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SAN FELIPE - San Felipe Crafters and Gift Guild SHOW

San Felipe Crafters and Gift Guild SHOW

Date: Tuesday, June 8th
Time: 10:00am-3:00pm.
Location: El Dorado Pavilion

The Show will include handmade items such as Hats, Purses, Jewelry, Natural Creams and Lotions, Mosaics, Wood Carvings, Iron Work, Art Work, Home Decor and surprises galore. Please join us for a mid-week show inside with Air Conditioning.

NEWS - SCORE Baja 500 Course map

The official course map for the 42nd Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 500
view map
June 4-6: 42nd Tecate SCORE Baja 500
The legendary desert race in which more than 250 cars, trucks, motorcycles and ATVs traverse nearly 500 miles of rugged mountain, forest and desert terrain in their attempts to “beat the Baja.” This year’s race starts and finishes in Ensenada. Info: SCORE International at U.S. tel. (818) 225-8402.

ROSARITO BEACH - Flying Samaritans 5th annual open house

Serving Chili, Burgers, Salads & desserts. Meal Donation: $10.00. Location: C. Abeto #7 (1 block west of Las Brisas Hotel). Date: June 6th Time: 11 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. For info contact Miss Morgan at (858) 538-5922; e-mail:


Meeting At the Rosarito Beach Hotel, Salon Terraza, at 10:00 a.m. The USBC is primarily a social group serving as the hub of information for the English speaking community in the Rosarito area. EVERYONE WELCOME! For info contact Paul Weekes, President, at (661) 612-2186; e-mail:

Mexico Living June 2010 - Read it Online!

Edition 37 - June 2010

Superb Health Care at a Fraction of U.S. Prices, Has Arizona Crossed the Line?, Snakes of Baja, Summer Fun in Baja! The All New Baja Good Life Club, and so much more.


ENSENADA - Ensenada 128th Anniversary

May 30: Ensenada 128th Anniversary “Ensenada de Todos, Suma de Culturas” International Festival
11am-6pm: A multicultural celebration at Plaza Ventana al Mar on the waterfront near the giant flag pole on Blvd. Costero (Lázaro Cárdenas), Ensenada. Enjoy music, dance, arts, ethnic foods and exhibits by nearly four dozen local community groups of various nationalities, historical and cultural societies, museums and the city’s founding families. Free admission. Info: Yukio Nishikawa, tel. (646)176-2763

ENSENADA - 42nd Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 500 Desert Race

42nd Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 500 Desert Race

Over 300 entries expected June 3-6 in Ensenada, Mexico, for Rd 3 of five-race 2010 SCORE Desert Series; real time ‘live’ draw results to be broadcast on

Round 3 of the five-race 2010 SCORE Desert Series, the World’s Foremost Desert Racing Series, will feature over 300 entries from over 30 US States and over 10 countries, competing in 28 Pro and 7 Sportsman classes for cars, trucks, motorcycles and ATVs, will be held June 3-6 in Ensenada, Mexico. Traditionally one of the most popular events on the SCORE schedule, over 100,000 spectators are expected to enjoy the world’s best desert racers in action at this year’s Tecate SCORE Baja 500. The finalized course is expected to be approximately 430 miles.

For more information regarding the series, contact SCORE at its Los Angeles headquarters 818.225.8402 or visit the official website of the 2010 SCORE Desert Series at

SAN FELIPE - Fire Dept Fiesta at Campo El Vergel

Fire Dept Fiesta at Campo El Vergel
Sunday, May 30, 2010, with permission of the Castro Family.
Dinner will be available and we ask you bring an hors d'oeuvre, salad, side dish or dessert to be shared. Donations are gratefully accepted and we are asking for $4.00 per adult. Drinks available for $l.00 = water, soda, wine and cerveza. We will have some shade available, but please feel free to bring your own if you wish.
Donations are always accepted, along with any new unused gift items to be raffled. Also will have a silent auction and a cash prize raffle. Tickets are available prior to the Fiesta from Pat Polloreno 760-753-5948 or, Alice, Patty M, or Sandie Lorie.
Vatos Locos are again volunteered to play at the Fiesta. They performed last year and were a
rip roaring success. In the past many of you have volunteered to donate cases of water, soda and boxes of wine - Chardonnay, Burgundy, Merlot Cabernet or Red Zinfandel. If you are able to donate any of these items please call Pat Polloreno or email a note so I can keep track of items being furnished.
Thanks so much for all your help and donations. Be sure to come and join us - it is a lot of fun.
Contact Pat Polloreno if you have any questions. Hope to see you all at the Fiesta, Remember this
is our only fund raiser to help keep the Fire trucks and equipment in working order.
Thanks again,
Pat Polloreno
1015 Nolbey St, Cardiff, CA 92007
760-753-5948 or


