Tuesday, February 23, 2016

This Month Aboard Sound Discovery...

Buenas Dias de Loreto--

I'm writing from the comfort of land while the wind picks up off the Loreto shoreline. This week the wind has been up high, so we have been hunkering down here in Loreto with good friends waiting for some good wind and weather to cross back over to Guaymas. Clif's dad, Rob, joined us last Sunday, just in time for the Norther to start blowing, and he will be crossing with is as an extra hand, but we have been enjoying land adventures and the home/company of a Reno couple, Rosie and Ken, long time friends of Clif's family. Thank you Rosie and Ken for letting us take over your house this week--- laundry, wifi, amazing meals up on the top deck of the house-- we've been spoiled! All the while, Sound Discovery is sitting tight and snug on anchor in Puerto Escondido, 20 miles south of Loreto in a little wind protection.

Beach walk in Agua Verde.
Since I last posted photos (our first pass through Loreto), Clif and I sailed down to Agua Verde and Caleta Los Gatos, two popular cruising spots south of us. The second we passed Loreto that water got warmer, the wind died down, and the sun got hotter. Amazing what a little adjustment south can do! We had some wonderful sails downwind and hot, flat-calm motoring days back up to Loreto area. All of our destinations have been centered around accessibility of good spear-fishing spots-- making the majority of our meals this year fish tacos or pan-friend fish fillets! Clif and I have both improved our fish-frying skills drastically. Turns out... the secret is coconut oil. We've gone through some serious coconut oil, and have taken to using it whenever we cook with the skillet.

We took a little break from galley cooking while in Agua Verde. Clif made an actual Valentine's Day reservation with a small palapa-restaruant on the beach, run by several local ladies. We dined under a little palm-fronds roof on homemade chicken mole! My first meal of authentic chicken mole since Sound Discovery has been in Mexican waters. (My Dad will understand why this is a milestone, I've been asking for mole in restaurants since we started sailing down the outside coast.) It lived up to all of my expectations!

Happy Spearfisherman! The Blunthead Trigger.
Clif has been enjoying his new dive toy, the Lunocet Pro Monofin, having great success with monofin spearfishing as well. One day, while I had cell service and was chatting with my sister sitting in the cockpit, Clif swam up quietly and said, "Giselle, I need your help." I peeked over the side of the boat, told my sister I had to go, to him holding onto our side ladder with a huge trigger fish, the biggest one either of us had ever seen-- later learned it was a Blunthead Trigger. Needless to say, we were eating trigger fish tacos and ceviche for DAYS.

Yesterday, Clif, Rob and I took a day trip across Baja to see the Gray Whale mama and baby pairs rearing in the shallow, protected waters near Lopez Mateo. This time we hired our own panga to take us our and saw dozens of mama-baby pairs, so many excited to play and interact! Rob was up front in the panga when one of the young calves was swimming back and forth under the bow of the panga and got some good whale pets in! We also were fortunate enough to see a mama Gray do several "head-slap," bringing her head all the way our of the water and looking and the world around. Another amazing day out there getting close to the curious and playful whales!

What's Next...

Rob petting the baby Gray whale the surfaced under our bow!
Now that Rob has arrived in Mexico, we are Guaymas bound. Once the winds calm down, we are going to sail up to San Juanico (San Basillio area), and make the crossing from there. The weather looks nice and calm for a crossing this coming weekend (Feb 27th/28th)-- and with three of us, I might even get a chance to sleep! (Unlike this past one... where we were doing some serious sailing all night). Once we're in Guaymas, we will schedule a day to haul-out, do a couple days of thorough clean-up, and then hit the road for Phoenix. Our goal is to be up in Arizona by the first weekend on March. Depending on the timing, we would like to do some camping on our way back north, passing through Occidental, Bend and then eventually Seattle before flying up to Juneau. Working our way slowly north for our wedding.

Until then, we are going to soak up as much sun as possible--- wearing sunscreen and working hard to make sure I'm tan-line free for wedding dress time!

Looking forward to seeing family and friends as we move up the west coast!