Wrapping it up

The alarm rang at 3am, as programmed, but Adriana and I were already awake on deck listening to the splish-splash of the manta rays.

The moon was coming up bright, as expected, and the seas were calm, as hoped for. For the ensuing 30 minutes we engaged on a mechanical, well rehearsed set of activities and soon Pesto was motoring quietly.

An like that, we left the beautiful bay of Santispac behind, with our friends Coastal Drifter in it, en route to cross the Sea of Cortez.

A couple hours later we were up to some awesome sailing, as we’d wished for.

<This the seventh and last in a series of posts covering the 10 days-or-so we spent cruising the beautiful Bahia Concepcion in Baja California. Click here to access the first post in the series, and here to access the previous post>

For over three months we cruised the wonderful coast of Baja California Sur, as covered on this blog. The time then came to cross the Sea of Cortez, tie Pesto up in a safe marina, and spend some two months refitting her and performing some shore-based activities.

The crossing is approximately 90 miles long, and we started overnight in order to arrive mid-afternoon the next day.

Leaving Santispac under the moonlight
Leaving Santispac under the moonlight
As tiresome as a midnight departure can be, the sunrise at sea is always a great reward
As tiresome as a midnight departure can be, the sunrise at sea is always a great reward

 

As soon as we left the shelter of Bahia Concepcion, we found excellent winds coming from the right direction. The engine went off, all of our three sails came out, and we shot forward at speeds between 7 and 9 knots, on a great close reach.

We got great winds as soon as we left the shelter of Bahia Concepcion
We got great winds as soon as we left the shelter of Bahia Concepcion
The blue-footed boobies kept us company for most of the way, taking advantage of the wind vortexes on the lee of our sails to keep airborne without much effort
The blue-footed boobies kept us company for most of the way, taking advantage of the wind vortexes on the lee of our sails to keep airborne without much effort
18 kt winds on a close reach ... it was awesome sailing all the way across the Sea
18 kt winds on a close reach … it was awesome sailing all the way across the Sea

 

We reached San Carlos, Sonora ahead of schedule. It was Sunday afternoon and the place was buzzing with private and rental boats cruising the beautiful harbor. It was a bit overwhelming.

Landfall. The scenic Tetakawi twin peaks are an unmistakable feature of the approach to San Carlos
Landfall. The scenic Tetakawi twin peaks are an unmistakable feature of the approach to San Carlos
We stayed at Marina San Carlos, which sits at a wonderful place inside the bay
We stayed at Marina San Carlos, which sits at a wonderful place inside the bay

 

As pretty as the setting was, there was no place for Pesto inside the marina’s inner basin, and we were much too exposed outside of it. Even though Tropical Storms very rarely hit San Carlos, we didn’t want to take any chances.

One worried skipper
One worried skipper

 

We were all happy for having accomplished this step of our Baja cruise, satisfied with our passage across the Sea, and anxious for what lay ahead. But we knew we would have to find a better solution to keep Pesto properly safe. Soon.

And this is the subject of a different story.

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