The Authentic Way of Mag Bay

pan_tosca_crew

Punta Tosca: a burly and majestic place, but a marginal anchorage

“Whatever it is we are looking for – we found it!”  Aldebaran had spent three nights in the Bahia Magdalena area; we were exhausted and euphoric.

Searching for surf and diving in remote places is not everyone’s cup of tea. The cruising book reads: “Shifting shoals, very marginal anchorage, various wrecks, avoid if possible.”  We interpret: “There might be waves and fish!”

It ain’t exactly ‘cruising’ … we dub it… Aggressive Cruising. We’re moving fast and going to funky places, courtesy of our trimaran’s great stability and the crew’s willingness for occasional suffering. Carving your own path has higher stakes but higher rewards — it feels pretty damn good to find our authentic way.

A lonely, blustery point break our friend Johnny had once told us about on a backdrop of gorgeous coastal mountains, near Bahia Magdalena.

Living authentically is also about eating really well- and getting close to the source.

At a village near a Mag Bay estuary, we traded a 10lb yellowtail for a few bucks and AA batteries, which Michael paddled in a SUP through the rivermouth breakers. Sabrina made exquisite sushi rolls that afternoon.

yellowtail sushi

The yellowtail soon became sushi rolls.. we have now run out of soy sauce

We later swam through a derelict ex-whaling station inside the bay, and when we pulled up anchor, a ton of tasty looking seaweed came up! That night it became seaweed salad (à la wakame) with sashimi from the yellowtail, along with Kim Chi that Ryan had been fermenting for 5 days (cabbage, carrots, and other vegetable detritus).

Breakfast featured fresh homemade yoghurt, which only fermented 8hrs in the sun, then was chilled overnight in the fridge. The jar of yoghurt was nicknamed “Bessie” and we talked to her sweetly as she matured in the dashboard basket.

seaweed anchor

Ok, making seaweed salad from what the anchor pulls up is a little extreme… but we had to give it a try!

Amid all this culinary extravaganza, we came upon the intimidating headland of Punta Tosca. The horrendous shoals and rock pinnacles sunk our spirits.. where was the anchorage? (Ahem, the book did mention it was an “emergency anchorage at best.)

anchoring bahia

Will she hold? Anchoring in strange places has its uncertainties.

The shoals had migrated offshore and we committed to a night in the turbulent, 50ft deep waters… then were rewarded with a most Mind-Blowing sunset and moonrise, and the next morning we scuba dove a 150ft ship wrecked on the rocks off the point with big lobster and gold treasures.

Subsequently every hugely intimidating but rewarding experience was dubbed a “Punta Tosca”. Few people probably stop here and for good reason– nevertheless it was one of our favorites for its pure ocean wilderness.

Dancing the seductive line between dreams and fears at Punta Tosca

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOur fastest passage to date: 150nm in 24hrs. We left Punta Tosca and arrived in Cabo San Lucas the next afternoon after battling the twisted reacher sail off the forestay. We pulled up to Land’s End monumental rocks with a cavalry of tourism boats bumping techno music.

Tourist chaos spoiling the moment? Not at all… When aboard your own boat, you have your own world.  We marveled at the madness, and celebrated turning the “corner” with a fresh focaccia bread coming out of the oven.

Cabo is a love / hate relationship. What a contrast with the wild waters we had left; yet here was the arrival of blue water with 75ft visibility, 75F degree warm water we could swim anytime.

We would have another battle or two with purgatory, but the Holy Grail was within reach. The Sea of Cortez was the next stop.

sunrise yoga

Sunrise at Punta Entrada, Mag Bay

Walking on the footsteps of ex-whalers… grey whales were once decimated here, now they are protected and have made a great comeback.

4 thoughts on “The Authentic Way of Mag Bay

  1. I’m loving these entries. How can you beat an empty right point setup and Ryan’s vegetable detritus with sushi? Man, that looks so fantastic. Keep on rollin, all! I’m so impressed that you have managed to pull all this together, set sail and get free, free, free!

  2. I pulled up to the Left on the other side of the bay in January of 1993. It was almost the same back then as now. I spent eleven months in Mag Bay area. Anchored in the Mangroves in the lee of Punta Huges for hurricane season. You had to live off the land, the store was a days sail away.
    Good to see your on your way. Looking to your Sea of Cortez segment. My new tri Corazon is in San Carlos waiting just a one more work stint till she’s sailing instead of setting.

    • That is awesome Dale! Thanks for the insight into 20 years ago, what boat were you in back then?
      Looks like Blanca just went right over that area, hope they fared well. What design tri is Corazon? When we were in Mazatlan, we found a sister ship to Aldebaran, the first we’ve ever seen! A 42ft macouillard trimar.

    • Dale, we are in eastern El Sal heading to Nica in a few days. Look forward to catching up in Gigante… or perhaps you’re in San Carlos on your tri? How’s she looking? Cheers

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