As mentioned in the previous post, arrival into Mexico was pretty easy, although involving a fairly long cold foggy motor. With clearing into Mexico out the way it was time to head on south down the baja california! First stop was a place called turtle bay, 290 NM away. It would be by far the longest leg I would have done in one go, and I was well aware I didn’t have enough fuel for the whole way. If they weather was not great I would just have to make it work!
The first day was fairly uneventful, though we caught another couple of Bonitos which went into the fridge/freezer. That night we saw dolphins swimming through the bio-luminance alongside the boat again, which is always wonderful.
The landscapes are looking very bleak and brown, with lots of volcanic peaks and cones
We’d been moving in not very good wind, in fits and starts and I actually motored through most of the night.
The next day was a lot of the same, very light winds flitting around the place which meant sailing was extremely frustrating! The fishing turned on though and we caught a bunch of stuff including
and even a small Mahi Mahi (which changes colours and then loses all its colour as it dies which is actually really sad)
We also caught a small yellowfin but we had to put it back as we had no more fridge freezer space – noooo! We pulled the lines in after that.
We also saw a TON of dolphins
Around midday on the second day we got visited by a small brown bird of some kind – he sat on the boat and then hopped around, sat on our knees, tried to get into the cabin (after being shooed out a few times) and drank some water. We were 40 miles offshore at this point so we figured that he had been blown out to sea as he was obviously not a sea bird.
He stuck around for a while and then left.
Shortly after this, I managed to get a handline wrapped around the prop due to stupidity, and with no other option, I had to heave-to and jump over the side with a knife to investigate. I stripped off quickly before I got too scared, and hacked away with the knife while trying to not let the boat land on my head which was bouncing up and down in swells, and also tried not to think of the 2800 ft depth we were in! Also trying not to think of sharks (I was doing a lot of not thinking about stuff). Eventually, the shaft was free and we carried on, as the wind picked up
This shifted around to a nice gentle beam reach as the second night approached
The third day the wind was great all day meaning we flew along, well into the night. We also got followed by a family of sealions for a way, all three of them throwing themselves out the water and following us for over an hour. One guy was particularly energetic
HEY GUYS HEY
IM A SEALION
And then came night again.
Night watches are still not my favourite thing in the world but are a LOT easier with two people. A LOT easier. By the third night we were getting into more of a routine but it was still really tiring – but eventually, we got to turtle bay in the early hours of the morning
Blatently ripping off another blog I’ve decided to do a quick sum up in numbers.
Distance from Ensenada to Turtle Bay – 290nm
Time taken – 76 hours
Average Speed – 3.6 knots
Average walking pace of a human – 3.1 miles an hour (we were just ahead!)
Hours motor run – around 12
Fish caught – 23 (9 skipjack tuna, 12 bonito, 1 mahi mahi, 1 yellow fin tuna)
Fish kept – 6 (3 skipjack, 2 bonito, 1 mahi mahi, all others returned safely)
Different ways of cooking fish attempted – 8