Tuesday, September 27, 2011

La Guarda near Isla Estanque – Sept 26-27, 2011

This morning the wind was blowing from the south, so we waited until early afternoon to head down the island. At 1:00 the winds calmed down and we headed out of the bay, threw up both sails and took off. After an hour of sailing, the winds picked up. We had to pull in the jib and reef the main. For the next few hours, we tacked back and fourth till we made it to the bay before Isla Estanque. It was calm in the bay, so we dropped the anchor and had a quite night. Tomorrow, we are going back to the Bahia de Los Angeles Village for groceries, diesel and internet.

Calita Pulpito East, La Guarda – Sept 24 – 26, 2011

Saturday, we moved over into the next bay about 2 miles away. This bay is a little smaller, but we are going to hang around till we hear what Hilary is doing. It is hot, so we put up our shade covers for the first time away from a marina. Rick decided to leave the shade covers up over night, so of course the wind picked up, and at 1:00 in the morning we were on deck tearing down the covers. Lesson Learned: take down the covers every night before going to bed.
Hotel California with the Shade Covers
All morning, dolphins have been swimming through this bay. You can hear them blow as they pass the boat. They come so close, it is amazing.
Dolphins in the Bay

This afternoon, 2 other boats pulled into the anchorage. It seems a little crowded in here. But they left the following morning.

Finally, Monday morning we heard that Hilary was slowing down and shouldn’t affect us in the northern sea. We will be heading south this afternoon to the bottom tip of the island, to a place called Isla Estanque. We’ve heard this place has no see ums, but with the wind blowing, it shouldn’t be too bad.

Calita Pulpito West, La Guarda – Sept 22 – 24, 2011

We sailed south down the back side of La Guarda about 20 miles to a bay called Calita Pulpito. We arrived at 2:00 and anchored in the west bay. If the wind stays calm this will be a great place, but there isn’t much protection from the north or east. We’ve been hearing about hurricane Hilary and hope it doesn’t come our way. If so, we will head north, far north.
"Just a Minute" Sailing South

Beautiful Water in This Bay

We’ve introduced Patrick and Laura to Rummikub and they love it as much as we do. We’ve been playing quite often. But they are getting too good.


The no see ums are getting bad here, so we will be moving around the corner tomorrow.

Another Arch

Refugio, East Bight – Sept 20 – 22, 2011

They say a norther is coming so we are heading back into Refugio. This time we will anchor in the East Bight, for a change of scenery. This bay has the best caves and green shrubs near the beach.
Caves in the Rocks

The Beach at the East Bight of Refugio

Gizmo made another bird friend. She got very close to this one, but as she went to grab it, it flew away.

The guys are out hunting food everyday and bringing back more than we can eat. Our freezer is getting full of fish.

Hueso, La Guarda – Sept 18 – 20, 2011

Sunday morning we pulled up the anchor and went back near sail rock and into Hueso Bay. This is a great place for more snorkeling, fishing and beachcombing. Also, more beautiful rock formations. There is one rock with a hole through the middle. It looks like a picture window.

We have been learning a lot from Just a Minute. Rick has learned to spearfish and hunt for food and I’ve learned how to make bread. We are eating good!
Bread Before

Baked Bread

Trigger Fish

More Trigger

The sunsets here are spectacular. The mountains and sky turn a bright orange.

Refugio, West Bight – Sept 15 – 18, 2011

Thursday morning it was time to head to Refugio on the north end of Angel De La Guarda Island. We were traveling with ‘Just a Minute’ and we both wanted to circumnavigate this 40 mile long island. Not many boats go to the eastern side of the island as there are only a few anchorages and the winds can change quickly. But we would like to see it.

On the way up to Refugio we could see what looked like another boat near the point. As we got closer, we realized it was a large rock covered in bird guano called Roca Vela (Sail Rock) and it did look like a sail. The entrance to Refugio is just past this rock. It is tricky getting into this anchorage because of the shallow areas, reefs and submerged rocks, but it is worth it. This is a beautiful area that not many boats go to. There are great rock formations. One in the center of the bay is called ‘Fang Rock’. There is an arch off the end of one point and Laura thinks it looks like an elephant trunk. I think she’s right.
Fang Rock

An Elephant Trunk??

Sea Lions

The next morning the crew from Just a Minute and Rick went to the far side of Isla Mejia in the dinghies. They found a bunch of sea lions. Laura jumped in to snorkel with the babies and a large bull came up and yelled at her. She flew back into the dinghy!

The Crew from 'Just a Minute'

Refugio is a beautiful spot, but the no see ums have arrived so tomorrow we sail around the point for another spot.

