Panama Canal - Spring 2015 travel blog

who are those people?

the driver

dune buggy

my view

kicking up sand

dusty view



land's end

land's end


the arch

tendering ships

on the beach

on the beach




sting ray

Movie Clips - Playback Requirements - Problems?

(MP4 - 4.55 MB)

the ride

(MP4 - 5.92 MB)

the beach

Cabo San Lucas is in a gorgeous location at the bottom of the 775 mile Baja Peninsula. It would be easy to argue that the Baja is more part of California than Mexico; it is only attached by a small piece of land on the northern edge. So far it seems less affected by drug cartel terrorism and the port was well guarded by soldiers sporting rifles that were as tall as they were. Cabo does not have a deep water port so we and the Disney Wonder had to tender passengers ashore. Getting off the life boat we were surprised to have our hand bags searched coming into the country. Cabo was decimated by Hurricane Odile in September 2014 and it was great to see that much rebuilding has taken place. In Mexico building owners pay lower taxes on unfinished buildings so nearly every building you see has rebar extending from the top, supposedly intended for building the next floor, so it can be hard to tell if buildings really are finished being built.

We have been here many times on cruises, on an RV trip and sailing along the eastern side off the peninsula on the Sea of Cortez, so we were glad to find a tour for something we have not done - a dune buggy ride through the desert. As often is the case these days we were by far the oldest folks on the trip. We were strapped into bare bones vehicles in front of deafening engines. The tour included crash helmets, goggles, and scarves to wear over our noses and mouths - just what we needed to keep ourselves comfortable and respirating as we careened through the desert. Ken has a way of melding with vehicles no matter how primitive or sophisticated, so he handled the ravines, bumps, and curves with aplomb. It was hard to take photos or videos as we lurched along and the dust flew; my camera may never be the same. The route took us through a wide, flat arroyo and as we picked up speed the front tire kicked so much river gravel into the legs of my shorts, I had a full kitty litter pan of gravel in my pants by the time the ride came to an end. After touring the desert we came to the beach and wandered around a bit enjoying the view. Large waves crashed into a blow hole making an enormous roar. By the end of the ride I had a marvelous tan, which was easily removed in the shower later in the day. It’s been a while since we’ve been so filthy and had so much fun.

Back in town we saw many signs of the US. Walmart, Office Max, Starbucks. We spent some time in a bar with good internet and when we tried to pay in pesos the bar owner had to get a calculator and figure out the bill. Everyone in Cabo uses US dollars.

As we sailed out of the harbor we passed the primary tourist sight here which is usually seen on a small tour boat - the arch. A school of dolphins fished beneath us and an enormous sting ray floated just below the surface. Usually on a large ship animal sightings are few and far between. We weren’t the only ones who enjoyed being in Cabo.

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