ROSARITO BEACH, BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO---This city on Saturday opened a $150,000 skate park in Colonio Benito Juarez to provide additional positive activities for young people.

The park, funded half by the city and half by the Federal Ministry of Social Development, has a variety of platforms and ramps that can be used by skateboarders, skaters and bicyclists of various skill levels. There is no usage charge.

photos show youngsters at the park and the group that attended the opening, with Mayor Torres in the center of the front row.

"This park is part of our overall efforts to provide positive activities, sports and recreation for city youth,” said Mayor Hugo Torres, who presided at the opening.

Local skaters also presented a signed plaque in appreciation of city efforts. The park had been discussed previously before being completed by the current city administration.

The event was attended by Alfredo Quintero, Secretary of Administration and Finance; Cautencio Lamb, CEO of Plan Libertador, Jorge Crosthwaite, Director of Social Development.

Also, Arturo Gonzalez, Director of the Promotion of Urban Development, Andrew Luna, director of the Institute of Municipal Sports and Juana Leticia González, Director of DIF.

Rosarito also has begun construction on its first Boys & Girls Club, for which funding still is being collected.


BAJA BIG LIST in July 2010 - Nightlife Guide

Mexico Living - Baja California BAJA BIG LIST
July 2010 is the Nightclubs & Nightlife Guide

If you are a night club or night life business and would like to be listed for FREE in Mexico Living's Baja California Guide.

NO OBLIGATION it is purely to encourage travel and commerce on the Baja peninsula. LIST YOUR BUSINESS ---> CLICK HERE

ROSARITO BEACH - Feria Rosarito 2010 / Rosarito Fair 2010

June 1 - 15, 2010
Rosarito Fair, 14th edition and being called "The Fair of South America, represents a classic Mexican Fair to promote the various sectors of the local economy, and our traditions through various cultural expressions like music, dance, crafts, food.

Spaces available for exhibition and sale of products and services.
MAYORES INFORMES: Lic. Mónica Ramos Tel. 01 661.613.15.32

OPEN HOUSE - Modern Masterpiece in San Felipe

A Modern Masterpiece with European Sophistication

Price is $1,000,000.

This dream house was built in San Felipe because of the climate, atmosphere, cost of living, and easy access to Southern California and Arizona. Although it is an unusual house for the San Felipe area because of its contemporary style, size, and amenities, the owner/builders, Jack and Valentina Ragsdale, wanted these special features that contribute to a comfortable lifestyle.

Valentina is a formally educated Russian designer; she brought design and construction experience to their design conversations that began five years before construction actually started. She uses a software program that displays all levels of detail including a virtual walk-through feature. They knew ahead of time that they had a 180-degree view of the Sea of Cortez, what the sun angles would be at any time of day or season (hence the wraparound veranda), where the electrical outlets and switches would be located, and what the view would be from any room in any direction. These drawings and artists’ renditions were an important asset because the workers could then see what the final objective would look like during the construction process.

She also brought to the table a vast knowledge of European finishes and concepts that she used when designing and building upscale housing in Russia; features such as French Ceiling systems and Venetian Plaster finishes that are not well known or used in this part of the world.

It became necessary for Jack and Valentina to finish the final 20 percent of the house by themselves, so two years of dawn-to-dusk hard work were required to accomplish the final product.

