On the way in we noticed another sailboat anchored on the northern side close to the cliffs of Isla Partida. We pushed on to the anchorage at the eastern side of the gap near the fishing camp and dropped anchor in 7 meters of very clear water over a sandy bottom. A few minutes later Brenda and I spotted an inflatable dinghy headed our way from the other yacht. The closer it got the more familiar it looked and yes, it was Bob Carroll on one of his trips to the islands and this was his second day here if I got it right. After a short visit he was off to the other side of the passage. An hour later we saw Bob returning to his boat. Brenda and I had by then had lunch and soon shoved off in the Zodiac to do some exploring of our own. We rounded a makeshift buoy as Bob had advised to get around the first spit of land then motored along a channel between the two spits with the fishing camp on our left. The water was crystal clear. We then rounded the second spit and made for a tiny sheltered beach on the Espiritu Santo side. We spent about an hour on shore, with me occupying myself with taking photographs and Brenda looking at the fauna and flora, which included a dip in the water. There had been talk of a Chubasco ("... a violent but short-lived squall, usually accompanied by thunder, lightning, rain, and strong winds") reaching the La Paz area this afternoon but sometimes it is better to not worry about what might be and enjoy what is right now, and on that visit to the shore we were enjoying a splendid day with a mild sun and a gentle easterly breeze. On the way back we visited the camp and asked two men if they could sell us some fish. They replied that they didn't have any this day but would have some tomorrow.
It was 2 PM by the time we returned to the boat. With the talk of the possibility of a Chubasco I took a few minutes to add my spare rode to the primary rode. I've only got 38 meters (118 ft) of 10 mm (3/8") chain as my primary rode and I'd feel much more comfortable with 60 meters. I learned in Port Townsend that metric chain is not available in the US so I decided to go with what I've got. What I do now is to lay down my anchor with the snubber taking the tension, then pull the tail of the chain onto the deck through the hawser pipe and shackle it to the 15 meters of chain of my spare rode with its 80 meters of 20 mm rope at the other end. So potentially I can pay out over 50 meters (164 ft) of chain and 80 meters (262 ft) of rope. In practice I'll pay out the chain only. If I start dragging and have to hold my ground my last resort will be to separate the 80 meters of rope from the chain and put it directly onto my 50 lb admiralty anchor as a second anchor.
In the late afternoon Brenda noticed that a catamaran had joined us at the anchorage, over closer to Bob at the north side.
The evening was picture perfect, with the lingering red hues of the sunset and almost still air. We enjoyed spotting the twin tips of manta rays and what we were sure was the heads of turtles coming up for air.
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