Saturday, April 19, 2014

Punta Chivato

Santa Domingo-Punta Chivato

26 deg 51' 56.5" N 111 deg 50'46.0"W
27 deg 3' 8.40" N 111 deg 57'64.7"W

9 am-12:44 pm

We started out the day in anticipation of big wind.  The forecast was for 18-24 knots, so Pangaea was set with jack lines and we with our PDFs and harnesses.  We left the anchorage right after some steel cut oatmeal and the Sonrisa net.

No wind.  I mean nadda, nothing. So we motored about half way until we got a decent 10-11 knots for the rest of the trip.  We anchored in 20 ' on the NE side near Posada de las Flores.  Hmmm....maybe we need another night there.

We were greeted royally this am by a pod of dolphins across the sea.  Three even came up to the bow of the boat and said hello.

We spent the afternoon reading.  The winds were gusting 20-22 knots most of the day.  

We made chicken mole with the leftover grilled chicken and served it with the last of the plantains and some refried black beans.

After dinner we read some more and I finished City of Thieves in one day!  Such a great book.

We watched the sun go down and then watched The Shawshank Redemption. I was trying to stay up for the lunar eclipse. We watched the first half of it and Mike went to bed, uninspired.  I caved as to not keep him up for another hour.  Wish I had stayed up for the rest of it.

Grateful for today.

First Mate Kate


I awoke early and took some sunrise shots.  The full moon was still up on the west horizon.  It was pretty amazing.

We listened to the net and decided to stay here on more day and ride the south winds up to Santa Rosalia on Wednesday.  Apparently the lunar eclipse was incredible.  That was all everyone talked about on the Sonrisa Net.  Sure wish I had stayed up for it.

We paddled into shore to do some exploring and get some real exercise.  The beach was rich with shells...the most we have seen so far.  The town has its own airstrip and many of the people with homes on the beach fly down in their planes.

We had hoped to stay at Posada de las Flores hotel, but it was all closed up.  We did get some great photos of Pangaea from there.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate

Bahia Concepcion


Caleta San Juanico-Santa Domingo, Bahia Concepcion

26 deg 22' 03.9" N 111 deg 26'58.6"W
26 deg 52' 02.8" N 111 deg 50'49.9"W

Calm winds and seas
Partly cloudy
Engine Hours 95.1-103.4
9:00-6:30 pm

Spanish Mackerel 22"- catch of the day

We had a pretty quiet (aside from the motor) trek to Bahia Concepcion.  It was a full day of quiet seas interspersed with light southerlies.  We had enough wind for about an hour to warrant flying the spinnaker.  Then the wind shifted to light and from the NE.  We finally got our wind back, right at the point of the bay.  That was when I caught the mackerel.  I was innocently reeling in the fishing line, assuming the pull on the rig was a load of seaweed similar to an earlier catch.  To my happy surprise, this seaweed had a face!  We got the little mackerel in and after safely anchoring commenced filleting her for dinner.  Yum!  Fresh fish with a capital F!  

First Mate Kate


Santa Domingo- Santispac

26 deg 51' 56.5" N 111 deg 50'46.0"W
26 deg 52' 02.8" N 111 deg 50'49.9"W

Engine hours 103.4-105.2
Mostly cloudy
Variable winds NE

We had a little wind when we started out, around 9 knots.  Slowly our wind diminished and we ended up motor sailing.  It is warmer here so we are thinking about swimming or snorkeling.

We were taking our dinghy off the boat when our friends from Solar Flair came up on their dinghy.  They were off for an adventure but said they were going to Ana's at the beach for rib night and invited us along.  We decided to meet at their boat with a bottle of wine for a little appetizer.

Ribs were great as were the margaritas.  We went back to Solar Flair for a little guitar playing and singing.  Jim was great and we all had fun.

We had some trouble with our outboard motor today.  It died as we were exploring and also on the way home to our boat tonight.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate


 Santispac-Santa Domingo

26 deg 52' 02.8" N 111 deg 50'49.9"W
26 deg 51' 56.5" N 111 deg 50'46.0"W

Variable winds, 4-11 knots
Mostly sunny
Engine hours 105.2- 106.5

It was a little noisy at the anchorage last night, especially the trucks barreling down the highway, so we decided to go back to Santa Domingo.  

