Sunday, February 22, 2015

Back aboard LightSpeed in Alameda, California

February 22, 2015

Time flies in the real world.  Our trip down the Baja was a great last blast before re-entering the real world.  Kathy officially started work on February 9 and flew out of San Jose del Cabo (3 hours south of La Paz) to the San Francisco Bay area for some client meetings and a busy first week at work. 

Left to my own in Mexico, I made a small effort to sell our Craigslist Honda Accord with 180,000 miles in La Paz and fly home.  I wasn't looking forward to the solo mile drive back to Alameda and had some doubts about the reliability of the high mileage Honda.  Milton, our host at Casa Buena B&B in La Paz, fueled my adventures spirit by suggesting the existence of a dirt road route via San Juanico to San Ignacio.. the route the Baja 1000 race takes.  
I took the beach / salt flat options as I heard that the 'main' road had lots of deep sand.

Many times along the 'short cut' I was pretty sure I'd end up leaving the Honda stuck in a ditch.  In the end it was good fun.  Local knowledge and a 4X4 with ground clearance strongly advised.
Wrong turn took me across the river twice!
A nice section of 'short cut'.  
A little sandy, but again a nice section... there was no way to film the sketch spots.

Salt flat.  All good if you stay on the track.

 Salt flats were a thin crust over some very very very slick mud.
 Signs like this one in the desert offered little help.
 Misson at San Juanico was a welcome sight after 110 miles of punishing off road travel.
 One moring I had pretty thick fog.
 Watch out for cows, donkeys and goats.
 One near blow out with a bulglng side wall.  However, I found a used tire that was an exact match for only 400 peso installed ~$28 is not too bad.   I wouldn't exactly call these Baja tires as they are very low profile, but it's a Craigslist car and well somehow I made it down and back the Baja on back roads.
 50 pesos or ~$4 to have my oil changed.  Labor only as I brought my own oil and filter.  Nice.
 Friendly folks at a taco stand that gave me directions to a tire shop and cooked up some tasty tacos for lunch.

 Mexico / USA border

On the way back I spent 5 days at my mom's house in Palm Desert which was really nice.

Finally back on the boat, I've been busy working on boat projects.  My list is getting pretty short, but the deck painting project is taking much longer than first envisioned.

Sunset from the beach near our boat in Alameda