The above ground building is 5,600 sq. ft. comprised of a 2,600-sq. ft. wraparound veranda, 2,400 sq. ft. of air-conditioned living space and a 600 sq. ft. interior patio. The subterranean area includes parking/storage for 3 to 4 vehicles, a separate laundry/pantry room, workshop space with 30 feet of workbench, a separate bedroom and bath for household help, and several large storage spaces.

Special features of the house include:

· 3 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms including 2 master suites, and a guest bedroom

· Open plan design with uncluttered 825-sq. ft. kitchen/dining/living area

· Travertine tile throughout except for master suites with laminate flooring

· Kitchen cabinets by Pedini, stainless steel appliances by Miele, Fisher-Paykel, and Kenmore Icon

· All rooms have either a patio or a veranda entrance

· Three-station dumbwaiter, pantry storage area in the basement, kitchen and rooftop entertainment area

· Built-in utilities for rooftop kitchen and entertainment area

· Retractable awning in central patio

· Swim-jet pool with sheer descent waterfall and granite waterwall

· Wraparound veranda provides shade on windows year round

· Entertainment-oriented flow-through design combines the central patio, dining/buffet area and exterior seating area. The design easily accommodates over 50 guests.

The fenced lot is slightly over 1 acre and could easily accommodate a separate building for a guest house or an additional pool house.

For more information, contact El Dorado Ranch at (800) 404-2599 ext 4062 or email Please refer to VDS 7200-027-13. This property is located in the community of Vista del Sol.

Living room 2

Living room

Kitchen at night.


NEWS & POLITICS - Trump Sued Again

Trump Sued Again Over Mexico Project
by Kevin Brass, International Property Journal

A lawsuit filed Monday by a group of buyers who lost their deposits in a Baja California resort charges Donald Trump and his executive children with fraud and negligence.

The seven plaintiffs say they were “duped” into buying hotel-condo units in the Trump Ocean Resort, a 526-unit, twin-tower project planned for 17 coastal acres a short drive south of the Mexican border. When the project collapsed in 2009, dozens of buyers lost their deposits, totaling more than $32 million.

Trump only licensed his name to the project's developer, Los Angeles-based Irongate. In the wake of the project’s demise, Irongate said there was no money to return—the deposit money was used to fund early development in the project, which was allowed by its contracts, the company said.

Several buyers have already sued the developer and Trump, alleging various misdeeds. But this suit focuses on the Trumps.

The filing charges Trump and his children, Donald, Jr. and Ivanka, with misleading buyers into thinking they were more involved in the project. It cites a long line of typically bold Trump statements promoting the development, suggesting they were deeply involved in every aspect.

The plaintiffs say they didn’t learn that the project was simply licensing the Trump name until the development collapsed.

"The Trump defendants falsely led plaintiffs to believe that they were financial backers of the project,” the suit claims. (Radar online has a copy of the lawsuit:

Buyers typically put down 30 percent deposits on units, which were priced between $300,000 and $3 million. In December 2006 the project announced 188 units worth $122 million were sold on the first day, which was deemed a record for Mexico. “Trump Ocean Resort Baja will redefine the standard of premier property ownership and service excellence for all of Northern Mexico,” Trump said at the time.

But the suit alleges that most of the talk was hype. The project didn’t even have the necessary permits and Trump was paid off on a commission basis, the suit charges.

If nothing else, the case demonstrates the pitfalls of licensing your name and brand to a third party. The Trumps will certainly argue that they were simply doing their job, promoting the project for the developers, earning their licensing fees.

Trump has already countered with a lawsuit against the developers, alleging they didn’t follow through on their contractual obligations.
This article is reprinted with permission from Kevin Brass and the International Property Journal,

NEWS & POLITICS - Rise in fuel

New rise in fuel, to $ 8.12, a liter of Magna

On Saturday April 3rd, the price of Magna and Premium gasoline recorded an increase of 8.4 cents per liter.

The price of diesel will increase 8 cents, said Luz Maria Jimenez president of United Gas Station of Puebla and Tlaxcala.

The millions of consumers have to pay 8.12 pesos per liter of gasoline type acquire Magna; 9.78 pesos for the Premium and 8.48 pesos per liter of diesel.

