Agua Verde or bust

After five nights and four days I was feeling like a charlatan, seeing as Julia came all the way from Germany to go sailing and thus far has been stuck on a mooring ball. The weather system gone, it was our chance to bug out of Puerto Escondido. Many of my friends had planned to head Isla Monserrate but Agua Verde was our destination. It was a beautiful day on the water and the amount of wind was perfect for Julia to practice with the jib and screecher sails. She did a great job navigating us through the pinnacles near Candeleros and by late morning we were tucked in and swinging on our anchor. Swimming the anchor turned into snorkeling to the nearby rocky shoreline where we were rewarded with many more fish that I have seen in the area during past visits. Definitely worth the trip.

Breaking my one activity per day rule, in the afternoon we paddled the kayak in to shore. Getting in we realized that the breaking waves on the shore were bigger than they appeared. Hmpf. Oh well, we were ashore so nothing we can do about it now. The word “town” was redefined for Julia, as she was surprised by how small and primitive Agua Verde is. We explored the two churches, the two tiendas, and the herds of goats before taking on our challenge of returning to Strikhedonia. While there were a few seconds of fear, it really wasn’t that bad as our timing the waves worked out well. While on the beach we saw our friends Volare (Jason), Liahona (Marne and Bret), and Perspective (Sarah and Brad) had come into the anchorage. Hmmm, there must be a story there. Not much light was left so a stop by to learn how they ended up here was saved for another day.

It felt good swinging on the anchor which led to a good night’s sleep. To start the day Julia went for a jog while I hiked the hills on the east, northeast entrance to the bay. Watching the sunrise and taking in the beauty of this place made me smile. And it was just beginning.

On the paddle back we stopped at Liahona to chat and learned that Monserrate was packed with boats and thus the change of plans the day before. They were using Agua Verde as a launching point to visit Isla Santa Catalan for some diving. Jason on Volare joined us and gave them some beta on a potential whale bone graveyard. As they were anxious to get moving and we hadn’t had breakfast we said goodbye and made plans with Jason to hike to the cave paintings. Since he was headed over to Perspective (and we were in a kayak) we asked if he could invite Brad and Sarah.

A bit later we all met up on shore and began our hike. The weather was perfect, the company was great, and the hike was sweet. And unlike the last time I went hiking with Jason, no one was injured – score! The temperature was much cooler than last spring when I did this hike with Jess and Sabrina. This gave us a chance to leisurely hike through the palm forest and along the beach. Arriving at the cave it looked like some rock had fallen from above over the summer. No damage to the paintings but rubble to avoid. Sydney (Sarah and Brad’s dog) gave us some quality entertainment chasing crabs and was well behaved when on the hike back we came upon a longhorn cattle drive. Reaching the beach we made plans for an afternoon snorkel. My one activity a day rule was continuing to get blown out of the water.

Lunch, gathering gear, and just like that Jason was picking us up. Brad and Jason planned to spearfish while Sarah, Julia, and I snorkeled. The water was a bit cold for my likes, my swimming to stay, somewhat, warm had the benefit of covering a lot of shore line. That said, it caused me to miss the octopus that Sarah found. In my experience the ladies see 10X as much as I do because they take their time, I need to learn from them… Jason did bring up some odd sea snake(?) that looked like it was made out of ballons, all puffed up with a bizarre mouth of small tentacles. Which was a bit freaky but cool. He also helped Julia hold a starfish. After forty-five minutes I was about frozen so Julia and I warmed up on the beach while Jason continued the hunt. Finally we were back to the boat for a hot shower to shake off the chill. Clearly I am a soft when the 73 degree water temperature is too low. Throwing caution to the wind, we invited everyone to Strikhedonia for game night and popcorn. Wow, four activities in one day.

The game that Jason brought was The Great Dalmuti. It was my first time playing, thankfully it was simple to pick up. Part of the game is constant swapping of seats and the “Great Dalmuti” making the “peasant scum” do silly exhibitions. This led to some good laughs, push-ups, singing, and sombrero wearing. Well past cruisers midnight, an unbelievable feat given the three activities, we said our goodnights and off into the pitch black everyone headed. Truly a great day and with a deep sigh I began to feel that Julia was getting the cruising experience she had signed up for.

The next day we planned to head for the Yellowstone beach on the north side of Monserrate but not before another trip to the tienda for more tomatoes (we seem to be consuming them at an alarming rate) and a hike with Jason out on the peninsula protecting the bay. Great views and the typical heart racing dropoffs made for a good send off. And to top it off Jason gave Julia an early Christmas present, it was even wrapped! She was really moved by the sand dollar that Jason had found one of his many dives. Impossible to beat the friends you make while cruising.

With that we prepared Strikhedonia and headed back north to Isla Monsserate while our friends pointed south. However, it was not without a loud conch shell blow from Jason and “Fair winds” from Perspective.

No Comments

Leave a Comment