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Talk about a trip you took out to Anza Borrego

Chubascos, Bees and Coyotes Messages in this topic - RSS

tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/16/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Not exactly The Park but kinda the same idea. My wife and I decided to head down to Baja last week for a break. Found a nice beach on GE we'd never visited and figured what the heck. Took about eight hours driving and arrived at the end of a 30 mile dirt road to this scene. Never would have guessed there would be five sailboats anchored off shore. Most of the sailors showed up on shore for a bonfire that night. There were retirees and two younger couples who had been sailing the Gulf for the past 1-2 years. Was a rather stark contrast to the standard rat race (guilty) and felt more than a twinge of envy regarding their circumstances. Before we left to set up camp, they mentioned Chubascos, bees and coyotes and we would find out exactly what they meant.

IMG_7065 by tomteske, on Flickr

The next morning, we awakened to a beepocalypse. Hundreds of bees swarmed the water container on the tailgate and any stray moisture that may have leaked during the trip. Being a bit rusty regarding bee mitigation strategies and no internet, I was unable to make any inroads before my wife crawled out the tent and was promptly stung (ended up being three times total). With a concerted effort to relocate all our water jugs away from camp, immediately bury any spilled liquids and judicious use of DEET, we were able to make some inroads but our camp coordinates were firmly imprinted on too many bees to not have an ongoing problem. The pics don't capture even a slight percentage of the swarm.

IMG_7075 by tomteske, on Flickr

IMG_7072 by tomteske, on Flickr

We were able to improve the mood a bit with a few beverages and a dip in the 85 degree water. My wife is trying to finish some continuing education requirements.

IMG_7080 by tomteske, on Flickr

Definitely were coyotes all over the beach which is rather common down there. Did notice both my water jugs got chewed up quite a bit.

IMG_7070 by tomteske, on Flickr

Low Tide Coyotes by tomteske, on Flickr

Lone Coyote by tomteske, on Flickr

IMG_7118 by tomteske, on Flickr

Oh yeah, the Chubascos. The first night there was lots of lightening to the south and some wind but nothing major. The third night we awakened to strong gusts but regrettably delayed securing camp till things got dramatic. By the time we got serious, our "well secured" staked and guylined awning was flailing in the wind and bashing the truck. Fortunately, there was no significant damage. While blasted by blowing sand, we furiously threw every loose item into the truck bed, collapsed the roof top tent and jumped into the truck for the subsequent hour long deluge. By the next morning, the wife was pretty much over our relaxing stay on a deserted beach and we broke camp. The place is obviously quite beautiful but just not ideal in mid-September. Was also a speck on the warm side...

IMG_7071 by tomteske, on Flickr

Playa by tomteske, on Flickr

Camp by tomteske, on Flickr

Pelican by tomteske, on Flickr

Bird by tomteske, on Flickr

Beach Gull by tomteske, on Flickr

Leaving camp.

IMG_7092 by tomteske, on Flickr

On the way out, spotted what I think were a ewe and lamb. They were rather shy.

BHS Pair by tomteske, on Flickr

Bighorn Sheep Pair by tomteske, on Flickr

Lots of elephant trees.

IMG_7097 by tomteske, on Flickr

Few other critters.

Raptor by tomteske, on Flickr

Horned Toad by tomteske, on Flickr

Almost back to pavement. Was a very memorable trip with a "few" hiccups( forgot to mention the truck battery dying running the wife's shower setup---was able to luckily get it started using a Li battery jump start. Yeah, that was a rookie mistake) Definitely will be back. Enjoy! Tom

IMG_7099 by tomteske, on Flickr
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Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 448


9/17/2021
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 448
Fantastic! Now that is a trip! It's so ironic to have that much beautiful water and not be able to drink it. I imagine there are no fresh water sources for many many miles?
edited by Rocko1 on 9/17/2021
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Brian
Brian
Posts: 98


9/17/2021
Brian
Brian
Posts: 98
I remember when the beach at Cabo looked like that and I remember thinking "it won't be like this for long."

Nice rig!
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Britain
Britain
Posts: 519


9/17/2021
Britain
Britain
Posts: 519
Thanks for sharing. Love the Baja. I like taking the dirt roads south at the Rumerosa. Lots of good camping hiking areas. Head on down to Mikes Sky ranch and then either go down the pacific side or the gulf side. Travel Baja use to sell gps maps. I have an older version but at that time it did a good job showing dirt roads and places to get gas.

