December 8, 2009
After 3 days of off and on rain in Mantachen near San Blas, we are quickly approaching Banderas Bay. Puerto Vallarta is located on the southeastern turn of the bay and the other towns include: Nuevo Vallarta (lots of resorts), Bucerias, La Cruz de Huanacaxtle and Punta Mita. Tonight we plan to anchor off of Punta Mita and then continue in tomorrow to the marina at La Cruz for a few days to get our feet on the ground and prepare for the arrival of family for Christmas.
Before leaving the San Blas area, we were able to get some much needed provisions in town and try out the whole internet cafe. I did not get the chance to upload pictures as my time was constrained by the dads trying to keep busy during a torrential rain storm, but I was able to tend some business that was demanding my attention.
We also braved the rain and took a "jungle tour" out of Tovara (a wide spot in the road between the beach at Mantachen and San Blas proper). Tovara is not only where you can get a guided tour of the mangroves, but it is also famous for it's baked goods - banana bread in particular. I will vouch for its quality (and so will Bryce) as we had it for breakfast this morning and it is GONE! There were no other pangas on the water when we took our tour, so the birds were relatively undisturbed. As a result, we got to see a pretty wide variety including a couple that are downright rare. Besides the birds, we also saw hanging termite nests, iguanas, and yes, salties (aka salt water crocodiles). The tour took us winding through the mangroves to a crocodile farm. There some huge specimens which because we are in Mexico where liability does really exist, we could almost touch them. Luckily, we are huge Steve Irwin fans and know just how fast those primordial hunks of solid muscle and teeth can move. There were some other animals there: javelinas (little boars), deer, raccoons which we could only guess were kept for . . . . . food!
This morning we decided to push all the way here to Banderas Bay where we will probably spend through the first of the year. En route, we caught a skip jack tuna which we are trying a milk soak to take some of the gaminess out of the flavor. Bryce and Brad also caught some pieces of mangrove debris. They were the lucky ones up on deck when a whale (probably a humpback surfaced between us and Totem! It's almost time to set the anchor, so I will wrap it up for now.
Our guide and driver, Hugo
Kids in the bow of the panga
Boat Billed Heron
Falcon in Flight
Crown of Mary Heron
Great Blue Heron on its Nest
Heron in Flight
Our first Saltwater Croc in the Mangrove
Saltie in the Mangrove
Giffords and Bakers just a foot or so from a huge Saltie
Mr. Crocodile's toes through the chain link
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