March 27, 2008
By Eric Leishman
It’s no secret that our owners take their Nordhavns far and wide to explore new places. So it’s no surprise to hear of would-be owners traveling far and wide to make sure their purchase of a Nordhavn is exactly what they were expecting.
Case in point: Rick and Dianne MacClure from Queensland, Australia, a terrific couple who I’d met Down Under while working the Sanctuary Cove Boat Show two years ago. Rick and Dianne had their sights set on a Nordhavn and decided to purchase the very first 60 (an extension of the very popular Nordhavn 55.)
With me back at home in southern California, the three of us quickly started to plan the details of their boat via numerous e-mails and conference call meetings with P.A.E.’s design and engineering teams. The end result? Makin Memories is next in line to mold…just one more step in transforming their dream of long-range cruising into reality.
Purchasing a Nordhavn grows into an all-encompassing feat and Rick soon became obsessed with the twin-engine model powered by Lugger 1066Ts…I knew I needed to get him on board one. Coincidently, a twin-engine Nordhavn 55, Pacific Escort, was available for sea trial in Mexico. The boat had been used as a lead escort vessel operated by P.A.E. staff – including myself – during the recent FUBAR Rally, and since the rally’s conclusion in November, she’d remained anchored in La Paz. I felt Pacific Escort would be the perfect test boat and before I knew it, we were packing our bags for a Mexican sea trial.
Rick thought nothing of taking the 7,000-mile trip to make sure the twin-engine Nordhavn was everything he thought it would be. When I met up with him at LAX, he didn’t appear jet lagged at all, but rather filled with excitement about the coming days’ event. We boarded a flight to La Paz and arrived a short time later, welcomed warmly by our friend and Pacific Escort’s caretaker, “Zeke.” We spent the rest of the afternoon getting acclimated and running the standard pre-departure check list, making a small provisioning list and deciding on a cruising plan for the next few days.
The next morning we headed toward the small island of Espiritu Santo, approximately 20 miles outside of La Paz. It was a perfect day with glassy, calm conditions and light to no wind. That afternoon we pulled into a beautiful secluded anchorage just north of Partida, a narrow stretch of sand connecting the two islands. We dropped the anchor in 30 feet of clear water with a nice white sand bottom. Once we settled, we were anxious to launch the dingy and explore the unlimited deserted beaches. Rick took some great photographs of the picturesque landscape so he could share them with Dianne, who was unable to make the trip. As the day came to an end we headed back to Pacific Escort to unwind. We fired up the BBQ and watched the beautiful sunset while discussing the day’s events over a couple of cold beers.
The following morning we pulled anchor and headed south for a short run down the island of Partida. We arrived at the Bay of Partida where we decided to drop hook. The bay was a really beautiful anchorage with shallow, clear water and a small authentic fishing village located on the sand spit. We were greeted by a few other boats anchored in the bay whose crews were busy cruising around in their dinghies to and from shore. As I sat up on the flybridge, I only wished we were just starting a six-month Mexican cruise, and not ending a three-day sea trial. However, all good things must come to an end so we pulled anchor once again and headed back to La Paz to catch our flights home.
The Mexican sea trial was a huge success. Rick couldn’t have gotten a better feel for what it will be like when he is out cruising on his new Nordhavn. We left Baja with Rick even more keyed up about his boat than before.
With the excitement and new ideas fresh from the Mexico trip, Rick decided to stay in Dana Point for a few days to powwow with me and our Project Manager Dave Harlow and to implement some new build changes.
Rick and Dianne will take delivery of Makin Memories in Brisbane, Australia at the end of the year. It will then be my turn to travel to their neck of the woods where I will accompany them on a few hundred-mile delivery/sea trial to the Whitsunday Islands. Like Rick, I won’t blink an eye at the notion of traveling thousands of miles to make sure his new Nordhavn 60 is everything he and Dianne hope it to be.
Eric Leishman is a salesman in the Nordhavn Yachts Southwest sales office. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.