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Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise July 2 – 13, 2003

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Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

July 2 – 13, 2003 .image006 [2]
Gato Loco is moving to a safer port for the fall hurricane season. Destination is San Carlos on the mainland side of the Sea of Cortez. San Carlos is 7 hours straight south of Phoenix in the Mexican state of Sonora. This destination is closer to home allowing us to drive to Gato Loco for future trips. You will hear more details about this area in the future.
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Official Tee-Shirt artwork

The chart below details the area we plan on hanging in. We will go to Coyote Bay as our first stop and plan on spending a couple days in the bay. This area has Hwy 1 along the shore and lots of tourist activity. Should be a fun place to visit. The area deserves a month to really do it justice.

The main cruising area for this trip

The complete route, 370 milesimage008 [4]

For this trip we will be spending most of our time adventuring between Puerto Escondido and Punta Chivato. This coast has some of the most interesting cruising grounds on Baja. The highlights will be Bahia Concepcion and a beautiful river city Mulege (Mul-la-ha).
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Puerto Escondido to Bahia Concepcion

As usual we will have teamwork to move the boat. Rick will take advantage of the last week in La Paz by bringing friends in to sail in the La Paz area. He will arrive June 26th. Bill and Dave will arrive July 1st to begin the passage north while Rick returns home to spend 4th of July weekend with his kids. Bill will be joined by one of his nieces and Dave’s daughter Shelly is very excited to do the full trip. They hope to head north for Puerto Escondido on the 2nd. This is the area that we covered in emails on our last trip. Bill will have the experience of cruising this leg before while everybody else will have a new adventure.image009 [6]

Frankie and Lowell will be flying in to Loreto on July 5th and joining Gato Loco in Puerto Escondido. Bill’s niece will end her cruise here and fly home on Sunday July 6th. Shortly after she departs we will begin the cruise north to the Mulege area. We will have 2 full days (possibly 3) to make Coyote Bay in Bahia Concepcion. Rick plans on rejoining the cruise while we send a couple days in the area.

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River area

Punta Chivato will be our last stop before heading across the sea to San Carlos. This resort area has the sister hotel to the beautiful one we visited in Loreto. Everybody is anxious to check it out after seeing the brochures.

We hope to be in San Carlos Saturday morning.

Bahia Coyte

Mid week we will move up to Mulege and spend a couple of days. Cruising guides speak very highly of this city. It is somewhat tropical due to the fresh river. We are really looking forward to this stop over.

As you can see it will be a busy trip. We are hoping for good weather (could be hot)… Emails will be spotty since we will probably be only sending from internet cafes along the way.

Checkout these links learn more about the area.

http://www.cruisecortez.com/concepcion.htm#coyote [8]

http://www.cruisecortez.com/mulege.htm [9]

http://www.cruisecortez.com/puntachivato.htm [10]

Big Fun!!

The Gato Crew

Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

Photo summary of trip from La Paz to Puerto Escondido

Gato Loco on the way to Bahia Concepcion

July 2 – 5

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Day two – snorkeling at Isla Islotes

Some of the best snorkeling of the whole trip

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Bow riders Sydney and Shelly

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Bill, Sydney and Shelly about to enjoy some gooood fish tacos at Puerto Escondido

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Dave working hard to land the usual bonita

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Shelly, Sydney and Dave at Honeymoon Bay

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Shelly and Dave at Honeymoon Bay looking toward Gato Loco

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Good under water visible and many colorful fish made for good snorkeling.

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

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Farewell to La Paz – Hope to return soon.

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Bill & Sydney at Honeymoon cove on the trip north

Landing in Loreto (breakwater marina in view)

Gato Loco in Puerto Escondido…image006[7] [21]

Trip to loreto went uneventful. Frankie has a story that includes me getting a speeding ticket in Tucson but other than that we arrived on time. There was a big problem on the boat because the fresh water pump had failed 2 days earlier and no showers were had for the last two days. A second hand distress call reached us on the 4th so we arrived with a pump to save the day. Quick order we had the pump installed and shower working. Shelly was standing with her towel and ready.

