On the beach - The Not So Long Way Down - CycleBlaze

December 18, 2018

On the beach

The beach quietened down, with 95% of the people leaving, and so we had a good night's sleep in our tent. In the morning I awoke to the sound of splashing and looked out to see that Dea was sitting on the beach watching pelicans. They were out for an early morning fish, diving down with a splash to try and catch breakfast.

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We saw that there were some yellow kayaks  set out for rent on the beach and Dea and I decided to go and have a paddle around the bay before it got busy again. It cost 300 pesos ($15) for an hour, and this would prove to be money extremely well spent.

The water close to shore was not deep at all but it was very clear, and we soon saw some little fish as we paddled away from the beach. Then on a rocky outcrop we spotted a heron, and drifted quietly in to get a close view of it. It was really special to see it at close quarters, but this was really just the beginning of our wildlife spotting. 

After paddling over to a deserted beach on the other side of the bay we made our way out into some slightly deeper water. Dea was extremely talented at spotting things in the water, and kept shouting with excitement when she spotted things. We saw a lot of fish and some long thin things that looked like eels or something. Then Dea said she thought she saw a turtle, but it was gone in a flash. I was upset I'd missed it, because I never got to see proper sea turtles, had never seen one at all in fact, I always missed them, and I was telling all of this to Dea when she interrupted me. 
"Chris, look there!"
And she pointed behind us to the left and I looked, and there was a big old sea turtle swimming along, and it went right underneath our little boat, and it was a beautiful, magnificent sight, with two little stripey fish tucked in behind it for good measure. It was an amazing moment.

We saw a few more fish after that and Dea thought she spotted a ray of some kind, but nothing was going to top seeing that turtle. Our hour was almost up and we were heading back towards the beach when we heard a buzzing noise over our heads. It was Jon's drone, and he followed us for a bit, taking photos and videos. I recommend watching the video below, if only for the moment when Ciaran suddenly appears on one of our inflatable tubes.

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Ludo VerhoevenMagnifique !!!
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2 weeks ago
This photo certainly demonstrates how clear the water was!
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Ludo VerhoevenLooks like you where flying over the water. What a beautiful picture !
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2 weeks ago

Our kayak excursion was a tremendous start to the day, but there was much more to come. Our ferry was not sailing until evening, and we had many hours to relax on the beach, during which we played many games, including volleyball, Eureka Ball, ninja, and many other things. It was really the best way to spend a day.

Here we are playing ninja. The easiest way to understand how it works is to look at this photo and then the next.
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You probably understand it now.
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One highlight of the day was when Tom, Nathan, Jon and I competed to see who could build the best animal in the sand, or 'sandimal' as we called it. We each had our own space and a 30 minute time limit. I decided to craft a giant lizard, but unfortunately the 30 minute time limit proved a little tight, and, having left the head till last, I ended up with a very impressive lizard body and a very silly looking lizard head. Mine was not really in contention for first place, and, while everyone did a good job, it was generally thought that Nathan's crocodile was the most impressive.

Intense work as the sandimal competition hots up.
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Nathan crafting his crocodile.
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My funny-headed lizard.
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Tom made creative use of seaweed for his bison.
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Drones are so cool.
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And while we are on the topic of Jon's cool drone photos, here's a couple more photos he made of the bay, pretty impressive stuff:

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But all good things must come to an end, and in the afternoon we had to leave the beach, after around 24 hours on it, and make our way back to the ferry port. 

I was slightly wishing we'd not been able to get on a ferry until the 25th now, just so we could have stayed on the beach for a week.
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The ferry terminal was packed with passengers for the fully booked, and perhaps now slightly over-booked, ferry to Mazatlan. There was a fair bit of waiting around, but we were actually then ushered through ahead of the queue. We needed to put our bags through an x-ray machine, which was a bit of a hassle considering I don't think anyone was looking at the results, but otherwise boarding was a fairly smooth process. We then all had to fit our bikes into an office room next to the cargo deck, which was a bit of a tight squeeze but we got them in. 

Just hope nobody needs to press any of those buttons during the voyage.
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The ferry did indeed seem to be overloaded. There were a lot of passengers on board, many with rolled up blankets and bedding. We decided to quickly nab some floor space on the outside deck for our mats and sleeping bags, although I think we didn't need to rush, as everybody else preferred to sleep indoors. It was nice to have  our own space though, and there was a noisy fan above us to drown out Tom's snoring. 

While we waited for the ship to leave, Ciaran and I entertained ourselves looking down over the cargo deck, where they were trying to squeeze the last of the cars on. It seemed like they must have over-booked, for they were insisting on making the cars park in rows of four, despite there only being three lanes. This was highly entertaining, and made more so by the fact that all of the cars had to reverse in, and that the employees directing them couldn't seem to agree on how it should be done. Then whenever a car did make it into the tight space it was directed into, the people inside could hardly get their doors open to get out, and then when they did they found it almost impossible to squeeze their way through the other tightly-parked cars. And then, of course, there were suddenly no more cars to board, and there was still a big empty space left over that they could easily have parked normally in.

The fiasco as the cars try to reverse into four tightly-packed rows.
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And how things ended up. This is how we set sail.
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Tom seemed to think he was still on the beach.
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Settling in for the night, with Baja California completed. Tomorrow, the mainland, and what adventures would we find there?!
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Today's ride: 7 km (4 miles)
Total: 1,504 km (934 miles)

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