What a treat to walk out of the door and onto the golf course. It was a straight forward course which was a good thing when I thought about the signs warning us to watch for rattle snakes. Although the fairways had a surprising amount of grass, on many holes the ball would hit a rock and careen in unexpected directions. The ninth hole had a water hazard, something we did not expect on this desert course. Naturally, my ball went in and when I fished it out I noticed twenty more within easy fishing distance.I think of my mother-in-law every time I use the fishing tool I inherited from her. The sack of balls we brought back more than made up for the greens fees. Lunch at the clubhouse made us feel that we had done our part to reciprocate the hospitality offered by this free campground.
Ajo is a small town, which has existed in some form for hundreds of years as Indians, Spanish, Mexicans and Americans sucked copper ore out of the ground here. Much of this extraction took place long before laws were in place requiring mines to restore the land to its original contours, and the massive piles of tailings dominate the landscape. We could tell that they had been here for many years because of the large saguaro growing on their slopes. The most famous Cornelia Mine was begun in 1906 and was profitable until 1964 when it closed. It left a hole two miles in diameter and 1,000 feet deep.
Today this small town has an attractive downtown with a Spanish looking square. Most of the people who live here are retirees enjoying the warm sunshine and border agents who keep an eye on traffic from the south. The most prominent business is a row of agencies selling Mexican insurance. Puerto Penasco and Rocky Point on the northern end of the Sea of Cortez are less than a two hour drive from here. For years we've heard RV'ers rave about camping in that area. the beaches are great and the drive within Mexico itself is a short one, but Mexican insurance is still required. It would be nice to stay on the beach for a while, but last time we checked the insurance was pricey and we haven't talked to anyone who has driven to Mexico lately. Too bad.