--
Cant drive 55
Britain
http://icorva.com
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Buford
Buford
Posts: 370


9/17/2021
Buford
Buford
Posts: 370
Nice trip report. The only thing missing for a full Baja beach experience is noseeums.
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/17/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Rocko1 wrote:
Fantastic! Now that is a trip! It's so ironic to have that much beautiful water and not be able to drink it. I imagine there are no fresh water sources for many many miles?
edited by Rocko1 on 9/17/2021

Other than the back of my pickup? Probably not smile
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/17/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Brian wrote:
I remember when the beach at Cabo looked like that and I remember thinking "it won't be like this for long."

Nice rig!

Did a number of trips to Baja in the late 70s and early 80s and when I first returned in 2011 I couldn't believe how all the pristine beaches were covered with houses or fenced in with a guy wanting $5 for the day. The one exception was Bahia de Las Animas south of LA Bay and maybe the beach we just stayed at. Both, a little off the beaten path.
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/17/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Britain wrote:
Thanks for sharing. Love the Baja. I like taking the dirt roads south at the Rumerosa. Lots of good camping hiking areas. Head on down to Mikes Sky ranch and then either go down the pacific side or the gulf side. Travel Baja use to sell gps maps. I have an older version but at that time it did a good job showing dirt roads and places to get gas.

The classic Baja California Almanac and Nat Geo maps are pretty dated but there's a new Baja atlas here: https://smile.amazon.com/Baja-California-Recreation-Atlas-Benchmark/dp/1734315059/ref=sr_1_3?crid=3GBS8PJRUUJ3P&dchild=1&keywords=baja+california+atlas+2021&qid=1631936640&sprefix=baja+california+atlas%2Caps%2C210&sr=8-3

There's an app called Map E32 with a decent topos of Baja but in order to be useful you have to get the pro edition for $60 and then download tiles for wherever you're going. Mexico has great free topos of all of Baja but the only place I could find them stitched together was surprisingly caltopo.com---for free.

Need to check out the roads south of La Rumorosa.
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/17/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Buford wrote:
Nice trip report. The only thing missing for a full Baja beach experience is noseeums.

Buford, you're a truly experienced Baja Traveler! My wife took a nap on the beach and got obliterated by noseeums or sand fleas or whatever they are. We were searching farmacias on the way back for creams etc. Read her your post and she started laughing.
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Buford
Buford
Posts: 370


9/17/2021
Buford
Buford
Posts: 370
tommy750 wrote:
Buford wrote:
Nice trip report. The only thing missing for a full Baja beach experience is noseeums.

Buford, you're a truly experienced Baja Traveler! My wife took a nap on the beach and got obliterated by noseeums or sand fleas or whatever they are. We were searching farmacias on the way back for creams etc. Read her your post and she started laughing.



Guilty. Sorry you guys found noseeums. They are far worse than mosquitos. I found out about noseeums the same way your wife did.

The sea of Cortez is not so tranquil when the chubascos hit in the summer or the northerlies come down in the winter/spring. Hay mucho viento.

Haven’t been for the last couple years and never was lucky enough to see BHS. I miss going with all the crazy experiences and sights, thanks for sharing the report.
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ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890


9/18/2021
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890
Great trip report Tommy. Love the coyote tracks, and even the coyotes! Spent a lot of time in 1997 in the northern Gulf on research vessels, surveying for the elusive vaquita porpoise. Saw a few too. The sheep know where the tinajas are...

--
http://www.coyotelearning.org
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/19/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
ziphius wrote:
Great trip report Tommy. Love the coyote tracks, and even the coyotes! Spent a lot of time in 1997 in the northern Gulf on research vessels, surveying for the elusive vaquita porpoise. Saw a few too. The sheep know where the tinajas are...

So, you were involved in the first survey of the vaquitas in 1997? Are there any still alive?? Outlook seems quite desperate.
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ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890


9/19/2021
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890
Tommy, yes I was an observer on the 1997 survey. I think estimated population size that year was ~ 500 vaquita. A 2016 survey resulted in an estimate of around thirty vaquita. Colleagues have been back since and have seen live animals, but it's likely there are fewer today.