We had a leisurely sail up to Santa Domingo and then settled down for an afternoon read and nap.

We finished our mackerel for dinner with plantains and black beans.

We were both tired so hit the hay early.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate

San Juanico

Isla Coronados- Caleta San Juanico

26 deg 06' 12.0" N 111 deg 16'34.1"W
26 deg 22' 03.9" N 111 deg 26'58.6"W


18 nm
Winds N 14-18
Seas 2-3' 5-6 secs
Engine hours 92.2-95.1

We had a motor sail this am and pretty calm winds leaving Isla Coronados.  On the east side of the island, there were sea lions barking at us as we passed.  A little ways north of the island I saw a blue whale surface, kind of like a submarine.  He blew us a little hello.  Then he was gone.

I hit my head on the boom so hard today I thought I had scalped myself.  I kept asking Mike if he saw blood, to which he simply replied, "Nope."  I am happy there wasn't blood.  My head still hurts like a son-of-a-bitch!

We sailed in strong winds, beating from 11-3 until it was time to take the sails down.  Minutes after we anchored safely, the wind died, and offered us an opportunity to get our SUPs out and explore. We discovered the cruiser shrine tree...and are inspired to add something of our own to represent Pangaea. 

Mike grilled the chicken in our fridge/freezer for the last 17 days.  It was still good!  We made chicken mole with black beans and plantains.  Yum with a capital Y!

Grateful for today,

Firet Mate Kate


We awakened to a perfect morning with calm winds and seas.  The anchorage was prime for exploring.  I found a card I had planned to frame of a couple on a sailboat with a heart-shaped head sail that I donned with the date, Pangaea on the sail, and katie and mike.

Inside, the message of the card read:

Like a prayer flag blows in the wind, may this wave in the good company of our fellow cruisers, and pray for happy hearts, full sails and calm seas.  Enjoy the journey!  Katie and Mike Gordon

We headed over to the cruiser shrine via SUPs, with the card around my neck.  Mike brought shells he found to add to the offering.  We placed it on a tree with room to wave and returned to our boards for serious exploration.

We paddled almost out to the ragged line of rocks that welcome you to the bay.  The water was clear and calm and we had an almost snorkeling view from the boards.  I got some great shots of San Juanico.

On the way back to the boat we stopped at a 57' aluminum troweler named Idlewild.  We had briefly seen the owners in Puerto Escondito and were curious to see her and her crew.

We were invited on board with a beer in our hands and a nice chat commenced with Andy, Julie, Tex and Gretta.  They are co-owners of the boat and their port was Alberta, Canada.  Nice folk!  As we were chatting, Andy noticed my paddle was no longer atop my SUP.  So, a search and rescue mission was launched.  Mike went on his SUP, Andy and Tex in their dinghy.  They followed the waves to the beach in hopes of an easy rescue.  Julie, a mathematician by training, plunked a half-full milk jug in the water to see the paddle's likely course.  
Sure enough, the paddle was found at the exact trajectory as the milk jug!

We surfed back to Pangaea, as the wind and surf had picked up significantly.  We had lunch and were ready for some R and R, which I took more literally than Mike.  I think I have had a nap every day for a week!

While we were enjoying a sundowner, the crew from Idlewild came by on their way to add their mark on the cruiser's shrine to invite us to the beach for a bonfire.  Mike and I gladly accepted and brought the guitar and ipad for some music around the fire.

On the shore of the beach was a dead sea turtle.  Hopefully it had a long, happy life and died of old age.  

We were out late and had a really nice evening.  Paddling back in the dark was a surreal experience.  I felt like I was walking on water...very weightless.  I am actually surprised I stayed on the board.  Did I mention I was wearing a dress?  

We had a late night quesadilla and watched more Breaking Bad.  Almost done!

First Mate Kate

Santa Rosalia

Day 2 


Punta Chivato- Santa Rosalia

27 deg 3' 8.40" N 111 deg 57'64.7"W
27 deg 20'14.9"N 112 deg 15'49.6"W

Mostly sunny
Calm winds
Calm seas

Catch of the Day: 2 skipjacks, 1 bonita 

We awoke early to get a good start on our journey.  We left right after the net with Solar Flair and Good As Gold right behind us.  We had a little dolphin show as we left the anchorage.

