Hiking

Exploring Yellowstone Beach on Isla Monserrate

Isla Monserrate sits in the Sea of Cortez (Baja California Sur) and was the farthest north island we visited. It is a boat ride there, if you come out of La Paz.

Anchored in the deeper water, I rode a Zodiac skiff to the beach.

We landed on Yellowstone Beach. It is a sun drenched beach, with arroyos to explore as you leave the beach. Sit and dry your wet feet, hiking boots on and ready to go.

Underneath one of the yellow cliffs purple caught my eye. It was growing in the shade the cliff provided.

My guide called this Desert Chamomile and to be honest, even after scouring the massive flower book for Baja….I couldn’t ID it’s real name. It reminded me of a mix between chamomile and feverfew. Hardy though.

Coming over the beach, entering a arroyo.

This plant is used in many ways – and it’s smell when crushed reminded me of Melaleuca (Tea Tree Oil). Same pungent smell, and not shocking it has sanitizing medicinal uses.

I might not be great at ID’ing flowers in Mexico, but I can appreciate how pretty they are.

The yellow of the land was very pretty.

The island is made of pushed up ancient sea bed. Shells and fossils are everywhere.

The ship in the distance. Walking there? Maybe not very straight forward.

High above me, a white sea shell, finally exposed, soon it might fall off. How old is it?

Finding shade was a treat to be enjoyed while I sucked down water.

The freaky part of the cliffs is you could peel off sheets of it, like a stale dehydrated whole wheat pita.

Thick shells.

Into another canyon, the tall cacti rising up.

At the end of this short canyon was a huge tree growing up. (Hard to see) It had the advantage of shade through the day to keep more moisture.

The island had just started opening the spring flowers, for that short period.

A Turkey Vulture that had finally lost its life in the unforgiving desert.

The beach is highly walkable.

Various shells found and left behind.

Better than the plastic garbage I found and took.

Loved all the shells.

Boots off and using a stick to pick seed pods out of the tread.

The sunset didn’t bode well though. With it came wind and swelling seas – and even rain as we sat down to dinner. I rarely get sea sick but I felt so awful as the sea pitched around. Meds helped and knocked me out. I was fine in the morning, but glad I had meds to take. We were traveling in a more exposed area, through the night, to Isla San Franciso.

~Sarah

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