Oh my goodness 24 days till Christmas. Anyway, enough of that.
We have just upped the anchor and headed north out of Agua Verde, after spending the night. A little rolly-polly but nothing untoward. This morning I took the kayak to the beach and walked partway up the rocky hill next to us so I could get photos of the boat from above. Marginal success but at least I got some exercise! There is a small SUV with a rooftop tent parked on the beach, with a little kayak and an outdoor cooker - more than one way to see the world! The young owners went for a walk into town this morning, how energetic! We have done that walk before - best done in the morning for sure. There are also some local fishermen camped out and working from this beach - more people here than we saw the last time we stayed in Agua Verde.
On my way back to the boat I stopped and chatted to the couple on the only other powerboat in the bay. Another story from some almost full-timers.they have been doing the rounds down here for a number of years. Again, everyone seems pretty happy about the life style they have chosen!
Back on Northern Ranger II after some discussion and breakfast we decided to leave. It is tempting to stay another day but I am looking forward to trying out new anchorages. The sooner we get up to Puerto Escondido the sooner I can access the Internet to set up the satellite phone to allow me to use it to post my blog, so that is kind of driving me today. That and hearing that our broker, after showing someone our 46, wants to ask us some questions. Nerve wracking when we can't just phone him (sat phone to US cell in Mexico not a great connection).
Anyway, there's a place called Honeymoon Cove that is looking awfully pretty, and the couple on the Bristol Channel Cutter told me about another bay on the other side of Isla Carmen. Time flies when you are having fun and I want to make the most of every day!
Later. Honeymoon Cove it is. It is situated on a small island called Isla Danzante, across from Puerto Escondido. It is a rocky, craggy, unwelcoming piece of real estate jutting out of the sea with a few coves that provide safe harbour and beautiful (dare I say paradise-like) surroundings. It looks not so much like a dancer, rather more like a dragon that has fallen into the sea. The sun is setting and the moon is rising and the bees are amassing around the boat. That's the only negative everything else is perfect. We had large fish jumping and gamboling around us as we maneuvered in, and I even saw a turtle. Also, on the way here suddenly, we had cell coverage, although it was quite spotty. Quick chats to as many people as I could in the short time I was able, including a text to the broker.
Other than that - I have been kayaking, we have spent a few hours snorkeling, and then I went kayaking again as the sun set. It is absolutely gorgeous here - there are three boats, one in each of the lobes of the cove - perfect privacy. One sailboat is from France, and he came over very quickly to ask us if it would be OK if he started his compressor to fill their dive tanks - he was quite concerned about the noise. They really are a little ways away from us and the noise was no worse than listening to our own generator. He gave us some tips about where to snorkeland offered to speak to us in French, Spanish or English. Nice guy!
There are birds to watch and fish to amuse us and the air is calm. Looking around I feel as if I have landed in some grand movie set - it's otherworldly but in a beautiful way. Rocks seem to have fallen out of the sky, or been thrust out of the earth in a jumble and tumble of red and white and greenmist makes the distant mountains (Sierra La Giganta) softly purple and gorgeous in the gold glow of the sunset. Considering all of Baja is volcanic rocks, tumbling out of the sky and emerging from the earth aren't too far of the mark, I reckon.
The snorkeling was great. The water was relatively clear, more so when the sun came out from behind the clouds. There were lots of the usual fish, and a few new ones. There was also a garden of huge sea urchins(!) and some crown of thorns starfish. Also, lots of little thin starfishvery prettyand I was able to get down to see some slate pencil urchins tucked into deep crevasses. Above the waterline, our favourite crimson crabs were on the rocks. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get pictures of everything - some OK footage but there were a few things I was trying to get (some crazy rockfish!!! deep down!) and the GoPro camera just refused to download all the last pictures I took. I think I overloaded it! We were out there almost two hours - even though it's warm here, the water isn't as toasty as it is closer to La Paz. Our core temperatures kind of went down after a while and even I had to admit defeat and go back to the boat for a hot shower.
After I figured out dinner (more dorado yum) I went out for a kayak to scope out some more snorkeling spots. This place has amazing rock formations and boulders that have just heaved themselves into the water, places for fish to play and birds to fish. I can hardly wait to get back in the water tomorrow.
Tonight the moon is almost full. I heard today that Sunday is a Super Moon - I remember we were down here last year, sitting in Isla San Francisco with Tom and Phyllis, when the moon rose up. HUUGE!!!! no way could I get a picture of it coming up. But I got a cool pic of it coming down the next day, landing on a big plinth of stone on the opposite side of the bay - still one of my favourite pictures ever. Hopefully we will be somewhere that will give us a great view on Sunday.
As usual, our itinerary is written in sand at low tide. There is some weather (norther) coming in several days from now, and we are questioning our plans to get as far as Bahia Concepcion. That bay continues to elude us! Although who knows, things can change. But we don't want to be up there, get caught a few days with crummy weather, and have to head back south in a hurry with 25 knot winds behind us. Although, come to think of itwe have spent a lot of time doing just that. But once again, a firm itinerary gets in the way. I am looking forward to a time when, like the boaters I have met over the past few days, ETA is truly just an estimate, and the weather and how we feel will dictate when we move (and whether we need fish). We met a couple on the water up north a few years ago. The name of their boat was NOETA. It was a nice name but I knew there was something else behind it. I asked, and they told me: Noand then spell it outNO E T A. Seemed like a great name after that! I sincerely hope they are still living out that motto somewhere!