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Old 01-11-2013, 08:20   #16
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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post

Either the make up of cruisers have changed a lot since the last time I was there or you never made it to the Santispac anchorage I was telling you about.
I think it's changed a lot, but no, we didn't make it to conception bay.

For five weeks we had a cyclone every week : it was an exceptionally stormy summer in Baja.

We've been to over two dozen bays / beaches / anchorages and the places are beautiful, no doubt. But we have two tiny kids, one who was six months old in September : we in a very different boat than most, pardon the pun.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:23   #17
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Certainly vessel design for shade and airflow through a vessel are important factors for long term liveaboard in tropical areas. Some vessels were never designed for the tropics.

Failing that AC can assist but I hesitate to mention that.
You can windscoop and shade all day but for two months the interior temperatures will go over 100 all day and drop into the mid 80's at night.

The more you vent the easier you make it for mosquitoes, wasps, and flies to get in of which there are clouds. Not everywhere, but in most places. Jejenes as well.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:24   #18
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Re: sea of cortez

Conception Bay is a great spot, we spent a couple of weeks there many years ago. Good fishing and lots of shell fish and good protected anchorages, should make a point of visiting there before you leave the sea.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:59   #19
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Re: sea of cortez

Yes it's terrible,please stay away!You are there at the wrong time if it wasn't enjoyable.The season in the sea is Oct-Dec. OR April-June.From Jan. to April you want to be south of PV.From July to Sept. put boat in marina or haul and go home,or take road trip somewhere cooler,like BC.We just had a very long,warm & sunny summer.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:06   #20
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Re: sea of cortez

keep talking about coastal mexico baking in heat...rodlmao..is inaccurate at best.
costalegre is a southwest mexico riviera, temperatures range from a low of 72 in night time in winter to a high of 95 tops in summer. the humidity is a factor,and is handle-able with use of a small air conditioning unit. i found it to be much more comfortable than mazatlan, at 115f when i bought this air conditioner, or la cruz de huanacaxtle, at 105 in shade.
but, then i have only been here 3 yrs now, so what would i know...rodlmao.

i also know how to keep away the pesty bugs that like so much to inhabit folksīs boats...lol....


until one has cruised this part of mexico, one cannot speak for it.
at least i KNOW the desert of golfo de california. btdt.. hated it.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:32   #21
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Re: sea of cortez

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
keep talking about coastal mexico baking in heat...rodlmao..is inaccurate at best.
costalegre is a southwest mexico riviera, temperatures range from a low of 72 in night time in winter to a high of 95 tops in summer. the humidity is a factor,and is handle-able with use of a small air conditioning unit. i found it to be much more comfortable than mazatlan, at 115f when i bought this air conditioner, or la cruz de huanacaxtle, at 105 in shade.
but, then i have only been here 3 yrs now, so what would i know...rodlmao.

i also know how to keep away the pesty bugs that like so much to inhabit folksīs boats...lol....


until one has cruised this part of mexico, one cannot speak for it.
at least i KNOW the desert of golfo de california. btdt.. hated it.
There's a distinction between "sailing" and "being at a dock with an AC in the hatch"; they're generally mutually exclusive. That's really what the summers in Mexico are all about: go home, stay submerged in the water all day, or hide in your boat on the Internet with an AC pumping from shore power.

And no offense but I'd put money on the fact that I've been to more places in the Sea of Cortez than you have.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:59   #22
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Re: sea of cortez

travel is not a contest. however, when you make wild statements about a location in which you have not set foot, you are not just inaccurate but irresponsible.
ditto with statements regarding human beings and where they have and have not been. you do not know me. not at all. nor will you ever know me.
i have been all around golfo de california in my lifetime in california and arizona. because you do not know me, you have no business saying anything about where i have and have not been.
in summer i repair boat,. i am out in open air and cruising on buses seeking parts for engines and wood for use as parts and trim on board.
having cruised entire coast of mexico, now, except south of acapulco, and having been all around golfo de california, and having taken buses to most everywhere possible within 200 miles of each location i stopped for repairs over the past 3 years, i think i have a little experience in mexico.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:17   #23
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Re: sea of cortez

All of my experience is dated, but for the entire area from San Felipe to Cabo, Bahia de Conception was my favorite by far. Eric, your so close, do at least a weekender into the bay and anchor at Santispac, if you don't like the area or cruisers in the area I promise I won't make any more recommendations for you. Of all the times I've been to Baja, if my only experiences were at La Paz, Cabo, San Felipe, and Puerto Penasco then my impression would be "nice place in the right season", but for me Conception was truly special, along with the local people and cruisers.
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:27   #24
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Re: sea of cortez

