So! I am skipping ahead a bit here. Mainly because my last blog post was over a month behind, so I’m playing catch up. But in a brief summary (I do have it all written down in detail) after Cono I headed down to the Wall which is another seven sister, which picks up more swell. I spent 4 days there surfing and chilling and fishing. generally having a great time! I’m not sure whether I have already mentioned it, but In Punta Cono a mouse found its way in to my truck and was living there eating the crumbs I was leaving behind, so I spent a while trying to chase him down, only to end up accepting him as a travelling companion. But yeah that was all pretty sick, but for the sake of speed I have jumped to the next part! so here it is!
When I woke up on that first morning at Abrejos, It was like stepping in to a dream. The sky was cloudless, with the sun just stretching her legs. The swell was pulsing in, hitting the point at just the right angle, throwing perfect rifling tubes. There were probably 5 different peaks, all looking like perfect right hand slabs with the light off-shores throwing dawn tinted rainbows off their lips. So I sat there, alone, porridge in hand, deciding which peak was more perfect.
Being a long distance south swell, the main sets were only coming through every 15 or 20 minutes. That is the problem with long period swells, you pray for them, but when you're sat there waiting you curse them. Luckily I was on my own, so when they did come I was on it. It sure was a lot of fun, but now, after I have gotten more familiar with the wave, I know I could have got way more barrels than I got that first morning. Don’t get me wrong, I got seriously kegged, but I could have gotten seriously keggeged.
But there we go, It was a grand day to be sure. Great waves in the morning, surfed for like 2/3 hours or so, water has gotten warmer! Towards the end a guy from Guerro Negro paddled out which was nice. We got chatting. Turns out this wasn’t the real Punta Abrejos point! The Real Points are around the corner, but these slabs pick up more swell and are hollower. The only reason the others are surfed more is they are longer (like football pitch length rides) and less sketchy. I can see what he meant, for the reef was hideously sharp and shallow, with nasty fingers sticking up out of the water just where you don’t want them. Even in that first surf I got myself a few gouges. Reminded me of surfing the high tide reef at home. Paying tax to the reef.
Anyway, more chilling ensued, then another good surf in the evening, and then that set the tone for the next few days! Surfed in the morning and in the evening every day. The swell lasted properly for 3 days, but there was a little surf this morning. The second day was pretty sick, I was getting used to the wave and got some pretty sick barrels. There was this one where I literally took of under the lip, just caught my rail in time to hook up in and just stood there, bolt up right in the squarest keg just like, omg. Stayed open for at least 2 or 3 seconds before it pinched and dragged me across the reef. If it hadn't pinched though… would have been so sick. I did make some nice ones, but that was the most memorable.
Because it was so shallow I surfed my old boards, and a good job too, as I smashed the nose off 2 of them! I surfed the board I had snapped and repaired though which was cool! It went great! Didn’t snap which was a good sign! Buzzing. I have got more repairs to make… but there is a long flat spell coming so I'll have plenty of time.
Now things have slowed down more I have been reading loads, must have read like 7 books so far! which is a lot for me, never been a very fast or good reader, despite my love of reading a good book. But I do love reading. Never have enough time at home to really get stuck in to a book, so it nice to be able to.
I think my mouse has gone though. Makes me kind of sad, I must have actually gotten it out the other day before I decided to keep it. Was starting to like the little guy… What is really annoying though, is this morning I left my washing up in the rock pool! I cant believe it! my porridge pot and my spoon! I just realised when I was cooking then and couldn’t find my pot. I can remember doing it as well, I went down to wash up and put my pot in the pool, but I always let it soak, as the porridge is easier to get off. So I was back up at the truck, and got distracted by a sick set and was like, omg got to get in there, so I went surfing and completely forgot about my pot! Now I don't have a pot! I cant believe it, how am i going to cook my porridge in the morning? It has sentimental value as well, that pot has been to 10 different countries with me! All over Europe and all the way here, and now its just sat on a rock in the middle of Baja. I have just driven all day, but Its almost worth driving all the way back to get it. No pot, no mouse, nothing.
