As I mentioned previously, we have been following the advice of Bruce Van Sant’s book, “Passages South” in which he shares his thoughts on how to move east against easterly winds. Van Sant believes it is best to take advantage of lower wind speeds which occur during the night and motor a few hours each morning from one anchorage to another. Per his suggestions, we awaken around 4 a.m., raise anchor, and move east along the southern shore of Puerto Rico for a few hours.
Sunrise is filled with pastel colors and soft breezes.
Although it is difficult to get out of bed when it is dark, we were rewarded with watching the day come alive and with calm seas, so the effort is definitely worth it! But getting up early means the days feel long and the evenings feel short since we go to bed earlier than usual.
Boqueron has a long, inviting shore.
After completing the Mona Passage and a good night of sleep at anchor in Mayaguez, we moved to Boqueron and anchored in a bay of flat water.
We strolled the waterfront town and had lunch in Boqueron.
Kelsey and Lauren relaxing in the park.
Next we meandered through the park along the water where we met three young ladies from the US who were on vacation. After a brief conversation, we invited Kelsey, Lauren and Shaye to come out to LIB and relax on our boat for the afternoon.
Captain had to join in the fun!
Shaye, Lauren and Kelsey are close in age to our own children and we were happy to share our “home” with them for a bit; very much like others have done for our sons as they travel. We enjoyed getting to know these young ladies and hearing about their plans. Their energy and enthusiasm were contagious and we are so happy they spent the afternoon with us. Safe travels, girls. Keep in touch!
We actually had to turn left here, not go straight toward town.
Our next stop was La Parguera. Finding our way into this small fishing village with crops of mangroves growing into small islands in front of the town made our initial entry a little challenging. It is necessary to watch the chart and keep a close eye out for shallow water but we managed to work LIB into a nice anchoring spot behind one of those mangrove “islands.”
La Parguera is a sleepy town during daylight hours with deserted streets and most businesses closed.
The same area of town after nightfall.
But once night falls, this little town is a jumble of people where families, teens and couples stroll the pedestrian area, live bands play loudly, food stands compete with restaurants and vendors hawk jewelry and trinkets from small stands.
Puerto Rico night life.
There was even a tent with a mechanical horse race where bets were taken and money changed hands for winning numbers. We placed a couple of big $1 bets, but walked away without winning.
After enjoying the bustling nightlife in La Parguera, we upped anchor around 4:30 a.m. and motored to Balnearia de Cana Gorda, a bay about 20 miles away. By 8 o’clock our anchor was down and we were happily floating in front of a very pretty little resort called Copa Marina Resort, though there really wasn’t a marina there.
LIB can be seen in the background.
We launched Day Tripper, our dinghy, and went to check out the Resort. As luck would have it, there was a yummy breakfast buffet being served and cruisers were welcome. So we had a very nice breakfast, then spent a bit of time relaxing at the pool. What a nice reward after our early morning departure.
Copa Resort has a nicely manicured beach and a few water toys for rent. We decided to rent a Hobie Wave (because when does Frank ever want to sit still?) and spend a little time sailing around the bay. We may or may not have had a little trouble tacking this little boat and I am certain we went further than we were “supposed” to go, but no one told us any limits when we started!
We may have gone out further than allowed???
Frank and I spent couple of wet hours sailing that Hobie and we had plenty of laughs in the process!
We ended up staying in this bay for two nights because we just couldn’t bring ourselves to leave. The Resort was welcoming, there was a popular public beach near the Resort where families gathered and played all day and just around the corner was the fairly famous “Gilligan’s Island.”
Gilligan’s Island (Image taken from internet)
So this island is actually called Cayo Aurora and even though I don’t see the likeness to the one in the TV show, many people call this place Gilligan’s Island. The picture above does not show how crowded this area is usually, but it does show you how pretty it is. Trust me, usually there are boats, kayaks, floats, people and plenty of music throughout this island.
Frank and I took Day Tripper over and hung out in the water, avoiding the land where the mosquitos were happily feasting on slightly inebriated humans too oblivious to notice. It was a great place to people watch and the current through the inlet kept the water moving and cool. Truly a pretty island and a fun place to while away a bit of time.
Our next stop is Ponce, then on to Salinas where we will catch up to s/v Mauna Kea!
Colorful homes in La Parguera.
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