across oceans or along foreign coastlines in search of their own kind of adventure on the sea, with stories to tell and experiences to share.

Over the years, time after time fellow Nordhavn owners have come to my aid and I have skinned my knuckles more times than I can remember helping others as well, knowing there was always something to be learned from a new friend and that there was a beer and a chuckle around the corner. Such is the Nordhavn world. I have seen and shared moments of incredible natural beauty and wildlife while drinking fine wine and listening to beautiful music with friends in the cockpit of a Nordhavn. Such is the Nordhavn world. I have pounded on the hull of a Nordhavn in Charleston belonging to perfect strangers, demanded that the beautiful woman that appeared become my wife’s friend and received in return giant smiles, a hearty laugh, instant compliance and friends for life. Such is the Nordhavn world.
We have made our way from the Channel Islands of Southern California to British Columbia, SE Alaska, and across the Gulf of Alaska to places not oft visited by cruisers, like Lituya Bay, Yakatat and the far reaches of Prince Williams Sound. We learned to love the beauty and the people of Mexico in ways the casual tourist does not have time to appreciate, we experienced the hospitality of desperately poor El Salvador and the natural wonders and wildlife of Costa Rica. We were virtually adopted by some wonderful locals in Panama and heard of their escape from the chaos in Venezuela and making a new home in a new country with their beautiful family.

We have been through the Canal three times and visited, touched and imagined the hopes and the crushed dreams of past mariners while visiting one of the first operational submarines abandoned 150 years ago where she still remains alone on a beach on a very remote Panamanian island. We have visited far away Caribbean islands, experienced the historic ports of the East Coast of the US making wonderful friends along the way and we have even eaten fresh lobster with Milt and Judy Baker at their summer haunt in Maine. We have visited many of our Nordhavn friends at their homes around the world and we had the great pleasure of helping take a newly minted FPB 64 across the sea from New Zealand to Fiji in what turned out to be a rather nasty storm.


I could go on but I think you get the point. It’s all been a great adventure and loads of fun made possible in very large part by the folks at PAE and their wonderful boats. Is there life after Nordhavn? Only time will tell but we live on a mountaintop now and life is pretty snowed yesterday and the sun is shining today so I’m headed for the slopes just as soon as I’m done with this post.
To all of you continue to savor the dreams, the people and the adventures and...........thanks for the memories!

Stan and Diane


CROSSROADS 5)  Marina Chahue

+52 958 587 2652
- due to runoffs and silting this Marina is currently closed (no word on the status of the fuel dock )
- when anchoring and waiting for your weather window for the Tehuantepec  please always lock your dinghy in this area !

Map of Chahue

As you can see in Good Nautical - there are plenty of alternative anchorages in the Huatulco
area as you "wait" for the green light to cross the Tehuantepec - just LOCK your DINGHY !
One of the favorites is La India  @ 15° 42.63 N 96° 11.87 W ( use a stern anchor if anchored behind the reef for extra comfort )


We are anchored outside Marina Chahue. Seeing small boats enter. I was told no with my big boat due to dredging. I plan to scope out the marina tomorrow Marina is a Fonatur government marina. Took dink in. Docks in poor shape. Closed to transients. Dredging in progress. Slow due to debris in marina. Old tires. A motorcycle. Cables. Restaurant open. Some business open like dive shop. Hope to be fully open by January. Manager Ezekiel was sad and frustrated and friendly.

Angela & Dan



6) As always we want to thank all of our

Official Panama Posse  Sponsors, Partners and Ambassadors

  • Marina Puerto Vallarta, Puerto Vallarta – Mexico 
  • Marina Puerto de La Navidad – Barra de Navidad – Mexico 
  • Marina Ixtapa, Ixtapa – Mexico 
  • La Marina Acapulco, Acapulco – Mexico 
  • Marina Chiapas – Mexico 
  • Marina Bahia del Sol – El Salvador 
  • La Palma Moorings – Bahia del Sol, El Salvador 
  • Marina Puesta del Sol – Nicaragua 
  • Marina Papagayo – Costa Rica 
  • Marina Pez Vela – Costa Rica 
  • Banana Bay Marina – Costa Rica 
  • Golfito Marina Village – Costa Rica *
  • Vista Mar Marina – Panama 
  • Shelter Bay Marina – Panama 
  • Red Frog Marina – Panama 

Discounts by marinas offered to the active Panama Posse roster are at subject to availability a.m.o. »



Official Panama Canal Agent


Official Panama Posse Ambassadors

Panama Posse Partners

Panama Posse

7) We need head shots from the following vessels :


Faces of the 2019-2020 Panama Posse

8) Costa Rica - Carnival of Desamparados
(San Jose, CR - 27th of December  09°53.88 N 084°03.92 "W)
Traditional parade, horse riders and characterized by colorful state coaches and
costumes of the participants, who dance to the rhythm of big bands.

