"Sail fast and live slow"

09 December 2013
02 December 2013
17 May 2013 | La Paz
13 May 2013 | Mazatlan
10 December 2012
03 December 2012
03 December 2012 | twenty miles from Loreto
03 December 2012 | Santa Rosalia to Santo Domingo
13 November 2012 | Puerto Escondido
13 November 2012 | Santa Rosalia
01 May 2012 | Mazatlan, Mx
29 April 2012
07 April 2012 | Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos
11 March 2012

Panga ride on the river estuary

17 February 2012 | Bahia del Sol, El Salvador
Panga ride on the river estuary
We hired a local man to take us exploring in the river estuary. There are many channels in the estuary that wind around with mangrove trees all along the banks. It’s quite an interesting place. Across from the marina is an island with a small community living on it. Some of the cruisers are helping the people there, one woman named Jan has been living here for about 10 years and has been teaching the children English on the island. Along the channels there are a number of open air and thatched roof buildings that are built up high on stilts because of the high tides. If you want to have a local fish lunch, you can take your dinghy to one of these palapas on stilts and eat over the water. When it’s low tide these palapas on stilts are surrounded by sand, but when it’s high tide they are in the water. When the tide is coming in, the water flows upstream at up to 5 knots, and when the tide is going out, the water flows downstream at about 5 knots. It was hard to get used to water flowing quickly by the boat at the dock. We went past another community on another island and it was interesting to watch the children playing and the adults sitting and chatting with each other. Their life revolves around the water as most of them are fishermen and you can see their nets hanging in the trees to dry. They all have pangas (boats) and use them as we use our cars. We left on this trip at low tide so our driver often had to go slow and find his way around shallow sand bars and trees sticking up from the bottom. We wound our way through different channels and out into another river called the Rio Lempa, which also was shallow. We saw local fishermen in dugout canoes throwing out nets to catch fish, and we also saw men in the water with masks and spears trying to get fish. We couldn’t understand how they could see to get any fish as the water was a muddy brown color with no visibility. Our guide took us up river and turned into a small channel that was so shallow we got stuck in the mud momentarily, several times. This was where our lunch stop was. When we stopped, he parked the panga on the muddy bank and we walked up a wooden ramp, and then some steps, so we were about 10 above the panga and there was a palapa on stilts and an open air palapa a few feet from the river bank. When we finished our lunch (very good local fish) the water had risen 3-4 feet and our driver had to tie his panga to the stilts of the palapa to keep it from being swept away in the current, and the wooden ramp we had walked up was now under water. Now, on our way back to the marina, the driver could go quite fast because the tide was high and there were no more shallows. We saw a very odd sight on our way back, and that was Pelicans perched in treetops!! I have never seen a Pelican, with his web feet, sitting on a branch before. And not a big sturdy branch, but small, bendy branches in the very tops of the trees. There must have been about 20-30 Pelicans in each tree. Amazing!
Vessel Name: Sirena
Vessel Make/Model: Cardinal 46
Hailing Port: Newport Beach, CA
Crew: Ed and Connie Quesada
About: Ed and Connie have been sailing together for over 44 years and have sailed on Sirena for over 22 years. Sirena has been to Mexico many times before. We plan an extended vacation to Mexico for four or more months. Stay tune as we take our time through the warm weather down south.
Extra: Slow cruising through Mexican waters
Home Page:

Ed and Connie

Who: Ed and Connie Quesada
Port: Newport Beach, CA