Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Santa Rosalia to Loreto

We'd seen some damage due to Hurricane Odile up in Bahia de Los Angeles, and were wondering how bad things might be in Santa Rosalia.  The whole town is in a large arroyo (gully) and we thought the flood damage might be severe.

Luckily for the town, things were not that bad.  Some roof damage here and there, and some dock damage.  The worst damage seemed to be the museum (partial roof collapse) and the older marina with the wooden docks.  We found out that a couple of boats at the older marina broke loose of their lines and crashed through the docks.  Two months after the hurricane, one boat was still in a pretty bad situation.  In the photo you can see where the dock used to be.

Wooden schooner still in the middle of the crash site
Two friends from Vancouver, Mel and Pete, met us in Santa Rosalia.  They had flown into Loreto and taken a local bus to where we were.  The first day we started off with good wind and were sailing along right away.  In the afternoon we caught a fish and cooked it up on the BBQ for dinner. Mel thought we might catch more fish, but we had to disappoint her and explain that we aren't usually that successful. Other than not catching any more fish, Mel and Pete had a great time. We think we got all the highlights covered: we sailed a lot of the time, got to some nice beaches, saw some cool fish while snorkeling, saw whales, dolphins, and rays jumping, had nice sunsets and great conversations. The plan had been to sail them back down to Loreto and send them home tanned, relaxed and a bit envious.  The four of us all agree that the plan was a success.
Mel and Pete enjoying the sailing

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Bahia de Los Angeles

We got as far north in the Sea of Cortez as Bahia de Los Angeles.  This is a pretty large bay which is quite popular with whale sharks (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whale_shark).  These are the largest fish in the world, they are sharks but they're slow moving filter feeders.  Malcolm and our friend Bill swam with one near La Paz last April.  In this bay we saw several of them right from our anchored boat, but they never came by when we were ready to jump in and swim with them.  We did catch one on video as it approached the boat and then swerved to avoid us.

We went ashore to get some fresh groceries.  It was hot out, so we stopped at Guillermo’s restaurant for some beer on the patio and Internet access. The server asked if we were from that sailboat out there and Dina said we were.  He then asked us if we’d be able to take a sea horse with us and set it free.  Dina said we’d be happy to and the server left us with no further explanation.  We went inside to find out the story and found the sea horse in a large glass jug.

Captive sea horse

The sea horse was accidentally captured by some octopus fishermen, and was only discovered when they were offering their fresh octopus to the restaurant.  We took the sea horse (and the jug) back with us when we motored out to where we were anchored.  We tried to take a video of the event but our camera batteries were dead by then.  Needless to say, the sea horse was quite happy to be back in the ocean and waved goodbye to us.

After a few days we decided to move on and started working our way south again.  Along the way we had some more pretty anchorages and some good snorkeling.  We didn’t see our sea horse friend but we saw some colourful fish and some star fish. 
Another quiet anchorage Fish parade

Yellow star fish Blue star fish

We did find some other people after a while.  We anchored in the bay just south of San Francisquito and met Phil and Dave, brothers from Arizona and Nevada.  They fly down in their Cessnas and land on a dirt runway in the field just behind their trailer on the beach. They insisted on giving us some killer Mai tai's.  They went fishing the next morning and motored past Good as Gold to show us the two Yellow Tails they caught and to invite us to breakfast.  The breakfast was awesome as was the company, by the end of the day we had enjoyed some of their fish (sashimi), our bubbly, and had an awesome BBQ dinner. The next morning we sailed away and they prepared to fly back home.