Desemp 2
Desempa 3

Festival of the Little Devils in Boruca, CR
Dec 30th & Jan 2nd @ 08°59 N 083°16 W


The Boruca put on masks representing devils and do stylized battle with the invading Spanish.
Their surviving population numbers barley over 2,500 members and they speak the ‘Brunka’ language.
Less than 40 members of the tribe can currently speak the language

Flute and Bull

The game of the Boruca devils  is a traditional festival of the Boruca culture, indigenous people of Costa Rica, which takes place between December 30 and January 2 of each year, in the community of Boruca, and the first weekend of February, in the town of Rey Curré,


Good Nautical is now mobile friendly (aka responsive)
so whip out all your cellphones and give it a tab

            Nautical Mobile Friendly
Safe Esteem

10) Safe Esteem - get your free personal risk barometer app

Free to try for 6 months for all Panama Posse participants
- safe esteem is a barometer for personal risk and thanks to
Van - COO of safe-esteeem  who gave a very good travel risk presentation
during the safety seminars - you can use it for free to see how your risk score's change along the route.

To download go to  
scroll down and use the invite code "PP1920"
This is a private beta release and currently only works on iphones.

SafeEsteem app

 “Safe-esteem is the map & compass to navigate risks in our life’s journey and provides a life risk barometer”


After a lot of planning, coordinating, and waiting since last year, the opportunity was upon us, FLARE NIGHT !  


The Panama Posse worked since last year to coordinate an exercise night of testing distress flares.  After discussions regarding timing, location and safety with both Port Captain and Harbor Master, the flare night was a go for this year.  From the corner of the marina and looking out towards the empty area of the lagoon, we began launching flares, one at a time, over the lagoon.
As we were launching from land, we were instructed to aim out over the lagoon, versus straight up which obviously would bring hot burning flares falling into the marina full of boats (there was a lesson here, see below....).  The first flares being fired were typical 12mm flares, there were a few people launching 25mm flares and towards the conclusion of the exercise we had two parachute flares.

Flare Guns

Personally, I was really glad we were able to hold this exercise.  I've never personally fired a flare, there's no kick or flame from the initial launch (although you should look away when firing), and there is a distinct 'cracking' sound at trigger pull.  The flares actually take much longer to ignite and light up after launch then I would've imagined and the flares stayed lit until finding the surface of the water.  The 25mm were clearly brighter and launched higher than the 12mm flares.  The 12mm flares stayed visible for about 6-8 seconds, the 25mm about 8-10 seconds.  But recall we were launching at an angle to avoid flares falling back into the marina.  The lesson here: despite what is likely a natural tendency to aim your flare in an emergency towards the target rescue vessel, in fact the better option would be to aim the flare just off directly overhead and downwind thus increasing the flight time and decreasing risk of the flare returning to your vessel.
Next lesson learned: admittedly many people probably brought expired flares for this exercise, but it was surprising just how many were duds.  Rough estimate is that 3/10 were duds.  Lesson is, when also considering the 6-10 seconds flight time, that it would be a good idea to have a dozen or more flares on hand.
Another lesson learned: the parachute flare was absolutely amazing.  This launched at least twice as high as the 12mm and 25mm flares, was much much brighter, and stayed airborne and visible for 4-5 minutes!
Lastly, an important reminder and lesson: remember that with flares you are dealing with extremely hot, flammable and a potentially very dangerous product.  Take extreme caution with these.  Our evening concluded with a misfire of a parachute-type flare which, very shortly after launch, made a wicked 90 degree turn only 100' off the ground and flew until it hit something, fortunately for us it landed in the moist jungle and burned itself out.  


Overall the experience was very educational and I'd like to thank the Barra de Navidad Port Captain, Marina Puerto de la Navidad Harbormaster, for the opportunity for this exercise.




