Mexico Road Trip – Part 1 (Stranded in Guerrero Negro)
It’s time for a road trip! One of my best friends Carly is moving to Mexico, so we’re driving her belongings (and cat!) all the way down the Baja peninsula from Tiujana to Cabo San Lucas. We decided to make the trip in three nights/four days (about five hours driving time and 250 miles per day). Well, that did not go as planned….and what was supposed to be an easy three night trip, turned into eight. This adventure has certainly been a lesson in going with the flow, taking things as they come, and trying to make the best of each moment (which was a challenge).
DAY ONE: crossed the Mexican border. Pretty easy process considering we had a full car, visa entry requirements, a cat, and speak limited Spanish. We did get pulled aside for a full scan, but overall pretty easy. Drove a few hours along the coast (it was foggy!) and arrived in the town of San Quintin around mid day. I was surprised to see many grapevines along the way in the desert. I didn’t try any Mexican wine while here because the cerveza is too tempting! We stayed at the most adorable hotel called Hotel Jardines Baja. This is where we first heard about the developing storm, and started monitoring it. The storm was given the name Lidia, and it’s projected path was directly along our driving route headed in our direction.
DAY TWO: made the drive through the desert along Highway 1 to Guerrero Negro. Best part of this day was seeing wild horses and stopping at a taco stand! Everyone we’ve met along the way has been so kind, helpful, and friendly. Sunny skies so far…so we weren’t sure what to make of the storm.
DAY THREE: instead of driving to Loreto as planned (which is five hours South and closer to the storm), we decided to go just a little farther South to wait it out in San Ignacio. After a fun day exploring San Ignacio and realizing there wasn’t a single person around, we headed back to our room and learned the storm was more devastating than expected. We looked up photos of Cabo, researched road closures, and consulted with our hotel who advised us to leave and head back North (we were the only ones at the hotel). So we ended up rushing to repack and drive North again to Guerrero Negro. Turns out we were in a low area and had we stayed, would have been flooded in for days. Pics below are from San Ignacio while we were unaware of the seriousness headed our way.
DAY FOUR: Guerrero Negro. Most of this day I stayed in bed and felt sorry for myself. And drank cerveza. We did venture out for a little exercise and got soaked in the process. I’m sure we looked absolutely crazy to the people around town. In the radar map below, we are the blue dot!
DAY FIVE: Guerrro Negro. Again. This was our favorite day here though, since we met a couple of fellow stranded travelers who were heading out to explore the salt flats and lighthouse. By this time, the storm had passed and it was just a matter of waiting before the roads were repaired (Highway 1 had washed out in several places).
Below I’m standing in the salt flats. The ride out there was very hot, and not a single tree! We did about 20 miles, and also swam in the ocean near the lighthouse. Day was completed with ice cold coffee drinks and taco shop! The last photo below shows what happens when you’re starving, indecisive, and everything costs $1 🙂