BAJA, A Truck Camper Paradise
by Dan & Lisa Goy
BAJA, A Truck Camper Paradise
Editor's Note This story was submitted on our What Is Your Favorite RVing Or Camping Destination Page
We have been traveling and camping in Mexico, including Baja since 1985 and everywhere we go we always see Truck Campers. More recently we have had some folks travel in our Baja Caravan Tour with Truck Campers. One could say Baja was built for Truck campers! Although we have seen every size of RV on Baja imaginable; from Mercedes Unimog, a VW Westfalia, a 38’ triple axel 5th wheel or a 45’ Prevost Motorhome, nothing is better suited to travel both the well traveled routes and more remote destinations on Baja then a truck & camper.
What many folks do not realize about the two (2) Mexican States, Baja California (north) and Baja California Sur (south), is just how vast Baja is and how few people actually inhabit this magnificent peninsula. Did you know Baja at 1300 km/800 miles, is longer than the state of California in the United States.
Baja is still referred to as Mexico’s frontier and the main highway, Mex 1 (officially named the Benito Juarez Highway) was only completed in 1973, prior to that 4 wheel drive and lots of supplies & time were mandatory to make the trip to Cabo San Lucas by vehicle. Whereas California, the American State, has a population of over 38 million, Baja California(s) has only 3.5 million people. Given that the majority of people that live in Baja California reside in Ensenada, Rosarito, Tecate, Tijuana and Mexicali, approximately three (3) million people. And about 450,000 populate La Paz, Todos Santos, Los Barriles, San Jose Del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas in Southern Baja, this means everything in between is remains sparsely populated and twice as much coastline as the northern US sister state. The reality of few people, barren beautiful beaches, stunning vistas and inexpensive fuel makes it a dream destination for RVers.
Although Mex 1 has improved immensely since 1973, much of the road remains narrow and without shoulders deterring many with larger RVs from making this a Snowbird haven. As always there are exceptions, Hwy 19 between La Paz and Cabo San Lucas has become a 4 Lane freeway with large shoulders (should be finished this year), Toll Roads are available for both Mex 1 from TJ to Ensenada Mex 2 from TJ to Mexicali and most recently almost all of Hwy 19 from Tecate to Ensenada has been rebuilt and extensively widened with including some four (4) lane sections.
There are many fantastic camping locations on Baja for Rvers, traveling in a Truck Camper provide many more excellent destinations, particularly those with 4 wheel drive. Here are a few of those special spots:
• Campo #5 just south of Ensenda overlooks the Pacific ocean only minutes from very popular La Bufadora (blow hole). The view is nothing short of spectacular as you are hundreds of feet up on a ridge, easy to get too but size is everything, smaller is definitely better.
• Both Laguna Hanson Mike’s Sky Rancho can be reached off Hwy 3 west from Ensenada to San Felipe. Laguna Hanson provides vey basic camping within the Parque Nacional Constitucion 1857, where you will be up in the mountains, surrounded by
pines, birds and sometimes snow. Mike’s Sky Rancho is very popular with many amenities hot showers, a restaurant and bar, and a pool. Your Truck Camper will be a good fit here!
• Take the turnoff to Playa La Gringa, Bahia De Los Angeles at the junction off Mex 1. The first 45 miles/72 km is a dream, all paved, 2 lanes with some shoulder. The last 11 km/7 miles requires a slow go and can be quite rough, most larger RVs do not make the journey. We fell in love with Baja and Mexico in Bahia De Los Angeles, we are confident your experience will be similar. While Lisa sleeps cannot resist the draw of sunrise, nothing short of spectacular.
• Ojo De Liebre Lagoon Campground is just south of Guerrero Negro (KM 207) and a magical place to stay overnight and watch whales the next day. Only accessible during whale watching season (January-April), you drive across the salt flats to the edge of the lagoon where you can camp for a small fee. You can book your whale watching and listen to the whales at night, keep an eye on your pets, lots of coyotes.
• At Km 63 south of Loreto is the road to Bahia Aqua Verde, where Mexico 1 veers inland from the Cortez coast, a part-graded, part-ungraded, gravel-and-dirt road heads southeast for 41 kms/26 miles to the fish camp of Agua Verde. The roadbed is steep and winding in places, not at all suitable for trailers or motor homes but a great place to take a truck camper.
• In 1985 with our 1st Class C Van we camped at Punta Conejo on the Pacific coast south of Ciudad Constitucion, 80 km north of La Paz. Our children were 2 & 4 years old and we stayed right on the beach, this was a wonderful experience. Lots of surfers to watch and good fresh seafood available. Although this is quite isolated it is good unpaved road with decent clearance, easily reached with a 2 wheel truck camper. Fees are low, sunsets stunning. Punta Conejo is very popular with TruckCamper RVers. Some of the better sites across the arroyo require 4 wheel drive.
This is only the tip of the Baja Iceberg for great places to stay with a TruckCamper. Jack Williams, author of The Comprehensive Guidebook to Mexico’s Baja California
stated “Baja California is a unique recreational Paradise-in-the Sun dominated by its 2,000 mile coastline. It pampers the jet set in its cities, hotels and resorts, without the high-rise, high-tension setting common in other resort areas. Those craving outdoor adventures find a largely undeveloped, beautiful land where escape to another environment and culture is only a step away. Few visit Baja without knowing they have been in a very special place, truly a magnificent peninsula.”
We could not have said it better ourselves.
Submitted by Dan & Lisa Goy
For more information on these Mexico Tours visit the Baja Amigos RV Caravan Tours Inc website
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