So I’m feeling pretty down about that. It was above the tide line, so maybe it will still be there if I come back up this way… But there we go! So yeah Punta Abrejos was sick, Cool town as well. There was a funny tire shop which let me use their WiFi, but it was so bad I could only send messages. Lots of cool little fish taco places, I have said it before and I'll say it again. I fecking love fish tacos. Maybe that should be the name of this, I fecking love fish tacos! Perfect! I’m gunna name it right now.
But Yeah, so it was nice walking around the town at Abrejos. Did I say the road is paved all the way there?!? Can you believe it! Not the best road, lots of pot holes and they run out of tarmac every now and then but still, luxury. Lots of dolphins as well, not shy, they were coming right up to me which was cool and slightly un-nerving at the same time. I wanted one to catch the same wave as me, but it was not to be. I checked out the other waves this morning, looked super fun, long reefy point types. I got in the sea on one of them, was like knee high, but great shape and running. Then I set off (without my pot) to my next destination.
So, Every year, between January and March, the grey whales come south in their thousands to give birth in the great calm lagunas of Baja. So that means right now! Apparently it is amazing, you can go out on a panga, and there are hundreds of grey whales and their babies just cruising around, really tame, apparently you can get right up and touch them! So with no waves imminent I have headed to one the great lagunas, laguna San Ignacio. The best is Ojos de Libre, but I have driven past that to catch the south swell. San Ignacio is on the way to Scorpion bay (another spot on my list) so It makes sense for me to go to this one rather than go back up to that one. Seems to me that whales are whales where ever you are…
So that is where I am now! I set off (another long drive) to the laguna. Mostly an easy drive, fairly long dirt track in but nothing I’m not used to. At one point I made a wrong turn in a little town, so made a u-turn and immediately got pulled over by the federales. Cost me 400 pesos! So annoying.
But yeah! Here I am! Found a cool place, 55 bucks for a place to camp and a whale watch tour in the morning which is pretty good! Don’t let me forget free drinks! well, not free cervezas which is a shame, but free coffee and juice! So nice to have coffee! I haven't drunk coffee for a while, probably overdosed to be honest, had to go for a long run, started getting twitchy… thats about all I have for now. tomorrow should be pretty sick, whales in the morning, and then a long drive, about 100km of dirt road to Scorpion bay. With the forecast the way it is, I wouldn't normally go, but the road I have taken to this laguna has put me almost half way there. so Yeah! exciting stuff!
Ballenas!!!!! Who would have known how cute they are! So amazing!
Any way! The morning began with copious amounts of coffee (trying to drink 55 dollars worth) and free juice and biscuits. The whales are most numerous on the in coming high tide, which was at about 11, so we set off early. To my disappointment I was told I couldn’t swim with them, as there were now one or 2 “police’ style boats hanging around keeping an eye out. But there we go. Anyway, we headed out to the main spot, but there were whales everywhere! all around us as we headed out I could see their dark shapes, rising out of the water like floating islands.
There were one or 2 boats sat at a point where the laguna narrowed, the whales are concentrated there. As we drew up I could see each Panga was surrounded by the gigantic looming shapes. No sooner than we slowed down did we get our own gaggle. They came gracefully over, 3 huge mothers and their much smaller babies. It was ridiculous. They were so friendly! At first they were just rubbing their backs on the under side of the Panga (be in mind, the Panga is a 15ft fibre-glass dinghy and the bigger Whales must have been at least 30-40ft), But then they were sticking their head out the water next to the Panga so we could scratch their jaws and backs! It was unbelievable! All we did was sit there and we were surrounded by they enormous beasts! The water was clear enough to see them playing about under the boat, and they were incredibly graceful. Turning and diving and spinning around one another. The babies were seriously cute, they stayed by their mothers side the whole time. Constantly within touching distance, they mirrored their every move as if it were some well rehearsed dance routine that they were acting out for us, spinning and twisting like a pair of synchronised swimmers.
