San Jaunico with the wind at our back.
.…Tuesday morning woke with clear blue sky and a gentle breeze after a pretty wild night with 30 plus knot gusts disturbing the otherwise beautiful anchorage of on the south west of Isla Coronados, an extinct volcano. Emulating pearling Captain Otego 400 years previously, Kerry led a shore expedition of Bill & Richard to the peak where the crator, although now filled in, is very obvious. The walking was tough through basalt rocks & flintstone, deposited untold eons ago. But the view from the top was extraordinary, the whole Pueto Escondido archipeligo stretching out before us.
With the shore party safely ashore without loss to the hostile environment, mauruding coyotes or stray rattlers, we raised anchor and set north with a following wind, Goto Loco showing off with all its best finery and looked a picture in blue & red.Kerry & Richard on spinnaker watch whilst Neely, with Frankie as her assistant, kept a vigilant eye on the fishing. As it turned out, she could have stayed asleep.
Inshore another cat was rock hopping along the coast & frustrating us all by slowly creeping away from us despite our best efforts trimming the spinnaker. Even in remote & isolated laid-back Mexico, it is hard to put away the competitive spirit.
Now back on the Baja peninsular, we sailed into San Juanico Cove, a truly spectacular, protected Bay and an obvious favorite with cruising yachts heading north after Loreto Fest. Already anchored was our sailing nemisis of earlier on – but turning out to be a nice looking 46 footer with huge rig & obvious light weight. No shame in coming second to this.
At the head of the Bay, we anchored in a channel between two spectacular rock formations, one with dozens of large cactus sprouting from its crest, looking like a kid with a bad haircut. Overlooking us from the high cliff above, were a couple of expensive looking huciendas, nicely blending their colors with the landscape. Everywhere is barren, dry and very inhospitable but awesome & inspiring in its beauty. It is every bit as spectacular as the Kimberley region in Australia’s north west. But unlike the Kimberley easily accessible to the adventurous yachtie – why it isn’t overrun by cruising yachts is a total mystery – it is that amazing.
The destination is celebrated by the relatively few yachts that pass this way by a tree displaying the names of visiting yachts & their crew and the time of their stay. Resourcefully, Bill fashioned a Gato Loco memo out of a pumice rock. He very genorously allowed the others to do a little bit of coloring in and then finished it off with artistic flair with some shells & liquid nails. With our offering adding hugely to the creative worth of the cruising tree, we posed for a group photo to commenorate the auspicious event.
With Neely leading, we scrambled up the cliffs to the big house where a team of builders were installing a cliff top swimming pool. The house design had an east & west wing, linked by the open air kitchen, dining & living room. With the owners away & mis-interpreting the Builder’s spanish equivalent of “get lost” for “make yourself at home”, we did just that and felt right at home in no time at all. Except that we were under Lowell’s orders & posing for the camera shot, we would have been turned around gazing out over the patio & pool and the incredible vista of San Juanico Bay and its surrounding hills.
The owner has grand plans for a hotel and resort estate of 5,000 homes. What a shame that would be. But, as we’ve learned, like a lot of grand plans in Mexico, it will likely see a few of our lifetimes before it happens.
Back to the boat for the mandatory Margueritas and a spec tacular sunset over the amazing cactus island. Kerry threw a line in and immediately hauled in supper – a good sized sweetlip that hardly was dry before hitting the barbecue.
Frankie pulled further ahead in the marathon card game, whoopin’ & hollerin’ as she loaded points onto the rest of us suckers.
Life doesn’t get any better than this.
Thank you Lowell, Frankie, Bill & Neely for letting us share this wonderful experience.
Richard & Kerry for the Gato Loco Crew
Leg 1 April 11-19, Crew: Lowell, Bill, Dave – Puerto Penasco to San Carlos
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