12) Please reply to this email with any updates - your vessel location -
contenders for picture of the week - your favorite song for our list -
and we'll include it in the next Fleet Update

The Panama Posse transfer of knowledge and learning process operates under the gestalt theory
We will not tell you what to do, when or how - we want you to to figure it out. YOUR VESSEL YOUR CREW YOUR RESPONSIBILITY


Dietmar & Suzanne
SV Carinthia

Panama Posse BUrgee

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Weekly Panama Posse Line Call

This is the weekly Panama Posse Monday morning line call at 15:30 and 16:00 UTC 

Read more

FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-10

FLEET UPDATE 2019-12-10

  • Picture of the Week
  • Safe-esteem app for iOS
  • OpenCPN
  • Tours and info from Marina Puesta del Sol, Nicaragua
  • The 5 most significant cultural celebrations in Panama
  • Costa Rica, Rental Car Theft Incident
  • Time to decorate your vessels and share your pictures !
  • Reply with updates please
  • Opt-out


          Posse 2019 - 2020

and we're off - thank you all for coming to the kick off seminars !


2) Safe Esteem - personal risk app free for download

Free to try for 6 months for all Panama Posse participants - safe esteem is a barometer for personal risk and thanks to
Van - COO of safe-esteem  who gave a very insightful travel risk presentation during the safety seminars
- you can use it for free to see how your risk scores change along the route.

To download go to   scroll down and use the invite code "PP1920"
This is a private beta release and currently only works on iphones.

SafeEsteem app

 “Safe-esteem is the map & compass to navigate risks in our life’s journey and provides a life risk barometer”

3) OpenCPN

Get satellite chartlets from  
Make chartlets


The Seminars at Barra de Navidad


4) Tours and info from Marina Puesta del Sol, Nicaragua 

        Puesta del Sol

Tours from Marina Puesta del Sol

We took the advice from Vikki of Taliesin Rose and contacted a local surfing guide for the possibility of a non-surfing tour of Nicaragua.  Chinto and his Bostonian fiance Drew customized a three-night, four-day outing that included:

León, Granada, Masaya, Catarina, the beautiful Laguna de Apoyo and the live Volcán Masaya.  They found great accommodations with A/C for us at prices ranging from $45 to $60.  We took their recommendations and we're certainly happy with them.  They knew we weren't interested in "exciting" adventures but preferred slow and relaxing days but if you want a more active tour, Chinto can certainly provide it.

Here's a link to his Facebook page:
Chinto's phone/whatsapp - +505-7727-1305

Chinto's place is a short distance from the marina, next to the Badaboom hostel/restaurant.  Drew also provides yoga, fitness, and nutritional training at that location.

It was a huge bonus...


Update on our previous entry for Marina Puesta del Sol.  I wish we could edit our entries for corrections and updates.

Electricity is NOT included in the slip fee and is a bit on the spendy side in Puesta del Sol.  When we were there 22Nov19-03Dec19, electric was provided from a generator 0700-1300 and 1700-2200 at a cost of $0.45/kwh compared to $0.24/kwh at Marina Papagayo.  We ran our "window" style 110v aircon for about 8 days out of the 12 we were there and we used 88kwh at a cost of about $40.

Water is also metered at about $0.04/liter.  Since we only used our tanks for drinking and cooking, we used dock water to rinse the boat and shower with.  Total used for 8 days was about 226liters for $9.00.

The washing machines & dryers are in poor shape.  Only one washer and one dryer were functioning (for each, the "good" one was on the left).  $2 per load each in quarters obtained from Juanita.  We would recommend waiting for the next port for your laundry.  The laundry room is locked when not in use, so arrange for it to be open before Juanita leaves for the day.  Keep in mind the hours that electricity is on.

Juanita is a gem and did all that she could to ensure our stay was pleasant.  Her Whatsapp #+505-8880-0013, but she may not be available after hours.

The pool is very nice and one of the few we've used with convenient shade.

Currently, the restaurant/bar at the marina is only open Fri-Sun.  Reasonable prices - dinner for one & two beers $18.

Wi-Fi is available at the pool and on the dock, but they're using an older style transmitter and more modern extenders may or may not be able to connect to it. 

All-in-all, Marina Puesta del Sol was a very quiet, tranquil and pleasant stop.

Bob & Carol



5) The 5 most significant cultural celebrations in Panama

Carnaval de Las Tablas Feb 22, 2020 - Feb 25, 2020 @  07°46'10.1"N 80°16'17.7"W


Held over four days prior to Ash Wednesday.
You'll see  floats and musicians and fireworks at night.
The queens appear on Saturday night and their coronation is on Sunday.
Monday is masquerade day and
Tuesday townswomen wear polleras.

Festival de la Mejorana en Guararé September 2020 @ 07°48'57.6"N 80°16'42.5"W -

          Festival de la Mejorana en Guararé

Dance groups from all over Panama – and even from other Latin American countries – attend this important annual event in late September. Festivities include a colorful procession in which decorated floats parade through the streets in oxcarts.

