First light found us coasting into Caleta San Juanico, a beautiful series of coves on the Baja Peninsula. We dropped anchor and began unloading the boats, kayaks, and standup paddleboards. Meandering through the anchored yachts and sailboats to a beautiful white sand beach. Some folks took a beautiful walk between coves, while others ventured out on the clear water to paddle.

The infamous winds of the Sea of Cortez gained speed throughout the morning. Back on board we enjoyed lunch before pulling anchor and enduring a bit of swell to turn and run with the wind. We cruised through the afternoon, the wind at our back with following seas. Our keen-eyed staff kept watch on the bow for wildlife, a challenging task with cresting whitecaps and frothing waves.

Evening found us shadowed by the mountains of Isla Danzantes. Tucked into a nice cove, we enjoyed the last bit of golden glow on the horizon and gathered on the sun deck for holiday festivities. Our local naturalist, Mauro Butron, explained the origin of the piñata before inviting our younger explorers to try their hand at breaking it while we sang the traditional song. All it took was three candy-motivated kids to break apart the piñata and send local candy flying across the deck.

While the sun and warmth may be unusual for many of us on a Christmas Eve, we all made the most of the fantastic location, conditions, and great company.