The winds were pretty light but we motor sailed with the sails full most of the day, and even had the Gennaker out for a spin.

Since it was such a calm day, we decided to focus on fishing.  Success!  In an hour's time we reeled in 3 tuna...2   Skipper Jack and 1 Bonita.  We threw them back, as they are not our favorite eats.  Exciting, though!

We were the last of the three boats into Santa Rosalia because of our fishing delay, and the other two groups had a slip in the marina for us and greeted us as we came in.  So nice!

We got settled in, put water in our tanks and washed the boat.  After a long, hot shower, we joined Dina and Malcolm on Good As Gold, Cinthia and Lee on GoldenHeart, and Jim and Kathy on Solar Flair out for a roasted chicken dinner. After dinner we went down to the center of town to follow a procession of Yaqui people presenting themselves in masks and ceremony for Semana Santa.  That little walk around the town was just the ticket to justify a little ice cream.  First one all tri
Glad to be here, safe and sound.

First Mate Kate

Day 3


Today was See Santa Rosalia Day.  We went up to the French Mesa and toured the copper mining part of town, including the main office building that now stands as a museum.

The architecture was very quaint.

We walked down to the center of the city to see a church designed by Eifel, which apparently was shipped and assembled here Ikea style.

We stocked up on food and water and enjoyed margaritas with the other boats in the marina.

Dinner was back in town at El Mulle with Brian and Barb on La Gaviata, a couple we met in Punta Chivato.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate

Day 4


Today is Good Friday, and Santa Rosalia has a tradition of reenacting the trial and journey of Christ to be crucified.  We went to the Zocolo to see the people of Santa Rosalia having a community Tenebrae service.  The journey coursed to twelve different points of town symbolizing twelve points of the cross.  The final destination was at the highest point of the city at the cemetery, where the crucifixion took place.  Songs of the service bellowed through the town from speakers atop the mountain.

The Yaqui people had their own ceremony today where they walk to La Ramada, a makeshift church in the fields at the edge of town.  A curtain is drawn and lifted several times, and the ceremonial Yaquis have to strip themselves of their masks and costumes they have worn throughout the 40 days of Lent and make it to the church before the curtain falls.  Those who make it into the church shall be saved from their pilgrimage.  Tomorrow am they burn the clothing and masks they wore.

The rest of the day was earmarked for laundry, errands and emails...or LEE.  

We dined with Kathy and Jim and Barb and Brian tonight at El Mulle for some yummy pizza.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate

Friday, April 18, 2014

Isla Coronados

Puerto Ballandra-Isla Coronados

26 deg 01' 0.25" N 111 deg 09'52.6"W
26 deg 06' 12.0" N 111 deg 16'34.1"W

Engine hours 91.7- 92.2
Winds 14-18 knots
Seas 2-3 ' 5-6 sec
Partly cloudy and breezy

Time 9:46-1:11

We had a great sail today.  We started out under full sail and around noon we decided that today would be a good day to practice reefing under way.  We had 16 knots on our nose almost and we had to pinch the wind to get to our destination.  Even so, we averaged 6 knots/hr.  

I would say we are definitely getting more comfortable with our sailing abilities, our boat and how she handles, and how to work as an efficient team.  The reefing went well. 

We anchored in 20' of water at the south anchorage of Isla Coronados. Right next door to our fellow Palmira cruisers, Diane and Bill on s/v True Love.  She has been very encouraging and helpful with my net experiences.

I made salmon patties, kind of like crab cakes, for our dinner tonight.  They turned out pretty well, so I will share with you my recipe:

Salmon Patties (serves 6)

Prep-time: 10 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in 25 min or 1 hr 25 min if patties are chilled before cooking


1 (14.75 oz) can salmon/water 
2 T organic butter
3 T coconut oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 large organic eggs, beaten
1 T chipotle mustard
3/4 c panko or gluten-free bread crumbs
1/4 c chopped fresh parsley
1/4 c capers
1/4 c chopped sun-dried tomatoes
3 T chopped dill

Optional topping: 

3 T plain greek yogurt
1 t chipotle powder
1 t cumin
Sea salt to taste


1.  Drain salmon and save the reserve water.  In a medium bowl, flake the  salmon and remove any bones.

2.  Add the reserved water, eggs, mustard, 1/4 c of the panko/ bread crumbs, parsley, capers, and sun-dried tomatoes to the flaked salmon.