Turtle Bay is a stop on the Ba Ha Ha, I believe... one of the biggest weekends for the village. Never been there for it but the locals say it is mui loco for the few days before and after. Been in and out on several deliveries and had engine problems forcing a stop on a trip north once.
Back in the 80's, Hector Estrada was the 'Jeffe de Jeffe' and well respected. I was forced to leave a boat there for about a month and he undertook the job to care for it in my absence. Heard it was washed every week and visited by either Hector or one of his many children. He refused any payment but contribution to the Padre at the local church is always appreciated. You aren't going to find better folks anywhere in the world. The Estrada family are well known as very good fishermen, abalone in the old days, and highly respected throughout the region.
Mag Bay further south is secure but the entrance can be tricky in fog. Man o' War Bay is most popular anchorage but much of the rest of the Bay is very shallow and channel markers to the fishing village on the eastern shore weren't all that reliable in the old days. That is where the Capt de Peurto lives and he comes over to Man o' War Bay to check folks in and out.
Bahia Santa Maria on the outside over the dunes from Man o War bay is a good anchorage outside with good holding ground and best protection from northwesterlies at the top end of the bay. Shore is dotted with temporary fisherman structures. Scammons Lagoon is hugh and one of the best whale watching areas in world but weather can be problematic from time to time.
Do not try to enter Mag Bay from the south as entrance is shallow and foul.
These are comments from the 80's and 90's and I assume not much has changed.
There are literally hundreds of great anchorages all through the Sea of Cortez and to list them all would always ignore some of the great ones.
Rebel Heart is livin' the dream as is Zee who can give much better updated opinions of good and better spots.
My info and memories are dated but never had a bad experience either on the outside or cruising inside the whole Mexican coast, top to bottom. Phil
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:46   #25
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Re: sea of cortez

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
All of my experience is dated, but for the entire area from San Felipe to Cabo, Bahia de Conception was my favorite by far. Eric, your so close, do at least a weekender into the bay and anchor at Santispac, if you don't like the area or cruisers in the area I promise I won't make any more recommendations for you. Of all the times I've been to Baja, if my only experiences were at La Paz, Cabo, San Felipe, and Puerto Penasco then my impression would be "nice place in the right season", but for me Conception was truly special, along with the local people and cruisers.
We're back in La Paz now waiting for the cyclones to (finally) end so we can get back to the mainland. But so far we've been to:

- Bahia de Los Muertos
- Cabo San Lucas (anchored in the bay)
- Mazatlan (old harbor)
- Isla Partida (Ensenada Grande and Calate Partida)
- Isla Espiritu Santo (San Gabriel and Bonanza)
- Balandra (a couple hours north of La Paz)
- Agua Verde (had "dinner" there on shore... what a trip)
- San Evaristo
- Candeleros
- Isla Danzante (Honeymoon Cove)
- Isla San Francisco
- Puerto Escondido (inner harbor and waiting room)
- Frailes
- Loreto
- Santa Rosalia and Mulege (only by car, when driving back down Baja this summer).

So while I know there are other places we could have visited that might have changed our view on things, it's not like we just putzed around here and there. We have our passes to walk on the islands. We've fished. We've snorkeled. We've traded for fish. We've gone through hurricanes, chubascos, and northers.

We've sailed under moon-less skies with blankets of stars, seen whale sharks, dolphins, nailed huge fish, and I'll pat myself on the back and say that my passage planning was good and we had some really decent sailing conditions.

I mean it's not like we all need to like the same movies or agree on ice cream, so sure, people will have different places they dig and don't. For us this wasn't so great. Take away the kids, the summer heat, the cyclones, and the bugs and I bet I'd feel a lot differently.
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Old 01-11-2013, 13:51   #26
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Re: sea of cortez

Eric,

Even though you missed my favorite spot, you did cover the area rather well. When driving through Santa Rosalia did you stop for the home made ice cream? It is a cool little town. While I was down there most cruisers would do their major shopping on the mainland at Guaymas, I just provisioned locally and Baja beef does leave a bit to be desired.