- Fiestas Patrias - Expect heavy traffic.

        Fiestas Patrias
  • Nov 03, 1903 Separation of Panamá from Colombia.
  • Nov 04: Flag Day
  • Nov 05 Separation Movement in Colón
  • Nov 10  1821 "El Grito" of Independence" in Villa de Los Santos  07°56'25.0"N 80°23'54.9"W
  • Nov 28 1821 Declaration of Independence from Spain ( 320 years of colonialism)

- Panama Jazz Festival - Jan 13-18, 2020

- Panama
        Jazz Festival

- Festival de Cristo Negro de Portobelo - October 21st 2020 @ 09°33'15.0"N 79°39'16.6"W 


Cristo Negro is a wooden statue of Jesus Christ in Iglesia de San Felipe, a Roman Catholic parish church located in Portobelo, Panama. The statue was found on the shores of the town's harbour. Life size, it is adorned with a robe that is changed twice a year, once during the Festival of the Black Christ and during Holy Week.

6) Costa Rica, Rental Car Theft Incident
Since we covered the Security subject today I wanted to share my recent experience in Costa Rica. In our time on the water and in anchorages and marinas we have felt very safe and have had great experiences, taking the normal precautions. My wife and I also rented a car and did a fantastic tour of northern Costa Rica without incident. Most of the driving was very rural, as were the hotels/motels and it was very safe. However Liberia are taught us some lessons about rental car shortcomings. My wife had to fly to New York to deal with a family emergency so my friend flew down from Mexico to join me on the trip from Marina Papagayo to Quepos. I picked him up and dropped my wife off at San Jose airport. My friend Zolly and I stopped at Walmart in Quepos for provisioning on the way back to marina Papagayo. The security at the Walmart parking lot is very good, but we believe we were identified as a potential theft target there due to all of our luggage in the car. On our way to the marina we stopped at the Do-It Center for Coffee and Gas, as it is the only place to get coffee on the way back to the marina. We only know this after a detailed review of security footage, but to make a long story short, a guy arrived 1 minute before we did with a key fob jammer. We parked, and he prevented may car from locking with the jammer in his hand after I pushed the lock function on the electronic key. In less than a minute he took our luggage out of the car and left the center before we exited the coffee shop. Passports, clothes, cell  phone, etc.....all gone. It is important for people to know to physically check to see that their doors are locked and that they not just push the lock button and walk away. The good news is that the US Embassy in San Jose is VERY efficient and we walked out of there with new 1 year temporary passports in 2 hours without any appointment and my wife arrived a few days ago from New York with a new cell for me. As we have learned, much of the crime in Costa Rica is petty theft from rental cars, so always be aware of surroundings, check your lock, and if possible do not leave anything in the car, and this will eliminate most of the theft risk. Again, we have had a great time here and it seems that most of the sharks are on land in the bigger cities, not on the water!!
Kudos to Marina Papagayo for all of the support they provided after this incident and for helping me access the security videos, from Duit Center so I knew what happened. Thank you Dan!!

Bob and Joan





DAN Boater (boating accident) (take from ship to nearest hospital/medical facility; limitation on amount but might get you all the way home). This is an annual membership fee service.
Emergency +1-919-667-9111
Information +1-919-490-2011

MEDJET Expat 180 Family Membership (any medical condition)(take from hospital/medical facility in foreign country to your home in U.S.). This is an annual membership fee service.
+1 205-595-6626
There are a number of Medical repatriation companies. Check your boat insurance, policy carefully as some policies do not contain any or sufficient medical repatriation expense.
Medjet and DAN Boater provide emergency information. There are a number of companies on the internet that are pay as you go and do not require that you purchase a membership that provide emergency information.

MHZ UTC time
4.125 2300-11
6.125 24 hr.
8.290 24 hr.
12.290 1100-2300

001 310 732 2046
World wide emergency Ham net: 14.313 24 hr.
Central America Ham net: 7.083 UTC time 1300

    Rescue Coordination Center:  (510) 437-3701.  This is the number for group receiving EPIRB emergency beacon distress signals.  They will coordinate with local country Coast Guards if boater is outside of the U.S. and they have translators, as the numbers at the local country Coast Guards in Central America will speak Spanish.  They said it would be ok to call them in emergency.

    These numbers were given to me by the U.S. Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center.  The individuals from these local Coast Guards will speak Spanish when you call them.  If you cannot communicate with them, the Rescue Coordination Center can call them, but that will take more time.

