Blog

Journey to San Jose del Cabo

Thu 07/12/18


Here's an update on my journey after leaving Ensenada:

We left the port with high hopes of a better running engine and steady winds. We cast off on a beautiful sunny day, and immediately the wind started to push us offshore. Good bye land!

The first few nights were great. I much more comfortable on the boat after living on it for the past 2 weeks, and so I wasn't as nervous about breaking things. We were doing a steady 6 knots.

I fell into a comfortable schedule. My watches were 6am -12pm and 6pm-12am, and the captain took the other half of the day. This was really nice, as I didn't have to deal with direct afternoon heat or the cold of the dead of night. The evening shift was my favorite: the sunsets, becoming in tune with the moon cycle, and navigating by the planets and constellations, were all highlights.

Eventually the steady winds ended, and we started on an east southeast tack back towards the land. This made it a lot harder to keep the boat pointed in the right direction.

We started the motor when there was nothing left to sail on, and headed into the Magdalena lagoons to anchor.

The lagoon is massive and is sparsely populated. It's surrounded by the jagged mountain range that runs all the way down the Baja peninsula. We anchored across from a fishing village that looked like it hadn't changed in the last century. There were no roads in or out. In the morning a local motored up in his ponga and asked me for triple a batteries. They must not get supplies often.

In the morning I went for a quick swim. The water was much colder than I thought. I briefly panicked after looking behind me and realizing the boat was really small and I was out of breath and cold. I made it back huffing and puffing. We sailed out a few hours later.

safe.jpg

The winds were almost dead so we motored for a few days until it started to make funny noises and eventually died on us. We drifted in the ocean for a few nights with no sail up, what sailors call being 'becalmed'. During this time other problems started to manifest.

Rayana, whom the captain affectionately calls 'The best galley slave ever', got sick and became bed ridden, so I took over galley duty. The propane connection to the range in the galley also broke, so I was using a camp stove that liked to slide all over as the boat rocked. Also our lazy jack lines got lost inside of the mast so we couldn't put the main sail away properly, so it draped over the cabin haphazardly instead being wrapped up nice and tidy like usual.

A few days later we finally limped into port. The engine fired up after draining excess oil (it died because too much fuel leaked into the oil and made the levels rise) . When we arrived I climbed the mast to tighten bolts on the spreaders, and take pictures of the rigging at the very top to see why our main halyard was chafing. It's lot taller than it seems up there!

its-high.jpg

I stayed there for a little under a week, before deciding that it was too late in the hurricane season to venture further south , so I got a plane ticket back. Rayana also flew back on the same day. The captain is still down there burning under the sun, repairing the boat, looking for new crew, and dreaming of sailing south.

powered by  26.3 9.1.912/29/19