Friday, December 12, 2014

December 12, 2014 - Bahia Tortugas (Turtle Bay)

We will remember this leg of the trip as the “long voyage from Ensenada.”    We left at 10:15am just as two of the sailing vessels, in the group we recently have attached ourselves to, were leaving.  It was nice knowing that there were other vessels we knew of out there along the passage.   Steve estimated 45 hours and it was exactly that as we pulled into Bahia de Tortuga (Turtle Bay) at 7am in the morning after two nights of transit.   Adagio performed flawlessly and the seas were for the most part nice.  One of the sailors said our VHF was great as they heard us from almost 60nm away.  We were reporting our position to everyone but could not hear anyone else.  The group was keeping tabs on each other at 2 hour intervals throughout the trip but by the middle of the night, the first night, we were losing communication with the next boat behind.   We travel quite a bit faster than the sailboats, and we ended up leaving the boats far behind, and out of radio range after about 12-16 hours.  This was also the furthest from shore that we have traveled since leaving La Conner; we were 40nm offshore at one point. 
Turtle Bay is a nice location.  The water is back up to about 69 degrees.  One afternoon we went to the beach and swam and played in the waves.  One of the vessels in the sailing group invited everyone over for Tuna and a potluck since during their transit they caught too much to eat.  We were able to socialize and get to know the group better.   Everyone has an interesting history and interesting plans for their trips and future.  Of the 5 or so vessels, let’s just say that Steve and I bring the average age up a bit!   A bit of funny was at the end of the evening we were all departing for our vessels and someone mentioned that we are now in the Mountain time zone and many of us were oblivious to the fact.  So now we are all up to speed and getting adjusted.
One morning Steve started the generator and Zappa runs in from the swim step carrying a fish that he was eating.  The fish was quite big at 7 inches or so.  After removing it from the carpet in our salon and throwing it in the ocean, we checked his paws and they were dry.  There are some little fish staying under our boat but this one was bigger.  Zappa is probably not the excellent fisher-cat we thought at first, as some of the sailors mentioned that they saw small flying fish here in the bay.  We are pretty sure that one had spent the night on the swim step after a making a poor choice for his aerial exploration. 
We will be leaving here with a few days.  Our plan is to make a stop at Bahia Abreojos and then on to Bahia Magdalena (Mag Bay).  We are waiting for the seas to calm a bit before heading out.  

Beautiful Mexican sunset, far out at sea.

An AIS target almost 300 miles away.  A cruise ship leaving Avalon on
Catalina Island, near San Diego!!  WOW!!!!!
It must have been an atmospheric condition that allowed it to travel so far.

Christmas is coming, and we now have a tree.  The decorations all all made
from Legos.  

Playing on a nearby beach.  Warm water at almost 70 degrees.

Cindy made a Lego Santa.  They made a gingerbread house a few weeks ago,
it is on the counter behind Kevin.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas......

Rowing to town.  Some of our new friends anchored behind Adagio.
The bay from shore


  1. Are you using SSB for longer range radio communications? I have an old used one for Nikko, but haven't installed it yet. We have some other friends down at Cabo already on a HR42 "Ranidan".

    1. Hi Ray,

      Nice to hear from you!!

      We'll look for your friends in Cabo, although we might not spend much time there. We are aiming for the posh San Jose Del Cabo marina for Christmas, which is about 20 miles to the east of Los Cabo.

      Yes, we have SSB, but it isn't performing very well yet. I had Icom check it out before we left and they did a little "alignment" on the tuner, and fine tuned the the AT-120 antenna tuner. I'm not really up on all this SSB/Ham radio stuff, so it's a big learning curve. I reworked the radio to antenna tuner ground connection today and we are now getting much better weather-FAX images on the PC. Tonight we are going to do some testing on the evening "nets" to see if the ground change I made helps us to receive the HF weather forecasts. My advice to you is: install that radio now and start getting familiar with it. I waited until we needed it (so many other projects to work on), and now I am scrambling to get it working. In a few days, SSB will be our only source of weather info. Or we can row over to other boats and beg for weather info.

      When do you guys leave La Conner for the warm Mexico fun on Nikko?


  2. Abreojos means "open your eyes". Be careful down there.

  3. Hi seadog1949,

    Yes, Abreojos is apparently named appropriately. There are more than a dozen hazards to navigation getting into this bay. On top of that, Mexican charts are notoriously inaccurate, sometimes showing a mile or more inland while you are floating safely in a bay. But, I think we will be fine. We have all the guide books, and the charts, and we have talked to a lot of others who have been there before.

    There may be some facilities in Abreojos, so we hope to be able to publish an update once we have arrived. Abreojos is next to a protected marine sanctuary where whales come to give birth and raise their offspring. So, it could be a very interesting stop.


  4. We're two years behind you. We're planning on a two month extended summer vacation this summer to cruise north then work one more winter then head south in 2016. There is another sailboat on our dock on the same schedule so we may have someone to buddy boat with all the way down the coast. Thanks for your blog. It's a nice resource to prepare ourselves for the trip.