Weather is a little warm when the breeze stops. I forgot a fan in Phx but all on board were in use last night for the first time on the trip. Bill says the weather is getting warmer as Gato Loco moves north.

Sydney (Bill’s niece) will be heading back today. Taxi is waiting on shore as I write this. We hope to use the taxi to run to the near by store for supplies. Local internet Café/doc master has made a run to Loreto for gas for us. This should get us ready to head north to next anchorage today.

Until next update

Sydney & Shelly

Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

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Gato Loco in San Sebastian

July 6

Leaving Puerto Escondido took a little longer than hoped but since it could be out last provisions for 4 days we made a 2nd trip back to the small Mercado. This also allowed us to get an email off and put some beer on board which we appreciated greatly later!!

We sailed by Loreto on out way north and thought about Sydney sightseeing while waiting for her flight. We think we made good arrangements with Martin the Taxi driver to get her to town for some sight seeing and on to the airport.

Wind was light and seas flat as we motored north allowing use to make 6.6kts. Coastline is fairly flat with desert floor coming right down to the sea. We have to cover 60+ miles today make it into Bahia Concepcion at a reasonable time tomorrow. Early afternoon we decided to stop at San Juanico bay for some snorkeling to cool down. Yes it’s pretty warm when the wind stops.

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Great snorkeling S. Juanico

We didn’t find Nemo but some of his buddies were there. Big rock formations made it interesting.

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Shelly was busy with her new Harry Potter book.

Our stretch goal was to make it to a very small anchorage called San Sebastian. A smoken spinnaker run put us in by 6:30.

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This little community has a natural spring, mex fishing camp and numerous American homes. The presence of palm trees everywhere gives it a topical feel.

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We went exploring and found moisture in the ground everywhere. Palm frons are the main building material in the area.

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This little guy was cruising the area.

Boys found theire way back to the boat.

Shamwari a 40 footer was also anchored with us filling most of the bay. One more boat might be able to squeeze in. Shamwari had 2 teenage girls on board that came over and invited Shelly to there boat to get acquainted.

Night was windy with winds out of the canyon behind the small bay. With wind direction we swung out near the entrance of the bay but still protected by a small reef along the entrance. A very cool place but no protection from the east but definitely worth the stop.

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

Gato Loco in Bahia Concepcion

July 7

We left San Sabastian 9ish. Morning breeze still blowing, sailed until 11 before mid day doldrums.

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Lowell at the helm as we head out from a mid day snorkel stop to cool down. Winds back up from the south as we pull out from snorkeling. Winds held and moved to the North as we entered Bahia Concepcion allowing us to fly the spinnaker.

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Full sails

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Lowell and Bill tending sails as we head south in Concepcion. Winds slowly died as we moved deeper into the bay. Dave had binoculars scanning shore for a bar/restaurant to take a break in.

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Bertha’s on Playa Burro was the spot. Blended Margs and finally dinner. They started the generator to run the fans for us. Aren’t we special. Fans really helped.

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Satisfied crew after early dinner.

Moved south one bay to Coyote cove with lots of vacation homes along the beach. Many sailboats anchored for the season. Seems to be a secure place to leave a boat.

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Shelly found the bottom under our anchorage covered with clams. In short order she had enough for a feast..

. Winds have stopped and we are running a fan while we play cards.

Big day and early night…

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

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Gato Loco in Bahia Concepcion – 2nd day – Cliff homes, Santispac bay

July 8

We anchored in Coyote cove in front of vacation homes. The area was totally closed probably until cooler weather in Oct. We had our warmest night yet for sleeping (low temp 83).

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Coyote Bay beach house.

