Te … Na … Ca … What ?!?

The name is “Tenacatita”, a beautiful bay roughly 3/4ths of the way from La Cruz to Barra de Navidad. We had a short stop there – just two nights. Could have been more, but the little we stayed was well worth every minute !

It’s quite interesting, in fact.

We have seen many uninhabited bays on the West Coast of Mexico. Tenacatita isn’t one of them.

We’ve seen truly gorgeous settings here. And, as beautiful as Tenacatita is, it isn’t up at the top of the list either.

Nevertheless, there’s some positive vibe associated to this place, something that makes you feel “at home” right from arrival. Hard to make it tangible and explain. But cruisers flock to this place – to the point that Tenacatita has its own “floating community” complete with a radio net and all.

We didn’t have the opportunity to enjoy any of the social perks of it. We were on a timeline and our short stay was focused on taking a dinghy ride along the mangrove that connects Tenacatita to its adjoining bay, known as “The Aquarium” after it’s good snorkeling.

The tour proved to be more challenging than anticipated, even costing us an outboard propeller, which was bent upon a rock at the entrance of the estuary. But it was still a fun adventure, and worth every bit of it. I’ll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

Tenacatita was our second stop on our way from la Cruz to Barra de Navidad:

Map - La Cruz to Barra

We arrived there early afternoon, on time for some refreshing swimming and a good dinner onboard, decorated by this most beautiful sunset:


The next day, we launched the dinghy to take the mangrove tour, one of the main attractions there. It’s a 2.5 mile, sinuous and narrow stream connecting Tenacatita to the “Aquarium”:

Map Tenacatita

We reached it through an estuary at the western end of Tenacatita beach (hitting our propeller on a rock in the process):


And soon we were cruising the placid waters of the mangrove:


The kids were clearly not expecting much at the beginning:


But they were soon to be proven wrong, as the mangrove’s features started to reveal themselves to us:


Some times they were hard-to-see within the maze of mangrove tree roots:

Pesto-04Feb16-088Others, they were hard to NOT see:


The crabbies were particularly photogenic, and added a mix of curiosity and thrill to the experience:


At this point the kids were fully into it:


The second half of the way, the stream gets really narrow and the experience gets quite sensorial from that point forward. I earned a beautiful scratch on one of my arms, the dinghy cover got a few semi-permanent “tattoos” from the tree roots, and later on I found a couple spider bodies at the bottom (they probably fell as we squeezed through the trees, and were stomped by some, or likely ALL of us during the ride):


We finally got to the “other side”, a little bruised and thrilled for the ride, and ready for some swimming and snorkeling in “The Aquarium”:


We spent some time enjoying the fresh water:


And while they swam and snorkeled, I played a bit with the camera … the waves were barely touching my knees, but it’s always a matter of perspective, isn’t it:


I must have done something which triggered the curiosity of the pelicans nearby. This fellow flew so close to me that I heard the air hissing through his wing tip’s feathers as he passed by:


But the afternoon was fast approaching, and our stomachs were reminding us there were no eateries on that place. It was time to come back home. Fortunately, we had learned the tricks of that trade, and Raquel and Roberta stood alert at the bow with the paddles, using them smartly to push the tree roots gently and open the way for the dinghy to pass. It took us half the time to make it back to Tenacatita:


We were so efficient that the mangrove folk even came to check:


Back to Pesto, we downed another nice dinner and chat about the the highlights of that fun-and-action-filled day:


It was well past dusk when we were done. We then lay on deck, watching shooting starts and satellites. All around us, the mast lights of the neighboring cruisers seemed to mix with the starry night:


The next morning we raised anchor and headed for Barra de Navidad, not knowing yet it would become our base for making the Jump across the Pacific. And that’s another story to be told.