It was a combination of things that made Santispac a fun anchorage. The RVs along the beach seemed to have a lot of folks that enjoy sailing and cruisers and some had VHF. Never a problem getting to Mulege for shopping via car with these folks. Would take some for a day sail. The cruisers built a hot springs bath which was a social place. Could easily live off the bounty of the shell fish alone. Scenic setting, warm crystal clear waters with many good snorkeling spots. I've stayed as late as early July but October through June is ideal.

As you leave the area, I and others will be dependent on your recommendations as you head south, but Baja was my old stomping grounds dating back to 1974. Cabo was a sleepy little fishing village back then but has changed to what I don't care for. Due to tough access, Love Beach was still close to the same from 1974 to 1997 which was the last time I was in Cabo.
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Old 01-11-2013, 14:14   #27
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Re: sea of cortez

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Before I bad mouth it let me say this it's just our opinion and that some (but not most) people like it just fine. I'm not the arbiter on what's good and bad in the world, so this is just my opinion:

- It's essentially a retirement community. Older folks who don't really go anywhere and use it as their warmer-than-Canada backyard. It's a super popular snowbird destination in the fall through spring, then in the summer the whole place becomes a ghost town. That's a much different vibe than places loaded with sailors going onward to further destinations. People splash from San Carlos in the fall, go to Banderas Bay and Ztown for the winter, go back to San Carlos in May, and repeat again in the fall.

- There can be a mile of difference between "sailors" and "people living on their boat in La Paz". Especially in Puerto Escondido we ran into a lot of clique-ish behavior. People have their little domain, they're there because they want to be away from others, and you are basically "others".

- It's insanely hot August-October. June and July are hot as hell as well, but August/September/October is clouded with mosquitoes, cyclones, humidity, and heat.

- It's quite expensive.

- The food is terrible. Produce is hard to come by and usually super low quality.

There's a lot of great stuff about the Sea of Cortez as well but really there are hundreds of places around the world that are clearly better. The real reason Baja is so popular, but no one seems to admit it, is because it's super close to the US/Canada, you can drive south, and it's Mexico-light. Less Mexican culture, more English speakers, more gringos.

I know people will disagree and it's entirely possible you'd love the place, this is just my opinion and it's a big world.
I can agree with everything you write here. I went a couple of times. I thought if I went again it would only be to wait for March-April to go into the pacific.

I met some good people in La Paz and still write. PE blows.
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Old 01-11-2013, 15:05   #28
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Re: sea of cortez

Thanks Phil,lots of response to my post even a little animosity it would seem?? Ha-ha Its all good folks!!!! I have the cruising guide to the Sea of Cortez but they don't touch on the west coast and was wondering about sailing alone if there was anchorages on the way.Seems there are several.Thank you all, see you there .New boat will be called PASSING WIND (maybe)
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Old 01-11-2013, 15:28   #29
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Re: sea of cortez

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We're back in La Paz now waiting for the cyclones to (finally) end so we can get back to the mainland.
I'm watching NOAA's eighteen-E, do it's thing (building). SkiprJohn and I are in Ensenada (real Mexico) and watching it. Being the owner of the vessel, I call the shots and would rather wait here in civilization to see what it does. If it starts dying down, I know the seas will have already been built up a little but at the same time, it will take a few days to make it into Turtle Bay anyways. I want a safe voyage, I'm in no hurry.
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Old 01-11-2013, 23:06   #30
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Re: sea of cortez

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I'm watching NOAA's eighteen-E, do it's thing (building). SkiprJohn and I are in Ensenada (real Mexico) and watching it. Being the owner of the vessel, I call the shots and would rather wait here in civilization to see what it does. If it starts dying down, I know the seas will have already been built up a little but at the same time, it will take a few days to make it into Turtle Bay anyways. I want a safe voyage, I'm in no hurry.
Sonia I think it will be named? The current track has it slamming into Mazatlan by Monday. It's supposed to be weak as cyclones go, which will be nice. We were planning on leaving Tuesday but:

- The weather is better here in Baja than on the mainland currently. Lower humidity, lower temperatures, and barring a cyclone no rain.

- We'll be ~100 miles north of the eye wall so I think 24 hours later the seas will be chopped and gross.

I hung out in Turtle Bay last year for a week. Had Thanksgiving there in fact; it's not too bad. Definitely different than Ensenada! I still think we'll scoot out before you guys get down here though. The slip we're in is reserved starting November 30th and the next batch of calm-ish seas with 3-4 days of northerly winds we're bagging ass.
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