A Perfect Storm in the Sea of Cortez

As I watched the kayak in front of me climb up the face of a steep 6-8 foot swell and disappear down the other side, I couldn’t help but think of the movie, The Perfect Storm. P1130947

Remember that fateful scene with the ship trying to make it over the crest of a monster wave? Unlike that ship, we made it!

That was the first 2-3 days of my recent sea kayaking trip around Espiritu Santo Island in the Sea of Cortez, between Baja Sur and the mainland of Mexico. I don’t have any photos of the waves since I didn’t want to release my tight grip on the paddle, even for a few moments, as we battled the waves and high winds — not the usual weather for this time of year in the Sea of Cortez. When we got to our destination — typically a protected, idyllic beach with views of a turquoise bay in front of us and a craggy desert landscape behind — we celebrated with ice cold beer from the cooler on the escort boat carrying our gear and supplies. P1140010P1130729

P1130884 P1130981P1130707The beaches, views, sunsets and especially the tequila and cold beer made it all worthwhile. P1130998 P1130994  P1130976       P1130799Not to mention the excitement and sense of accomplishment from surviving the adventure. Our escort boat stayed pretty close while we were battling the elements, so we were pretty safe. Besides, the water was warm so the worst we faced was a refreshing dunk and a few minutes of adrenaline-fueled intensity as we tried to get back in our kayaks or the boat in the rolling water. In any case, our kayaks stayed upright, as did we in our respective cockpits, and the worst we suffered were cramped fingers and sore arms and shoulders.

The rest of the trip was as idyllic as the settings for our nightly encampments. Besides paddling, napping and drinking lots of beer and tequila, we also snorkeled, including a snorkel with sea lions, who wizzed by with a foot or so, and went on easy hikes. P1020905 P1130856P1020941  P1130943 P1130935 P1130705  P1130694 P1140004 P1130757 P1130753 P1130738 P1130733And we had fresh fish, clams, squid and octopus almost every day, caught by the two person crew on our boat (the woman in the hat watching, is our guide, Patti).P1130877It was a great trip — excitement and serenity, activity and relaxation, and great scenery, company and food. And except for battling those waves and wind — that get bigger and stronger each time I tell the story — we didn’t have to lug the cold beer and tequila. We just had to drink it. And, like the paddling, I think we did pretty well.

(trip was operated by Baja Outdoor Activities)



3 thoughts on “A Perfect Storm in the Sea of Cortez

  1. Hey Don
    Great article and amazing pictures. You captured the essence of the experience. I’m so glad I was a part of this group and this journey

  2. Don, had a great time with the group and it was a fun trip with adventure! You did a great job photographing it and your blog. Cheers and here’s to another trip in the future. Jan (in the white hat)

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