3.  In a medium fry-pan, melt the butter and fry up the onion and garlic until soft. Add the cooked onion and garlic to the salmon mixture.  Mix well.

4.  Form 6 equal-sized patties and coat evenly with the remaining panko/bread crumbs.  Pat and form well.

5.  Melt 3 T of coconut oil in a hot fry pan and cook on medium-high heat until patties are browned on both sides.  Be careful when flipping, as the patties can break apart.  

Garnish with a dollop of optional topping and/or sprigs of dill.  

Note:  you can make patties and chill for 1 hour to help keep them from breaking apart.

These can also be made into bite-sized patties as a finger-food appetizer. (Yield-24)

We made quinoa with onion and red pepper and steamed broccoli to serve with the salmon cakes.  Let's just say there was a little proverbial plate lickin' going on.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate


We are spending another day on the hook at Isla Coronados.  We would really like to explore the island but it has been blowing 15-20 knots and that makes for a rough anything.

We decided to take advantage of free time and did a survey of our running rigging.  Most of it will be replaced this summer.  As we were doing that, a pod of dolphins came alongside our anchorage to feed.  What a treat!

We also gave fishing a shot after reading how to fish at anchor.  We had some rank shrimp in the fridge perfect for bait and successfully caught a puffer fish and a seagull. The seagull was a bit scary, as I hated the idea of injuring a bird, but realized that we had her only by the shrimp and not by the hook.  It was like fishing and flying a kite all-in-one.

While we were fishing, a sea turtle came by to investigate, right off our stern.  I just love them!

We are cooking steak on the bar-b tonight with sweet potato fries. Brownies for dessert.  :-)

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate 


Isla Coronados

Still blowing 12-20 knots.  We are waiting for the winds to subside before heading north.  Too much bashing potential.

Instead, I gave my first haircut.  It was a bit scary, as I have to live with my client.  And he had a lot of hair.  Like Animal from the muppets a lot.  My two concerns...
1) don't cut it too short
2) don't give him a mullet 

Well...1 out of 2 isn't bad.  Haha
Ok, I fixed the mullet.  He no longer looks like a throw back from an 80's rock band.

I think he's happy with it; I didnt see any tears. 
I finished Mexico!

More Breaking Bad was to be had after dinner.

Thankful for today,

First Mate Kate

Agua Verde

Punta Prieta to Bahia Agua Verde

25 deg 19' 37.7" N 110 deg 57' 16.0"W
25 deg 30' 52.5" N 111 deg 03' 45.2"W

9 am 3 pm
3 foot seas 
12-18 kts
Wind out of the N
Engine hours 78.4-80.0

I woke up early this am because of rolling so badly, only to discover dolphins swimming in pairs at the edge of the channel.  They were jumping out of the water in complete synchronization.  It was beautiful!

We had enough rockin' and rollin' so we decided to get out of there!  Little did we realize that we were rocking so badly because the seas were rough and big.

As we left the anchorage, a big wave rocked the boat and a bottle that was ready to be recycled rolled into the sink and broke our french press beaker.  Sadness!

We had to beat against the wind and waves to get to our destination, but it was good for us. We had a pleasant and more gentle end to our sailing as we approached Agua Verde.

While we were looking for a spot, we noticed our friends Kathy and Jim on Solar Flare in the north anchorage.  It was a bit congested, so we opted for a secluded beach spot on the south side, knowing that the winds were to switch to the south.

After a cerveza and guacamole, we went for a swim and a paddle, and paddled across the bay to see Solar Flair.  They invited us in for a glass of wine and a chat!

We left after sunset in time to get back to the boat before dark.  Showers were in order before our red snapper dinner.

