Almost There!

Two-plus weeks remaining of

our first sailing season

Punta Trinidad

It’s June 22nd and after a 43 nm day, we drop the hook in Punta Trinidad. We planned an overnight at this halfway point between Santa Rosalia and our San Francisquito so we were not sailing through the night and chance upon experiencing the evening gap winds. What are gap winds, you ask? “Gap winds are low-level winds that are associated with gaps or low areas in terrain. Gap winds can range in width from hundreds of feet to hundreds of miles, and in unusual circumstances can be associated with strong winds exceeding 50 knots.” In this area, the gap winds are known to arise at night. Now you can see why we stopped halfway. : )

The anchorage was pretty rolly and we were more than glad to get up early the next day and move on. The following video may come up sideways. Click on it, then click the arrow to play.

One of the many pods of dolphins that we were fortunate to see. The bees bees bees love their fresh water. This isn’t the first time we encountered these lovely pests.

Bahia San Francisquito

As an old commercial jingle says, “you’ve come along way babe”. It’s become a tradition between us when we arrive at a new anchorage that one of us will say ‘this is the farthest south (or north) we have ever been’. And it would be true for this season.

Another day of 42 nm to a new anchorage. It was great sailing. We even tried using the spinnaker. It was foggy coming around the point and to the entrance of the bay. Then, viola, as we motored on into the bay, there was no fog. It was a challenge to drive only using instruments.

We didn’t go ashore but we did explore the small cove immediately South of our anchorage. Using our kayak and stand up paddle (SUP) board we took on the workout to paddle into the wind that was blowing through the small cove. Coming out was a breeze – we just sat or stood on our craft and allowed the wind to push us out into the larger bay.

East Bahia de la Animas

46 nm day to here – we arrive 25-June. Coming into this anchoring spot presented the longest false corner we have every experienced. But with a couple of whales to distract us, we no longer noticed.

[We covered Bahia Los Angeles and Don Juan in a previous post. (June 28 – 4-July)]

Isla Cornando Norte (aka Isla Smith)

It’s July 5th and we dropped anchor in Bahia de Las Rocas. The anchorage faces west. So along with an evening show sunset, we also could enjoy the town lights of Bahia de Los Angeles.

As we move north in the SoC – we are noticing the terrain is drier and dusty, the weather is warmer, there are fewer trees, and more rocks, crumbly rocks, it is very obvious less rain reaches this far north.

We completed two hikes here because the terrain through the binoculars looked so inviting. Our first hike from the southern end of the bay was challenging because the rocks were crumbly as we ascended. But finding our own path, we arrived at the top end for a view of the southern end of the island.

The second day’s hike proved to be more of what we were hoping to see the previous day. At the ridge-like plateau, we could see the water on both sides of Isla Coronado.

Below you can see a person at the far end of the ridge. That is our friend Katie, from SV Absolute. The photo below Katie is the ridge Carrie tried to climb down but it turned out to be a very slippery rock. That was a no go. You can spot Dharma Girl in one photo, a decaying lizard, and greenery. We like to note the plant life on the islands.

And surprisingly enough, the fog would roll in. We enjoyed observing the fog move from the east as it covered the Sea of Cortez, creeping over the island, then falling into Bahia de Rocas, where the boats are. The sighting was peaceful.

Sea life that jumps in Bahia de Rocas

We cannot recall if we mentioned about mobulas. When you can see these rays in action — it’s a hoot. We typically hear their belly flop before we see them. They pop up out of the water like popcorn in hot oil; some reaching as high as 6 feet. These creatures are also known as flying rays, manta rays, or devil rays. This is a short video by National Geographic, of what we witness multiple times in the Sea of Cortez. 10’s to 1000’s of rays have arrived in the Sea of Cortez this year. The largest school in years.

A pair of Mobula, from the larger group, visits the bay.

We now head to Puerto Refugio.

Nautical Terminology

The Dog Watch within the Watch Schedule
A short watch period, generally half the usual time (e.g. a two-hour watch rather than a four-hour one). Such watches might be included in order to rotate the system over different days for fairness, or to allow both watches to eat their meals at approximately normal times.
When it is the two of us, we use a 3 hour night and a 4 hour day watch schedule. When there were three onboard, we used a 3 hour night and day watch schedule (3 on, 6 hours off).

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