Puerto Escondido to La Paz

You’ve heard from Games of Thrones, Winter is coming.  Well here in the SoC, this time of year you hear the Northers are coming.  Means, tie everything down, stow items away, and find a good book or movie or indoor project to occupy your time – sometimes for a day sometimes for three. Afterward the northers pass, it’s often quiet for a few days.  when most folks get moving to their next destination.  then the Northers are coming again and you repeat.  this is new for us.  waiting for the winds to calm down.  

The other caveat of us waiting is we are waiting for Carrie’s prescription sunglasses to return after being repaired.  Here’s the time calculation we came up with; we were told 10-14 business days on Nov 16th. We added three days for Thanksgiving break.  Then add in some Mexican time.  And we calculated it to be December 18th.  We certainly hope we have received the glasses before you have read this.  Our travel plan is to get to La Paz in a week, in time to share Christmas with Kevin and Gina on SV Raven.

Timing our southbound travel so we are not hung up and miss Christmas in La Paz was our plan and we gave our selves six days. We had the option of a 23 hour trip or 5 day (with a 2 day weather buffer) trip and visit at the stop overs.  We choose the later because we had the time and we are glad we did.

 

The beach at Punta San Telmo

18 December- That amazing hike in Mesquite Canyon gives nice closure for this visit to Puerto Escondido. Dharma Girl is full of fuel, provisioned, and we are showered.  And today we motored out of Puerto Escondido for a 35nm leg south to Punta San Telmo. After dropping anchor at 1400 in this quiet and secluded anchorage on the southern point, again, the only boat, we drop our water toys in the water paddled to shore to take in the stunning red rock formations here, also known as Punta Prieta.   The landscape is still very dry with the familiar red and tan rocks and land we have been seeing since Puerto Penasco.  Cactus, rocky shorelines and good winds at the top of the hills are common in the northern Sea of Cortez. This point provides anchorages for north and south protection.  We’ll probably stop on the north side on our return to the Sea of Cortez.  (photos from our shoreline hike)

The terrain is greener as we mover south.
A Happy Hour eastern sky sunset.

19December – The morning we left San Telmo …

Punta San Telmo bluffs
0729 – Sailing into the sunrise

 

Not long after we departed Punta San Telmo and the winds blowing strong on our backs, we unfurl and reef the genoa for some downwind sailing.  Later the winds settle down and we raise the mainsail, unfurled the reefed genoa, and have a wonderful 3 hours of downwind sailing; for a total, sail time of 4.5 hours. That is a good day.  The winds die as we near San Evaristo and we motor sailed till we anchored in the North East anchorage.

December 19-21 – San Evaristo has the beautiful grand Sierra de la Gigantic range as its backdrop. The quiet salt panning, goat-heading, and fishing village have about 25 full-time families living there. The main anchorage appeared full so, we anchored in the North East bay, which turned out to be a quiet location. Even though we are protected in the deep cove with the high hillsides, the winds were strong so we stayed on the boat and wait two days before we moved on. We hope to stop here on our northbound trip and visit the quaint town. We heard there is fresh goat cheese for purchase!

Sunset at 0722, lighting up the town.

A walls that flank the indented cove of El Cardinal

21December-29nm. We weighed anchor and head south.  Remember how we explained there is a lull after the big winds. The lull doesn’t provide enough wind for our sails so we are motoring the next 29 nm.  During this leg, we had our first by-catch experience during this stretch. We heard it is common but this was our first.  

Most times we through a fishing line out and troll during a motor or sail.  There has been a couple of occasions Chris observed birds scooping out the fresh bait on the end of the lines.  This time, a brown pelican licking its bill took our bait.  And from what we can initially see was the triple hook became caught on the bird.  Slowing the boat down and turning back towards the bird we slowly reel in the line assuring we don’t get it tangled in our prop and pull on the pelican.  We didn’t want to create additional injury to one of our favorite birds. Once the pelican was close enough, we used the boat hook to carefully pull the pelican close to the boat.  We reached down and grabbed the bill and gently pulled the pelican up.  We were relieved the hook was in its gullet.  The pelican was pretty docile, so we held and covered its eyes, and the hook was removed. The three of us were very calm, so I took the gifted opportunity and petted the pelican, not in ideal circumstances but it was wonderful.  More importantly that his experience gave us confidence for the next rescue.  No photos of this occurrence as our hands were busy.

