Isla Isabel, Matachan Bay and Chacala!

Isla Isabel was teaming with fish and all sorts of marine life. In fact, just as we were approaching the anchorage, I hooked on to a good sized fish that ended with a broken line and one lost fishing lure. I guess I was determined enough, because I found myself quickly tying on a new lure and trying again. In less than 5 minutes, we hooked a nice Mexican Bonita (so glad we picked up a fish ID book in La Paz). After we dropped the anchor, I quickly filleted the fish, which we had for lunch as fish tacos. This was probably the first time I’ve ever caught and killed an animal, prepared the meat, and ate in all in the same day without being a bit grossed out. I was and still am pretty proud of myself. Now I just need to step it up to the next level and start preparing sushi! I had stayed up the entire night sailing, so I was a bit tired. After receiving an unfavorable weather report, Deidre and I had to make the decision on whether to stay put or play it safe and sail the next 40 miles back to the mainland. It was a hard decision, but we chose to play it safe and sail in to Matachan Bay near San Blas. We had a great sail, and as we approached San Blas, we would catch some surfs that seemed to last an eternity! Every time we would surf down a wave, our speed would go from 7-8 knots up to 11-12 knots! Yeah… it felt good!

We stayed in Matachan Bay for a couple of days. Long enough to go into the cute little town of San Blas, visit the locals, and get reprovisioned. We also took a day to go do the Tovara Springs jungle tour. Along with the crew from s/v Convivia, we rented a Mexican Panga (classic mexican fishing boat) and guide/driver to bring us miles up this overgrown jungle river with crocodiles, turtles and many cool birds. There was also a zoo where we saw some HUGE crocodiles and sadly a caged Jaguar also. The highlight was drinking margaritas and swimming at Tovara Springs, a fenced off section of water where swimming in the fresh water was amazing!
We left  Matachan Bay Sunday, 12/18 along with s/v Convivia. The day was hot enough, and we were far enough away from anyone else that we finally had a full day of naked sailing! I’ll see about finding some “PG” pics to post. We sailed most of the 20 miles to Chacala until very light winds were going to put us in after dark, so we fired up a motor and motor/sailed the rest of the way in. This anchorage is quite a bit smaller than some and the way the swell can come in makes most cruisers set a stern anchor along with the main anchor. Having set one of my anchors up as a permanent stern anchor in Matachan  Bay, I was ready to deploy mine once in Chacala. I assumed everyone was also using one, but this morning I can see that only about half the boats were using one. We are stern tied to the beach only about 100 yards off. The tiny beach was alive with festivities! At almost every other beach we’ve been to it has been like coming to a ghost town (besides Cabo and La Paz). What a cool scene to come into and hear all the music and seeing people out and about!!!
Deidre is taking a Yoga class that is happening just down the beach. I am trying to figure out where we are going from here, and updating the blog. We’re gonna hang here for a day or two and do some exploring, paddle boarding, and snorkeling in this decidedly tropical paradise!

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