This is the fourth recorded fuel increase so far this year, as part of the federal government's strategy to strengthen public finances: Magna gasoline, which is the most consumed in the country (9 out of 10 cars the demand) recorded an increase 4.1% in price, so far in 2010.

Premium Gasoline accumulated rate 2.19% higher, while the cost of diesel went up 3.29%.

The Ministry of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP) said the policy adopted fuel consisting of regular and gradual adjustments in the prices of petrol and diesel is to prevent abrupt impacts on inflation.

In December last year, Magna every gallon of gasoline cost 7.80 pesos, pesos and 9.57 Premium Diesel 8.16 pesos per liter.

These increases will represent federal government revenues equivalent to almost 22 billion pesos a month in the case of Magna and Premium gasoline, and, about 9 billion dollars per month for the Diesel.

The prices were applied on Saturday April 3 and the current exchange rate, gasoline still too Magna weighing three cents cheaper than its counterpart in the United States, the Regular and Diesel weight 13 cents cheaper.

The gap between the Premium that is sold in Mexico and the United States market is only 14 cents, a difference that would end with the increases planned by the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit for the next four months if the price of fuel in the U.S. remains unchanged.

NEWS & POLITICS - Five myths about Mexico´s drug war

Five Myths about Mexico's Drug War

by Andrew Selee, David Shirk and Eric Olson

Violence in Mexico has escalated dramatically in recent years. In 2009 alone, at least 6,500 people were killed in apparent drug-related incidents, and more than 2,000 have already died in such violence this year. The recent killings of three people linked to the U.S. Consulate in Ciudad Juarez (just across the border from El Paso) have left many wondering whether the situation is hopeless.

In Mexico last week, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton lamented the "cycle of violence and crime that has impacted communities on both sides of the border" and pledged continued U.S. engagement. With Washington's support, the Mexican government has been pursuing an aggressive multiyear campaign to confront criminal groups tied to the drug trade. To understand those efforts' chances of success, let's look beyond common misperceptions about Mexico's plight.

1. Mexico is descending into widespread and indiscriminate violence.

The country has certainly seen a big rise in drug violence, with cartels fighting for control of major narcotics shipment routes—especially at the U.S. border and near major seaports and highways—and branching into kidnapping, extortion and other illicit activities. Ciudad Juarez, in particular, has been the scene of major battles between two crime organizations and accounted for nearly a third of drug-linked deaths last year.

But the violence is not as widespread or as random as it may appear. Though civilians with no evident ties to the drug trade have been killed in the crossfire and occasionally targeted, drug-related deaths are concentrated among the traffickers. (Deaths among military and police personnel are an estimated 7 percent of the total.) A major reshuffling of leaders and alliances is occurring among the top organized crime groups, and, partly because of government efforts to disrupt their activities, violence has jumped as former allies battle each other. The bloodshed is also geographically concentrated in key trafficking corridors, notably in the states of Sinaloa, Chihuahua and Tamaulipas.

While the violence underscores weaknesses in the government's ability to maintain security in parts of the country, organized crime is not threatening to take over the federal government. Mexico is not turning into a failed state.

2. The Mexican government lacks the resources to fight the cartels.

Last week, the Mexican newspaper Milenio released a survey indicating that 59 percent of Mexicans believe the cartels are winning the drug war; only 21 percent believe the government is prevailing. Such assessments are well founded, but the battle against organized crime is not a lost cause. Thanks to a genuine commitment by Mexican officials and greater cooperation with the United States, important cartel leaders have been arrested over the past several years. Some cartels, such as Arellano Felix in Tijuana, have been seriously weakened.

The Mexican government has the tools to succeed, but it must redirect its efforts. To date, its campaign against drug traffickers has relied on the massive deployment of federal security forces, both police and military. But their "presence and patrol" strategy presents only a minor inconvenience to criminal groups, which work around it by shifting their trafficking routes. To strengthen law enforcement and restore public confidence, there is an urgent need to modernize and professionalize Mexico's police and courts. The 2008 passage of constitutional reforms in this area was a good start. As they are implemented, the changes will transform the country's judiciary from one that relies on closed courtrooms and mostly written evidence into a system where evidence is presented in open court.

