Loving the Baja
28 April 2011 | La Paz
After a couple of good nights sleep in Bahia de los Muertos, we headed up to Isla Espiritu Santo for a few days. This island is stunning and has so many places to anchor. Our first anchorage was Puerto Ballena on the south end of the island. It is one of the less popular anchorages and we had it to ourselves for the first 24 hours. The reason for this is that in this bay there are some small flies known as Bobo's. They land on you but don't bite. We put up the sunshades and we weren't bothered by them anymore. We enjoyed a beautiful afternoon of swimming and hiking on the beach for shells. After a great day and a great dinner, we were in bed early because we had gotten up at 5 that morning to make the trip from Muertos.
About an hour after going to sleep, we were woken up by a howling wind in the rigging. Looks like it was a Coromuel wind which is a local (to this area) wind that comes up at night. It really blew hard and Ian decided to lay in the cockpit for a couple of hours on anchor watch. He came back to bed around 3:30 as the wind seemed to be dying. About an hour later it started up again but we knew that the anchor was well set so we just went back to sleep.
We spent another day there swimming, fishing and hiking and hanging out and again another night with a Coromuel. By now we are getting used to 20+ knot winds blowing all night.
We moved to another bay on our 3rd day on the island called Ensenada Grande and WOW! It is so beautiful. There are 4 white sand beaches in this anchorage. The colours of the water go from deep blue to the palest of greens as the water shallows out towards the beach. I don't think I'll ever get tired of the colour of the water here.
The four of us (our friends Pat and Les are with us) decided to do a hike up the valley which we were told was an hour each way. We had good intentions of starting early but it was 10 am before we got going. The hike started out flat and gradually got steeper as we went up. We were going up what looked like a creek bed although I don't know when it last saw water. About an hour and a half into the hike, I almost quit and turned around it was so hot. But I mustered on and am glad that I did. It turned into about a 3 hour hike for us and boy was it hot right in the middle of the day. The first thing we did when we got down was strip down into our undies and t-shirts and jump in the water to cool down. Another perfect day and another Coromuel that night!
The next day we headed south to an anchorage called Balandra just around the corner from La Paz. Another beautiful place. We walked from the beach at Balandra to a beach called Tecolote Beach and there enjoyed a meal and a few margaritas at a restaurant - the first money we spent in 5 days! That night we had our worst Coromuel yet. Ian spent a part of the night in the cockpit again as there were lots of boats upwind of us and he wanted to make sure they didn't drag down on us. I hardly slept a wink as the wind was so loud. We don't have a wind speed indicator on our boat, but both Ian and I agree that the wind was around 30 knots with stronger gusts. It was after 4 am before I finally fell asleep and even then I kept waking up as the wind screamed through the rigging. It's beautiful here but I'll be happy to be out of the Coromuel range which is about 70 miles north of here.
We are now in the charming town of La Paz and have decided to stay at a marina for a couple of weeks. We have some maintenance things to do on the boat and it's so much easier when you are at the dock. Our friends Pat and Les left today to return home and we will miss them. We had such a great time again and it was really great to have company for the almost 2 day crossing from Mazatlan. So we will be in La Paz till around the 9th of May before we start heading more northwards.