  El Salvadore Coast Guard:  (505) 22500210,   Extension 5103
    Nicaragua Coast Guard:      (504)22342507
    Costa Rica Coast Guard:      (506) 22314924
    Panama Coast Guard:           (507) 60451197

CALIFORNIA COAST GUARD OFFICES WHO COULD BE  called if you cannot reach rescue coordination center, however the local coast guards will likely just go through the Rescue Center:
    Coast Guard Sector LA/Long Beach:  310 521-3815
    Channel Islands office:  805 985-9822



World wide emergency Ham net:  14.313    24 hr.
Pacific Seafares Net 14300 @ 0300 UTC 
Central America Ham net:  7.083   @ 1300 UTC

CENTRAL AMERICA EMBASSY CONTACT INFORMATION.  Go to for further information.  For Central America embassies, emergency number is +1-202-501-4444, and press “0”,  from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. EST.  When dialing embassy numbers below probably start with “ +” depending on phone service.   

    +52 55 5080-2000
    Paseo de la Reforma 305, Colonia Cuauhtenoc,     06500 Mexico, DF

    +502 2326 4000
    Avenida Reforma 7-01, Zona 10, Guatemala Cuidad, Guatemala

    +503 2501 2999
    Final Blvd. Santa Elena,     Antiguo Cuseatlan, La Libertad,     San Salvador   

    +504 2238 5114 (after hours X4100)
    +504 2236 9320 (per embassy website, but not communications received:  011-504 2236 9320)
    Avenida La Paz,     Tegucigalpa MDC, Honduras
    +505 2252-7100
    Kilometer 5.5 Carreter Sur, Managua, Nicagagua

    +506 2519 2000
    Calle 98 Via 104, Pavas,     San Jose, Costa Rico

    +507 317 5000
    Bldg 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Ave, Clayton, Panama


GLOBAL MARINE DISTRESS SAFETY SYSTEM:      1-888-407-4747, press “0” for overseas citizen emergency services.


They provide information on piracy and safety and security, and you can sign up for alerts by going online.
    Emergency:  1-202-501-4444 (8-8 EST, M-F)


Stan & Diane


8)  Download the official Barra de Navidad, Mexico

barra guide

Thanks to Tally, Neil, Jan and of course Otter -
this is the best resource guide to date on Barra de Navidad
and we wholeheartedly thank Tally and SV Raven for creating such a detailed guide !

Follow this link and download this 36 page guide !


Neil, Tammy, Jan & Otter


9) Time to decorate your vessels and share your pictures !

Xmas Lights

10) Please reply to this email with

– your updates
contenders for picture of the week links to your favorite SONGS
– relevant blog posts – and of course your valuable suggestions

and we’ll include it in the next FLEET UPDATE – Keep em ‘coming


The Panama Posse philosophy is to pass on nautical knowledge via the gestalt theory...

Dietmar & Suzanne
SV Carinthia

11) Opt-out from Fleet Updates simply reply with “REMOVE

Panama Posse Burgees

23-24' Panama Posse Kick Off Weekend

All of this takes place starting December 7-10 2023 in Barra de Navidad, MX at the Marina Puerto de la Navidad



Some of these seminars are recorded  and place them online for participants

Panama Posse 2020-2021


Here are our tentative dates for our seminars in early December 2022 in Barra de Navidad, Mexico 


Thursday Decemeber 7, 2023    

    1)  10:00 PANAMA POSSE INTRO AND OVERVIEW   and Fleet Tracking




Friday December 8,  2023

   3)  10:00 DANGERS & SAFETY





Saturday December 9, 2023



-> details here on how to win the chef award ->



Sunday December 10, 2023

     @ 10:00 AM  Swapmeet




( * social distancing rues and masks will apply  )

Harbormaster Secundino Alvarez 



When: Thu  @ 13:00 to ~ 15:30

Meet at Manuel Antonio de Mendoza Meeting room on the 3rd floor of the Resort
From the top lobby take the side elevator down to the 3rd floor -
Manuel Antonio
19°11'44.1"N 104°41'05.3"W

Class room style Tables, Chairs, Air Conditioning, Bath rooms Lights, resort wifi, (but no cellphone service),
Power outlets on the wall so bring extension cords if you need power.

Food & Beverage:
We will also have a waiter on standby to order food or drinks from the resort.

What to bring ?
big notepad - pencil - things to write - pads - phones - guidebooks - cameras - laptops - extension cords - a happy adventurers mindset