There are only so many anchorages one can stop in on the way to, or from, Cabo.
So we are retracing those first, few, baby steps that we made (exactly one year ago) as we nosed our way into the Sea of Cortes for the first time.
It is surreal.
The kids keep saying how it all looks so different but it's not the places that have changed-it's us.
The kids and I went to shore in Los Muertos for one last hop around on the sand dunes. On the dingy back out to the boat, we passed over beautiful coral and saw two sea turtles and a giant sea lion dozing near our boat. We were supposed to get an early start for Los Frailles but we realized this might be our last chance to swim in the Sea of Cortes.
The Pacific is just around the corner.
We are heading West now, too.
Haven't done THAT in awhile.
It was awesome to free-dive as a family again.
It's such a pleasure to watch Kai and Hunter swim. How graceful they are underwater. Each has their own style. Kai is sleek and streamlined, like a seal and Hunter wiggles and twists, her long hair streaming out behind her. The coral heads were about twenty feet down and everyone swam down to the bottom and hung out looking at all the juvenile angel fish hiding in the coral. We tried to take pictures down there, well see if they come out okay-That is something I think Scuba will be WAY better for!
Hunter didn't even have a weight belt on AND she was wearing her wetsuit. I don't know how she does it but she's part fish, obviously.
People always warn me to be careful when free diving with the kids, because it;s easy to get shallow water blackout if you push yourself too far-but the thing is, we never push. The kids never push. They just spend a lot of time in the water and are very relaxed. I think spending as much time as we have around air breathing aquatic life helps, too. There;s a definite pace to doing these things and I notice when we haven't been diving for awhile, no one goes as deep or stays down as long because it takes awhile for your body to remember how to be calm. How to do the slow, slow, thing.
We headed to Frailles and were surrounded by whales-this continued on the next day also, as we made our slow( and no wind) way towards San Jose Del Cabo.
Whales were everywhere, lolling about on the glassy surface. I had a ton to do below decks but I didn't get a thing done, because every five minutes we saw another group of three or six or ten whales.-Mother's and calves or young males slapping their tails. I stood on deck all day with binoculars, grinning from ear to ear.
We had the fishing line in for a hundred miles without a single bite ( not counting Bonita) until JUST before we pulled into SDC...then BAM!
The line went ZING and Kai woke up from a six hour nap and was on deck in a hot second, hand on the reel...
"Hey, we got a shark! " he yelled.
It was a young Mako-not too big, but big enough that we realized we had no protocol for releasing him.
We didn't want to cut the line and leave him hooked. Both for his sake and ours-hooks aren't cheap and it was a good one-but he sure had a LOT of teeth.
We tried to loop a line over his tail and get him up that way, but very quickly it became obvious what bad idea that could be. He was strong and we don't really know how to manage a shark on deck, we just read that they did it that way on Kontiki -but those guys were nuts!
Jon did some sort of magic move with a gaff hook while leaning over the deck and we got the hook out and our little guy swam off unharmed-it might seem strange to be so protective of a shark but they are so valuable to the ocean's balance and he was so beautiful and quite trusting, and even patient seeming, as we lamely tried to get the hook out of his mouth.
I'm sure he would have taken off a toe or a finger in a heartbeat if he was on deck, but alongside the boat,he was kind of puppy-like.
Anyway, I'm hoping the positive shark Karma holds us in good stead with the sharks of the South Pacific-which we hear are EVERYWHERE.