Caleta San Juanico
It’s Wednesday, June 19th, and it’s another amazing day. I’m snugly anchored in the southern portion of Caleta San Juanico, and the sandstone bluffs right behind me are unreal.
Small View of Sandstone Bluffs, Caleta San Juanico
This morning I was up at sunrise, and after checking my anchor position, I switched off the anchor light and checked my battery status. This I can now do with my newfangled battery monitor. All is good there. I started my morning routine by filling the coffee pot/espresso maker with water and espresso, and set that on the stove. While it’s a-brewing, I drank a liter of water and put away the dishes left over from the night before. After I steamed my milk, I sat next to the radio and switched it on, waiting through the check ins until the weather forecast came on. Gary, the guy who lives in El Burro Cove, has been doing this daily forecast for years. He sounds knowledgeable and uses as many reliable resources he can get his hands on. Around 0800, I turned the SSB radio off and the vhf on. I finished cleaning and doing light chores, and checked that my solar panels were optimally angled to get the early sun.
After my normal tooth-brushing, face washing and sunscreen applying were done, I hit the SUP. I wanted to get a nice paddle in before the breeze piped up, and it was forecast to do so today. I paddled against the wind for about 1.5 nm, until I arrived at the southern point of this small bay and beached the board. I wished I had brought my camera and a pair of shoes, as the rocks were rough but the scenery amazing. I gathered a few shells in my beach-combing and enjoyed stretching my sea legs on shore. I must admit, my shoulders, lats and arms are in great shape, but my legs are lacking. They welcomed the long walk. After gathering a few unusual shells, I walked back to the board. I noticed a large cross propped in some rough rocks about 50 yards away. As I stumbled barefoot to investigate, I noted a rock wind-break built nearby. Sure enough, there was a rocky cairn in the shape of a 6′ oblong with a cross coming out of it. A favorite dog? I hoped for that instead of the other options my mind offered up. I dragged the SUP to the water and after tripping gracelessly (I know, me?) over a few slippery rocks, I climbed aboard and paddled along the dramatic shoreline. It really was a sight.
Nature’s Refrigerator… Nice Black Skipjack (I found out not real good eatin’…)
Soon, I arrived back at Willow. The wind was howling now, so I decided to stay aboard for the remainder of the day. I parked the board and grabbed the bucket of soaking stuff from yesterday’s fish cleaning. I’m getting much better in my fish cleaning, but I still make a heck of a mess. After rinsing my dive bootie, a few rags, and my fish towline, I decided to hit the water. The temperature inside the cabin was already 90 degrees, and it wasn’t noon yet. After a refreshing swim, I made a tall OJ and tonic and grabbed a book. I’m nearing the end of this one, and though I’ve read it before, I still enjoy learning what’s next. Good thing I have no memory… As I recline in the cockpit under the awning, I bat away bees coming to scout for fresh water. The only thing available are the cats bowls of water, and they’re not very large. About 20 pages from the end of the book, it’s time for another swim.
I took another swim, and this water was refreshing. I’m amazed at the air temps, even in 20 knots of wind, and the cooler water helps alot! I decided to move on tomorrow, Thursday, June 20th, and got Willow ready to move.
Thursday morning, I was up before dawn and weighing anchor. I wanted to get as many miles today as possible. Where am I going? Who knows! Could be Mulege, Punta Chivato or Santa Rosalia. Or Bahia Santo Domingo. I’ll just have to wait and see how conditions go. Sunrise was awesome…
Another Incredible Sunrise at Sea
The east southeast breeze kicked up, clocked to southeast, and built through the afternoon. The autopilot wasn’t holding the course with the sail plan I had up, so I reefed the main and dropped the jib and staysail. With just the reefed main, we were doing 6.5 knots, DDW. Nice! I rounded Punta Concepcion around 1530, and had the hook down in Bahia Santo Domingo around 1700. Time for a swim!
Almost Full Moon Rising, Bahia Santo Domingo
It was wonderful there, and I was the only boat. The moon rose just shy of full on the 20th, the last day of Spring, and I had an extra long day of sunshine. Just for me! Okay, maybe not just for me, but I can always delude myself! Friday, I did laundry, boat style, in the morning, and took a long paddle to the beach for some shell hunting in the afternoon. It’s really heating up, and the walk back to my SUP found me in bath tub temperature, chest high water, trying to find a way to be cool. Once back at Willow, I stayed in the water for a while longer, and just thought about the trip so far. I am the absolutely luckiest person on the planet to be doing what I am doing. It boggles my mind…
Later in the evening, two more boats pulled into the bay. One, a Norsea 27, Vela, is also being singlehanded by a guy named Brian. We spoke for a bit on the VHF. Out of San Francisco, he left in March and has been moving pretty much since then. He’s on his way over to San Carlos to put the boat away for the summer. He sounded like a real nice young guy who was out there doing it. I wished him well.
This morning, Saturday, I decided to head a little farther into Bahia Concepcion to either El Coyote or El Burro Cove. The first real weather concern popped up on the radar yesterday, but I feel pretty good about things. There is no recorded occurrence of a hurricane making landfall on Baja in the month of June, and only one in July. It’s just something to be aware of, watch out for, and have a plan for escape, management, or deluge. This place I’m at, Bahia Concepcion, is roughly 25 nm long, north to south, and is basically smack dab in the middle of the inside of the Baja peninsula. Though pretty dang hot, I think I’ll hang for a week or so, as long as the monsters hang with it. They are undeniably hot, and have a tough time escaping the heat. Kai is pretty quiet about things, and stretches out on the cabin sole. Makani, Fat Red Boy Cat, is vocal, whiney, and constantly cranky as he looks for different ways to escape. The belly-up, all fours extended outward position he assumes is pretty funny…
At 1500, I’m happily anchored in 8′ of water in El Coyote Cove, in front of some pretty fabulous palapas and homes. I’m looking straight into a building with the master bedroom completely exposed, as with the heat, there really is no need for walls… I’m gonna take a swim, put up the boom tent, and try to cool down this boat a little. I hope you all are well, happy and healthy. Again, I will be back in La Paz, just over 200 nm away, by the first of August. Take care and know I love and miss you all. Best Fishes…
Wendy I am following your travels on the “quake map” just a stupid app but has a good map to all the ports so thanks for keeping me entertained! Your an orange dot! And no earthquakes around you! Xoxo miss ya Drea
I’m so glad, Drea! Too much fun here! And one should know, it’s always good to be a orange dot! I’ll let you know what the next stop is… Take care, I love and miss you, and give my best to Mom and Graham.
Hi, Wendy. I’m sure having fun reading about your adventures. Sounds sort of like a dream, moving through the heat and deserts (both land and sea deserts, as the ocean is a desert with the life underground, eh? (there is some song about that running through my head)). Pretty funny picture of the BRFB – Big Red Fat Boy – trying to escape the heat. Keep one eye on the weather and the other on the rocks and the third on the great mysterious universe you are moving through.
Hey, Ian! I’m glad you’re enjoying the stories. Yeah, the fat red boy cat is looking for any way he can to cool down. The Sea here is amazing, the people super charming, and the sailing very nice. I’m starting on my way back down to La Paz late tonight from Santa Rosalia, hoping to take the rest of the month to get there. I hope you’re well, and are making plans to get back to La Cruz soon. Take care, stay cool, and have a great summer! See you down here soon! Best Fishes!!
On Tue, Jul 2, 2013 at 9:38 AM, wendyonwillow