El Barril and Canal de Soledad
  • Daily Expedition Reports
  • 12 Mar 2022

El Barril and Canal de Soledad, 3/12/2022, National Geographic Sea Bird

  • Aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird
  • Baja California

We concluded our trip with a mellow day in Bahia Magdalena. The weather was very pleasant from early on. We started out with water activities at the area of mangrove ecosystems, locally known as “El Barril.” We had the opportunity to travel through the well-protected channels by kayak, stand-up paddleboard, and by Zodiac. As we traveled through these lush aquatic forests surrounded by a desert landscape, we carefully observed birds, oysters, and fish. We learned about the massive ecological importance of mangroves, which play a role in the natural life cycle of many marine fish. It also became clear that mangroves stabilize the ground, reducing potential for erosion during catastrophic events like hurricanes.

 

The rest of the day we spent out on the bow as National Geographic Sea Bird sailed through Canal de Soledad. This natural channel, which connects the upper and lower sections of Magdalena Bay, is quite an experience to sail through in a ship of our size. Considered a non-navigable waterway, we have managed to travel through it for several decades, thanks to the Camacho family. Three generations of the Camachos have been pilots for National Geographic Sea Bird, making it possible for us to witness not only the sailing of such a special channel, but also the wilderness that this place represents. One of our many highlights was the repeated visit of several groups of bottlenose dolphins, which joined to ride the bow of our ship.

 

Photo caption: Bow-riding bottlenose dolphins. Photo by Alberto Montaudon Ferrer

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