DAY 13 – Alamos to San Carlos (11/17/11)
Alamos was an interesting town. It had a vibe that was a mix of modern-day and yesteryear mining gateway town, artist community, old-money residences, and somewhat of a tourist town. It is definitely worth a day or two stop if you are in the area. I’’ll let several of the below pictures do the “talking” for me. It was a very colorful, photogenic town. Most of these pictures were taken from a few hundred foot tall hill near the edge of town that is called the Mirador (I think).
We spent the morning walking around and taking pictures before we headed to San Carlos. The drive up MEX15 was pretty standard Mexico driving. We were able to travel around 60mph+ for long stretches on the smooth pavement. Pemex’s were readily available within Alamos and for the rest of the trip.
Instead of going straight to San Carlos, we decided to eat an early dinner and drive through Guaymas. I’m not sure if it was really worth it, but they did have a Papa John’s so I was happy. (We don’t have any in Santa Barbara so this was a rare treat!)
We kept driving past one or two rather uninspiring RV parks that consisted of densely packed sites on a field of dirt. The upside was that they were a minute or two walk from the Sea of Cortez. When we felt like we were far enough outside of the commercial area, we came across an sign for the El Mirador RV park. The place was deserted. Perfect, we thought…
It turns out the American owner was there trying to clean it up and get it somewhat operational again or to sell it. (Anyone got a few million dollars?) He was saying the tourism bust took it toll on the place and they closed it a year or two back. The park was still officially closed. He said we could stay the night if we wanted for free if we tipped the care taker – deal!
The owner gave us a tour of the place, described how it was in its heyday, and told us he would let the police know that he had people staying there. What a great guy!
There were no hook-ups (what did we care?), the toilet facility was marginally working (fine with us), and the grounds had road apples all over (ok). But, it was a five minute walk to a fairly secluded beach. So, we thanked him, picked the best sites in the whole place, and took a walk down to the beach to catch the sunset over the sea.
On the beach, we carried out our final vehicle recovery of the trip. A local guy was with his wife/girlfriend. He got their small 2WD pickup stuck in the loose-ish sand. He was spinning his tires while his wife watched from outside the car. We told him we’d give him a push. He asked if one of us would drive so he could help push. LeeWhay decided she’’d be better in the truck so us three men could push.
LeeWhay got in and wanted to get a feel for the gas and auto transmission before we pushed. She put the tranny in “L”, put her foot on the brake, gave it some gas, and drove right out of the hole! (A skill she learned at the Overland Rally in California.) It was pretty comical…