Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

We headed out to the islands for holiday celebrations on Dec. 22 just before a strong northerly blew through the La Paz area. We knew we wanted to spend our holidays at the islands and would not be able to get out there during the north winds, so we cut out early and had a lovely time. We stayed on the boat for two entire days until the winds subsided on Christmas day.

We decorated our tiny tree with glitter covered sea shells, made a Christmas feast and opened presents before a stroll along the white sand beach of Bahia San Gabriel. We did miss our families a lot, but luckily still had phone reception to give them a call.

We spent the last 10 days exploring the anchorages that we had not seen yet and found some new favorites. We tucked into Candleros Bay and found some incredible hiking up the center ridge-line and down into the valley. We stayed there for a few days and watched tourist camps come in and out. We moved up to Ensenada Grande – on the north side of Isla Partida. This is a busy anchorage with tourists, divers and fishermen. This is where Tim shot his very first fish with his spear gun. He hunted it along the rocks nearby and brought it home for dinner. It, unfortunately, was very boney and tough to fillet, but we tried.

One night we were catching up on Season 2 of Friends and heard a loud splash outside. Tim went to investigate and found sea lions feeding all around our boat! It was so neat because as they swam around, they stirred up the bioluminescent plankton and created glowing streams of water and splashes all around. We grabbed our bright spotlight, and when we saw a grouping of glowing movement we flashed the light in their direction. All the sea lions would look at us surprised and scatter. It was great fun, and we all played this little game for about an hour.

We scooted up to the very northern rocks that have a colony of sea lions called Los Islotes. This is a huge tourist hot spot, so pongas (little power boats) full of divers and snorkelers were surrounding the island. The water there is about 65-feet deep and very rocky bottom, so we opted not to anchor and just do a loop to take a look at the activity. We anchored in a very large anchorage called Cordonal. This spot was cool because it nearly cuts the northern island in half, so you can take a very easy stroll to the east side of the island, which we did. We were confronted with the vastness of the Sea of Cortez on that side. It made me wonder if we will ever be ready to cross it.

From this anchorage we heard our friends from Matilda on the radio, but we couldn’t see them. Turns out, they were in the same place – Cordoncito – that we had waited out the last northerly with them. This is a little cove just next door to where we were, so we moved over there to join Hayden and his friends aboard, Megan, Andy and Emily. Another boat and close friends of Hayden, Pyxis with James and Eva, was there. We three boats decided to stay here and have a little party to kick off the new year. It was perfect. Everyone brought over food including the fish Hayden had shot earlier that day, and I helped fillet. We had dinner and drinks and shot off expired flares at midnight!

We also drove around to the anchorage next door and had amazing views of the glowing bioluminescence. It is unlike anything I have seen before. Our dinghies had glowing, sparkling tails as we whizzed around in the dark. Just amazing.

We returned to La Paz yesterday with sails up all the way to tend to boat maintenance and await the arrival of Tim’s parents. We are so excited to share our discoveries with them!

Heading out to the islands.
We made shells into ornaments, and I wanted to cover them all in glitter.
Ta da! Our tree covered in homemade shell ornaments.
Tim is carving our Christmas ham. We had green bean casserole, cheddar potatoes, ham and a chocolate cake for dessert.
Christmas day walking on the beach. Yes, Tim's hair is getting long.
Hiking the ridge in Candleros bay.
Working our way through the rocky valley in Candleros.
We found these amazing red rock caves.
There is a well in Candleros that travelers can use for showers.
The view from our hike in Ensenada Grande.
Tim's first spear catch. It doesn't look like much, but he could feed us.
Me filleting Hayden's fish for New Year's Eve dinner.
New Year's party on the Luckiest.
One of the best sunsets yet.

5 thoughts on “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  1. Great update. Looks like a nice Christmas.. loved the sunset!

  2. Dennis and Brenda Nowicki January 3, 2012 — 9:58 pm

    When you were at my house and we tried to explain the events you are seeing it must of been difficult to understand the things like phosprsence and all the sea life, scenery places, anchorages, etc. Now you understand the life style and the friends your making and the hair that Tim is growing, because your so busy not enough time for a hair cut! By the way, your friends fish is a fish, what Tim shot is an appetizer. Hopefully he can master the art of killing big fish someday.
    Glad your going to share the experience with Steve and Debbie. say hi from us and we will be seeing everyone on the cruise.
    The pictures are all the same places we visited. Tell Tim that we dove with the seals not just drove around them, just don’t get to close to shore while in he water. The pups are real curious but if you get to close to the female the big bull enters the water and then you become his meal. The pups nip at your fins!
    Keep up the blogs, love them and a great reminder of our past through you. We are very proud of your accomplishment and glad to see you hanging in there. Bythe way crossing the sea to the main land up North is a lot shorter than from La Paz to Mazatlan which is almost 300 miles or so.
    We are enjoying our time in Mission, Texas and just said good by to our friends that are on their way to Mazatlan in their RV. they also know Gary and Lois.

  3. Gorgeous sunset! I have ALWAYS wanted to see the bioluminescence (sp?), where all does that happen, do you know?? Looks like yall had a fun party on new years!!

  4. Hi guys!
    We spent Christmas in Caleta Partida, so pretty close to you. We are sorry we didn’t meet… We had an amazing New Years Party in San Evaristo and are now in Puerto Escondido. Nice to see that you are having great time as well, we hope to see you out there soon. We are planning to come back south in a few weeks, so look out for Calypso!!
    Hugs from Jasna and Rick

    1. Oh wow! Sounds like you have also been having an amazing time. Sorry we missed you, but we will definitely keep an eye out for you as you make your way south. We will be back in the states for the month of february, but will return and head north in march. Hope to see you soon!
      Meredith and Tim

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