What a great start to an adventure!! We left Newport Harbor on Monday night March 18th as dark fell (after installing the final large piece to our boat, the dinghy davit). We had two glassy days with minimal movement down the coast. This was a welcome calm as it gave us time to get our windmills installed and start generating power to recharge our batteries. We have a bank of 6 batteries that power all of our interior lighting (all LED) and devices. We also mounted our solar panels, but even after specially ordering 12 V panels, we were shipped 24 V panels. Crushing. Hard to return now. Courage did some strategic planning, etc. and we finally got them soddered in and contributing. While the windmills kept us charged for the most part for the first 5 days, on most days the solar panels are surpassing the windmills noticeably.
Finally the wind picked up as we passed San Diego and we had a nice downwind sail into Mexico. After 5 days without seeing land, we spotted Baja Mexico and headed into Bahia Santa Maria, a great cove on the Pacific side of the peninsula that makes up Magdalena Bay. While being a cute and secluded cove with white sandy beaches, the breakers were huge and there was no way we were going to venture through them with the dinghy to get to shore. So the next morning we headed off around the corner (one long corner) to Magdalena Bay.
Magdalena Bay is a large protected bay with a small fishing village to the northwest and further up a larger town San Carlos. We saw a full size ship heading into San Carlos while we were there. The breakers were minimal and we could get to shore with ease. There was a large delta from an estuary surrounded by mangroves. Such great exploring!! We took the kayaks, paddle boards, and dinghy up the estuary and saw many halibut and sting rays on the bottom. There were also white ibis birds along the way, which really stood out. These shores are hardly visited – other than a fishing boat, we were the only ones anchored out here. There were so many undisturbed complete and beautiful shells. We also checked out some skulls and bones, which we believe to be from dolphins due to the long snouts. In this bay many whales come to have their young. They were still there and just beginning to head back up north. An adolescent sized whale came up behind the boat one afternoon, so Cassidy and I jumped into a kayak to go get a closer look. We headed out, but the whale had gone down so we weren’t sure where exactly to be looking. It came up within a few feet of our kayak!! Wow, so amazing! She had the camera, but there’s no way to get that sensation! It proceeded to circle us with multiple surfacing episodes to breathe.
We had some great fishing along the way. We have caught some yellow tail tuna and some bonita. One morning we woke up and a small squid had jumped onto the deck sometime in the night. We cooked him up and had calamari with breakfast. Since we don’t have refrigeration, our meat supply is limited and our protein is mostly in beans. The fish is a welcome addition to our meals. One night, after dark, Cassidy heard the line pulling and went out. She hauled in a Humboldt squid, at least 2 feet long, probably longer. What a funny creature!! His little jets were spewing out in all directions and he was hissing! We examined him, touched him, felt his tentacles and looked at his jet propulsion mechanisms. Got a great (hilarious) video that I will try to upload if possible. Now that’s great (and memorable) family fun! We let him go, he earned it, and we determined that calamari wasn’t really our favorite fish to eat. We so wanted some of those halibut we saw in the estuary, but it wasn’t to be. Overall, fishing has been both fun, educational, entertaining, and a nice addition to our meals. We’ve also released many when it seemed that we would not be able to consume any more.
In the afternoon of March 26th we headed out for Cabo. We had some calms along the way, but arrived in the morning of March 28th. We hit the crosswaters from the Pacific and the Gulf in the morning – great fishing!! We were pulling in bonitas one after the other. Every time we would get the sails set, we had another on the line! With the first catch, we turned the boat upwind. In doing so, we heard/felt a significant THUD x 2. Looking out behind the port hull we saw a midsized whale heading off the stern. Seriously? We hit a whale!! The whale appeared unharmed. After our arrival in Cabo, Cassidy swam on the hull and saw no evidence of damage.
Turns out to be spring break in Cabo, so there’s a lot of activity! We had a little Easter egg hunt of our own on the boat. After our arrival here, we checked in with the Port Captain, got our visas, then headed out. The water was finally warm enough to swim in. Refreshingly cool, yet not freezing. On such a warm day, it was inviting. We kayaked to shore, played in the sand and waves, then went to “Lover’s Beach” for a hike/swim. This evening we watched an almost full moon rising over the horizon in the bay at Cabo. It was a large orange glowing circle as it first appeared. So beautiful, we all went out to the cockpit to enjoy it. So much activity here with spring break, especially after having a week or so in the open ocean with only us. Still with mariachi music playing well into the evening at the bars on the beach only 200 feet away as I head to bed. Good night all, here’s hoping you’re loving every day as much as we are!
P.S. This morning we woke up to a seahorse tied onto our kayak line. We checked him out, then let him go. He went right back and tied onto our kayak line. Guess he’s found his place. We saw a puffer fish on our way to and back again from shore. He puffed up and quilled out. Funny little thing. There were also tons of jellyfish on shore and in the water. Courage got a couple of stings that left a mark, so the rest of us didn’t really go swimming today, but the kids did play with the ones that washed up on shore. Kayaking back to the boat Courage saw a sea turtle that popped up right in front of his kayak. So full of sea life here!! Full morning. Now off to shore to find internet and upload some things.