View single post by John S
 Posted: Wed Sep 9th, 2009 10:37 pm
PM Quote Reply Full Topic
John S


Joined: Tue Nov 1st, 2005
Posts: 86
Compass Rose

The Sea of Cortez from San Carlos to La Paz is not to be missed, especially the area from Loreto/Conception down to La Paz, and all the wonderful islands around La Paz, Espiritu Santu, San Francisco, etc, all within an easy day sail from downtown La Paz. The Sea of Cortez is definitely the "real" Mexico, you won't see many high rise condo there.

I sail with an educational schooner (85 ft) that sails from Sausalito (San Francisco area) to Mexico in winter, and often does the route from Cabo to La Paz and then out to the surrounding islands for a few months exploring, and then back to Cabo for return to Sausalito. The trips are from December to early March. It can be quite cool then and some nasty Northers, but if you watch your weather you should be OK. And you would be headed south all the time anyway.

This year we are returning to the same area but will do a Rotary sponsored trip to take clothing and other supplies to remote fishing villages that cannot be reached easily (or at all) by vehicle. If you sail south, look for us, 85 ft. steel schooner named "Seaward" (owned by a nonprofit 'Call of the Sea')

I can send you some nice photos of the islands, and also of anchorages, and fishermen bringing fresh lobsters to the boat. All in all, it's quite a unique and very authentic experience. Totally different that the 'Gold Coast' of Mexico, ie, Mazatlan-PV-Manzanillo, etc. which are all very beautiful in their own ways but hardly pristine Mexico.

We sailed down as far as Manzanillo for several years (winter) but decided to stay in the lower Sea of Cortez, more interesting sailing and great anchorages.

Even if you eventually sail all the way to Manzanillo, don't miss cruising for at least a few weeks in the islands around La Paz, and even a stop in La Paz itself, still a very delightful and real Mexican city. Costa Baja Marina is closest as you enter the channel, out near the ferry, Marina La Paz is all the way down channel and walking distance to downtown.

A word about the shipper you mentioned, be prepared for significant delays, and you may also have to sign an insurance waiver the absolves the shipping company from any liability, even if it's their fault. I wouldn't think there would be so much difference in price between La Paz and Manzanillo? Dockwise might be more expensive but they are generally dependable and if they don't have a full load they will negotiate with you. Another option might be to check the price for Ensenada, might only take a week or so to work your way north up the coast of Baja and then get a more competitive bid from Ensenada to Seattle?

No matter which route you take you can't help but have a good trip...