Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Repairs in Bahia Concepcion, Surfing Trip to Scorpion Bay/San Juanico

State-of-the-art weather station predicted good weather for our trip. Read on...

This year our annual trip to visit the McGuires in Bahia Concepcion was by land, not by sea. After assessing some of the damage to their property (courtesy of Hurricane Odile) Mike sent us a shopping list and Tom and I headed off to the La Paz Home Depot to pick up items such as outdoor lights, ceiling fans, bags of dry-wall repair, buckets of stucco repair, and much, much more. It was quite an experience to try to find the correct materials when reading directions in a foreign language! My eye gets a nervous tic just thinking about it. Luckily, our relationship survived the shopping trip (barely), we loaded up the tundra with the materials and the next day (March 24) drove north to Bahia Concepcion.

We arrived about an hour after dark, and were soon comfortably at rest in the private Casita of Casa de los Suenos. It felt very odd to be perched high up in the Casita and not have Cinnabar anchored below as part of the view.

What's missing from this picture? No red boat!!

Luckily, the Casita seemed untouched by the hurricane. The only drama was one night a huge centipede tried to eat my arm, but luckily Tom managed to squash it after a high speed chase through the Casita. Did you know that centipedes can run up to 16" per second?

Picture from "What's That Bug?", but my centipede looked JUST LIKE this one, same size, but a pretty green color.

The next few days were spent enjoying the area, snorkeling (me), and helping out with repairs (Tom). 

Tom and Mike doing one of the numerous light/fan repairs.

The annual surfing trip to Scorpion Bay was on the agenda, so after a few days of Home Improvement, we loaded up our two trucks, Tom and I in one, and the McGuires (including cousin Preston and friend Mackenzie) in another, and set off across the Baja for the Pacific side.

Preston, Mac and Savanah make breakfast for us before the trip.

There were many spots along the highway, including entire bridges, that had been washed out by hurricane Odile. Most of the sinkholes were marked merely by white rocks, dead cacti, or other debris, so we had to drive carefully to avoid the treacherous areas. 

Random rocks and stuff = Warning! Sink hole or road washed out!

This entire bridge was destroyed by the hurricane and flooding.

We missed our turnoff, and ended up on an hour or so detour across the Baja outback.  Stephanie and I were skeptical that we would ever make it to our destination, and wondered if we would be camping outdoors or taking shelter in a goat farm...

These goats were the only traffic we saw on our off-road adventure.

...but we eventually popped out at the highway and soon found our campsite at Scorpion Bay/San Juanico.

We made it! Maybe we'll survive after all.

The campsite overlooked the entire Scorpion Bay and the view was stunning...

Sunrise over Scorpion Bay

...but one night in the mosquito-infested palapa was more than enough for me, and I moved myself back into the Tundra so I could get some decent nights' sleeps.

Go ahead...ask Stephanie and me what we think about palapa living.

The first day everyone grabbed their boards and headed down to enjoy some of the some of the best surfing in the world, while Stephanie and I enjoyed some relaxing "alone" time reading and walking along the bluff. Scorpion Bay has something like six different surfing spots, ranging from long beginner waves to very advanced waves out around the point.

The kids head for the most excellent surf break. (photo M. McGuire)

The town of San Juanico is all about surfing, but they do have a couple of stores and restaurants. We ate at El Burro restaurant a couple of times.

Mesa para uno, por favor?? (photo M. McGuire)

Mac just turned 18 and is old enough to drink in MX! Just kidding, give our drinks back girls.

...And had the best fresh halibut tacos ever at Christy's Tacos and Burgers.

Christy rules her kitchen with a wicked spatula.

We had heard that Bobby and Denise Davidson might join us, and sure enough, our second day there we spied the familiar Vanagon driving into the camping area. These road warriors had just completed a 3-day marathon trip from Santa Cruz California to join us! 

The Davidsons and their intrepid Vanagon. 

Tom and Bobby were happy to be back on such world-class waves, and Mackenzie, Savanah and Preston were soon surfing like champs. The waves at Scorpion Bay were so amazingly easy, and the water so warm, that even I gave surfing a shot. 

It kinda looks like I'm about to catch this wave with expert surfer BobbyD. Looks can be deceiving, LOL!! (photo M. McGuire)

I got as far as surfing on my knees and never actually made it up, but I still had a great time. 

Tom and BobbyD after a great session.

We had arrived just before Semana Santa, the Easter holy week, which is the traditional time for families to camp at the beaches for a week of celebration. While we were there the long beach became absolutely packed with families that had set up large compounds with tents, fire pits, outdoor showers, and a stage for entertainment. 

Public beach PACKED with families.

Families enjoying the water.

The McGuires had to get Mackenzie back to Mulege for her flight home to the SF Bay Area, and Kelston would soon be arriving from Colorado so, much to Stephanie's dismay (NOT!) the McGuires left us and only the Vanagon and the Tundra remained. 

After BobbyD and Denise had made the long trip down to Baja no way were Tom and I going to leave so quickly, so we spent another glorious 2 days surfing, enjoying the local color, and meeting other surf vagabonds.

All happy after the guys enjoy their last day of surfing.

Denise and the hunks.

Denise tries to remove all the nasty stickers from their rug.

These little buggers (aka goat heads, devil's weed, puncture vine) got everywhere!!

When it was time for BobbyD and Denise to continue their road trip to Arizona, we followed them along the washed out roads all the way to Ciudad Insurgentes...

We follow the Vanagon to Insurgentes.

...and then we went our separate ways. They headed back up the Baja and Tom and I continued our return to La Paz.

We had heard about a little town on Bahia Magdalena famous for its whale watching, so we turned off the highway to Lopez de Mateos to check it out. 

The whales had pretty much gone for the season, but the town was busy with fishing and we enjoyed a tailgate lunch on the beach.

We arrived back in La Paz before sunset...

Cows on the freeway? Yep, we're back in La Paz.

...tired from our adventure, but happy to have spent an exceedingly fun time with great friends.

Now we just had to rest up and get ready for meeting Tom's cousins in Cabo, the arrival of my friend Dina, and our trip to Antigua for Classic Race Week. More on that soon!

Album: Bahia Concepcion and Scorpion Bay

Once again our beloved Tundra gets it done.


  1. Hi tom & Sylvia,
    I'm missing our "down time" in San Juanico. Maybe I'll cogitate on that for awhile!
    Miss you!
    Denise & Bobby

  2. I miss my cogitatin' pal! Hope to see you back in the states this summer.

  3. Great photo's and descriptions of the activities.