Map Update

We have reached our furthest destination on the Baja Peninsula so seems like a perfect time to do a map update. It’s time to play escape from Baja!

Cabo Pulmo

We arrived in Cabo Pulmo after several days in the windy towns of La Ventana and Los Barriles.  We were warned that the last 10 kilometers to the town were unpaved and a bit rough but we had no problems just went very slow.  Cabo Pulmo is a Mexican National Marine park that encompasses a coral reef off the coast and is known as the best diving in Baja, so naturally we were drawn there to dive.  The Cabo Pulmo reef is the most northern reef in the Eastern Pacific and is an example of an overfished spot that was restored and preserved. We chose to stay on the south side of town at the Cabo Pulmo park, it was a boondocking spot with a ton of fun rocks to climb around on for the kids.  There was snorkeling near the shore but the water was too rough.

The next morning we went diving, happily the waters were not too rough and we got two nice dives in.  The first was a reef dive, with lots of fish and we saw a huge leatherback turtle!  Our second dive was on a ship wreak that is frequented by bull sharks, we love sharks so we jumped at the chance.  Unfortunately I busted my GoPro case last year so I wasn’t able to take it diving.

Apres diving we went and got fish tacos and ceviche then found another beach to boondock at.  I was able to find a place with a tv and caught the Packers game in a well ventilated space.   The kids played around on the beach coming up with a way of surfing down the rocks.

La Ventana

By Julian

La Ventana is a beautiful beach, and they have a lot of kite surfers there. They go there because the wind is perfect for kite surfing. The kite surfers are very skilled and talented. They were flipping a lot. They would go in the air and doing cool flips.

The people who we talked to in the campground were very nice too. Some of them come and stay here for many months just to kite surf every day. It was very warm and windy when we were there. The wind starts every afternoon, which is when the kite surfers go out. Someday I would like to kitesurf, but for now I like to watch them.

La Paz

By Maddy

Well after a while on the road we were all feeling like we could use a little space and break from the tight quarters (and maybe from each other a bit!) So we booked an Airbnb in La Paz for 4 days. It was a great decision and we loved the place we stayed which was super unique and Gaudi inspire architecture. The whole house was all round and curvy and white with great windows and art all around. We loved it! The master bathroom didn’t have a door, which was a bummer but it did have insane views of the city and the sea.

The house had a pool which was a bit too cold for us, and the hot tub wasn’t working which was too bad. But we still spent a lot of time hanging outside.

We also got the chance to catch up on work and have the kids do some blogging and math and such.

I enjoyed running on the malecon (beachfront walkway) though I did have to wear a mask as there were some other people around, which always makes it hard to breathe!

Whale Sharks

by Caroline

When we were in La Paz we went on a boat to go see whale sharks. We learned that the whale shark is the world’s largest shark although there are larger whales in the oceans this is the biggest fish. First we rented wet suits because the water in the Sea of Cortez is very cold. Then we took a boat to go see the sharks in a protected cove near the harbor of La Paz. Once we got to the protected area we spotted a shark in the water. Everyone else went into the water but I chickened out because I was too scared. The next time I got in I had to swim really hard to get close enough to see the shark, the water was freezing was not the very clear but we were able to see it because the whale shark was huge. The shark was gray and had white dots, there were only juvenile sharks in the area that were probably 15-20 feet long. A full grown whale shark can get to between 30-60 feet!!! Did you know that their eyes are the size of ping pong balls.

At first, I was so terrified that I wanted to go back to the boat. I also thought we were too close to it so I thought we were going to get hit by its tale. After a bit, I got used to the big shark. At the end my parents went into the water again to see a whale shark that was eating, and I could see it from the boat which was really cool. usually you should not swim with sharks when they are eating because they could eat you! but whale sharks only eat tiny plankton, also they have filters in their throat that filter out anything bigger than that. After we finished we ate sandwiches, and they were really good. On the way back it was windy and cold. This was super cool to do and I would totally recommend it.

Bahia Concepcion

After the crash we stayed one night a Playa Santispac and although it was quite a nice beach we were all a bit frazzled by the accident. We did enjoy some time on the beach and relaxed a bit, the kids went out on the paddle board and I chased them with the drone.  The beach campsite was considered dry which means it doesn’t have any electricity or water only a toilet and was only 200 pesos ($5) per night. The views were pretty stunning.

The next day we packed up pretty early to go and call our insurance and get the accident reported since we didn’t have cell service at the accident site.  We sat around the town of Mulege until the adjuster was able to come look at the RV.  Once that was completed we were free to continue on our adventure.  We traveled south along the Bahia Concepcion and decided on Coyote beach and chose one of the last palapas on the beach.  Again it was a dry camp site but the new solar system seems to be keeping us in power although the battery for the RV seems to be running low on power quickly.  It’s always something.

