We left Ensenada Nov 18th with another ‘family boat’, sv Dakota. We were all bound for Cabo San Quintin (pronounced ‘KEEN-TEEN’), which is about 100 nautical miles south of Ensenada. We decided a night sail would be the best option so that we could get into Quintin in the daylight hours. It was a long journey of mostly motoring that brought us into San Quintin the following day, guided in by dozens of dolphins leaping with joy and amusement around our boat. After finding a good spot to anchor at 30° 21.844′ N, 115° 58.234′ W, we settled in and headed to bed early. The initial plan (based on the weather before we left Ensenada) was to stay in Quintin for about 3 days. However, the weather forecast changed and a great window opened up the next day that would take us to Isla Cedros, about 154 nautical miles further south from Cabo San Quintin. Despite our fatigue, we decided to go for it.
Up and at ’em with the sun the next morning, we set sail for Isla Cedros. We researched the various anchorages this island offers along the way and decided that Villa Cedros looked like the best option. It is a very small fishing village located towards the south east side of the island.
All of our guidebooks say that you can ask the Port Captain for permission to anchor either north of the north breakwater or south of the south breakwater. We were never able to reach the Port Captain via VHF, but it was a national holiday when we arrived, so we guessed that they were closed. It was fairly calm when we arrived, and after closely assessing both locations, we opted for the northern area because it was much bigger and was not littered with lobster pots.
In order to get a decent depth to anchor, we had to go a bit close to shore with not a lot of room for swinging. We were a little freaked out about dragging and being close to shore, so Jason and I both slept in the cockpit that night. It was not a very restful sleep. The next day we awoke to wind and a lot of very uncomfortable swell coming in. We decided to try to venture to shore in the kayak, however we were unable to land there as the shore was too steep and the swell coming in too big to safely land the kayak. After consulting with a good friend of ours who has voyaged from Washington to Mexico via boat around 75 times, we were told that anchoring INSIDE the breakwater here is allowed with permission for the Port Captain. With ‘Spanish for Cruisers’ in hand, I hopped on the VHF and through some broken Spanish, managed to get permission to anchor inside the breakwater of this quaint village. We were the only sailboat around! The sv Dakota crew were faster than us and went on the outside of Isla Cedros, deciding to go all the way to Turtle Bay. They have since landed in Mazatlan and we wish them all the best! Miss you Dakota Crew!
With pelican-ridden pangas moored all around us, we dropped hook inside the breakwater and were the only sailboat there. We immediately eyed a quaint little sand beach nearby where we were sure we could land our kayak. So, Carson and I decided to venture to shore to see if we could get some WiFi and some provisions. We were immediately welcomed by the locals and asked if we needed help finding anything. We were guided to the local grocery store where we were pleasantly surprised to find a decent selection of groceries, but not a ton of fresh stuff. We found the local tortillaria and for 16 pesos, we got 10 hot-off-the-press tortillas. Yum! We found the restaurant with the WiFi, conversed with the locals a little, who are very welcoming to cruisers as they don’t see many of us! I caught up on some work and then we headed back to the boat. The next couple of days were very windy and were were extremely thankful to be inside the breakwater rather than outside it! The next weather window to head to Turtle Bay was 3 days after we arrived at Cedros, and with a short hop of only 35 nautical miles, it would be a fairly easy day sail…. or so we thought.