We left Abreojos fairly quickly for a reason, we wanted to spend some time catching the upcoming swell in Scorpion Bay. There were a few stops on the way we wanted to see and we were pressed for time, so off we went.
The desert road skirts along a small mountain range which contains from what we have heard, very good mountain biking and hiking, we will have to return to explore it another time. The Abreojos road meets with the main highway again in blistering heat. It was over 100 degrees for the first time of the trip.
We arrived in San Ignacio, a desert oasis, although still hot at least there was no humidity. We camped at a famous little Baja 1000 race stop, Rice & Beans. We had them grill up the grouper I had caught earlier that day, it was one of the best meals of the trip.
We decided to check out the town itself the following day. We hadn't seen trees since San Diego, so this desert Oasis was a sudden surprise. It boasted a great mission, one of the first in Baja.
We proceeded to indulge on the local delicacy, fresh fig milkshakes a tasty treat in 100 degree heat. We investigated the river next, where the real Oasis is. We immediately regretted not camping here, Ben decided to cool down on the rope swing, Dillon played some uke, and we chilled out for a few hours before heading to Mulege.
It was a beautiful drive to Mulege with vast expanses of rugged landscape, drastic cliffs and contrasting colors.
Upon entering Mulege we found a broken down Westfalia and got the owner's story. He once lived and worked as a mechanic in San Fransisco, before moving back to Mulege in his Westy. Mulege itself is a nice little town on a river which flows into the sea of Cortez. It has quite the expat community for a reason; fishing, snorkeling, and good weather.
After a scenic first night on an abandoned private beach under palapas our new friends Mary and Rusty came over with their little Boston Whaler and we went out to an island for a day of fishing, snorkeling, and lounging.
After a few days longer than planned camping in Bahia Concepcion it was time to catch the tail end of the swell in Scorpion Bay, one of the most famous surfing spots in Baja. Here you can catch 2 KM long waves if the swell is just right. It just so happens the swell was just right, for the first time in years. Our route, however, was completely wrong. The map said it was the main road, but it took 7 hours to drive 60KM. We found out upon arrival there was a paved new option. The off-road remote trail we took is now used for Baja 1000 off-roading races, not for 40 year old buses with under body radiators.
We then headed south toward the East Cape of Baja to meet with some of our friends who own a house there. Along the way is Todos Santos, La Paz, and Cerritos. La Paz was interesting, the bus was having trouble shifting and suddenly we were dealing with heavy traffic, crooked cops, and trying to book a ferry. We realized we had lost our title so we waited to deal with booking the ferry, but the delay was great as we were able to meet with Samba favorite SyncroBo who now is traveling the same trip in a giant Unimog!
We headed to Cerritos and Todos Santos where we met other great travelers and surfers.
We were then headed to East Cape for civilization. Cabo and San Jose Del Cabo were a world apart from the rest of Baja. Starbucks bordered the large supermarkets where we stocked up on groceries. Luckily our friends lived an hour down a dirt road near desolate surf breaks, and a swell just happened to be in.
After a week in the East Cape surfing and getting some much needed time with some Alaskans it was time to begin heading North to jump on a ferry to mainland. We spent a night in San Jose del Cabo and found the Baja Brewery. We found some good stuff there like Dogs on roofs and bacon wrapped hot dogs. We continued to Los Barriles where we met fellow overlanders Ebb&Road in their Westy.
We moved on to La Ventana. This is a big ex pat and tourist wind surfing community that some other Alaska friends just happened to own a house. They brought some stuff we ordered on Amazon down for us, and even some slices of our favorite pizza from their Brewery / pizza place. It was a great surprise for Tessa's birthday. The campsite at La Ventana was absolutely beautiful, and completely desolate after the windy season.
After La Ventana we climbed a steep hill to drop back down immediately into La Paz. We will be posting a write up about the ferry next.