It is Tuesday, 16 May, 2017 and all is good on the SV Milagro. After a night of less than stellar conditions at Pto. Los Gatos we took advantage of the mornings offshore breeze and sailed North. It turned out to be a mixed bag. Great sailing early on flat seas followed by motorsailing in 0 wind on the same flat water followed by beam reach sailing on the afternoon onshore wind followed by beating into 3′ swells and 15kt headwinds. If you’re keeping score, that’s Zen, Zen, Zen then definitely NOT Zen. Yes, it was a bit of a long day but on balance, it was a great passage day. We ended up 49nm North at Bahia Ballandra on Isla Carmen just 9 miles East of the town of Loreto. Well protected from the predicted Northerlies, which may have actually arrived-we’ll see what tomorrow brings. We will hang here for at least a few days. We are in our intended cruising grounds where we will stay until heading across to San Carlos later to put Milagro away for the “hot” months. There are countless great anchorages within a few hours sail so we will likely move around some over the next several weeks while staying within this general area. At 1800 MDT the anchor was set in 19′ over sand at 26 01.034’N 111 09.879’W. The OAT is 77F, the humidity 49%, it’s 73F in the pool and there is a 8kt wind blowing from the North. The water is flat but there is a small swell that has wrapped around into the bay from the bigger swell running outside. We will let you know when we change the scenery but, for now, hasta luego, y’all.
It is Monday, May 15th, 2017 and all is well onboard Milagro. We made the 34nm passage today from Isla San Francisco to Puerto Los Gatos. Sadly, the forecast SW winds of 10-15kts were a total no show. Instead, we were treated to winds of mostly less than 5kts which came from every direction at one time or another except South. Since we were headed NW up the San Jose Channel that was no bueno por nada. So we enjoyed a flat water motorsail and and are now anchored in the North lobe of Puerto Los Gatos at 25 18.234’N 111 56.761’W in 15′ over sand. It is 83F, 41% humid, and the pool is 74F. There’s a breeze from the East running 4 to 6kts. If you can find this place on Google you will see the amazing red sandstone formations at the North end and black rock formations at the South end connected by a white sand beach in the middle. Pretty photogenic. The forecast suggests that we’ll see Northerly winds for the next couple of days – not that we put very much stock in the forecast. However, should that turn out to be more or less true, we may sit here and wait for more Southerly winds to return. We’ll have to see how comfortable this place stays in whatever winds decide to show up before knowing for certain. In any case, we will post again whenever we do move to our next stop. That will be to Bahia Agua Verde, about 18nm North. Hasta luego, y’all.
It is Sunday, May 14, 2017 (Mother’s Day) and all is well on Milagro. We did make the move today from Caleta Partida to Isla San Francisco. The last 2 nights at Partida brought SW Coromuel winds overnight with gusts to the mid 20’s with little to no wind during the daytime. This morning dawned with those winds blowing 20 kts steady with gusts to 26 though they steadily decreased with the climbing sun until down to 10 gusting to 15 when we weighed anchor a little after 0900. Our location in the anchorage was protected from much in the way of waves ever developing so we were plenty comfortable through it all. With those winds from the South and us headed generally North, we enjoyed a nice downwind run today right into the anchorage on the East side of Isla San Francisco. At 1350 MDT we were set at 24 49.806’N 111 34.001’W in 20′ over sand. It’s 79F, 61% humid and the pool is 76. There is still a South breeze of 3 to 5 kts over flat water. Wx forecast says these S winds will become Northerly on Tuesday or Wednesday so we’re going to take what advantage we can and continue our Northing tomorrow. Not sure of our destination though Puerto Los Gatos seems likely, more on that later. Hasta manana, y’all.
It is Tuesday, May 9, 2017 and all is well on Milagro. Plus, we actually did it. The good ship Milagro sailed away from Marina De La Paz today bound for Caleta Partida on the Isla Espiritu Santo just about 25 miles away. After an uneventful, unremarkable passage we set the anchor at 1419 hrs (MDT) at Caleta Partida in 30′ over sand and gravel at 24 32.919’N 110 22.839’W. The wind, which has been conspicuously absent to this point, is now from the E at 9 kts. The water is 73F and flat while the OAT is 78. We’ve got clear skies and 40% humidity. It is a bit cooler than normal for these parts and this time of year but we are not complaining as we know that “real” summer is coming. While this is one of our favorite anchorages, our last time here was very nearly 2 years ago (June, 2015). So, our anchor was no sooner set when the “welcome turtle” surfaced right next to us to welcome us back. After checking us out and offering his greeting he moseyed along on his way. It was a nice welcome back. We will stay here until probably Saturday before moving on further North. Of course, we’ll keep you posted as we move around.
