Rodeo, New Mexico
May 19, 2004
It was a calm, sunny day with the gentlest of breezes, as we tried to coordinate our paddling in the harbor, sheltered by land on three sides. The breeze was blowing in from the sea, prolonging the time it took to paddle past the Peninsula Caracol and the longer west isthmus jutting out past Catalina Island. Once out in the sea, we were greeted by many groups of pelicans skimming over the surface of the water.
West of the isthmus, we spied a sheltered cove. This seemed like a good place to have our sandwiches, so we paddled up and easily pulled our kayak onto the beach. Unfortunately, the cove was far from pristine, as the sands were littered with refuse, mostly plastics. We tried to ignore the mess and admire the organ pipe cacti sprouting out of the cliffs above us, and watched boats go by as we ate.
After lunch we paddled off again, this time to the other side of the cove, where the water was very clear – so clear we could see far down into it, where fish swam among the aquatic plants that undulated in the current. As we began paddling up the coast, gaping holes appeared in the rocky cliffs – caves! We weren’t sure how deep they were, but Bob was bound and determined to explore each one, in spite of my protests. Not the bravest soul alive, I had visions of us being sucked into underground currents. Luckily, each one of the three "caves" we explored turned out to be shallow, no more than grottos. In their shady and cool depths, many crabs scurried spider-like along the walls and into crevices out of sight as we approached. The last cave contained a little "blowhole", which sputtered and sprayed when the bigger waves pushed in.
As we paddled back down past Catalina Island into the harbor, the breeze was now on our backs, helping us make progress even when we drifted. It was late afternoon when we returned the kayak to its slip. Our arms were sore, our hands beginning to blister, but we felt gratified and well rewarded. I’m ready for another kayak adventure!
From journal San Carlos: our intro to Mexico