Birthday Boy sails the Midriff Islands
Wednesday morning May 3nd
We’re up and in to Guillermo’s for breakfast. This will be our last opportunity for eating on shore until we make Santa Rosalia 3 or 4 days down the way. Talking to the Guillermo’s staff we arrange for Victor to give us a ride to the Pemex for our gas. A little gas in his car and a 6 pack and he’s very happy. During the drive we learn he’s from Ensenada and came to the Bay to slow his pace down and be able to live right on the sea. Very nice kid.
We bid goodbye to the village and haul anchor 10ish and head south in the Bay looking for whale sharks and to check out the 2 communities in the south bay. No luck on the whale shark but we did pick up some nice bay wind as we sailed by the community of La Mona. The photos below are from La Mona.
Today is our sightseeing day. Next we sailed in the nearby anchorage Don Juan one of the best protected anchorages on Baja to fly Bill’s drone.
The picture above is the entrance into the anchorage and you can see Gato Loco anchored in the turquoise water upper left. Bill got some great shots of the wrecked fishing boat setting back in the bay. As he approached coyotes fled from the boat making us think they probably use the boat for their den.
Exiting the Bay area there’s a series of beautiful bays with white sand beaches just south. We decide on Ensenada el Pescadores where there’s a beach resort that’s been closed for years but still has a caretaker who keeps the place in order for when the owner visits occasionally. We anchored in 15’ of crystal clear water with at least a mile long white sand beach in front of us. It brings back memories of Frankie and I walking Neely on this beach on our passage south with Craig and John years back. After checking out the resort we walked the entire beach before relaxing for a beer (or two). The opening photo on this blog was taken setting on the steps of one of the palapa cabins.
It’s ashamed this place is no longer open. It was built with some cool large palapa cabins. This beach resort has an island setting in the middle of the bay giving it good protection and that’s where we headed for the night. What a great anchor spot giving us the sunset shot across the bay while the amigos enjoy some cocktails on the bow.
Thursday May 4th (Bill’ birthday)
Our sightseeing cruise continues.. The next bay south is Ensenada el Alacran where the Las Animas Wilderness Retreat is. The camp is built with yurtrs as cabins. They fly people from San Diego to Laguna Ojo de Liebre for whale watching and then on to Bay of LA were you board pangas for the 15 mile ride to this resort. Very cool and it would be perfect for a Anita and Daryl retreat and another chapter on her book.
We got a tour of the yurt rooms and then they invited for breakfast a perfect way to start Bill’s birthday.We spent some time with a guest from San Diego named Tom who gave us the low down on the resort since the only staff member that spoke English was out fishing with guest.
Frankie, you would have loved it.. We were greeted as we arrived by two brown labs. Click on the photo left to see their brochure.
Lots of info and a great breakfast in our bellies we head out for the next sightseeing tour. This relaxed pace is very unusual for us, normally we are focused on heading north or south. Next stop Animas Slot for Bill to fly the drone. But WAIT.. We’ve got fin whales all over the channel as we head south. Time to try to capture some drone shots. This turned out to be a bigger challenge than you might think. By the time you get the drone up the whales decides to dive. We did finally get some video that I took this photo from. Bill is loving it. Nice birthday treat for him.
The weather is warm and the water is 65 degrees but swimmable if you don’t stay in too long. John is working hard to catch dinner but no joy. This small bay has nice white sand beach lots rock rubble around the bay entrance making for good fishing. The cruising guide mentions 2 tunnels through the island on the west side of the anchorage. One remains and then other has been covered by a rock slide. Good anchorage for one or two boats.
Isla Salsipuedes (the site of the birthday party)
We choose a remote island in the Sea of Cortez to celebrate Bill’s birthday. Salsipuedes is our favorite island to stop over south of Bay of LA with good fishing, snorkeling and hiking. The surface is relatively smooth making it great for hikes with great 360 view of the midriff Sea.
Winds were light on our passage from Animas Slot to Salsipuedes. Bill put the drone up to get the anchorage view and you can see the sea is flat calm. Water temp is still cool 68 but warmer than last night. After some swimming it’s time for a birthday dinner. John’s galley dinner tonight has stuffed green chilies with green Chile chicken. Yum
You’ll have to see the video to see Bill inhale to blow out candles but coughed instead. The old man did have a good birthday dinner.
Happy Birthday Bill
Until the next Update
Hola mi amigos y amigas from the Gato Loco! Every time I think this trip can’t get better it does. The kindness and warmth of our Mexican neighbors has been incredible. We’ve been given shrimp, had meals made for us, and even had a young man give us the keys to his truck to fill our gas cans. In all cases they refused payment so we had to sneak a tip or a 6 pack to them as our thank you. The sea has been beautiful. We had a full day a whale watching with the Vice Commodore Lowell steering us near while Bill the drone master hovered above. I’ve been doing a lot of fishing without much catching but the trip is still young. One of the most interesting sites was the abandoned beach resort. Beautiful facilities with spotless windows, polished floors and freshly raked sand on a perfect white sand beach, just no people there. A little spooky in a Scooby-Doo mystery kind of way.I also learned a new word, Yurt. Go figure. My 2 captains have continued to amaze me with their detailed knowledge of the ins and outs of every bay we anchor at. They continue to teach me about the sails and the rigging. I even got to drive the dingy! I’ve been trying my best to fatten my crew up with my take on firehouse cuisine and have been impressing them with my huge collection of corny 70’s songs. I wish my family could see all this with me, but thanks to Lowell’s blog at least they can get a small taste of the fun I am having. Love and miss you all!
Stay safe and I’ll be back for another report soon. Until then……….Teefy out!!