A Big Circle and a Long Tail…

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Greetings from La Paz…again!

Having discovered that the shipment (to the hotel in La Paz) of our stock alternator was delayed by 5 days, Ned and I decided to drive south to the quaint little town of Los Barriles on the Sea of Cortez. Our friends, Spence and Carlee Rauber live down there in the winter, so it was a good chance to spend some time with them. We had a wonderful couple of days eating lots of good food, walking on the beach, and enjoying their wonderful company.

We left Los Barriles on the morning of Monday the 6th, but rather than drive the highway north, we enjoyed 78 miles of incredibly scenic dirt roads, heading south, then west toward Todos Santos, and finally ending up making a great circle back to La Paz.

Amazingly, our package was waiting for us in the hotel lobby when we arrived later that evening. We were not thrilled to be in La Paz (which is a big, noisy city) for another night, and our goal was to replace the alternator first thing in the morning, stock up on fuel, food and water and then head out camping in the wilderness for the next three nights. Not feeling the need to get a hotel room, we pulled the first of what will probably be many stealth overnight stays. Charlotte tip-toed into the side parking lot of a nice hotel and we crawled into bed in the back and spent an undisturbed (and free!) night.

Bright and early the next morning, we tip-toed out of the hotel parking lot and headed for the Walmart parking lot where Ned performed the alternator retrofit. Now totally sick of being urban parking lot rats, we ran our errands and took off for the wild country.

We headed north along a dirt road which literally hugs the Sea of Cortez coast for 30 miles and spent a heavenly night and half of the next day camping, walking and swimming on a completely deserted beach. Around 2pm the next day, we pried ourselves off of the beach and headed inland, driving through some more spectacular country. We spent the second night camping in a lovely canyon, drove a bit further the next day to a little village called Las Animas, then turned around and headed back the same way. The third night (last night) we camped at yet another deserted beach and then grimaced as we had to drive back into La Paz. All told, our out-and-back “tail” was 168 miles of remote dirt roads and Charlotte ran beautifully.

As I am writing this, we are nicely ensconced in a non-pretentious hotel with all the necessities: A MUCH needed hot shower, a clean bed, and wifi! Tomorrow at 2:00 we ship out on the ferry; we are ready to take on the Mainland!

On our big circle…from the Sea of Cortez to the Pacific Ocean (pictured out on the horizon) and back!

On our big circle…from the Sea of Cortez to the Pacific Ocean (pictured out on the horizon) and back!

One way to survive the harsh Baja desert.

One way to survive the harsh Baja desert.

A bathroom break in a sandy wash that turned into a mini-siesta.

A bathroom break in a sandy wash that turned into a mini-siesta.

An interesting passerby!

An interesting passerby!

Alternator fixed and on our way to our first beach camp. Beautiful pink and green rocks and a spooky overhanging cliff…

Alternator fixed and on our way to our first beach camp.
Beautiful pink and green rocks and a spooky overhanging cliff…

The “watermelon” cliffs went for miles and miles.

The “watermelon” cliffs went for miles and miles.

Lucky me…I get to go for a run…

Lucky me…I get to go for a run…

While Ned makes me breakfast!

While Ned makes me breakfast!

Yumm!  Nothing like bacon and cheesey eggs on the beach.

Yumm! Nothing like bacon and cheesey eggs on the beach.

Where did you get that red jacket!? We saw many of these beautiful birds with white chests, so this red one was a great surprise.

Where did you get that red jacket!?
We saw many of these beautiful birds with white chests, so this red one was a great surprise.

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Can you hear me now?

Can you hear me now?

How about now?

How about now?

Ok, got it!

Ok, got it!

Awwww….

Awwww….

The Pelican Quartet

The Pelican Quartet

And a solo

And a solo

Morning at the canyon camp…Ned gets his workout tightening the alternator belt, while our new mascot looks on…

Morning at the canyon camp…Ned gets his workout tightening the alternator belt, while our new mascot looks on…

  …and I get my workout jumping rope!

…and I get my workout jumping rope!

Inland we found more pink and green cliffs and  small “ranchos” nestled inside these palm oasis.

Inland we found more pink and green cliffs and small “ranchos” nestled inside these palm oasis.

Giving out “dulces” to some very excited school children.  Interestingly, we also had pens with us, and the kids were even more excited about those than the sweets.

Giving out “dulces” to some very excited school children. Interestingly, we also had pens with us, and the kids were even more excited about those than the sweets.

A typical home in one of the ranchos

A typical home in one of the ranchos

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A really long commute.

A really long commute.

Heading back south toward La Paz again to finish our out-and-back “tail.” Tomorrow we leave the familiarity of Baja behind and board the ferry to mainland Mexico.  We are looking forward to the adventure of the unknown…

Heading back south toward La Paz again to finish our out-and-back “tail.”
Tomorrow we leave the familiarity of Baja behind and board the ferry to mainland Mexico. We are looking forward to the adventure of the unknown…

5 thoughts on “A Big Circle and a Long Tail…

  1. Hi from Gardnerville!
    We sure are enjoying your trip. You take such good pictures–great shadows and fun captions. Happy trails, Irma & Steve

  2. Nice pics you guys. Ned, are you following Heath and Danny’s motto of “if you have to replace one,buy two.” Looking forward to more.

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