Alcatraz – Sept. 14 – 15, 2011

Mid morning we left La Gringa for Isla Alcatraz, a 10 mile trip north, but still on the Baja mainland. A little bird landed on the boat and rode most of the way with us. We pulled into the bay and anchored in front of a white sand beach. 
The Beach at Alcatraz

Alcatraz Island

Rick with His Book

Rick has finally started to relax, he read his first book of the trip. Ted from Firefly loaned him a book called “Enchanted Vegabonds” about a couple sailing in the Sea of Cortez in the 30’s. I’ll read it next, before we meet them again and return it.

That little bird got really brave and hopped around the cockpit until Gizmo noticed it and chased it away.
Gizmo and the Bird

We had a quiet evening aboard and left the following morning for Refugio.

La Gringa – Sept 11 – 14, 2011

We pulled up anchor early to get across the bay to the village. We had to get fuel, groceries and an internet connection before we traveled north a few miles to La Gringa. Rick and Patrick took the jerry cans and hitched a ride with a friend of Patrick’s in his pick-up to the Pemex station outside of town. He also stopped at the liquor store so they could buy cases of beer. It’s a good thing they got a ride, it would be too heavy to carry these things.  The village is a small town with a few restaurants and stores. Laura, Jack and I found a restaurant with internet and checked e-mail and uploaded the blog. We didn’t see much of the village because we were trying to get to the Full Moon Party at La Gringa.
We left by 2:00 and anchored in La Gringa. We dinghy’ed over to the South America talk at 4:30 that Herme from ‘Iwa’ gave. We joined about 12 other dinghies and were there about 10 minutes when someone on one of the nearby boats yelled “Here comes the wind”. Everyone looked out and saw the Chubasco coming our way. All the dinghies left immediately for their boats and prepared for the winds. They blew for about an hour and a half at up to 35 knots. Right before dark, the wind stopped and a rainbow came out. It was a calm night.
The Rainbow during the Storm
During the Chubasco

Calm after the Storm

Monday was the Full Moon Party. There was a floaty party in the lagoon and most of the cruisers made great costumes. We also learned how to dig for treasures from the sea. They had judges for the floaties and the awards ceremony was after the pot luck that night on the beach. The weather cooperated and it was a great day and night.

Crusiers at the Floaty Party

More Costumes

Digging for Treasures for Dinner

Jack winning an Award

The next morning, I made a heavier snubber for the anchor. We were a little worried about ours breaking during the Chubasco. Rick went up the mast to change our wind indicator. It is nice to know where the wind is coming from and how strong it is, especially in a Chubasco. He took a few pictures of all the boats in the bay for the Full Moon Celebration. They will all be going in different directions after this. We plan to head further north tomorrow.
The New Snubber

A shot of the Bay from the Top of the Mast

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Bahia de Los Angeles – Sept 10, 2011

Today we are moving into Bahia de Los Angeles and anchoring in front of the village. We plan to go ashore and find an internet connection. The clouds didn’t look good so we didn’t go to shore, instead we headed across the bay to La Mona to anchor. We enjoyed a fish dinner on ‘Just a Minute’ and stayed way too late. Tomorrow we’ll try to make it into the village.

Quemado - Sept 9 -10, 2011

7:00am we pulled up the anchor and motored carefully through the small opening out of Cala San Francisquito. In the bay, the water was calm, but as soon as we hit open water it was very rolly with white caps. The seas stayed this way for the next 45 miles. The good thing is the waves pushed us north and we made it in 8 hours. As we came into the anchorage at Quemado we saw 2 other boats and dolphins in the bay.

I made crab cakes in the hot galley and they turned out pretty good. We watched the dolphins swim around the boat as we ate. It was a great show.
Dolphin Beside the Boat
Greeting us as we came into the bay

Cala San Francisquito – Sept 5 – 9, 2011

This is a perfect little anchorage, wave protection all around us and a little breeze to cool us off. A north wind picked up and was forecasted to blow for 3 days. This is a great place to hang out and wait for the wind to change so we can head north.
The Beach at Cala San Francisquito

We are spending our days on boat projects (yes, there are always boat projects!), swimming, playing Rummikub, Bocce Ball on the beach and watching the fish swim around the boat. Another catamaran came into the bay and joined us for a game of Bocce Ball. They have 2 cute little boys aboard, 2 and 5. It must be rough cruising with little ones, but they seem to love it.
Tons of fish at the bow of the boat

Jack and Pam on the beach getting ready for Bocce Ball

Jack and Rick Setting up the Court

Tonight we are going to attempt to make a pizza again. It is too hot in the boat, so we will try to cook it on the BBQ using the pizza stone. Results = it tasted OK, but we need practice. The crust was a little hard and we used too much sauce.


The north winds have died and it started blowing from the south, so tomorrow morning we are heading further north. We plan to stop at Ensenada El Quemado on our way to Bahia de Los Angeles.
Winds from the South, Ready to Go