Final Sea Crossing: Reflections Through Kaleidoscope Eyes
28 May 2019
We crossed the Sea of Cortez for our third and last time on an overnight sail to San Carlos, Pinocchio's final Mexico destination where our eight-month adventure will come to a close.
Winds were from the northeast, so we set sails for a reach, making for a nice eight-hour sail averaging 6 knots. As it became dark and the wind lightened, we kept sailing at 2 knots to enjoy every last bit of the Sea's beauty.
As Pinocchio sailed slowly through the night on my watch, the stars shined in the clear, dark skies like crystals. I could hear dolphins nearby and see their shadows illuminated as they darted through the bright, phosphorescent water. I had time to reflect back on this adventure, and in a bittersweet way, slow down the close of it.
We traveled as far south as Manzanillo on the mainland and as far north as San Carlos in the Sea of Cortez. Each anchorage and cove had it's own unique beauty. The little towns and larger cities we visited also had their own flavor and personality.
If I had to choose one word to describe Mexico it would be "vibrant".
The Mexican people have big smiles and big hearts. Their festivals, music, and art are full of life, color, and noise. They proudly display and sell their handcrafts of colorful talavera pottery and blanket weavings made from yarn dyed with vivid hues of crushed plants and seeds.
Mainland Mexico has lush, green tropical trees, bougainvilleas of every shade, and brightly painted homes decorated with colorful inlaid tiles. Diego Rivera style frescoes and modern murals adorn the walls along the cobblestone streets. The warm, clear Pacific waters sparkle with all shades of blue.
Dry, craggy, rocky cliffs, walls and sea caves found on the Islas in Sea of Cortez have striated layers of reds, oranges, purples, and yellows. The land's palette of dramatic, desert hues contrasts with the vivid aqua and turquoise waters of the Sea. Dramatic Sunsets seen from Islas Danzante and Carmen illuminated the Sierra La Giganta mountain range.
Mexico is a kaleidoscope of vibrant colors and life.
At around 2 am on David's watch, the wind kicked up pretty good. David put in a reef. We neared our destination of Caleto Lalo before the sun came up. Between the choppy seas and strong wind, it was difficult to see the small entrance between the two prominent reefs. I was awake by that time and we both were on high alert, looking at the silhouette of land ahead, the chart plotter, radar, and Navionics on our IPad. In the end, the radar helped us to shoot the entrance between the two reefs. We surfed our way into the cove, just like Mr. Toad's Wild Ride. What a great finale!
Yesterday, as we entered Marina San Carlos to begin the process of dismantling Pinocchio for truck transport back to San Francisco Bay, our mileage log read 3,534 nautical miles.
This is my last blog entry for Mexico's Chapter of Sail Pinocchio, "Adventures of Two by Sea". In hindsight, I should have titled it "Adventures of Three by Sea". Pinocchio was the most important crew member, performed well under pressure, and never, ever complained!
Perhaps more chapters to follow...