Travel Journal

Baja California - December 28 - 31

(Friday 11 January 2008) by Karin
Friday - beach day with a short hike over the hill in the afternoon.
Evenings are spent talking quietly around the fire, looking at the Milky Way, watching the sky for shooting stars and satellites, and roasting marshmallows. In this clear, dry desert the brightness of the stars creates a sparkling ceiling. Moments to savor.
On Saturday we record only 11 degrees Celsius in the morning.
As seawater and sand are not doing much good to my hair a wash really isn't a luxury so I braved the cold water. Fortunately, Harald heated some fresh water for the rinse. Enjoyed the delight of pouring it slowly over my head. Clean hair... marvelous.
Windy day so another trip to Mulege in the afternoon to stroll around, some more souvenir shopping and a ride along the river.
On Sunday we go for a scenic desert drive to Rancho La Trinidad, situated at the foot of the mountains approximately 29 km west of Mulege, to see some cave paintings. The ride inland showed me totally different sceneries again. An unspoiled wilderness of mountain and cactus. On arrival we hiked about 800 m to a four meter stone dam, which you must climb to enter Canyon La Trinidad. Once inside the mouth of the canyon you reach a large group of murals. Among the many red and black animal representations on the canyon walls is a large deer silhouette, considered one of the best prehistoric deer paintings in Baja. Among human representations in this group is a shamanistic figure sometimes referred to as "cardon man," though there's no real evidence to suggest the image is linked to local legends about cardon cacti coming to life at night. Arrows pierce the figure's neck, chest, and groin.
The canyon scenery is spectacular. The desert keeps surprising me.
Temperatures are going up on Monday and we are going to discover the other side of the peninsula. Some parts of the desert beyond the beach are barren. Just a few tall cactus and thorny bushes break the distant mountain skyline. In other parts, cactus dominate the coastal shrub and the adjacent desert with the 'don't mess with me' spinal symmetry of a sea urchin or a porcupine.
Laila and I collected beautiful seashells on the beach. Harald collected firewood. Last night of the year is spent around the fire and running and circling the beach with Laila and some glowsticks. The night sky was as magical as ever.


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