Caleta San Lucas is a calm, pretty cove circled by a long, narrow finger of land from the north making an OK sign with the sandbar from the south. We’ve read that there’s a shipwreck near the mouth that’s become a reef for many fish.
I wake up before sunrise and peak out to see the sky lit up in a soft lavender glow. Fishermen with boats have parked next to us, getting their gear ready to go out. The water is super calm in this cove but the fishing must be outside, in the Sea of Cortez.
The bright sunny day begins with the hassle of doing last night’s dishes in the collapsible blue bucket. It’s not a fun thing when the dishes are greasy, there is no running water and the water you have is not hot enough to cut the grease. While I are doing this, Big Dog goes to take a shower.
“Wow, the hot water is really hot!” he announces. I wish the water for doing dishes was as hot, but pleased to hear about the shower. Plus the toilets are real flush toilets! And there’s a sink outside! Plus a water tap! Whoo hoo!
After dishes, I am finally ready to make coffee to go with the pastries we bought at El Boleo yesterday.
“How are they?” I ask Big Dog.
“Like every pastry from every panaderia?”
“I’m not holding my breath for the baguette.”
Three groups of campers are moving out today. One guy has a camper truck that pops up and folds out. Another has something that looks homemade. The good thing about truck campers is that they all have high clearance – perfect for Mexico, especially Baja. In the RV camp next door, there are many rigs but on our side of the chain link fence, it is now just us and the two big rigs parked oceanfront. They look like they are here for the season, with palapas done up with lights and hummingbird feeders.
“Royce” who collected your camping fee yesterday is in one of those big rigs. He tells us that there is decent WiFi at the “restaurant” in the park next door. The restaurant only operates on weekends but they keep the modem on all the time. I quickly do a small load of laundry, hanging it up on the rope I tie to the palapa posts, and then we walk along the beach to the restaurant with our laptops.
There are a lot of permanent-looking RVs here. The residents have put in little gardens, landscaped with shells, whale bones and turtle shells. Some have locked sheds. And there are, surprisingly, a few open beachfront spaces.
Although the signal is decent and we are able to check emails for the first time in days, there is no electricity at the restaurant and my laptop quickly goes down to 40% power but when we return to our site, Royce lets us recharge at their RV. They have solar, something that would have been very nice for us to have on this trip.
Lunch is ham and tomatoes on the El Boleo “baguette.” Tasty enough, but hardly a baguette. In fact, the “dorado” type bolillos you get on the mainland might be more baguette-y.
“It’s just like pan de sal in a different shape! The French bread I make at the ranch is more like French bread than this!”
Winds have picked up, nixing the idea of an afternoon kayak trip. Instead, we look at maps and info, watch birds and go on a long walk around the cove. The beach is crunchy with shells. There are lots of little pieces of driftwood and a few larger pieces. Birds are everywhere, especially the big pelicans and the very vocal seagulls whose cackle sounds like the laughter from those mechanical laughter devices.
There’s a house or two beyond the camp, then the military base. A soldier stops us and makes us turn around but it is all low-key and mellow.
Fishermen have brought in a huge haul and are still dealing with it. Royce tells us that it’s “sábado” a “garbage fish” that they grind up for dog food.
“Too many small bones,” he says. “They sell it for something like 4 pesos per kilo so they’re not making much.”
Hardly seems worth the effort. The fish look like mackerel, making me think it might be good as a shio-yaki, but if the Mexicans don’t eat it, maybe it really is bad.
Just about the time we get back to our rig, an enormous one pulls in. From a distance it looks like a big orange garbage truck. Now, close up, we can see that it is a “Unimog,” a MAN-like vehicle. The top pops up to become a huge house — like a big 2-storey house! Brad and his Russian wife, Oksana, are friends of Royce and his British wife, Susan, and so they have a get-together in the afternoon which we are also invited to join. Their neighbors, Joanne and Ken are also there and Joanne asks Oksana if she could see the inside of their rig. Everyone is curious and we all go to peek inside.
The kitchen area is not that spacious but they have a huge high ceilinged living room, with real stairs (not ladder) leading up to their sleeping loft. The place is as big, and as modern looking as a Tokyo apartment. And it’s on wheels!
Much later, the Giant Mercedes we crossed paths with at Whale Camp pulls in. It looked so big back then, but now it looks “normal” next to Big Orange. Poor Sprockets is as small as a flea.