Follow us as we review the highs and the lows of our non-stop passage between Ensenada and San Jose Del Cabo.
(This is the first in a series of six posts I will be publishing daily from today until Friday)
written April 15th
Having left Ensenada at 11am on Saturday, we were relieved and utterly satisfied when we arrived to Cabo San Lucas yesterday, Wednesday at 7pm.
At 742 miles, this was by far our longest non-stop passage – not only on this journey, but ever. It was a major accomplishment for us!
edited April 18th
In one go, we sailed the equivalent of ~50% of all other passages we had done with Pesto so far since leaving Seattle in September last year.
There are nice places to stop along the way between Ensenada and the Los Cabos region, particularly Turtle Bay and Magdalena Bay, roughly lying at 1/3rd and 2/3rds of the way respectively. Also, we were with our friends of Coast Drifter in Ensenada, and it would have been very cool to buddy boat down the coast with them. But on the other hand, we wanted to try ourselves on a longer passage, and acquire the experience of an extended time offshore. Moreover, Adriana had a business commitment which required her to be near an international airport before April 18th. And that’s when we embraced the straight, non-stop challenge and let go the benefits of doing it in shorter steps … choices, choices.
The fact is, I was extremely excited, and looking forward to this passage. I had always hoped we might cover this portion of our trip in one go. The route between Ensenada and the Los Cabos region is a great one for sailing – winds, waves and currents are all favorable, and the weather is pretty fair during this time of the year. Yet, it IS an offshore passage. Cool.
The weather window we had in forecast for our passage wasn’t ideal though. A low pressure system passing along the coast some 300 miles offshore had disturbed the regular wind pattern, and we might get some lighter-than-normal winds along the way. There was also a possibility of a bit of rain – but no squalls – in the middle of the passage. And we might also get some SW swell for the last third of it (that would mean the waves would be hitting us at a 90 degree angle, given our expected route, which might cause Pesto to rock sideways significantly – not dangerous, but uncomfortable).
In practice, we had better conditions than the forecast. Winds were indeed light for parts of the passage, but we had no rain at all, and the SW swell never made a noticeable presence. Four out of the five days out were clear and sunny. Nights were generally very dark, for the moon wasn’t up until very late.
The kids spent most of the time inside the cabin. We did’t homeschool them during the passage, and they were free to read, watch movies, and play with their gadgets – which they enjoyed to the fullest. Adriana and I spent most of our time outside. We kept a loose watch system during the day, and a 3-hr-in / 3-hr-out system during the nights.
We covered the 742 miles (over ground) in 4 days and 8 hours, to a grand-average speed of 7.1knots, or the equivalent to 170NM/ 24hours. But, to be fair, we had favorable current most of the way – at times as low as 0.25knots, others as much as 1.25knots !
I captured the main highlights (and lowlights) of each day, but felt that downloading everything at once here today would make for too long (too boring?) a post. Instead, I will be publishing each daily summary, and accompanying photos, over five days starting tomorrow.
I hope you enjoy.
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