A Taste of Cruising Mexico

Vessel Name: Journey
Vessel Make/Model: Passport 40
Hailing Port: Ventura, Ca
Crew: Jeff and Dori Beller
About: We're home ported out of Ventura, California. Jeff is a software engineer and Dori is a special ed teacher. We're both on sabbatical from our carreers or early retirement. We're not too sure which and don't really care. Cruising fits us real well right now.
Extra: This is our third extended cruise to Mexico. I guess we like it there! We hope you enjoy reading this journal of our cruise.
12 July 2012 | Ventura, CA
20 June 2012 | San Diego, CA
12 June 2012 | Turtle Bay
11 June 2012 | Turtle Bay
04 June 2012 | Bahia San Juanico
02 June 2012 | Outside of the Baja
31 May 2012 | Cabo San Lucas
27 May 2012 | La Paz
22 May 2012 | La Paz
22 May 2012 | Southern Sea of Cortez
15 May 2012 | Bahia Candeleros
15 May 2012 | Bahia Salinas
15 May 2012 | Isla Carmen
15 May 2012 | Isla Carmen
15 May 2012 | Isla Danzante
02 May 2012 | Sea of Cortez
02 May 2012 | Punta Colorada (Isla San Jose)
02 May 2012 | Sea of Cortez
02 May 2012 | Sea of Cortez
14 April 2012 | Mazatlan to La Paz
Recent Blog Posts
12 July 2012 | Ventura, CA

Home Sweet Home

Journey has been home for just over a week, after sailing into Ventura harbor on the Fourth of July.

20 June 2012 | San Diego, CA

Survivors of the Un-Bash

It seems there is no rest for the weary. (OK, after resting four days, I guess being weary isn't an excuse anymore.) Anyway, we've received a few 'gentle' hints from some impatient readers. They've noticed that our position reports show we've reached San Diego, but our blog hasn't been updated to reflect [...]

12 June 2012 | Turtle Bay

A Night at Anabel's

Last night we debated whether or not to leave Turtle Bay early this morning, but one day's rest just didn't put a dent in the sense of exhaustion we were feeling after this last week. So we put off our departure until tomorrow. Our reward for making that decision was spending this evening at Anabel's. There [...]

11 June 2012 | Turtle Bay

The Half Way Point

Arriving at Turtle Bay is a milestone because it means you've reached the half-way point in your trip up or down the Baja. Several of the boats who left Cabo with us had a little celebration by having a scrumptious potluck lunch hosted by Mary and Jack on S.V. Oriana. We also attended to mundane details [...]

04 June 2012 | Bahia San Juanico

The 'Un-bash'

With one-third of the trip north completed, the good news is that we haven't really been 'bashed' much at all. The closest we've came was the passage around Cabo Falso early Saturday AM which Jeff described in his last post. As he mentioned, once that was behind us, it was all motoring in calm seas [...]

02 June 2012 | Outside of the Baja

Let the Bash Begin!

We left Cabo San Lucas anchorage just before 6am this morning in calm winds and seas. By the time we rounded Cabo Falso an hour later the winds were 18-22 knots and seas were 3-5 feet. That's more than we expected but pretty typical for the Cape. We had lots of spray on deck, but managed to stay dry in the cockpit. We did find our main hatch over the dinette leaks badly. Everything else on the boat is tight and dry. Twenty miles out we got out of the venturi affect of the Cape: Both seas and winds have now dropped down and we are making a very nice going making 6.5 knots directly for Magdalena Bay. There is a low marine layer of clouds and the temperature has dropped twenty degrees. Feels like we're back in the June gloom of southern California. We have roughly another 95 miles to Punta Tosco, which is the next real windy spot we have to traverse. We are traveling in the company of three other vessels. All is well on board.

Turtle Taxi Service

14 April 2012 | Mazatlan to La Paz
Dori
Once the epic surf at Matanchen Bay had run its course, we began trekking north again. We had some really fine sailing during the trip to Isla Isabella, arriving in time to enjoy a beautiful afternoon anchored near the rocky Los Monas islets. With the water there still near 80 degrees, we wondered if we were doing the right thing by heading towards the much colder water in the Sea of Cortez.

The passage to Mazatlan offered calm, flat seas, but no wind. The 12-13 hour motorboat ride came with some built-in entertainment, though. It was turtles...turtles...everywhere. For several hours there were always 2-3 sea turtles within sight of the boat. And at least ¾ of them had hitchhikers on their backs, just as you see in the photo here. I guess when your wings get tired, it's nice to be able to just sit back and enjoy the ride.

We anchored in the Stone Island anchorage just outside Mazatlan harbor. Weather conditions encouraged us to delay making the crossing to the Baja by one day. So we took time to play tourist, climbing up Isla Creston to the lighthouse which is billed as the highest lighthouse in the world. After shopping for a few supplies we couldn't resist finishing off the afternoon with the famous garlic shrimp pizza served at Benji's restaurant on the beach.

All that was left was to get a good night's sleep before attempting the passage of over 200 miles that lay ahead. Unfortunately, we had a very unpleasant surprise before the night was over. Jeff awoke to an unfamiliar squeaking sound and when he investigated, he discovered that our outboard motor had been stolen off the stern of the boat. We found out later that another boat had been boarded that night, but one of the crew woke up and came on deck, scaring the thieves away.

It was definitely a bummer. Without a motor for the dinghy, we'd be unable to do much in the way of diving or fishing and would be stranded on the boat when the wind was too strong to row to shore.

We put our disappointment aside, however, and set off on the 230 mile, 36 hour passage early that morning. It would have been nice to have wind so we could sail, but the sea was like a lake and the full moon made for a magical night passage. At 9 P.M. The next night, we anchored under that same full moon at Playa Bonanza. Weather conditions there were so nice that we stayed for three more days.

After leaving Bonanza, we took a slip at Marina La Paz and Jeff set about looking for a used outboard motor that we could use for our last couple of months down here. He did manage to find something that fit the bill. It's older and much heavier than our Nisson was, but it has plenty of get-up-and-go.

So we are all ready to leave La Paz and revisit some of our favorite spots in the Sea of Cortez.

Comments
Journey's Photos - Main
We've posted our favorite photos from this year's cruising in the Sea of Cortez
46 Photos
Created 8 July 2012
Four glorious days of surfing "the longest wave" at Matanchen Bay in warm water, tropical surroundings, and no crowds.
11 Photos
Created 13 April 2012
Dori shot these photos of a morning surf session at Barra de Navidad. She was standing on the breakwater which adjacent to the surf break, giving great access for pictures.
15 Photos
Created 22 February 2012
This is a morning spent touring the estuary and river above Matanchen up to Tovara springs.
28 Photos
Created 27 January 2012
Yelapa is a unique little hidden away village on the south side of Banderas Bay. No roads reach it and the only way to get there is by water.
14 Photos
Created 15 March 2011
14 Photos
Created 20 December 2010
40 Photos
Created 15 November 2010