Caleta Partida – Isla Espíritu Santo – 4 miles South
We retreated away from the lee shore at Esenada Grande on Isla Parida, to a new anchorage just 4 miles South. Caleta Partida is one of the largest anchorages within the Natural Marine Park that includes both Isla Partida and Isla Espíritu Santo. Both islands are so close, you can walk back and forth to each island at low tide. The size of this anchorage was crazy huge with steep cliffs that surrounded both sides! In fact, the anchorage is the remains of a very large extinct volcano crater that over the years eventually eroded below sea level.
We did our usual lap to scope out the beaches and noticed more fish camps. The park ranger’s station sitting in the corner of the bay was a good reminder that we did not have park passes, so we refrained from stepping foot ashore.
That evening we watched the most impressive sunset we’ve ever seen!
Bahia San Gabriel – Espíritu Santo – 9 miles South
Both islands (Espíritu Santo and Isla Partida) were once rich with oysters. A frigate bird sanctuary has replaced remains of an old pearl fishery. The frigate bird is a silent sea bird that swoops and glides effortlessly to astounding heights of approximately 834 feet. We had the huge anchorage all to ourselves!
We headed to shore in the dinghy with the idea of making a hike to the other side of the island. It was low tide. Mini islands were popping up all around us before we got to the beach. We left the dinghy on a sandbar and hoofed it the rest of the way to the shore.
After finding the trail marker we decided we were not prepared for a 4 mile hike to the other side of the island as we were unclear of the tide situation. We didn’t want to risk returning to a dinghy we’d have to swim to.
That evening, we discovered a new toy on our handheld GPS. An anchor alarm setting we didn’t know existed. We set up a radius around where we thought we had anchored and proceeded to go to bed. But, our toy alarm kept freaking out at us. Every hour, and sometimes less the alarm BEEPED!? We spent the night sleeping, waking up, poking our head out, looking at the GPS, turning off the alarm and going back to bed. Visual checks outside the boat indicated we hadn’t budged. We’re we dragging anchor or just stretching out the chain? The wind had kicked up to 15-20k from the SW.
Throughout the night, the wind kept shifting from South, to South East, then East to North East, back to East then South East. By morning these winds had lightened and turned West! It was then we realized that we didn’t give ourselves enough of a swing radius on our anchor alarm.
Coleta Lobos – Baja California Sur – 8 miles South
On our way to back to La Paz we decide to do a lunch stop in Coleta Lobos. We entered the bay and put out the hook. Just then, the La Paz Port Captain came onto the radio with a weather warning in Spanish. Luckily, I’ve been practicing my Spanish via the VHF radio by following the Port Captain conversations on a regular basis. All pangas should stay off the water. Larger boats should exercise extreme caution as a North wind in the excess of 30k was building, and would be heading down the Sea of Cortez. We decided to skip our lunch break and just head back the rest of the way to La Paz. The winds had started started picking up.
We tried fishing again. Turns out, this time we caught something!
La Paz – Baja California Sur – 10 miles South
We called ahead to the marina and had people on the dock ready to help us get the boat into the slip. The slips are shared slips meaning you don’t have a dock finger on each side. It is good to have people on the dock to help with lines because the current in our marina can take your boat away form your target quickly. Luckily with people lined up on the dock we had a fairly smooth landing.
We made it back to La Paz with only 2 gallons of water to spare. We ran out of cash back in Puerto Escondido. That hamburger and cab ride to Loreto wiped us out! Leaving the dock for a few weeks was so invigorating we couldn’t wait to do it again!