The federal government has also made strides in developing a professional national police force. It is devoting resources to the improvement of state and local forces and boosting investigative capabilities, including creating a national police database that allows authorities to track crimes in different parts of the country.

3. Endemic corruption allows the cartels to flourish.

Corruption does continue to be a major challenge for Mexico. In 1997, for instance, the country's drug czar was found to be on the take from the Juarez cartel, and last year, the Federal Investigative Agency was dissolved after a third of the force was placed under investigation for corruption.

But there appears to be a real commitment by honest officials to root out malfeasance. Recent arrests and prosecutions have brought down the head of Mexico's Interpol office, senior officials in the attorney general's office, three state public security chiefs, hundreds of state and local police officers, and a few mayors and local police commanders. Meanwhile, Mexico is slowly cultivating a culture of lawfulness, thanks to courageous journalists and new civic organizations calling for greater accountability. Far more can be done, but this is a good start.

4. Drug violence is a Mexican problem, not a U.S. one.

Hardly. Mexico and the United States share a 2,000-mile border, and our southern neighbor is also our third-largest trading partner. Since the drug cartels run a bi-national business—moving drugs from south to north and weapons from north to south—both the problem and the solution will inevitably involve Washington.

Perhaps the top contribution the United States could make is to redouble its efforts to reduce American demand for illegal narcotics. The trafficking in Mexico is driven overwhelmingly by U.S. consumption—especially of cocaine, marijuana, heroin and methamphetamine—which is estimated to exceed $60 billion annually. Moreover, the U.S. government estimates that $18 billion to $39 billion flows south each year as a result of American sales of illegal narcotics. Some of this money is invested in high-caliber weapons purchased in the United States and taken across the border illegally. Little surprise that while in Mexico last month, Clinton referred to "our shared responsibility to combat and defeat organized transnational crime."

In a positive development, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy announced this month that it will seek more funding for programs to reduce U.S. demand for illicit drugs—with a 13 percent increase for prevention and 4 percent for treatment. Such funding pales in comparison to law enforcement budgets, but it's a step in the right direction.

5. Mexican drug violence is spilling over into the United States.

Despite the violent confrontations between drug-trafficking organizations in Mexico, there has been little of the same spectacular violence on the American side of the border, even though the cartels operate with U.S.-based distribution networks. El Paso, one of the least violent cities in the United States, sits right across from Ciudad Juarez, the most violent in Mexico.

This points to important institutional differences. In Mexico, a crime has only a 1 to 2 percent chance of leading to a conviction and jail time; the greater likelihood of arrest in the United States leads traffickers to keep most of their violent activities south of the border. Of course, drug violence does occur here, but not with the severity or impunity found in Mexico.

For better or worse, the United States and Mexico are in this together. It is hard to imagine a solution that does not involve a joint strategy to disrupt organized crime; a shift in U.S. drug policy to address consumption; shared efforts to improve Mexican law enforcement and judicial institutions; and continued cooperation to foster greater economic opportunity in Mexico.

Andrew Selee is the director of the Mexico Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. David Shirk is a fellow at the center and an associate professor at the University of San Diego. Eric Olson is senior adviser at the center.

LOS CABOS - 2010 Polo Tournament

Club Polo Cabo is inviting us to their 2010 Polo Tournament, happening on May 28 and 29. The 2-day 6-8 Goal Tournament Event will feature 4 teams representing Guatemala, California/USA, Lavikina/Mexico City, Club Polo Cabo/Fiesta Americana. General tickets are $ 10 USD. or VIP Seats under the tent (includes lunch and beverages) ate $ 50 USD.

SAN FELIPE - Destinations


San Felipe, Baja California – 31°01′39″N ~ 114°50′07″W
Just 125 miles south of the international border is a virtual paradise on Earth. If you take Mexico’s Federal Highway 5, you will end up in San Felipe, right along the Sea of Cortez. Founded in 1916, San Felipe began as a fishing port and now attracts tourists and retirees from all around the world. The natural beauty, unique arid landscape and endless outdoor opportunities for fun make San Felipe a must-see destination. One trip and it is easy to see why so many people return to make San Felipe their home, adding to the population of roughly 25,000.

