Home -> Rocky Point Sea of Cortez, Puerto Penasco Sea of Cortez
Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco): Sea of Cortez
The beautiful Sea of Cortez in Rocky Point Mexico (Puerto Penasco)
The Sea of Cortez, also known as the 'Gulf of California', is amazing in so many different ways. From the abundance of sea life
to the clarity of the waters, the Sea of Cortez is host to amazing fishing, scuba diving, beautiful views, and more.
Legendary diver Jacques Cousteau once described the Sea of Cortez as the "world's aquarium" and the "Galapagos of North America".
The Sea of Cortez
currently plays an important role in one of the most interesting ecospheres in the world, and with everything that is happening in the region, it
stands to play an amazingly pivotal role in what happens to the area next. There is so much one could say about the Sea Of Cortez, so
I'm just going to start off of the top of my head and go from there.
As you can see from the map - the Sea of Cortez is bordered by the states of Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sonora, and Sinaloa.
To the north it is part of the desolate Sonoran landscape, and creates amazing ares where open desert suddenly spills into a beautiful, sparkling
coastline. Further down south it laps up against more popular - and populated - places like bahia Concepcion, La Paz, San Carlos, and
San Jose del Cabo.
Traditionally the Sea of Cortez has been a commercial fishing zone. With the growth of tourism in the last 20 years (more about this below)
attentions have been turned toward sport fishing and boating, scuba diving, and the like.
In 2005, hundreds of islands in Mexico's Sea of Cortez were declared World Heritage Fund sites by United Nations
Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization. They are home to major whale breeding grounds, and the designation
opens up the ability for Mexico to seek funding from the international responsibility to help preseve the area.
The Sea of Cortez is host to a number of interesting and unique little sea critters such as
the Flying Mobula and the vaquita
marina, the latter of which has been called "the world's rarest, most
What's in the Sea of Cortez's future? There's the Mexican government's La Escalera Nautica/Sea of Cortez Project, which seeks
to draw more and more pleasure boaters and fishermen to the area. There's a boom in construction all up and down the coasts. There's the
World Heritage Fund site status. There is ecotourism and environmental worries about what is going to happen to the area.
In other words, the future's going to be busy on the Sea of Cortez.
Obligatory John Steinbeck 'The Log from the Sea of Cortez' mention
The first thing a lot of people think of when they hear 'The Sea of Cortez' is the John Steinbeck novel.
"The Log from the Sea of Cortez" is John Steinbeck's
tale of a 1940's expedition there to collect and catalog marine life. In it,
he "recounts the day to day events of the collecting trip; encounters with local people at sea and ashore, negotiations with customs officials" (Here's a review).
I'll confess a horrible secret - I bought this book, I have this book, but I have not read this book. I'm really not a big Steinbeck guy
- I'm more of a Kerouac guy. If you read this and want to send me your review, I'll post it here, because I've got a stack of other stuff in line before I get to
Sea of Cortez links you may find helpful
Sea of Cortez at Wikipedia.
The Tucson Citizen ran an excellent 'Sea of Cortez' series - in
2004 the Tucson Citizen ran a three-day series of articles that covered issues facing the Sea of Cortez such as overfishing and
federal protectionary attention from both sides of the border. It's a great read, and worth checking out. Overfishing is a huge, huge
issue facing the region, and this series does a good job spelling out the whole situation.
http://www.seaofcortez.org and http://www.mardecortes.org
(Spanish) is also an excellent recreational read. From March 26 to May 26, 2004, the authors retraced John Steinbeck's trip to the Gulf of
California in 1940 (See: 'books' below for more info)
and logged their experiences. Their log is a great day-by-day writeup including photos,
multimedia and writings about the marine life and geography that makes the Sea Of Cortez so unique. If you're interested in getting a better
look at their route, see here. On a side note, if they ever do this again, I want
to go with them!. You hear me guys!? :)
There's also a great audio interview at thestory.org with Rafe Sagarin, one of the researchers who
participated in this journey, that American Public Media put together in Feb. of 2007.
The interview is an
absolutely fascintating look at both the Sea Of Cortez and the methodologies employed the modern
researchers to use Steinbeck's data from so long ago.
The audio is found here: http://thestory.org/archive/the_story_185_Riding_The_Sea_of_Cortez.mp3
CruiseCortez.com - a now unmaintained (?) site relating to sailing and fishing in the
Sea Of Cortez. This site was active and popular a few years ago but the webmaster has since disappeared (?) and it has fallen by the
wayside. Still, some of the photos and information found here are worth checking out. I've been looking to get in touch
with whoever is running the site ever since. Despite the site's status, their
message board remains popular, however.
Sea of Cortez fund at the International Community Foundation.
Recent news articles about the Sea of Cortez
The ecological threats to the Sea of Cortez
Mexico's bid to lure boaters a tough sale
Americans look to the next Baja boom town
Company says Mexico to allow pipeline for Arizona refinery
Books about the Sea of Cortez
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By: Maria Isabel Hernandez