Fan belts and Banshees
That took twice the effort it should have.
Our first attempt to get to Los Frailes was scuppered by a broken fan belt 4 hours into our trip. Thanks to an alarm screeching like a banshee in our earholes, we found the problem quickly enough. But, of course, it wasn’t one of the easy belts to replace. Being the one driving the 12v alternator and the water pump, it was inside the other belts for the main alternator. And, as the engine had been running for a few hours, it was as hot as a Swedish Sauna in the engine room. But, after 40 minutes of sweating and swearing, we were back moving again.
Unfortunately, it was now too late to get to our intended destination before sunset, so we headed back towards Cabo San Lucas – anchoring as far away from the lunacy as possible. In a way, we are glad to have turned around. Our chosen anchorage spot turned out to be a haven of quiet after all the jet skiers had buggered off. And the water was surprisingly clear here. We could see the anchor in 7 metres of water.
The next attempt went without incident. There was still no wind coming from the right place, but there was a beautiful sunrise and morning light.
Bahia Los Frailes
We arrived at the Bay of the Friars late afternoon on 18th December. The weather forecasters predicted strong northerly winds, so we tucked our way into the bay to stand the best chance of shelter. And that worked. Apart from some swell working its way into the anchorage, we would never have known there was much wind at all.
The main feature of Bahia Los Frailes, apart from the beach and the shelter, is the spectacular rock formations that almost look sculpted. We spent a couple of days here just walking around, snorkelling near the rock faces (nothing of note) before heading off to the Cove of The Dead in late November.
Ensenda de los Muertos 28th Nov to 1st Dec
The chartlet in the pilot book suggested the anchorage to be way over the east. We tried that, in around 10 metres, but hit sand over rock. So, we cautiously continued into the bay where we found sand in 5.5 metres and dug in the anchor almost to Australia.
It might be known as the Cove of the Dead, but at night, the cove comes alive with small fishing boats launching from their trailers via the ramps on the beach. Each, without exception, gave us a wave as they left, and each returned in the morning to reverse the process.
There’s a restaurant in the corner of the cove here, where we went one night with the crew of Just Lucky, Ron and Kirsten, for Margaritas and some excellent Mexican food.
For us, though, this was just a stopover on the way to La Paz, so on 1st December, we persuaded the anchor to return from its antipodean adventure and away we went sailing and motoring our way towards La Paz.