Punta Pulpito

Posted:  March 16, 2024
👁 882   4

After a lovely sail from Chivato, we arrived at Punta Pulpito and set our hook alongside crew-less Kessel. Her tender, Jabba, was gone which could only mean one thing: Peter probably hit the water as soon as his hook did, likely with a speargun in hand. Right after we set our hook, my suspicions were confirmed as he zoomed up to us to share his kill. A big ol’ grouper perfect for fish tacos. Peter went to shower off then returned to Avocet, ready for breakfast. Around that time we spotted I’Mua sailing in, inspiring the boys to play pirate and go board her. Together, Reid, Chris, Peter and Reid’s crew Barry brought I’Mua into the anchorage and set her hook closest to the rock. Big rock and  I’Mua … surely this a flashback to Morro Bay, right? Wrong. We were a good 730 miles (as the crow flies) away from Reid’s homeport of Morro Bay, but the views here in this Baja anchorage was giving me major de ja vu.

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Punta Pulpito

This is a large bay with room for a dozen boats or more. The best protection in northern weather is of course tucked up into the NW corner, but what little wrap there is seems to us to be about the same anywhere. Holding is excellent in a sand bottom at 20-35 feet, we set our hook here: 26°30.846’N 111°26.955’W

Punta Púlpito is a Pleistocene obsidian dome dated at about 0.5 million years that forms a small peninsula along the Gulf of California, east of the southern tip of Bahía Concepción in southern Baja California. The gigantic 400+ foot tall Púlpito monolith is visible from over 30 miles away on clear days, and provides a stunning backdrop to the anchorage at any time of day or night. In addition to the sea level views, the hike up the rock gives the opportunity for a Birds Eye view of the anchorage and surrounding mountains that tower over the sea which is how this big ol’ rock got its name: it’s really a pulpit rock, because from the top of this thing you can project your own gospel out onto the Sea (although some people think its called “Pulpito” as a joke, like naming a small dog Goliath, since “pulpito” means little octopus in Spanish).

As mentioned, it was very reminiscent of California’s Morro Rock, but in contrast we could actually hike this big rock for some stellar views, which is exactly what we did. 

Hiking

Getting to shore was easy aboard Peter’s dinghy, Jabba. Built out of aluminum and weighing in at around 200 lbs the rocky shoreline was no match for Jabba’s industrial strength and Peter’s determination to get as close to dry land as possible. Carefully we unloaded and tied off the boat, making our way to the dusty trail lined with cactus, desert flowers and the occasional timid lizard. 

We stopped at every vista to snap photos of our boats below, each one of the boys pulling out their cameras which had lenses that varied in size, making a pretty comical photo to submit to #InfluencersInTheWild. At the top, we sat back and enjoyed the view, snapping some “family photos” for our next Christmas Card. Oh how good it felt to explore with friends! 

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Water Activities

“This is sick, we have to get in” Peter said as we motored across the water. The middle of the anchorage went from deep, to shallow, with a protected reef. It did look like prime snorkeling conditions, so we returned to the boats to suit up then jumped in to explore. Unfortunately I broke the front of our gopro screen which compromised its waterproof abilities which meant all of the beautiful schools of fish, eels, and crabs we encountered will visually remain as memories. 

Reid and his crew Barry joined us an hour or so later, just as I was reaching the end of my heat supply. Even in a full body wetsuit, the Sea of Cortez was still not warm enough to swim in all day, and likely wouldn’t be until the summer months. However, that didn’t stop Peter. He was armed with his speargun and ready to provide dinner so we dinghied out to the pinnacle rock and watched him do his thing while we basked in the sunshine aboard Jabba. 

“Chris, I think he needs us” I said as Peter waved to us from a mile or so away, prompting us to zoom over and see what was up. Upon arrival, the floodgate of curse words spilled out of his mouth followed by the cause. “I almost had it man, but then it” (insert curse words here) “and got away”. The “it” he was referring to was a big ol’ yellow fin Tuna that he had speared, but unfortunately the fish was too strong for his current setup, snapped his line, and got away with the spear as well. Like the responsible fisherman he is, Peter was more upset about fatally wounding the fish and not being able to see the job through, but losing part of his expensive spear set up was also salt in the wound. He was cranky, so we headed back to the boats… but I refused to let him end his day on a sour note so made him grab his other gun and go out to dive again, telling him he couldn’t come back unless he brought dinner. A little harsh? Maybe, but I knew he would be successful and needed the win. 

That evening we had fish tacos, freshly speared by Peter that afternoon on his second hunt. Since I don’t like seafood (I know, I know…) he volunteered to beer batter and fry his catch aboard Avocet where we hosted all of the boys. We had the pesca, negro frijoles, cole slaw, carne (para mi), and more! It was a full spread, which warranted the use of our “nice” cloth napkins. Once full, we wished the boys goodnight as they returned to their vessels… but Peter was quick to return. 

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“You guys have to come out here” he said. The bioluminescence was the most intense I had ever seen, making Jabba’s wake look like we were on a magic carpet ride. We zoomed around the anchorage with a glowing tail of water streaming behind us until my cheeks were sore from smiling and butt was absolutely soaked from the salty spray. That night I went to bed with a heart overflowing with gratitude to be enjoying so many of Mother Nature’s gifts with some of my favorite humans, making memories that I will certainly never forget. 

Jabba’s wake

We had one more mellow day in Pulpito before our little armada set our course for a place that holds fond memories – Isla Coronados. There we would add one more boy to our salty mix, but those details are coming in the next post. 

Fair winds,

Marissa (and Chris and Cleo)

 




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