We decided to stay at Coyote for two days our first location with more than one day!  The kids went snorkeling and we hiked around the area and were rewarded with some spectacular views of the Bay.  There were lots of Mexicans that would come throughout the day and try and sell things to us on the beach.  I did purchase some really amazing fresh halibut and made my first ceviche.  It turned out amazing and I didn’t get sick.

On our last night we got invited by a Mexican family to their fire for some smores.  It was a lovely cultural exchange, they couldn’t speak much English and our Spanish is so so but we seemed to muddle through and had a fun time.

Alebrijes

By Julian

Alebrijes is a type of craftsmanship native to Mexico also called Nahuatkzosquit. These are handicrafts made with paper mache and wood that are painted with mostly cheerful and vibrant colors. The alebrijes represent beings that are several animals that have come back as spirits. Not only are they fantastic but also have a parade for dedicated to them in Mexico City. They were officially created by a Mexican artist Pedro López Linares (1906-1992) then people started to love them!! When we were just playing on the beach in Bahia Concepcion we saw a guy selling Alebrijes so I got one. Alebrijes are also in the movie Coco. this video is cool!!!!! (link below)

Building Beautiful Monsters in Mexico – Bing video

Cool photos 

alebrijes – Bing images

Travel is not all Rainbows and Sprinkles

Not everything goes as planned on travel and we certainly learned that in Bahia Concepcion after a relatively short day of travel about 2-3 hours with stops for shrimp tacos.  We had arrived at Bahia Concepcion, we were pulling into our camp site at Playa Santispac traveling at a very slow speed 5-10 mph when were crashed into by a rushing ambulance trying to pass us.  We were shocked to say the least, the kids were shaken up but unharmed.  Thank goodness nobody was hurt and both vehicles were able to continue.  The ambulance had a woman in the back who was in labor!!! Campy took some scrapes but did well considering.

Bahia de Los Angeles and San Ignacio

After reading about the bay of angels we decided that we couldn’t pass it up.  It was described as one of the most beautiful bays on the Baja peninsula.  We finished traveling highway 5, which as newly paved was a pleasure compared to what Hwy 1 would bring. It was significantly harder driving, with shoulders much reduced and semi-trailer traffic increased, we had a lot more white knuckle miles. Bahia Los Angeles was about 30 min off the main highway but the road was pretty empty. 

We arrived at our RV park, mostly chosen because they had showers and it was on the ocean.  Probably one of our least favorite parks mostly due to the amount of dog poop around.  It was mostly geared toward fisherman with the accompanying flock of seagulls.  We got some paddle boarding in and lots of beach time and walks.  It was quite beautiful with azure water and islands off the coast giving an interesting sunset.  We liked it well enough but probably wouldn’t go back again.  The showers by the way were warm but pretty grubby.

Bahia de Los Angeles

The next day we finally crossed over into Baja California Sur, the lower half of Baja peninsula and halfway to Cabo San Lucas.  After driving lots of miles in Baja California we will be driving less per day and staying at places for more days and getting a bit more immersed in the culture.  We pulled into San Ignacio after driving through the desert on Hwy 1 and were surprised to see the verdant landscape of the oasis.  We brought our RV into the main square of the town, a typical Spanish quadrangle with a mission one side and administrative buildings on the opposite side.  We decided to get ice cream and enjoy the town square.  We camped on the reservoir dammed to provide the water for the oasis.  We have really been fortunate to get camp sites on the water almost wherever we go, not sure if it would be this easy in a non covid year.  There was lot of birds on the reservoir including a duck that when it quacked sounded like it was farting. We couldn’t stop laughing. Tomorrow on the Bahia Conception.

Bahia San Luis Gonzaga

By Caroline Niebauer

Bahia San Luis Gonzaga is a beautiful place and has amazing beaches. When we were there we stayed at an awesome beach campsite called Papas Fernandez, there were only two other people on the entire beach! When we parked Julie and I got our swimsuits on and ran to the waves, the water was so cold! Our mom brought us towels and hot cocoa, after we got warm we begun the hunt for cool shells. First we just checked on the beach then discovered a huge patch of rocks that after some exploration had tons of shells of all different shapes and sizes like Cowrie and sundial shells.

That night we ate shrimp tacos they were really good, really big shrimp! After watching the sun go down we discovered the time had gone out and so we went tide pool exploring and found several star fish and some colorful Chiton (a mollusk with a pretty shell), it was so much fun. if you ever find yourself in Baja be sure to check out Bahia San Luis Gonzaga.