--
http://www.coyotelearning.org
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dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2518


9/21/2021
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2518
Nice TR tommy750..!!

I like the pics, good eye spotting the BHS....Thumbs Up

--
http://www.sefcik.com
http://www.darensefcik.com
http://www.carrizogorge.com
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tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 289


9/21/2021
tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 289
What a wild trip! Assaulted by all kinds of wild life on the beach. Love the truck BTW. It looks loaded and ready for anything.
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Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 448


9/21/2021
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 448
Any worry of pirates down there?
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/21/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
tekewin wrote:
What a wild trip! Assaulted by all kinds of wild life on the beach. Love the truck BTW. It looks loaded and ready for anything.

Took a stock Tundra and added KO2s, rock sliders, gas tank skid plate, a low bed rack for the lightweight RTT that's nearly below the roofline and a lightweight awning with adjustable height to keep it low while driving. No lifts, no racks on the cab or heavy stuff up high---all that makes me nervous driving on winding narrow roads. Saw lots of top heaving vehicles that looked roll over ready.
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rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 600


9/21/2021
rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 600
Neat Baja trip. Is that Isla angel de la Guardia in the back ground on pic 1 ? Reminds me of trips down to Bay of LA and Mulege'. Never had the bee problem. It's been years. brings back great memories of Baja. Baja is longer than the boot of Italy!
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/22/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
rockhopper wrote:
Neat Baja trip. Is that Isla angel de la Guardia in the back ground on pic 1 ? Reminds me of trips down to Bay of LA and Mulege'. Never had the bee problem. It's been years. brings back great memories of Baja. Baja is longer than the boot of Italy!


Believe you're correct. Had a hard time figuring what islands were offshore till the stars came out and I realized my orientation was way off. The sky was so dark you could actually see Andromeda with the naked eye.
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/22/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
Rocko1 wrote:
Any worry of pirates down there?

Was thinking of the Gulf of Mexico where there's lots of piracy but just saw this: https://maritime-executive.com/article/sea-shepherd-vessel-attacked-again-in-gulf-of-california
Kinda disappointing. Ziphius, you have any info on these attacks?
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/22/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
dsefcik wrote:
Nice TR tommy750..!!

I like the pics, good eye spotting the BHS....Thumbs Up

Daren, if you ever find any free time in your extremely busy schedule, let me know and let's plan on a Baja adventure!
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ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890


9/23/2021
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 890
tommy750 wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Any worry of pirates down there?

Was thinking of the Gulf of Mexico where there's lots of piracy but just saw this: https://maritime-executive.com/article/sea-shepherd-vessel-attacked-again-in-gulf-of-california
Kinda disappointing. Ziphius, you have any info on these attacks?


There's a lot of economic incentive to keep fishing, no matter what the consequences are for vaquita. So conservation groups being targeted is not a surprise. This article tells more of the story: https://qz.com/468358/how-chinas-fish-bladder-investment-craze-is-wiping-out-species-on-the-other-side-of-the-planet/

--
http://www.coyotelearning.org
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984


9/24/2021
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 984
ziphius wrote:
tommy750 wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Any worry of pirates down there?

Was thinking of the Gulf of Mexico where there's lots of piracy but just saw this: https://maritime-executive.com/article/sea-shepherd-vessel-attacked-again-in-gulf-of-california
Kinda disappointing. Ziphius, you have any info on these attacks?


There's a lot of economic incentive to keep fishing, no matter what the consequences are for vaquita. So conservation groups being targeted is not a surprise. This article tells more of the story: https://qz.com/468358/how-chinas-fish-bladder-investment-craze-is-wiping-out-species-on-the-other-side-of-the-planet/

Interesting read. Thanks, Ziphius. When my wife and I were down in Baja in 2016 ( http://www.anzaborrego.net/anzaborrego/forum/topic1228-bahia-de-los-angeles-road-trip.aspx ), we encountered a couple fishermen who were harvesting the Blue Spotted Jawfish ( https://www.nationalgeographic.org/projects/photo-ark/animal/opistognathus-rosenblatti/ ). This trip, we saw multiple pangas near shore with diving hookah setups and presumably harvesting the same fish from their colonies on sandy bottoms. The two fishermen we met last trip stated they got $2.50 each and the price now on aquarium sites is around $200 each. Fortunately, they don't seen to be endangered---yet.
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