I am thankful for today and our safe journey here.  It is really beautiful in Agua Verde!!
The north anchorage at Agua Verde

Looking at the entrance and the surrounding reef

Mountains and palm trees

Day 2

We spent the day today exploring Agua Verde.  We paddled into shore, locked up the SUPs and walked down a dirt road to a little tienda with goats, chickens and two little dogs outside and bought some bananas.  We met Maria, who also has another tienda on the other side of town.  She said she would have fresh goat cheese later this afternoon.  We walked down toward the beach and saw the school and church in town, as well as another tienda.  We bought some cilantro and flour and headed back to the boat.  We did our body weight and core exercises and then chilled on our boards with a shared cerveza.The town of Agua Verde has a school, a church, a restaurant and a couple of tiendas.

La Escuela

La Iglesia

Il Restaurante

Children from the village

SUP rack
Goats in the village

Day 3

The wind picked up, so no snorkeling today.  Instead, we made focaccia.  It actually turned out well and shared that with a bottle of Italian red wine (Coreo) for dinner.  

Mike and I went up to look at the stars and there were as many little lights in sea as stars in the sky.  Bioluminescence or whatever it is called.  Pretty spectacular.  

The night ended with another marathon of Breaking Bad.

Thankful for today,

First Mate Kate

Puerto Escondito

Bahia Agua Verde-Honeymoon Cove-Puerto Escondito

25 deg 30' 52.5" N 111 deg 03' 45.2"W
25 deg 49' 04.0" N 111 deg 18' 54.5"W

Engine hours 80.0-87.3
Mostly sunny
Calm seas
Wind out of the N-NE

We were awakened this am (6:30) by the rumbling of an engine and sounds of anchoring.  Sure enough, a motor vessel pulled in right next to us...even though the entire anchorage was basically free.  Harumph!

I did my very first check in with the Sonrisa Net this am.  It went pretty well.  :-). You have to have your ham license to participate, and Mike and I both got the technician level licenses, so it was time.  We just hadn't had a good copy on the net until now.

We started off the day with 11-12 knots of wind and were off to a nice heading to HC.  All of a sudden, thr fishing rod went crazy!  We had a fish!  I headed up wind and Mike pulled him in.  Right at the last second, we saw a huge splash and the line felt light again.  He kept reeling and we saw a brown shark swim up to the boat with only a head left on the luer.  He (the shark) ate our fish for breakfast.  Harumph!  Mike thinks it was a wahoo.  That would have been good eating!

The winds died and we had to resort to motor sailing.

We headed to Honeymoon Cove, which was beautiful, but Mike wasn't comfortable with the anchorages, so we left and headed to Puerto Escondito.

Outside Puerto Escondito

Coming into the marina

We anchored just before 5 and paddled in to check in with the officina.  Restaurante Porto Bella was our dinner destination with cheeseburgers as our post sail fare.  

After loving on a 6 week old lab puppy that was abandoned on the road, we paddled back to Pangaea.

Time for a shower!

First Mate Kate

Day 2

We spent today catching up on emails and taxes over at the marina after a long paddle over.  We also arranged for a rental car for tomorrow morning to explore Loreto. That actually took two hours.  Exasperated, we went back over to Porto Bella for some pizza. We paddled back to the boat and changed into hiking clothes to hike the canyon.  I didn't think it was a great idea to start this at 2:30, as it was in the heat of the day, we had only two water bottles, and three miles into the hike we were just getting to the trailhead.  Thus, i suggested that we consider this a recon trip and return another day when we could start earlier.  Mike begrudgingly agreed.  At least we burned off some of our pizza.

We paddled back to the boat and ate the rest of our pizza for dinner.

Little houses on the way to the trailhead

Buzzards hoping for dinner


Mountain View

A good day!  Thankful for that!

Day 3
Mike decided to blow up the dinghy so we wouldn't have to leave our paddle boards at the dinghy dock over night.  We left the motor on Pangaea and rowed over. 

We got in our rental car by 11:15 and were off to explore Loreto.  There was construction on the highway to Loreto and we had a 20-minute wait.

When we got to Loreto, we found our hotel, parked nearby and were able to check into our room in our very quaint hotel La Posada de las flores.