And then just like that, the tide changed and the began to drift away. Mothers and babes separating off in to their pairs to start the day. And so it was that we were driving back to the camp, amazed by the incredible experience we had had. I managed to get a load of footage, but the whales were so big you almost cant see what is going on! I got some good stuff as well though. There was a funny Italian couple which came out on the boat, along with a couple of american bikers. after we all sat around drinking coffee and chatting. By the time I took my leave I must have had at least 10 cups of coffee (in total, not just in that one sitting) Which, although that probably cost them less than a fiver, in costa coffee that would have been like 20 or 30 quid! So I was pretty pleased with my self, all told a very successful mission!
But it was still only mid day, leaving me about 5 hours of day light. By my calculations, that would leave me with just enough time to make it to Scorpion bay! After being given instructions to “follow the track which looks best”, I set off. The road started of ok-ish, a big track but really bad wash boards, so the going was slow. but it very quickly turned bad. I tried my best, and I was pretty sure I must have been taking the right turning every time I came to a point where the track split, but the road got really bad. Really really bad. And then I was driving through Grass which came up above the window, with the track winding this was and that. If it were not for the mountains to my left I would have had no sense of direction at all. But I did have a sense of direction, and after a while It dawned on me that I wasn't fully heading in the right direction.
With no way to turn around I kept on. The thing with these roads is most of the time they meet up any way, and I was probably just heading inland to avoid a river or something. But then I got to the mountains. If there was one thing I didn’t want, it was to be heading up in to the mountains. If I was following some random farm track which lead to secluded farm in the middle of no where I could be on the road for a very long time. There is no knowing where some of these things end up. It got to a point where I was heading up a valley with sharp ridges rising up on either side of me. It was like a slap in the face. The last turning I had past had been an hour ago. so at the least I had come 2 hours out of the way, possibly more if the right track was even further back.
I ran up on of the slopes at the off chance I would see anything, but it was hopeless. All I got for my efforts was 3, inch long spines in my foot to the bone due to a lapse in concentration. The only thing I could do was turn around and drive that long, hard, sandy track back the way I had come. feeling more sorry for pour Bruce’s suspension than anything else. I knew that this meant I couldn’t reach the bay by night fall, but if it came to it there was nothing stopping me just pulling over and kipping out here; I would rather avoid that however.
The first track I passed was definatly not what I was looking for. Nor was the second. Then hope arrived as a cloud of dust behind me, coming from the mountain track I was on. It didn't take them long to catch up to me, and I was quick to wave them down to get directions.
You wont believe it. It happened again. After a brief conference they told me I had been heading the right way. the track follows the valley up of a few miles, then hops over a pass and slowly winds its way, up and down back to the coast. They also said the track didn't get much better for a fair way, and where I was was less than a quarter of the way there.
I had had enough. I had only just recently pulled over to see one of the camper shell bolts had come lose and cracked the fibre-glass. I was over the dirt roads, the dust, the long slow, tedious travel time and constantly worrying that the next bump could burst a tire or break the suspension. I was worried for Brucy, It was hard going on the roads, and the dust and dirt was playing havoc with his idle, stalling more than once. So that made up my mind. I was heading back to tarmac and easy driving. Where I was (having doubled back so far) was only 1 or 2 hours of relatively ok dirt track before I hit good roads again. There are easier ways in to Scorpion bay, but they all involve long dirt tracks. There is no swell though, so It isn't worth me going out of my way to get there.
But the route I have chosen is definatly the easier one. A lovely, steady cruise down the sea of Cortes. That first evening I blasted over to the point where the Mex 1 first hits the coast and camped on the beach, and then today I have been cruising steadily south, driving as efficiently as possible. Again an absolutely stunning drive. I have had no complaints driving here. Every corner is a new wonder, even without a radio Im not bored. I just cruise along at my slow pace, singing and watching the world go by and change around me. I am starting to see more life. At first, It was just an oasis, in the middle of the desert and cacti forest. But now the patches of green are growing more frequent, the dry river beds larger. It is quite a sight, to be driving through the desert and then suddenly be in a lush, tropical jungle. I’m seeing a few mangrove swamps as well, I am actually camped next to one now! few mosquitoes but inside I’m ok. I have a few days of driving ahead of me, I am planning on meeting up with Diego in southern Baja, stopping of at a few waves along the way.