We left Bahía Kino yesterday morning after a standard late breakfast. The trip, according to both the GPS and Google Maps, was estimated to take about 3.5 hours or so. Both these guides had us turning on a road about 25 kilometers east of Bahía Kino and going south from there, not meeting up with southbound Hwy 15 until well south of Hermosillo. This sounded really appealing as driving through the big city of Hermosillo didn’t sound like that much fun. However, if this was the “beach road” that Kevin had warned us about, it was supposed to be very slow going and rough. But, since both mappers were trying to get us to go that way, we decided to reserve judgement. I did, however, also plug in the route via Hermosillo and the driving time was almost exactly the same.
We slowed as we approached the intersection with the road in question and gave it a gander. It was paved but looked pretty narrow. Lulu said she could see the unmistakable signs of major potholes a ways down the road so we decided to skip it and just take the conventional route through Hermosillo. We stopped for gas in the town of Miguel Allemán which was larger than we’d expected. Once we got to Hermosillo, we followed the signs towards Guaymas instead of following Dora’s instructions. This worked great for a little while but Mexico has this bad habit of putting up enough signs to get you on your way and then, leaving you in the lurch at major intersections where decisions need to be made. We continued on, partly using Dora and partly using our gut feelings. At one point we were a little afraid that we’d overshot Hwy 15 although I couldn’t see any way that was possible. No matter. There was a big Bodega Arrera (very similar to Walmart) so we pulled in for some groceries and to try to ascertain just where we were.
Once groceried up, I looked at a map view in Dora and found that we were right where we were supposed to be. Just keep going the direction we were already headed and we’d meet up with Hwy 15 and then turn south. While sitting in the cab checking the map, a Mexican guy pulled up alongside and asked if Flipper was for sale. We had to send him away disappointed.
The rest of the drive to San Carlos was pretty fast (100 km/h speed limit) and totally uneventful. We pulled into the Totonaka RV Park about 3 PM. The staff could not be nicer here. We were invited to pick any spot we wanted. The first spot we picked was near the garbage cans that were near the dog walk. Since the prevailing breeze was from that side, you can imagine that things kind of got stanky a few times. This morning we moved to another spot that was shadier and where the cooling breeze has lost its dog poo stink by the time it reaches us.
Our plans for our time in San Carlos were to get storage for Flipper, get tickets for our flight to La Paz, do some laundry, get Flipper ready for storage, figure out how to get to the airport, etc. Had no idea how long it would all take for sure. As it turned out, it took almost no time at all.
First thing I did was to go online and get on the Aereo Calafia website. AC is one of the few airlines that still fly out of Guaymas and fly to La Paz. I went on their site just to check prices and schedules. But, since things were going so smoothly, before it was all over I had purchased out tickets for this coming Sunday. First thing done.
Our friends Doug and Jody (Westsail 32 El Gitano) are here at the RV park in their motorhome while they get El Gitano ready to sail to La Paz. Since they also have a tow-along vehicle (a “toad” in RV circles), they offered to take us to the airport Sunday morning. Second thing taken care of.
Next: where to store Flipper. There is a storage place here in San Carlos that offers a completely enclosed storage garage with a locking door (we’d have the only key) and excellent security for $167(US) per month. Kind of steep but what a nice way to store the rig. I e-mailed them and they said that they ˆshouldˆ have a space available by the end of the week. Whoops. That’s probably not going to work. There’s another place with covered, but not enclosed, storage but I don’t know what they charge. Both of these places are a little ways from the main drag so we’d have to figure out how to get back after dropping the rig off (probably walk). Our plan was to store the rig on Saturday, stay in a motel Saturday night and then go to the airport Sunday. That was our plan until Doug and Jody told us what they were doing. Apparently, Totonaka RV offers dry storage for $75(US) per month. It’s not covered but it is secure. The best part is that your rig is stored right where you’re camped. The same space. So, we can stay in Flipper Saturday night (saving the cost of the motel which will pay for most of the first month’s storage), get up Sunday morning, unhook our umbilicals and head to the airport. Even better, once we return in May or June, we move right back in and go back to the camping rates. What could be easier?
Oh, and the RV park has a really nice laundry facility right on-site. Looks like we’ve pretty much gotten everything we needed to do done and we haven’t even been here 24 hours yet. All that’s left is to secure Flipper for storage and pack our bags. Easy-schmeazy. Weird to think that by lunchtime on Sunday we’ll be back in La Paz.