MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 08



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The Sierra Giganta of the Baja peninsula form a spectacular backdrop to the azure Sea of Cortez from Danzante Island. We continue our trip with a day paddle for Julio and Bob and the start of the second part of our Mexican adventure for Rick and Hank.




Los Cinqo Magnifico had lost a member and was to soon lose two more. Harding decided to stay in Loreto while Rick and I paddled the islands south of town. Julio and Bob were leaving on the Sunday flight to get back to work in Baltimore. Just like our gunfighting namesakes, only some of us would continue on.




.After breakfast of huevos y chorizo on the hotel patio, four of us took the $45.00 taxi shuttle down to Puerto Escondido where we launched on the hard surface ramp in the completely protected harbor. It was a warm and magnificent day. The wind that had been blowing all through the first week was gone. Not a breath rippled the surface as we headed out the harbor entrance. We rounded the point and before us lay Isla Danzante and Isla Carmen. Two commercial trips were just returning from a tour of the islands. One was a Gabriola trip, the same outfitter as our boat providers. the other was Seakayak Adventures based in Idaho, go figure. We talked to Ginny Holloway, the leader of the second group, as she treaded water after a snorkeling session.



Taking up our paddles once more ( movie ) we crossed the two plus miles over to Isla Danzante and landed in a secluded cove on the north end of the island. The still, clear water over the smooth white sand was a pleasure after the bouncing rocky landings of the first week. We climbed the dry hill with large cactus to a spectacular view of the mainland, with Isla Carmen to the north. A sharp escarpment plunged to the blue waters and we could see fish swimming just off the shore. To the south stretched the rest of the little islands and the range that hugged the coast and made for such spectacular vistas on the way to La Paz.
After scrambling around on the rock ridge for a while and talking to a group of college students fro Wetherford College, we returned to the boats and began paddling south along the west shore of Danzante. As crabs scurried along the rocks, we passed an undercut rock that looked as if it could fall at any moment. We paddled about half way down the island then pulled onto the beach for some lunch. With no wind and greater temperatures we sought the shade of a few large boulders. From here Bob and Julio would return to Puerto Escondido for a return to Loreto while Rick and I continued to paddle south along the shore of Danzante.

We paddled to the southern tip of Danzante where we saw some oyster catchers, cormorants and fish on the small rocks on the end of the island. it looked like a good place to catch some fish. If one looked closely at the water, you could see clouds of small shrimp like creatures in the water. it looked like krill. this rich soup was one of the reasons there are so many whales in the Sea of Cortez. We turned north once more paddling along the shore back to our evening camp. On the way we passed a group of three small sailing dories with NOLS cadets out on a four week training course.




We reached our camp in late afternoon. Over the wide rocky beach the backbone of the island was studded with large cactus. As the sun set the warm rays gilded the soft green of their spiny arms. Even the boats picked up the soft glow of the setting sun. Subtle shades of grey filled the ridges of the mountain range over on the mainland. Behind camp, the rocks reflected the warmth of the soon to be gone sun. Before all the heat was gone, I slipped into the water, still in my wet suit. The water was cold. But the view from the beach, especially to the south and west, was spectacular.
We made our camp on the edge of the beach well above the high tide line. We cooked over our gas stove as the stars came out against the dark Mexican night sky. I saw several shooting stars before my eyes closed on this wonderful day.


On to Day 9....

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 08

The Sierra Giganta of the Baja peninsula form a spectacular backdrop to the azure Sea of Cortez from Danzante Island. We continue our trip with a day paddle for Julio and Bob and the start of the second part of our Mexican adventure for Rick and Hank.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 04

Our kayak trip continues from San Nicolas, past El Pulpito to the beautiful bay at San Juanico.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 10

Another calm day for our paddle back to Isla Danzante and then down to Candelero Chico where we spend the afternoon relaxing with snorkeling and playing in the shore rocks.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 06

Leaving our wind refuge at Boca San Bruno, a strong west wind keeps us tight against the shore as we paddle back to Loreto.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 09

From Isla Danzante, a short crossing brings us to Isla Carmen where we play tag with fin whales, 80 foot monsters of the Canal de Ballenas.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 01 - 18 miles

Launching from Playa Freson, we paddle up Bahia Conception, stopping at Isla Blanca. We arrive just short of our intended destination, Punta Conception.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 07

A rest day between trip legs allows a land trip to Mission San Xavier in the mountains west of Loreto.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 02

Leaving the shallow waters of Bahia Conception, we round Punta Conception, paddle into the Sea of Cortez and head south along the coast .

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 03

Fair winds provide and opportunity to try out my sail. We end the windy day high atop a sand dune.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Loreto - Day 11

From Candelero Chico we paddled 24 miles back to Loreto. The first half of the trip was flat calm. In the second half, a little tail wind makes the long mileage bearable.

MX - Sea of Cortez - 2006/03/15 to 2006/03/30 - Bahia Conception to Loreto - Day 05

Leaving San Juanico, the wind picks up to 20 to 25 knots ( Force 5) and we have a roller coaster ride down to San Bruno where problems with our chart leads to some interesting developments.


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