On the next leg of our trip we headed back to the Pacific coast, crossing the 28th parallel – the border that separates Baja California north and south. Because we wanted to do some whale watching, we decided to stay south of Guerrero Negro along Scammon’s Lagoon at Ojo de Liebre National Park. To get here we had to drive about 15 miles through a salt flats working area. Camping costs 100 pesos a night or about $5. There are no hookups but there are hot showers. No cell service either. However, we could see the puffs of the whales’ breaths in the distance from our campsite. The park is only open during the season the gray whales migrate to the lagoon, from December to March, where they give birth and nurture their calves in the protected waters.
They do not allow kayaks in the lagoon so if you want to get a close look at the whales you have to pay to go out in a panga. The cost was 810 pesos or about $42 bucks a person. It is well worth the cost since we got to get so close to the whales. Some whales are shy and will dive when the boat gets close but others are curious and will come up to the boat and even allow you to pet them. Initially it was a little intimidating when the giant mother swam under our small boat. They are large but docile, and even playful, especially the calf. I think the mother purposely snorted water at us a couple times. It was a great time.
When we went into the town of Guerrero Negro to do some business we had the pleasure of trying some of the local food stands. We had some fish tacos of course and we also tried a new taco we haven’t had yet. It is called a Birria Dorado. Birria is a moist, shredded beef stewed in a savory beef stock. The birria is then stuffed into a taco and grilled to a crispy perfection (which means dorado, I think). Man it was delicious. I wish I took a picture but it was so good I completely forgot.
Our next stop is San Ignacio, an oasis in the desert, before bouncing back over to the Sea of Cortez.