Hoppity hop, cruiser’s style
Hopping from anchorage to anchorage up Baja’s Eastern coastline has been progressing slowly for us. We are nearing mid April [in this story-telling] but we are looking to haul Meriwether out of the water in barely 7 weeks time and over 400 miles away still. Since leaving La Paz only three weeks prior, we have been stuck in place for two of those weeks due to weather, and the other time we stop, visit, and move on to another anchorage at pretty much a daily rate. Kerri has surely grown tired of my complaining, but I can’t help but stress the near-conflicting issues of a) we move too frequently, and b) we aren’t moving far enough when we do move. It is a conundrum that we keep finding ourselves in any time we have a deadline to be somewhere. With that said, I offer you the following blog post of a four day window in our lives.
After just a single night’s stay we left our previous 1-night anchorage to
sail motor the 15 nautical miles to San Marte for an overnight in the protection of the point. It was a short enough day on the water for Kerri to convince me to otherwise get off the boat and explore the nearby shoreline. There wasn’t much of it – the shoreline – as there were no safe paths into the cactus laden inlands, and a rocky shore kept us contained to a few hundred yards on the beach. Nevertheless, a lot was found and enjoyed by us both in that small space.
We moved the following day to the anchorage just 1.7 miles to the south (backtracking, ugh) for the second night. Why? For the sea cave worth exploring and a nearly 4 mile round trip in our dinghy is asking a lot of little electric motor. So, we brought the big boat over, anchored near the cave, and ventured out by snorkel to explore the whole area. Just as we finished up a large pod of dolphins swam past the exact spot we were just swimming. That is some damn bad timing right there. Although, I must say, the dolphins in Mexico are not all that playful as they were/are up in the Pacific North West. Most of these just seem to be all business. Just moving along at a moderate pace, feeding. We have yet to see any local dolphins play with Meriwether while underway.
Another single night’s stay and we were back underway. This time only 9 nautical miles, just round the point, to Aqua Verde. It is a well known and well hyped anchorage, which we shared with many other cruisers for our two night stay. And, although we did get off the boat to walk the village in search of some cookies (I was nearly out!) and ate at both shack-style restaurants, we failed to take any real photos of those trips to shore. Instead, I turned the camera to the sky to attempt to capture the show that the pelicans were performing.
We were back on the move after eating at all/both places to eat, this time for a full 26 miles to Puerto Escondido. This trip was fantastic, with nearly all of it under sail. The sun and a breeze were out and leading us the correct direction. We were sailing within a minute of clearing the other boats still on anchor and only pulled the sails down a few minutes before entering the channel into Escondido. We were having such a peaceful time on the water that we chose the long way around an island to ensure our wind did not get blocked.
Escondido is a well established stopping point for cruisers traveling up the coast. It has a full marina, restaurant, showers, laundry, fuel, pool, hot tub, and the price tag to go with it all. We took our first mooring ball of the year and shuttled into the marina area each day to run errands and eat at the bar/restaurant each evening. The biggest new of our time here is that we got in our first proper showers since mid January. Yep, you read that right – 4 months since our last shower and we wont get another for 3 more months.
Lots of other cruisers were stopping here the same few days we did, many of which we had only seen on AIS. It was nice meeting the new-to-us boaters and putting a face to the blip on the screen. Since the weekly rate is cheaper than a few days on the mooring, most paid for and stayed the week. We chose to get our chores done and get out to avoid getting trapped there for a full week. It wasn’t easy to leave. Escondido’s siren song is strong. We escaped after just two days on the ball – barely.
You may be surprised to read that the above photo is *literally* (seriously true) the only picture taken be either of us during our two-day stay.
Our next sail was to the town of Loreto, which we knew and have grown to love during our two visits back in the van-days. Two memories stick out to us here; 1) the best tacos in the world during Carnival, and 2) the best mole in the world at a local restaurant. We had missed Carnival, and by extension the tacos, by months so we could only re-live the mole this time around. Now, I usually have a rule that I ignore way too often. It is simply to never go back to a place in search of a repeat of that amazing memory or feeling. I do not think there is a single time in my life that the second time around was any where near as good as the first, and it was proven once again this time too. While the mole was still very good, it just wasn’t *that* good anymore. Two nights we stayed just off Loreto. We ate, we filled our fridge and propane tank and then we left, as is the norm now it seems.