Sunday, April 28, 2013

Back in Loreto

4/6 Mom to bus station by 11:30. Shuttle van ride 6 hours back to La Paz for her Sunday flight. Claire and I went out for cocktails and internet. Weather check. Looks like a blow Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Another rant on the Puerto Escondido/Loreto radio-Net. Claire and I having little weather knowledge and being quite inexperienced to this lifestyle saw big pressure systems off of southern california and arizona area. We are sandwiched between here, in the Sea, and one can easily suggest the high winds coming our way. Further investigation showed that the winds for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday would be over 25 knots. But we could not make out if it was from the SW or NW. Which can make a big difference in sailing and anchoring. Most wind being between 9PM and 9AM for those days/nights. That morning on the net again (I listen for reference and hoping that another boat gives input) there was no mention of high winds or these pressure systems. I made note of their weather report again nothing above 12 knots. Jokes about the calmness. 
4/7 We think it’s finally daylights savings time here? Went to Farmer’s market for provisions. Stole ice from the Mision Hotel! You’d be proud Mom, Claire fooled them real good into thinking she was a tourist going out on a tourboat and needed ice for her cocktails. Anchor up at 10:15. Crazy thick fantasy fog all over the islands and intertwining the palm trees. Still dissipating at 11:00. Heading 22 miles back North to San Juanico for the blow. Which is in OUR forecast, no one elses… Very hot out with a ENE breeze. 12:30 hoisted the mainsail ironically in the same location that it came down in days before during that squall. Great sailing. A rare thick fog lays between Isla Coronado and Isla Carmen. Drifting fog lifting over the coastal mountains. San Bruno creek area filled with mirages and sizzling mirrored reflections. (one suggestion of why early sailors coming for missions and settlements had such errors in their charts for the area.) We had such a great sail that we considered going farther north to Puerco while it was still nice out. We decided not to with our forecast, unknown protection of that bay, and it was damn hot out. Anchor down pretty much in the same spot as before at 15:45. Wind died after sunset and easterly swell came into the bay making it uncomfortable. Rocking side to side. Hard gusts from dead West started before midnight. Ending the ‘earthquakes’ in our home. I let out more scope. Consistently heavy wind all night with spurts of strength.

tree house bar

mexico has the best pastries in the world


chicken molé

fresh shrimp and garlic

chocolate clams au gratin

local sea bas



crepes and mexican caramel

adios mama!


mysterious fog

farmer's market

river mouth of loreto

north side isla coronado

crazy fog rolling around the sea

greatest sailing

Caleta San Juanico

4/3 Anchor up at 9:45 to finish our heading of 6 miles north to Caleta San Juanico, our original destination days before. Calm wind on the nose and rolling smooth swell. Halfway there saw wind forming on the horizon. Nasty swell and gusty wind again. Very very annoying. Forecast is never correct. Let me rant on the local Puerto Escondido/Loreto radio-Net. They do a daily forecast every morning. I will explain that these are seasonal gringos in the most protected bay one may ever see. They leave their boat in this bay or to the north, coming each spring on vacation. Wallets full and worries empty. They are strapped to mooring balls, sail covers never removed, cockpits enclosed with biminis and wind-dodgers similar to an incubator, and they might motor to one of 5 islands within their 10 mile radius, a few times each season. They give a lousy weather report and usually joke about any wind reaching the teens. Little do they know that actual cruisers, outside of their perfect bubble, might be depending on the only radio contact and information in the area to navigate the shifty area. From this day on I gave up on their reports. We finally got into San juanico with winds gusting over 25 knots. I wrote down that their weather report for this day said 5-10 knot winds, light and variable, with flat seas. “it’s gunna be a great day” WRONG. 5 sailboats and one power boat in here. We over-heard on the radio of an alleged stolen dinghy reported last night. Campers on the beach. I had trolled 2 poles on the way up, not being able to real them up in time, they were caught in the motor. This made anchoring more stressful than dangerous. Claire heroically jumped in to untangled the mess. That evening I caught 5 roosterfish in the surf drop off on the SW beach.
4/4 Wonderful bay. Aquarium cove to the north. Surf fishing to the SW. Reefs to the S. Two Islets on the northern side. Many areas to tuck into and explore. We decided this area is so vast and hard to explain that it looks like a mixture of those mountain paintings in Chinese restaurants, fly-fishing lagoons with greenery similar to the American NW, Moon rocks and cliffs, Bahama beaches and reefs, and New Mexican cactus deserts. Caught a big Grunt and white sea bass surf fishing again. Dangerous toilet situation caused stress amongst the crew, leading to a tense evening. Met Ben on ‘IriExpress’ gave us tips on foul weather sailing. 
4/ 5 Anchor up at 6:20AM heading 22 miles back to Loreto. Discussion with Ben last night gave us outside insight. Trying to continue 50 miles north to Mulegé area, with the time crunch of my mother’s departure, unknown weather, and not many anchorages seemed to be the poor choice in this situation. We have never departed on a Friday and have never back-tracked this entire trip. But we already know the course back south, we know the town, we know that their is a bus there, we know where to anchor, and we know it will be a quick ride. So we left, for now, abandoning our dream of Mulegé. Actually there was no wind and we did not sail. We motored straight there. Anchor down at high noon. Scorching hot. Walked with Mom to the bus station to buy her ticket. Very nice dinner out at a restaurant we had tried to go to on our first outing in Loreto. Funny how things like that happen.



big high tides make it brackish

this was the perfect drop off for fishing

rooster fish

"the aquarium"

fossilized shells

clear reefs

full of sea life. groupers, triggers, angelfish, morey eels, reef fish galore


grunt and white sea bass

dolphin sworm

isla coronado