The beaches of San Felipe are amongst the most pristine and natural in the world. The clean, smooth sand and the fact that San Felipe is the second sunniest place on Earth make it perfect for anyone who enjoys lounging on the beach, beach combing for one-of-a-kind sea treasures, or swimming in the warm waters. You can camp or sleep on the beaches for the ultimate beach bum experience or romantic night away from ordinary. When the tide is low, the northern beaches can extend nearly half a mile out, opening up the possibilities of finding more unique beach treasures. It can also provide entertainment, because nearly every weekend someone in their shining new 4-wheel drive will bury themselves to the axle, many taken as another sacrifice to the sea.

The desert dunes and valleys can give visitors more than just a great photo opportunity. Off-road racing in the San Felipe area is also unlike any other area in the world and plays host to world-renowned races that attract many racing enthusiasts. You can rent ATVs or dune buggies, or you can go on a guided tour. If you are a beginner, rental companies provide instruction and lessons before you head out into the dunes. Rental companies are available throughout downtown San Felipe.

Fishing is so ingrained in the culture and history of San Felipe that many regard this town as the home of the fish taco and just about anything made with the San Felipe blue shrimp that is exclusive to the area. There are a few charter fishing companies in the area that cater to both the experts and the novice. If you fish off the shores of San Felipe, you can expect to catch sierra, corvina, grouper, sea bass and a few other species. The bay of San Felipe contains an artificial reef, which makes finding the fish a littler easier. Many of the local charter companies can take you for 4–8 hours of fishing.

As San Felipe has grown, so have the amenities in this coastal town. Exclusive resorts and luxury retirement homes, along with small beach villas, have led to a burgeoning area north of town with many competing restaurants, grocers and bars. The downtown area features galleries, craft shops, clothing stores, pottery and jewelry stores; which all make for an eclectic shopping experience. There is also an active nightlife for locals and tourists alike.

The San Felipe area has that rare combination of sophisticated amenities and natural wonders galore. It is a very active community with many annual festivals and events including the annual Shrimp Festival in November, Blues & Arts Fiesta in March, Cominata Contra Cancer Walk in March, SCORE San Felipe 250 in March, Mexico Living Home Show in October, and a swap meet every weekend, October through May.

San Felipe Road Trips
Valle de los Gigantes – 30°52'56.64"N ~ 114°45'31.28"W
Valle de los Gigantes, or Valley of the Giants is home to the largest cardones cacti in the world. The shadows alone cast by these larger-than-life plants can extend as long as a few football fields. This natural wonder draws many photographers and naturalists all year long.

The natural reserve of the thousand-year-old Cardon Cactus has become a major attraction after the transport of one of these giant specimens to Seville, Spain, for Seville Expo '92. Local enviromentalists are lobbying for the protection of the valley in the form of a Nature Reserve.

Located 15 Km south of downtown San Felipe, just south of campo Punta Estrella, Valle de los Gigantes is a must-see site.

The Rob's Ranch Waterfalls – 30°51'238"N ~ W115°14'.137
There are several waters falls in the mountains above San Felipe, but a favorite is what many refer to as Rob's Ranch. The ranch is not much more than an old cattle shoot next to an area for parking. The falls are approx. 300 yards up stream of this point.

Spring time is the best time to visit the area when wild purple and yellow flowers blanet the desert floor and all the desert and mountain flora is blossoming and beautiful. Don't expect water during the summer months.

The stream that provides the falls, also provides water to several ranchos in the valley. The pipes used to carry the water are visible beside the stream and road.

The falls are 25.2 miles southwest of San Felipe. From the top of Saltito Rd. (El Dorado Ranch) turn West (right), travel 8.7 miles to the cows hide fork in the road, stay on the left fork towards Valle Chico (small sign), continue travel 6.7 miles, turn right onto dirt road and continue 9.8 miles to Rob's Ranch.

Puertecitos – 30°20'44.23"N ~ 114°38'24.71"W

Just 90 kilometers south of San Felipe is the little town of Puertecitos. Settled in 1949, this little fishing village hasn't changed much. The road to Puertecitos is paved, and is a beautiful coastal drive. By the time you've reach Puertecitos the landscape becomes nearly void of any vegetation.

uertecitos has a few establishments, basic supplies for sale, a small airstrip, a machine shop and only a handful of families who live there full time. Those who do call it home are always helpful and gracious to the occasional traveler.

