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Gary Graham – ROAD TREKKER

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014
¡Buen viaje!
Tuesday, November 04, 2014
An easy decision


Boots on the ground in Cabo after Odile
Observations at Tourney Central

Hurricane Odile slammed the Baja California peninsula on Sept. 14, hitting Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, La Paz, Mulege, Bahia de Los Angeles and others. Stark images of damage and destruction presented a dismal picture in the news and across social media. Post hurricane Odile like zombie apocalypse headlined one worldwide news organization’s account of the disaster.


wavesforwater
WAVES FOR WATER working with Yacht Aid Global arranged for the delivery of humanitarian supplies by motor yacht Seven Js, a 156-foot motor yacht which included medical supplies, fresh milk, 1,000 buckets donated by Home Depot, plus in-the-field water filtration kits.

Slowly at first, then gaining momentum, hope conquered the fear and desolation. Local residents, joined by local, regional and national government representatives, rallied in the biggest leanups in Baja's history.


A month after the storm, I arrived as is my annual practice to attend a series of October tournaments. During the month – from the middle of September to my arrival around the middle of October – there had been speculation that the events would be postponed until the Los Cabos Airport was operational, and utilities and communication, including internet, could be restored.


This trip, I flew into the La Paz Airport, and as I landed and drove into the city of La Paz, aside from more military being visible, everything seemed pretty normal. I picked up my baggage and caught a shuttle to the bus stop.


Along the way even a month later, there was standing water on some of the roads. Billboards and light standards which had been no match for the 120+ mph winds could be seen strewn along the roadways and there was definitely some property damage to both businesses and residential areas, but cleanup crews were hard at work piling debris in huge mounds for removal.


incabosan
IN CABO SAN LUCAS, manager Darren Carey and his crews are working around the clock to make the necessary repairs needed to the IGY Marina.


Yet, aside from a few detours, the main highways were repaired and passable all the way from La Paz to Cabo San Lucas. However, a few blocks off the main roads it was obvious that there was still a lot more work needed before things would return to normal.


While I haven’t visited Puerto Los Cabos Marina, I was informed by the manager that fuel for boat owners is available.


In Cabo San Lucas, Manager Darren Carey and his crews are working around the clock to make the necessary repairs needed to the IGY Marina and although it is not completely restored, the boats are fishing every day and all services are available.


I arrived in Baja in time to experience three major sportfishing tournaments. There have been 225 teams competing in those events over eight days. It’s almost embarrassing to even suggest that it’s not business as usual. It isn't until you look behind the curtain that you realize the herculean effort it has taken to make the tournaments happen. From Mexico's President to the street cleaners, all have hunkered down and accepted the challenge of cleaning up after Odile. They have made their motto CABO STRONG and swathed it in HOPE for a better Baja in the future.


therehave

THERE HAVE BEEN 225 teams competing in the three major sportfishing events over eight days in October.


By their own account, literally thousands have flocked from around the world to assist in the recovery, allowing the community to accomplish so much in so little time.


The personal and collective achievements of the people of Baja along with the volunteers will be admired for many years to come. As a group, they have faced insurmountable odds and have set the bar for responding to natural disasters in the future.


Not resting on their accomplishments, they quickly point out that there is so much more to be done and they still need all the help they can get. You can support them simply by visiting and having a good time so they can resume their jobs. Or donate to one of the many organizations that are lending a hand.


boatsarefishing300
ALTHOUGH NOT COMPLETELY restored, all services at IGY Marina are available and boats are fishing every day.


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