It was a really windy day on the Sea, and walking around was a bit chilly.  We found a local restaurant on the malecon called Los Mandiles where we had the best lunch!  They had traditional Loreto-style fare, and we opted for the enmolades con planatano macha.  Basically, mashed plantains in a corn tortilla pan fried with mole.  The mole was so good we bought some for cooking.

We returned to the hotel for a nap (Mike) and a massage (Katie) and showered for dinner.

We walked across the zocolo to 1697 Restaurant for a nice dinner.  We met two gentlemen (Brian and partner) who lived part time in Loreto and part time in Sausilito.  We chatted about Loreto and sailing.  He told us how to get to Dali, my favorite gourmet food store (that closed in La Paz over the holidays).

Thankful for a beautiful day.

First Mate Kate

Day 4

We awoke early to pack and enjoyed a quaint breakfast atop the hotel terrace overlooking the city center.

From there I was on a mission to find Dali for some decent additions to our provisioning and another grocery store for the rest.  Mission accomplished!  Unfortunately, the fresh produce was not so fresh, so we didn't get as many vegetables as I wanted.  We did find Joy dish soap!

We made it back to Puerto Escondito and got the car checked back in.  That took a while.  We loaded up the groceries into the dinghy and began our trek back to Pangaea, which seemed miles away with a 15+ knot wind out of the direction we were heading.  There was probably 1' swell in the anchorage!  Luckily some kindhearted Mexican driving a larger dinghy took pity on us and gave us a tow back to the boat.

A rare dinghy showing

We decided to take advantage of the laundry facilities, so headed back to the marina in the dinghy, this time with a motor.  :-). The pepperoni pizza at Porto Bella called our names again as we waited for the laundry to finish.

Tonight we enjoyed one of the most spectacular, red sky and sea sunsets.  I got some great shots of it and us to share.

Fire in the sky reflected on the water

Thankful for today!

First Mate Kate

Captain Mike and First Mate Kate

Puerto Ballandra


Puerto Escondito-Puerto Ballandra

25 deg 49' 04.0" N 111 deg 18' 54.5"W
26 deg 01' 0.25" N 111 deg 09'52.6"W
Engine hours 87.3-91.7
Winds 4-5 knots
Partly cloudy
Wind out of the N-NE

We dinghied into the marina to check out and pay for the last night at anchor only to find the office closed. We assume that the highway construction created a delay for the marina employees.  It did give us a chance to meet and talk with Joan and Jane from s/v Dolce Maestra.  They were an interesting lesbian couple about 20 years older than we are who did the Central America trip on their way to the Galapagos and South Pacific.

After waiting an hour, we decided to leave for Puerto Ballandra.  I thought we would have great wind, but it ended up being light winds (4-5 kts) and left us motoring most of the way.  I pulled out the keyboard and gave Mike about an hour or so concert in the cockpit.

About 3 miles away from our anchorage we spotted a whale with an interesting dorsal fin approximately 10 m long.  We are not sure what species, but it was definitely new to us.  Bryde's whale, Minke or Melon-headed are our guesses.

Pangaea in the background from the east shore

We had three anchor attempts before getting a decent hold in our anchorage.  Not exactly where we wanted to be, but not bad.  We enjoyed a wonderful sunset and decided to make popcorn for dinnner.  No bueno por mi stomico.  I was up all night as the reigning DQ.

Grateful for today,

First Mate Kate  

Looking at the north shore

Day 2

I am one tired pup!  After not sleeping much last night, we got up, paddled down to an lagoon connecting to an arroyo and hiked around 5 miles.

Mouth of the lagoon

Mike hiking on the arroyo

It was rocky walking and buggy, but interesting because of the cactus and spring flowers budding and caves in the cliffs surrounding us.

Looking down on the arroyo (and me)

We climbed to one and found the remains of either a baby bighorn sheep or a goat.  That made me a little leery of what had dined on it, so I was ok not exploring any more caves.  Ha!

Remains of a kill

We finally have an opportunity to sit and read, so I plan on doing that.

Fish that we got from a local fisherman named Jimmy (hai-mi) is on tonight's menu, with lentils and broccoli we bought in Loreto.  I think I'm going to make a little mediterranean tapenade as a fish topper.

Loving the sun's sparkle on the water as I sit here in the cockpit writing this.

Thankful for today,

First Mate Kate