11. Bahia de Los Angeles, Mexico - Palapas and Pelicans

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February 7, 2007

Campo Archelon, in Bahia de Los Angeles, has basic, open-walled palapas that are metres from the beach and that can be used for sleeping, cooking and relaxing in.

Much to Adrienne's consternation, we shared ours with a nest of red-back spiders.

Bahia de Los Angeles (pop. 500 or so), is on the east coast/Sea of Cortez, about half way down the Baja.

The long drive on Highways 1 and 12 from San Quintan to Bahia de Los Angeles took us through the amazing desert topography - really a "melange" of boulders and cacti.

This was especially near the desert outpost Catavina, that as far as we could tell consists only of a fairly nice Desert Inn Hotel (formerly La Pinta Hotel), a few mom and pop convenience stores and a guy who sells gasoline out of a barrel.

The only thing missing was a lone bramble blowing down the dusty street and some western-movie style whistling in the background.

The highway also was a graveyard for a constant trail of dead and decaying animals (dogs, cows, etc.) alongside the highway. (Seeing dead and rotting animals on the road was something we never got used to on the trip).

We spent four blissful nights in Bahia de Los Angeles camping on the beach at Campo Archelon, lulled into inaction watching the pelicans, dolphins, etc., by the hot days, by the cold beer and by Adrienne´s cooking (she has mastered cheese quesadillas on the Coleman stove - she is going to make someone a good wife one day!).

The temperature was hot during the days but we still wore our toques at night. Campfires on the beach at night are allowed, although the desert conditions mean that firewood is virtually impossible to scavenge.

Antonio Resendiz who, along with his wife Bety, owns Campo Archelon is a former Mexican government biologist and has been very involved with sea turtle conservation initiatives in the area for decades. We tagged along with him and his brother, Rafael, to the local elementary school one day to watch them give an inpsiring presentation to the kids about protecting the environment.

Key Facts & Figures:

-Campo Archelon: $10/night