Southwest Investigation Tour 2019 Part “Dos” including México, California and Nevada (Delayed Publis
Now where were we? Ah yes…
Southwest Investigation Tour 2019 Part “Dos” found us driving from San Diego to the border crossing towns of Mexicali/Calexico.
A decision to “brave” the media promoted risks of driving in Mexico created a need to be aware that special insurance is recommended, our US policy would not cover us. A call to our insurance company gave us a referral to someone they work with. Coverage is for the number of days you plan to be in Mexico. The cost is affordable, our policy was just over $100. Well worth the peace of mind. Grab that proof of insurance and your passport and you’re all set to enter Mexico. (We actually did not ever get asked for proof of insurance and did not get asked for ID/passport until re-entry to the good ol’ USA.)
Driving Interstate 8 from San Diego we crossed the Tecate Divide at 4000 ft+ above sea level and then dropped back to the barren desert floor. Our first in vehicle border crossing was smooth and easy, comfortable in all regards. We were not stopped or questioned as we exited the US and made our way into the Baja. We found roadways in good condition and traveled on without incident to San Felipe which lies at the top of the Gulf of California/Sea of Cortez.
I noted the translucent colors of the seashore connected to the desert as it provided a pastel palette that is very pleasing to the senses in San Felipe. Las Palmas Hotel provided a bird’s eye view of the sea from its pristine desert landscaped grounds and comfortable pool area adjacent to the bar and restaurant. The rooms were modest but clean and we were within decent walking distance to the Malecón.
Driving south out of the small town of about 25,000 full time residents we checked out the rural airport which at this time does not have commercial flights. We visited Valle de los Gigantes which was just a short distance further. There was a park fee to get in and a sandy trail that led us to the land of the giants. Breathtaking and serene, some of these beauties age to 300 years. On the drive back to San Felipe we dropped down to the beach line to muse at the home and resort developments appearing to simply be abandoned that dotted the coastline between occupied areas.
Mexican food is one of our favorites and this little seaside town does it right especially with a focus on shrimp which is harvested from the sea adjacent to it’s many eateries. Taco Factory was hands down our favorite with excellent service, low prices, tasty fare, sports on the televisions and good music on the sound system. They served one of the best Shrimp Cocktails ever with a whopping 18 medium shrimp. El Kikiriki did chicken just right with the lowest pricing we saw.
San Felipe has a slot casino with sports book and many tourist goods type shops. If you are a deep sea fishing fiend or you love to off-road, this is a great spot for you to visit!
…This is where I pick up the story, which I started writing in May and am now getting back to in late October. My style may be a bit rusty but let’s do this!
Memories of San Felipe are a bit idyllic for me. The muted colors where desert and ocean meet flood my minds eye and soothe me. I enjoyed thrift store and pottery shopping to legitimize this “working” Spring Fling road trip into Mexico experience. As I write this now, in late October, I find myself falling back to old lessons about watching the local newspaper in an area where you enjoy or expect to travel. Staying well informed about anything that may impact a visit is key to personal safety. Check out this bit of news that seems to be hushed in the media but would definitely have me taking pause if our fall travel was taking us to Mexico. https://medium.com/navigating-life/what-the-fuck-just-happened-in-mexico-b98eff2b340c
But I digress, we left Mexico nearly as easily as we went in. The line was long but we expected it. If I recall correctly it took just over a couple hours. It was nothing we didn’t expect. We showed our passports once at the exit gate and that was it. Back into Cali.
We stopped over in San Diego again and had the pleasure of meeting up with our son and fam who were on a spring break trip. We spent the day with them poolside and I rode electric scooters with my grandson and had dinner in Little Italy. The following day we jumped up to LA to surprise our other grandsons at a Dodgers game. They were with their parents 😉 who had just surprised then with a trip to Disneyland for spring break. They started by seeing an A’s game, which had been the disguise behind all the surprise. The look on their faces as they made their way to the seats where we were already waiting was priceless. It was like they were lost in “what the heck?” We laughed so hard and played baseball in the parking lot of Chavez Ravine after the game. We are so fortunate to be able to enjoy such truly quality time with our peeps!
Small town Nevada thrift and yard sale shopping occupied us on the road home to Idaho where we arrived with a truck full of bounty for the shop at 204 Main. BoCo Collectibles 2019 was set to open as soon as we could get moved in. Read on to the next post to catch up with how our summer was spent!