The Cowpatty Cantina is a must when you visit Puertecitos. The funky little cantina is a local hangout and a favorite watering hole for travelers. It's on the highway as you enter town. Many tourists find the natural hot springs of Puertecitos to be its top draw. These springs are so intensely boiling hot, you must wait for high tide to roll in to cool the waters down enough to soak without burning. Many find soaking a necessity after the journey there, especially if you plan to continue the rough and tumble drive further south to Gonzaga Bay.

Gonzaga Bay – 29°47'48.42"N ~ 114°24'3.99"W
Bahia San Luis Gonzaga, or better known as Gonzaga Bay, is one of the most beautiful and pristine destinations in Baja. Just a 100 miles south of San Felipe, Gonzaga Bay has remained a remote and isolated place. The road from San Felipe to Puertecitos was finished being paved in 2009 and, as of this writing, the road has continued 18 miles south of Puertecitios, leaving only 30 rough and bumpy miles of dirt road to Gonzaga Bay.

Gonzaga Bay is a dream destination for many. In addition to the breathtaking beauty of the area, the bay also includes over 70 oceanfront homes, an airstrip for the planes of owners and guests, Alfonsina's restaurant and hotel, Rancho Grande market, and a Pemex.

The raw beauty and remoteness of these two settlements cannot be replicated or even described. It is basically as far from civilization as most people ever care to venture, but worth the trip for the natural beauty alone and its “you have to see it to believe it” factor.

San Felipe Lodging

RV Park
Kiki's RV Park on the Beach...........................686-577-2021

Private Rentals
Casey’s Place ................................................ 686-577-1431
Rancho del Sol ............................................... 686-231-4921
Redwagon Property Services ....................... 686-576-0081
Sandollar Condotels ...................................... 686-123-7688

La Hacienda de la Langosta roja ................ 686-577-0483

San Felipe Dining

Los Arcos .................................................... 686-577-2585
Blowin’ Smoke .............................................686-576-0710
Roadrunner cafe ..........................................686-227-7668
The Beach Bar & Grill. ................................686-577-3144

The Beach Bar and Grill. ........................... 686-577-3144
Rosita restaurant ........................................ 686-577-1903

Fatboy’s....................................................... 686-577-4092
Los Arcos - Happy Jackass....................... 686-577-2585
Rabbit Pizza Delivery ................................ 686-577-0987

Steak & Seafood
Baja Mar & Taco Factory........................... 686-577-2648
Los Arcos .................................................... 686-577-2585

Fine Dining
The Sweet Spot........................................... 686-209-6369
Pavilion Restaurant..................................... 686-577-0022
Juanitos (el Colorado) ............................... 686-133-6500

Valle de Gigante by edgarinn

Cowpatty Cantina by unknown

San Felipe Lighthouse

Enjoying a warm breezy afternoon on the a San Felipe beach in early March. Photo by Victor Ratliff Rodriguez.

San Felipe malecón (boardwalk) at dusk. Image provided by Parkstrong (

Bahia San Luis Gonzaga

Las Caras de Mexico 18-hole Championship Golf Course, at La Ventana del Mar in El Dorado Ranch San Felipe Baja California.

NEWS - Mexican President Felipe Calderon addressed a Joint Meeting of Congress

Mexican President Felipe Calderon addressed a Joint Meeting of Congress, addressing the issue of immigration and calling Arizona's immigration policy a "law that ignores reality" and "based on racial profiling." Reviewing Mexico's growing crime, President Calderon asked U.S. politicians to reinstate the assault weapons ban.

LOS BARRILES - Lodging-Hotel Los Pescadores

Hotel Los Pescadores is Sportfishing Utopia on the East Cape
by Stockton Hill

Hotel Los Pescadores was built with fishing in mind. The East Cape of Baja on the Sea of Cortez is one of the most exciting places in the world to fish. Hotel Los Pescadores is the ideal place to stay if you're goal is fishing and fun.