We went back to Bertha’s for Shrimp, Beer and water then headed out to the islands for a lay day of snorkeling and sightseeing. 1st stop Isla Coyote a mile off the beach. 2 rocks off the island was a great spot. Ledges with deep water below. Lots of fish.

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Off Isla Coyote

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Shelly ready to hit the water to cool off

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In search of Nemo

We stopped at 4 or 5 good spots before moving back to Santispac bay for the night. Homes at the top of email are to the north of us..

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Cactus perches on small island

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Shelly and Frankie guide Lowell on beach tour

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Dave prepared and Bill BBQed the shrimp.

Anchored near punta Tordillo in Santispac bay in 30’ of water. After last night we tried to find a good breeze spot protected from the SE waves. Cooler and smooth night so I think we found the spot. Everybody sleep much better.

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

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Gato Loco in Mulege shallow anchorage estuary

July 9 – 10

Had breakfast at a EcoLodge before heading north to Mulege. The trip north took about 2 hours where we motored into the shallow anchorage in about 4’ of water. Shortly after we pulled in a Gemini joined us. Just us shallow draft boats can anchor here! A trip to the port captain’s office to check in turned out to be good news. No Check in required & no fees!

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Sailboat moored on seawall at Mulege entrance

We motored the dingy into town past nice homes with waterfront boat docks. Made a quick stop at Jungle Jim’s cantina for some local knowledge. 2 miles into Mulege with 5 of us in the little dingy was a sight I’m sure..

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Home along estuary river front

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Progress up the river as we head to town in the dingy

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River home

The trip seemed longer than 2 miles.

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We were dry from the dingy ride.

Found a I-café and hopefully sent some emails before having lunch. A little sightseeing and then motored back to the boat still feeling the effects of some strong margs..

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The crew relaxing in Mulege plaza

2nd day Lowell hitched a ride into town with Garth from Inclinations moored on the wall to get gas cans filled. When he returned in a taxi with full cans, the entire crew pilled in the taxi for some sightseeing on wheels.

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Historic mission founded 1705

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Fresh water basin below the Mission

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Photo thanks to our taxi driver at the mission

Riding in a taxi is much better with these temps.. We visited a historic prision that’s now a museum and found some good shopping before having another good lunch.

Back to the boat we quickly readied the boat to head north to Punta Chavato. Winds are up 20kts so it’s going to be a good leg.

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

Gato Loco on the way to San Carlos

July 10

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Hotel at Punta Chivata

Winds still blowing 20 as we approached Punta Chivata. A quick survey of the anchorage and no way we would be comfortable here. Next option is to go 14 miles north to Isla San Marcos with a well protected port. The island has an active gypsum mine exporting around the world. We anchored near the loading dock. Water very cold here and temp is much cooler.

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Gypsum loading dock

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1st sunset with west water since sailing from San Diego

Mine siren went off at 5am & 5:45am. We left for San Carlos by 6am. I guess they use the siren to wake the village for work.

The San Carlos leg is 78 miles and will take all day.

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Crew busy with important activies

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Frankie getting galley in ship shape

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1pm and better than ½ the way. Hope to arrive by 7pm.

Until the next update..


Gato Loco – The Mulege Cruise

Gato Loco – In San Carlos

July 11 -12

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Twin peaks at the entrance of San Carlos harbor

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Homes near the outer bay entrance

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Overlooking outer bay

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Marina San Carlos entance

Winds built to 10 kts in the final hour of the crossing improving our arrival. 12 hours to cross (6 to 6) motor sailing the distance. Winds were blowing strong as we entered the marina and we found that our slip was very tight and against a sea wall. We made it!

First thing on Saturday we moved to final end-tie in front of the restaurant.

Everybody likes the marina.

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Gato Loco’s new home near restaurant in marina

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View to the south

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Gato Loco ready for the next trip

We hope to adventure around the San Carlos area in the coming months before heading to Pureto Penasco.

Until the next voyage..

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