It is Thursday, March 23, 2017 and all is well here. As advertised, we moved yesterday from Playa Bonanza to Baha Falsa, just 14 nm distant on the way towards La Paz. This area is expecting a fairly strong wind from the north today and tomorrow and Falsa offers good protection from that direction. We are joined here by friends on SV Cake and SV Cantem Para Mi and a game of Baja Rummy broke out onboard Milagro very shortly after we all were settled. We enjoyed a comfortable night at anchor but the north breeze has begun building as I write this at 1130 MST. Currently we have an OAT of 75F, a pool temp of only 72F and the humidity is 60%. The sky is mostly overcast with fast moving high level clouds and the wind is from the NNW at 15, expected to become 25kts, or more. Where we are, 24 15.483’N 110 19.122’W, there is no fetch for the wind to create waves so we should have a pretty flat ride regardless of what wind might actually develop. Our current plan is to hang out here through the weekend then move into Marina de La Paz first thing Monday morning, March 27th. In the meantime, we do have decent cell signal.
It is Monday, March 20, 2017 and Milagro has changed locations once again. After getting together on the beach yesterday afternoon at Los Muertos with other cruisers and playing some bocce ball, we weighed anchor this morning at first light and made way for Playa Bonanza on Isla Espiritu Santo. We saw another mixed bag of wind conditions for today’s passage leading us to sail, motor, sail, motor sail and then finally motoring to complete the 42 mile passage. However, the seas were calm and, except from some wind waves where there was wind, totally flat. It was a very nice day. Our anchor was set at 1515 MST in 13′ over sand in clear water at 24 26.815’N 110 18.573’W. It is 82F and 73F in the pool. Humidity is 50% and there is a 5 knot breeze from the NE over flat water under clear skies. We will move on to Bahia Falsa either tomorrow or Wednesday.
It is Sunday, 19 March, 2017 and we are happy to report that all is very well on board Milagro. We completed our 320nm passage to Bahia de Los Muertos (Bay of the Dead) at a little before 0600 CST/0500 MST this morning and had the anchor set by 5 mins after the hour in 33′ over sand under a bright moon. We join about 10 other boats already anchored here including 5 belonging to folks we know who arrived yesterday afternoon from Mazatlan. As is typical of passages of this length (320nm), the conditions varied but were very good over all. Of course, we could always wish for more of the conditions suitable for sailing but flat glassy water and a smooth ride is a fine substitute so we aren’t fussing. We are not sure how long we will hang here but likely we will move along towards La Paz tomorrow (Monday) or Tuesday – a pretty strong north wind is forecast by late Wednesday which would pin us down here if we haven’t moved by then. At 1100 MST the sea here is still flat and glassy and the wind <5 kts and variable in direction. It’s 85 outside and 76 in the pool, humidity 66%. We’ve planted ourselves at 22 59.260’N 109 49.579’W. Oh, and there is no wifi or cell coverage here so we remain off the grid except for this ham radio service.
It is Saturday evening, 18 March 2017 about 1830 MST (yes, we are back on MST. At least for now) and all is well on board the Milagro. We are about 55 miles out from our destination and estimate arriving in the 0500 hour tomorrow morning. It has been mostly a very smooth passage so far with winds mostly light and variable except for a few periods of apx 10 kts on the nose and, this morning, several hours of 10 knots from the port beam. It was nice to be able to turn the motor off for that time. But, of course, that nice, sailable breeze couldn’t and didn’t last long. It was followed by 0 wind and flat, glassy seas for the entire rest of the day. The water here is a brilliant, deep blue with a translucent quality that makes it seem as though you are seeing a great distance when you look down into it. I know that’s a poor description but we see this same thing every time we are in the open ocean (at least, THIS ocean) and it never fails to move us. It’s very cool to look at. Also cool to see was the Green Flash at last night’s sunset, Judy’s first and only my second. Although we haven’t seen much in the way of sea life, this afternoon Judy did observe 2 whales breaching while I was below napping. All in all, not a bad passage. As I write this we are at 23 25.351N 109 00.676W motorsailing on glassy water under clear skies. No green flash tonight though we were still treated to a great sunset as it slipped behind the mountains of the Baja Peninsula in the distance. There’s a S wind running 2 to 3 kts and it is 80F the cockpit with 65% humidity. The pool is 76F.
It is Friday evening, March 17, 2017 (St. Patrick’s Day) approaching 1800 CST and all is well on board the SV Milagro. We are about 18 miles shy of the halfway point of our passage and motorsailing along in winds that are mostly light and variable and on mostly calm seas. Conditions so far have followed the forecast pretty closely with winds mostly less than 5 knots and coming from E, N and/or NW then with afternoon thermals more like 10 knots. Those, of course, always come directly on our nose. We are currently at 22 03.534’N 107 23.893’W making 4.5 to 5.0 knots against a NW breeze of 10 knots. It is 78F outside with 69% humidity. The pool is 76F. Sea has small wind chop and a long period westerly swell approximately 2′.
These were taken by mobile devices which do not have enough dynamic range to deal very well with the lighting challenge. However, that’s what we had handy so that’s what we used. Hopefully, they did well enough to present the idea that sunsets here are often very pretty – maybe your imagination can make up for the poor imagery.