Hand crafted, unique small ship cruises: the Inside Passage of SE Alaska, British Columbia, the Pacific Northwest, San Juan Islands and the Sea of Cortez, Baja Mexico.
Pacific Catalyst

About Pacific Catalyst, Small Ship Cruises to Baja California, Southeast Alaska & Pacific Northwest

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We love being able to introduce our guests to places we have discovered over our years of exploration. On our classic vessels, MV Catalyst and MV Westward, we are able to provide the perfect conveyance for a return to the age of exploration. On behalf of myself and the crew of...

Ancient Petroglyphs of the Baja Peninsula

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Twenty miles up a rough dirt road we passed through our last gate. Checho, our guide, opened the fence and waited for us to drive through before closing it behind us. Continuing a few meters further he indicated that we were to park. From here we would continue on foot. We were...

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The Glory of a Sunrise

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I was busy in the engine room when an orange glow outside the port hole caught my attention. Sunrise! A scattered layer of clouds promised one of unusual intensity, so I downed my tools, cleaned off my hands and climbed the ladder to the deck. Walking up the side deck toward the...

Going Back in Time

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A bit over three hours after leaving the paved road, our four wheel drive truck surged up a steep embankment and stopped in a small corral that was shaded by a few large mesquites. Stepping out of the truck was a step back in time. The wood rail corral was leaning into the...

Westward just completed her second season in the Sea of Cortez

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We are preparing to get underway from La Paz, Baja. Next stop is San Diego on our way to Alaska. It was a wonderful, challenging, exciting and sublime winter in the Sea of Cortez. And now Westward and Catalyst are heading north for Alaska.

Lessons from Captain Scammon

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As I prepared myself for my first Baja charter season I acquired as many writings about the region as possible. From beautiful large format photo journals to intertidal organism identification books to awkward, self-published accounts of personal adventures. As I have read...
MV Catalyst, SE Alaska Inside Passage, small ship cruises

Take a trip up the Inside Passage

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Enjoy this video from Alaska Magazine, aboard MV Catalyst.  

Puerto Gato

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We had anchored in Puerto Gato, a beautiful shallow bay that lies on the eastern shore of the Baja peninsula, about midway between the fishing villages of San Evaristo and Agua Verde. Northerly winds had been whipping up the Gulf for the past few days, and the resulting wind...
Historic MV Westward

MV Westward: a link to a historic past

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From the blog The Peregrine Sea, 2011 Tacoma’s waterfront has been undergoing a transition, and I intended to explore the new working waterfront museum at Foss Waterway Seaport, wondering if any ships would be moored there.  I ran into the WESTWARD and found a very active,...