CROSSING THE BORDER

The time had finally come to cross into Mexico. We'd slowly made our way south from Ojai after the wedding, camping along the coast, until we stayed with family in Oceanside for a few days. We used our time there to finalize our plans to cross into Mexico: stocking up on supplies, figuring out our route, and getting our paperwork in order, including car insurance and tourist cards (we went to Discover Baja to get this stuff taken care of ahead of time rather than figuring it out at the border). We stayed at the KOA in San Diego the night before crossing, so we could relax and get an early start.

The next day we fueled up and drove to the San Ysidro crossing, where we thankfully had notes for which building to stop at to get our tourist cards stamped and get some pesos from the ATM inside. Afterwords, we continued on with the rest of the traffic, where we got flagged to pull over for a search. After seeing how much stuff we had loaded inside, the border agent guided us to park under a large drive-through looking machine off in a separate area. A little confused, we got out and waited while they x-rayed it (our best guess), asked us some questions, and let us go on our way. We hopped on the toll road to head down the coast from Tijuana to Ensenada.

After stopping to camp just south of Ensenada near Punta Banda, we were surprised to find our dual battery monitor showing that our aux battery was almost drained. After some searching (and worrying), it turned out that it was just a couple loose connections.

SOUTH TO SAN QUINTÍN

After a successful first day, we continued south. The wide toll road and built up coastline from the previous day changed drastically as we continued south on the 1 through much smaller towns. We made our way to a campground just outside San Quintín called Los Olivos, but not before stopping for a late lunch of lobster burritos and beer at the Old Mill overlooking the water nearby.

ONWARD TO CATAVIÑA

After spending a rainy and windy night at Los Olivos, we packed up and headed south to El Rosario where the 1 turns east to cross the peninsula for the first time. We stopped for lunch and groceries before continuing into the desert towards Cataviña, where we set up camp for the night.

There are subtle and not-so-subtle reminders that these roads aren't exactly the safest. Most of the time there are no shoulders, potholes, narrow lanes, blind curves, and oncoming 18-wheelers taking up more than half the road. Throw in some random unmarked 'topes' and it's definitely making sense to us that everyone's first piece of advice is: don't drive at night!

THE SEA OF CORTEZ

We took off in the morning the next day to continue east, where we took the turnoff towards Bahía de los Ángeles. We quickly realized that our decision to skip the long line for the ATM in San Quintín was a big mistake, as there wouldn't be any way to get cash out until Guerrero Negro. With the last of our dollars and pesos, we were able to fill 3/4 of our tank and pay for a couple nights of camping at Bahía de los Ángeles.

This couple pulled in after fishing all morning and generously gave us some of their halibut, which we later turned into some of the best fish tacos we've had.


CAMPING

Centro Recretivo Mi Refugio, $100 MXN
[31.69833, -116.63500]

Los Olivos, $150 MXN
[30.48883, -115.93913]
*Nice Showers

Rancho Santa Inez, $100 MXN
[29.7293, -114.6968]

Daggett's Campground, $160 MXN
[28.97581, -113.54691]

MEALS OF NOTE

The Old Mill, $$
Lobster Burrito!!!
[30.48507, -115.97723]

Mamá Espinoza Restaurante, $$$
[30.0588, -115.72521]