We continue south and coming along the west shores of the national park islands of Isla Partida and Isla Espiriitu Santo is eye candy to any outdoor enthusiast. The tall shorelines colors in pink and red with turquoise blue water, white sandy beaches book ended with lush green mangroves is a picture perfect postcard.  And each anchorage is inviting to visit.  These park islands are undeveloped and uninhabited and require a park permit for anchoring or visiting the islands. The annual permit (optional) covers the Loreto Bay Nation Park, Isla San Francisco, Bahia de los Angeles islands, and the Cabo Pulmo National marine park and Pulmo Reef complex. The permit is available through a park ranger or online using the Pasaportes de La Conservacion app.

We choose Ensenada El Cardonal on Isla Partida. Okay, let’s paint that picture again … tranquil blue water, paradise white beach bordered with lush green mangroves.  Add the blue skies, beautiful red hills that flank the deeply indented cove, and we are the only boat there; it just does not get any better. After we set the anchor, we rowed the dinghy to the north beach.  We explored and beachcombed and to Chris’ surprise, Carrie is not bringing anything back from the beach to the boat.

We choose Ensenada El Cardonal on Isla Partida. Okay, let’s paint that picture again … tranquil blue water, paradise white beach bordered with lush green mangroves.  Add the blue skies, beautiful red hills that flank the deeply indented cove, and we are the only boat there; it just does not get any better. After we set the anchor, we rowed the dinghy to the north beach.  We explored and beachcombed and to Chris’ surprise, Carrie is not bringing anything back from the beach to the boat.

Another sunset because we can. 🙂

We stay here one night but will return here to explore a couple of hikes we noted.

22December-22nm.  Ensenada El Cardonal to … Playa Pichilinque is our go-to anchorage when we come and go from La Paz.  It provides protection from the weather, it is very quiet in the evening, and it is just 30 minutes from the La Paz fuel dock.  Though the view is not as quintessential as our typical anchorages, it is convenient. We watch the Pichilinque Mazatlan ferry come and go, the large semi-trucks buzz out of the ferry and south over the hill, and dive boats come and go from Club Cantamar.  You could call this our transition anchorage before heading into the city of La Paz.  

23December- 10nm. The well-marked Canal de La Paz, aka the channel, is over five nautical miles and located on the east side of the Bahia de La Paz.  Along the channel, shoreline are various marinas, resorts, hotels, a few homes, and a plethora of condos.  The main town road runs behind these structures.  

La Paz, the peace, is a city of charm and beauty.  We find this more so when we walk up the non touristy streets east of the malacon.  

We arrived to Marina de La Paz very excited to see our friends Kevin and Gina who gave us a very warm welcome.  We stay through the holidays as a gift to each of us.  The holiday decor went up with a tree, lights on the bow pulpit, and holiday music playing.  We Zoomed with our friends and family.  We went on walks, to a yoga class, Christmas dinner with Kevin and Gina, rang in the New Years east coast time, haha, very mellow.  Chris reconnected with David and Candace of SV Lady Midnight (Carrie was down with a cold), we met them in Puerto Escondido last May.  Carrie painted a seed pod and sewed a new shower bag for herself.  Gina and Carrie gifted a little art project to a pair of sailing brothers who we observed daily playing pirates.  

Trent and Andrew of SV Wild with their Pirate Masks
Our reflection off a statue of a pearl in a shell.
La Paz beach off the Malacon
Gina and Carrie paint our seed pods.

And then before we knew it, it was time we were off to Mazatlan. 

2 thoughts on “Puerto Escondido to La Paz

  1. I am enjoying traveling with you. I’ve been to LaPaz, one of my favorite villages. We really enjoyed Mazatlan as well. I’ve traveled some in Mexico. Thank you for sharing. Hugs Shelley

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