Located just 16 miles to the NW of Puerto Escondido, Puerto Ballandra is a nice and protected bay where we spent a couple days in the company of s/v Coastal Drifter and s/v Sarita.
<This the first in a series of posts we are publishing covering the 10 days-or-so we spent cruising the area between Puerto Escondido and Bahia Concepcion in Baja California. Click here to access the next post>
Not to be confused with Puerto Balandra, where we stayed in May just before arriving to La Paz (notice the single L), Puerto BaLLandra is located on Isla Carmen, a picturesque feature almost in the middle of the Baja Peninsula.
We had heard great things about Ballandra, especially the snorkeling, which is supposed to be great there. In fact, upon approach and during our stay, we heard and saw a number of aquatic life moving around us. But, as expected, the waters were murky – possibly a consequence of the rain from Tropical Storm Blanca the previous week. We did spend a great deal of time swimming, mainly to soothe at the hottest hours of the day, but didn’t do much snorkeling.
On the first evening, s/v Sarita kindly invited us all for a Movie/ Booze night for the Kids/ Grown Ups respectively.
The next day, s/v Sarita left early. At 48ft and built in 2001, she is nearly a sistership to Pesto, and I took this unique opportunity, hopped on the dinghy, and followed them as they unfurled the sails and charged toward the horizon. A great sight !
That evening was Phil’s birthday, and they kindly invited us to share in this special date on s/v Coastal Drifter. The girls treated him to a pretty and tasty chocolate cake, which we savored slowly as the sun set behind the Giganta mountain range on the Baja Peninsula.
While in Ballandra, I started removing the growth that had accumulated on Pesto’s bottom. The sea here is so nutritious that we are in a constant war against barnacles. I was able to clean approximately ¾’s of the bottom, gaining a clogged inner ear in the process, and an additional ½ kt in speed – a fair trade, I suppose.
On the third day, possibly inspired by the sight of s/v Sarita the previous day, we spread Pesto’s sails and blasted at 8kts toward Isla Coronados, where we spent a formidable week – watch out for the following 2 posts.