San Felipe, Mexico


Papa Fernandez boat photo 1

GOOD AS NEW!--Jim Wills' boat flipped its anchor in 54 m.p.h. night winds at Gonzaga Bay and five days later was recovered at Calamajue, inverted but otherwise undamaged, with both motors intact. Photo courtesy Peggy Magee.


Jan. 15, 2005, Peggy Magee, Papa Fernandez, San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico Lost Fishing Boat Recovery Report:

On Sunday night, Jan. 9, 2005, a 15-foot Gregor pulled it's anchor during a wind storm in the night off of Papa's beach over the hill from camp. The wind was out of the south to 54 m.p.h.

On Monday, the military took the boat's owner, Jim Wills of Chico, Calif., out to search for the missing boat.

On Tuesday, a search was made again by panga with Tony Fernandez, grandson of Papa Fernandez. The radio tree message was given to all beaches south and north of Papa's. The search was by panga conducted off the islands and by questioning Shrimpers in the area. One shrimper between here and the islands encountered a dead battery. Tony gave him his panga battery, then headed for home.

On Wednesday, they drove to San Felipe to report the boat missing to the Port Authority. Meanwhile, they had posted notes and told other camps in the area of the problem.

On Thursday morning, Campo Papa Fernandez received a radio message from the Camp at Calamajue Beach, that they had recovered an aluminum boat floating upside down off their beach.

On Friday, Jim Wills and two friends drove 100 miles round trip, to Calamajue to retrieve the boat!!

If wind had been continuous, the course of the overturned boat would have taken it just west of Puerto Penasco. And as it turned out, it went south 18 sea miles.

The boat was found upside down with its motor and trolling motor intact, and without damage to the hull, amazing.

The search for the boat did not stop the Wills camp from their quest for fish! As they searched, they trolled Rebel Fastracs and scored on nice leopard grouper. In fact, when the radio message came on Friday morning, Jim was out fishing, The Sea of Cortez with a friend!

Not much on the fishing front. There are reports of 20-pound yellowtail 25 miles out, at the Golden Reef. Spotted bay bass and triggerfish are the mainstay. We have had winds up to 54 m.p.h. out of the south.

(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from San Felipe and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for San Felipe may be found at's main San Felipe page.