Winter in Baja Day 72: We must be allergic to pavement

San Ignacio -> Rancho Escondido //

San Ignacio has been an absolute delight.  This year it has grown to become one of my favorite towns in all of Baja.  While we’ve decided to pack up and continue north this morning, I already look forward to our next visit.

An hour long drive on Highway 1 takes us to a town whose name I’ll never remember (After consulting the map I can tell you it’s Villa Alberto Andre´s Alvarado Ara´mburo, try saying that 3 times fast.)  We resupply with water and groceries and satiate our hunger with some excellent fish tacos at a taco stand with a much easier name…Baja Fish Taco.  

A short half hour on pavement took us to our next dirt road of choice.  A route that weaves 130 miles through the desert and would eventually land us in Bahia de los Angeles.  Though we intended to spend several days getting there.  If our goal was to get to the border in a timely fashion, this would most definitely not be the way.  However, I would say our goal is to get to the border leisurely and creatively and this road perfectly fit the criteria.  

The first few miles of washboard had us feeling like we were being aggressively shaken inside of a tin can.  But after we passed the mining establishment of El Arco the road narrowed and softened as it led us in to a magnificent desert filled with my favorite Baja flora…gigantic cardons, blooming ocotillo, and whimsical boojum trees.  

To solidify the feeling that we were driving through the movie set of an old western, we arrived at our destination, a ranch in the middle of nowhere that welcomed campers but looked more ready for a cast of actors.  Our host Oscar welcomed us with great enthusiasm and very little English.  We spent the afternoon walking around his beautiful property meeting his dogs, goats, chickens, and cows.  I immediately felt right at home. I absolutely love the way Mexicans have created these amazing and welcoming destinations for us travelers out here in the middle of nowhere.

While slowly traversing our way through the desert today I got to thinking about why we travel in such a slow, meandering, and indirect fashion.  Most of the time we don’t even know where we’re headed.  On paper it would be so much easier to choose a destination and the easiest route and go straight there.  But we’ve found over the years that the slower you move, the more you see.  And the less you plan, the more you open up the doors of possibility to endless unexpected delights.  It is, without question, my favorite way to see the world. 

Photos taken with the Canon R6.

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  • Wow! Rancho Escondido looks like a great stay. It appears you got to enjoy the full moon while you were there. Nice place. Fun way to travel too. Back roads are sometimes such a surprise. Safe travels!

  • Your Rancho beautiful! How fun. How do you find these fantastic places? Glad you both are ok and happy. Love, mom and dad

By michele


We’re Mark & Michele, modern-day nomads perfecting the art of slow, full-time travel.  Our tiny home on wheels and slow-paced travel style allows us to minimize our expenses while maximizing our freedom.  May our unconventional way of life inspire you to design a life that you love.


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