Baja

2016

Cancelled. This year there was a major el nino event which would have made travel very unpredictable.

This will be the 5th expedition to Baja California (Mexico) by Flight Culture. I will be leading it and will share some of the magic experiences in this astonishing place with you.

The Trip

Baja is peninsula that is attached to the bottom of California (USA) but is part of Mexico. It’s not very wide but is longer than Italy and is separated from mainland Mexico by the Sea of Cortez.
Baja is extremely diverse geographically; the Pacific coast is relatively temperate as there is a cold current running along it. Nights can be quite chilly but days tend to be really nice. In the northern central part of Baja we have the San Pedro Martir mountains that rise up to over 10,000 feet. To the south, is the Vizcanio Desert which is hot, dry and very beautiful. The East coast on the Sea of Cortez is quite tropical and the water’s nice and warm.
Men have been living on the Baja peninsula for the last 11, 000 years and you’ll get to see cave paintings and find old arrow heads as will as visiting some of the Jesuit mission stations.
We’ll meet at the airport in San Diago airport on September 28 with our fleet of huge 4×4 vehicles and will drive straight down to the border (about 45 mins away) and into Mexico. Our first nights stop will be at La Salina (15 mi north of Ensenada). We’ll be staying with a friend of mine, Baja Brent, in his pilots B+B. It’s dormitory accommodation but is really comfortable. There’s an outstanding ridge to fly and if it’s good, you can fly back to his house which is right on the beach. We’ll leave La Salina on Monday and head through Ensenada where we’ll stop to provision (we’ll have 3 giant freezer boxes) and continue on down to San Antonio Del Mar (SADM). Once we get south of Ensenada the country starts to change and it looks more like a spaghetti western, then part of the 21st century. We’ll be heading south on the main road but the last 15 miles to SADM is all dirt tracks and beach driving. We’re going to spend the night camping just off the beach and we’ve seen whales here before. The soaring is simply outstanding and it’s a beautiful, wild setting. Our next stop will be in Rosario and after a pit stop in Mama Espinosa’s I’ll take you along a secret dirt track to another pristine deserted beach. Again it offers some outstanding coastal soaring.
Heading south of here, we enter the Catavina boulder fields before either heading to a secret spot on the Sea of Cortez, to the south of Bajia de Los Angeles or to press on to San Fillipe and head to the Scorpion Bay on the Pacific. Whatever we decide, we’ll spend at least a night camping and a day flying in the Vizcanio Desert.

John Steinbeck was describing Baja when he said, “The very air here is miraculous, and outlines
of reality change with the moment.” It’s such a unique place and it will change and is changing.
I’ve been to Baja 6 times before and guided expeditions 5 times. It’s one of those places that haunts me and draws me back again and again.

The Flying

We will fly in La Salina, SADM, and probably Scorpion Bay as well as flying from some unnamed sites that I’ve flown before and some new ones. This is a paragliding trip but it’s also so much more. If you simply want to do as much flying as possible, have a comfortable room, hot shower each night and have your meals provided then this probably isn’t the trip for you. If you want to fly places that nobody has ever previously flown, wild camp in deserts and on beaches, if you’re happy with meals cooked over a camp fire and enjoy being part of a team then this will be the best thing you’ve ever done! You’ll be expected to contribute with a whole host of chores such as cooking, washing up, gathering firewood, helping put up and take down tents, change flat tyres and to fully participate. While we will do some incredible flying, there’s more to the trip than just the flying.

Details

We’ll meet you at the airport in San Diego and will organise the vehicles, provide fuel, all cooking equipment, communal camping equipment, food, guiding, and instruction (if required). We’ll cover all B+B costs and camping fees where applicable.
We don’t include alcoholic drinks, meals in restaurants, tents or sleeping bags (although we can buy you a tent and sleeping bag from Wal-Mart for about $100.

Dates

We’ll be meeting in San Diego at the airport on September 28 and will be dropping you back there on the October 11.

Cost

The cost is £1495 for fliers and £1100 for non-fliers

Take a look at our Baja pictures on our Facebook page:

Baja Paragliding Expedition 2008
Baja Paragliding Expedition 2010 part 1
Baja Paragliding Expedition 2010 part 2

Highlights