Isla Isabel is a small volcanic island about 15 miles off the coast, about 90 miles south of Mazatlan and 70 miles north of Banderas Bay. The island is less than half a mile wide and about a mile in length. It was made a National Park in the 1980's, and it has been called the "Galapagos" of Mexico. Isla Isabel is a major breeding and nesting area for frigate birds, brown boobies, blue-footed & green footed boobies, and random scraggly sea gulls, which were all very tame but equally protective of their eggs and babies.
View of anchorage with Endeavor in the background
We have passed this tiny island 3 times coming and going from the Sea of Cortez to Banderas Bay, hesitating a stop due to the anchorage being fairly open to weather and the bottom being tricky for setting and retrieving the anchor. This was our last chance. We left Punta de Mita at 6pm for an easy and uneventful overnight, arriving Isabel early the next morning. We carefully set the anchor, had some breakfast, dropped the dinghy is the water, said a prayer and headed to shore!
Oh I know the feeling!
We spent the next few hours exploring the island, walked among hundreds of nesting birds while enjoying spectacular views. It was well worth the visit, but Captain Rick did not want to take a chance with an overnight at this anchorage. So after swimming in perfect water and catching a few winks, we successfully pulled anchor and set our sights on Mazatlan.