Ensenada Travel Blog› entry 2 of 3 › view all entries
April 11th, 2006 – by: cneoridium
We took the Toll Road. You don't see as much, but you get there a lot sooner. They found it necessary though to put a toll booth every couple miles that takes some arbitrary, ever-changing toll, exact change only. On the way down it'll be $2.10, on the way back $1.30. You never know. In any case, we were amazed at the amount of development that had taken place in the last year. Every bit of the coastline was full of condos, hotels, rental houses.
At Kilometer 56, we stopped for the necessary supplies and fireworks. Everything in Baja is known by what kilometer it's at. There's pretty much one highway that runs the length of the peninsula so it's a good measure of how far down you're going. Everything else is "go to Kilometer 324, then head west to... whatever the spot is. Anyway, Kilometer 56 is the bluest place in the world, the store is blue. The walls are blue. The rocks are painted blue. The bluest blue too.
There used to be "campos" all along the coastline of northern Baja. These were basically trailer parks, but as the trailers typically became more house-like over the years. Rolf's hut has a trailer as it's "nucleus" and over the years people have built around it, adding a living room, bedroom, steam sauna, patio.
The campo is on a tongue of black lava rock that extends from the cliffs down into the ocean. This gives a rocky coastline with tidepools full of sea creatures. There are bright red bat starfish, green sea anemones that could swallow you're head, darting sculpin, bright purple urchins, and whatever fish are trapped in the pools as the tide goes out. We usually end up in the water, but this time big surf pounding on the rocks and 50-degree water kept us out.
The hut is sadly, rarely used these days so the first order of business clearing out the scorpions and black widow spiders. It's actually a pretty comfortable place, all glass and wood. The roof is a good place to lay and watch the sun set. Somehow the Baja sunsets are always redder and brighter and ...Baja-er than in San Diego, just a few miles north. After cooking up some lobster that Rolf caught earlier, we built a big fire, heated lava rocks to red hot, and shoveled them into the steam sauna. The sauna is yet another plywood extension to the hut "compound". I'm not sure why, but being steamed always feels good.
We debated lurking in the hut the next day versus taking the "long way" back through the interior to the border crossing at Tecate. Tecate won...
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