Aug 3, 2012

Ensanada El Quemado - 'The Tides, They Are a Changing'

I have never heard of anyone ever stumbling 
On something sitting down.
Charles F. Kettering 

All you need is a cold drink and....
Another beautiful anchorage to ourselves but the first with absolutely NO LIGHT nearby, nor even in the distance. We finally feel far away from civilization. All other anchorages either had lights across the way or other boats anchored nearby with their lights on.

Amazing beach-side cabanas with palm frond roofs
Ceiling of cabana made by artisans from Jalisco
View from cabana
Mike with a warm drink atop mountain
Nikki in the heat of the morning....  long tongue sticking out...
The treasures of high tides...
Tides are increasing in ranges as we go further north. Up here you have to account for a change of approximately 10-12 feet in height between high and low tides - further south we only had to deal with 2-5 feet. It makes a difference as to how much chain you put out when you anchor, how far you anchor from shore, and where you dinghy to land since you can end up needing to walk 50-100 feet carrying a heavy dinghy once the tide recedes. By the time you get to Puerto Peñasco the furthest anchorage or marina north of the Sea, the difference will reportedly be in the 25 foot range!

Coyotes yap close by - there seems to be two clans of approximately 6-10 individuals each, one on the West side of the bay answering to another on the East side of the bay. On the East side where we are anchored, we see one older coyote walk the beach especially at low tide to see if anything eatable may have washed ashore. During a hike on rocks also at low tide, we scare away a much younger coyote who quickly disappears up the hill. On the West side, we see two more adult coyotes during a hike up a dry riverbed. Since the West side is at least a mile away, we motored there and they seemed to be attracted by the sound of our motor to check us out.

We see areas along the beach that have been dug up quite deeply and can't figure out what the coyotes are looking for. At first, we thought of crabs but this was too far from the waterline to have crab tunnels. We finally saw what they were after: turtle eggs! I had no ideas turtles bury eggs in this area. This is sad for the turtle but quite a treat for the coyote who found them. I don't know how it located the eggs - via smell or just trial and error for there were several other holes in the area with no remain of egg shells in them.

This wouldn't be a cove without birds on rocks.
Nearly a cave
White, black and red rock formations
White beach, black stones, red cliffs
Cloudy day dotted with red rocks to cheer us up
View to the other side....
The bay is so still in the early mornings and near dusk that we can hear everything swimming around us: dolphins and rays are particularly abundant in this area but when you can hear each breath, each breaching above the water, each flapping of tails, and each belly flop, they seem even more numerous. A type of silver fish travelling in large schools keeps startling us when they all come out of the water at once (for what reasons I do not know) sounding like a rapid succession of loud splashes in the water - almost as quick and strident as an automatic weapon of some sort.

We meander across a small salt marsh area to another beach facing the Sea of Cortez. There we see beautiful cabanas. There seems to be no one around but Mike finally finds Ramon, the caretaker of the place. He tells us this is a private beach with approximately 4 large cabanas and 10 small cabins accessible by water only (true there is no road or airstrip to it). The owner who has a large yacht uses it for private gatherings. What a beautiful setting. You can tell Ramon is proud to be the caretaker of this little gem. The cabanas are being built by 'specialists' from the Jalisco area of Mexico. It seems like this would be a great place for receptions, weddings, etc.

We encounter two cloudy days here but welcome the coolness it promotes although we always fear thunder and lightning with the only mast in this part of the sea. The clouds dissipated without letting go of needed rain and we were blessed with a bright half-moon surrounded by a rainbow colored circle. The dolphins are doing their regular late afternoon crisscrossing of the bay looking for food, the smaller rays seem to be practicing their aerial acrobatics and they are not that good at it yet. The larger ones just glide by so effortlessly they seem to fly rather than float. Two female seagulls are desperately trying to get the attention of one male gull by squawking incessantly for long periods of time - I'd leave too for the noise is quite deafening and piercing…

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