Hello again from the road. I¡¯ve gotten a chance to sit down and write after another week or so of cycling. After a small break in Guerrero Negro, we continued south along the very straight and desolate highway that runs through the middle of Baja. The surrounding area was dry, flat, and very hot. There weren¡¯t many cacti around either. As we neared the mountains, the hilly terrain returned along with the many desert plants like the cactus. We¡¯d heard of an oasis in San Ignacio, our next stop, which might be able to provide a nice change of scenery. As we approached the town of San Ignacio, we saw palm trees, loads of them! They were all surrounding a fresh water spring in the center of town. Elated at the new and exciting sight, we immediately sought refuge under the palm trees and started swimming in the refreshing water. I could see fish, water birds, and dragonflies. This was certainly a change from the desert, a true oasis! From San Ignacio, our first glimpse of the Gulf was only a day of cycling away. We pedaled to Santa Rosalia and saw the magnificence of Las Tres Virgenes Volcanoes along the way. We descended to sea level on an exhilarating and somewhat dangerous road near La Cuesta Infierno (Hell¡¯s Hill). Right away we noticed it was much warmer on the Gulf side, maybe more humidity. We camped out along the water and went for a swim. The water was just as warm as I thought it would be. Fisherman in tiny boats could be seen near the shore catching what they could to sell to nearby restaurants and markets. From Santa Rosalia, it was a relatively easy ride to Mulege. Mulege marked the beginning of the Bahia Concepcion. We heard that this was a nice place to chill. Our legs and butts were definitely ready for some relaxation off the bikes. We got some useful information from some expatriated Canadians about the choice beaches along the Bay. We headed for a deserted place where we could have some peace and quiet for at least one night, a beach community being built called Punta Suenos. I met a fisherman in need of some gasoline for his car who traded me a bag of scallops and conch for a gallon of the community¡¯s gas. There was no doubt in my mind he would have taken the gas if we weren¡¯t there, so I gladly accepted the fresh seafood treats. I headed down to Los Naranjos, a beach a bit further south and met up with some friendlies from the US and Italy who were still hanging around despite the oncoming heat of summer. I met Bob and Elijah, and Roberto and Daniella. Bob had set up one of the beach side palapas or shacks for more permanent living since he spent most of the year here. He had solar and plumbing. One could do just like Bob for 6 bucks a day. Not a bad life on the water! Bob tossed a beer in my hand and snatched the seafood and started cooking it up for me. This was the beginning of a very nice relaxing few days on the Bay, hanging out with new friends, snorkeling, swimming, and relaxing our legs. Before leaving the Bay, we spent one more night under a palapa of our own on a beach called La Perla. It was a nice secluded beach and swimming area. The next day we had an early start to beat the intense midday heat and made it to Loreto.
From here, we are going to take an easy ride along the Gulf and check out a beach or two and a place called Puerto Escondido before turning west for some large mountains. We¡¯ll be cycling down the middle of Baja again the long and straight road, going through cities like Insurgentes, Constitucion, before making a three day run into La Paz. Then we will be finished cycling Baja, but not exactly finished exploring Baja. We plan to store our bikes in La Paz and hitch or bus down to Los Cabos (San Lucas and San Jose), and check out a couple cool towns like Todos Santos and Pescadero.
So far, camping is going well, the locals continue to be supportive of our journey, and our legs and spirits strengthen with every new and exciting day!
Highlights: Awesome mountain views, Bahia Concepcion chill time, San Ignacio oasis swimming, cheap avocados.
Downers: Trying to fall asleep on a hot night, sweaty lotion burning eyes.
I think if you haven¡¯t seen Baja yet, you should seriously consider putting it on your list. There is so much great stuff out here. I wish I could give you a more personal slice. For now, you¡¯ll have to make due with this description and a few more pics.
Peace and Love,