The hotel is located just north of Los Barriles, a charming pueblo that remains slow paced. A place that people can still get away, without the hassle of a big city resort. The East Cape and Los Barriles are famous for incredible fishing, kiteboarding and windsurfing, and offers an array of other outdoor activities. After a busy day enjoying the sport or sightseeing adventure of your choice, you will return to Hotel Los Pescadores and be able to relax in their deluxe accomodations.

At Hotel Los Pescadores all of their rooms have air conditioning and two queen beds. Amenities include complimentary WiFi internet connection, a refrigerator, coffee maker and a hair dryer by request. But that's not what makes this place so specialit's the hospitality. Hotel owner Patti, along with Sean and Gulliermo, go out of their way to make your stay at their hotel a memorable and highly enjoyable experience.

When you first enter the hotel you immediately feel at home and relaxed. As you enter through the front doors of the hotel, it opens directly into the open-air hotel bar and restaurant. The bar is open fully to the landscaped property with swimming pool and courtyard.

On the weekends, Hotel Los Pescadores is a popular place for locals and Los Barriles foreign residents. The hotel is north of the down town area and walking distance to the beach and some of the best kite and wind surfing in the world.

If fishing is your goal, this is the place. Hotel Los Pescadores offers you the opportunity to board one of their two 26-foot super pangas with their tournament winning Captains Lavo and Andreas.
Approximately two hours north of Cabo San Lucas and one hour north of the Los Cabos International Airport, Hotel Los Pescadores is situated in an ideal setting to truly enjoy the Baja experience.

Rates are affordable and service is excellent. They can assist you in setting up any activity you wish to do. After an exciting day on the East Cape they will make you feel right at home. Visit their cantina for a refreshing drink or relax by the pool. Visit to see their rates and availability. Be sure to look them up on TripAdvisor for testimonials from their past guests.

LORETO - Musical: "Cabaret au Edith Piaf," Life is not so pink!

ANGRA HOTEL in Loreto, will be presenting this May 29 the musical "Cabaret au Edith Piaf," Life is not so pink! Dinner-show .. .. 250 dollars per person, includes meal and a glass of wine ...

HOTEL ANGRA en Loreto, estará presentando este 29 de mayo la comedia músical "Edith Piaf au Cabaret" , La vida no es tan rosa! ..cena-show ..250 pesos por persona, incluye cena y una copa de vino ...
Reservaciones/Reservations: (613)1351172 or

COOKING - Chorizo tacos

Chorizo Tacos

This is a fast, easy and delicious breakfast. If you like spicy food, you're going to love this breakfast.

6 ounces chorizo sausage
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
6 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 dash hot pepper sauce (e.g., Tabasco), or to taste
1/2 cup salsa

Crumble the sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir until evenly brown. Set aside.

Heat one skillet over medium heat, and heat another skillet over high heat. The skillet over high heat is for warming tortillas. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Spray the medium-heat skillet with some cooking spray, and pour in the eggs. Cook and stir until almost firm. Add the sausage, and continue cooking and stirring until firm.

Meanwhile, warm tortillas for about 45 seconds per side in the other skillet, so they are hot and crispy on the edges, but still pliable.

Sprinkle a little shredded cheese onto each tortilla while it is still hot. Top with some of the scrambled eggs and sausage, then add hot pepper sauce and salsa to your liking.

Nutritional Information:
Serving size: 2 tacos. Amount Per Serving: 537 Calories, 34.1g Total Fat, 381mg Cholesterol
Soy (Soya) chorizo sausage has reduced fat and is available in many Mexican markets.

SF-Baja Java Home Cooked Supper

Tuesday evening - May 25, 2010 Baja Java will be serving a "home cooked supper". Menu: Pot Roast with mashed potatoes and gravy, vegetables, bread, a salad and dessert. Soda or coffee included with your meal. If you want, bring your own booze. Price is $9.50. Serving from 5 PM until it's gone. Come and get a Midwest home cooked meal! Questions - call Baja Java 576-0059 or Karen 686 573 0192.

Medical Tourism Expected to Rise in 2010

Medical Tourism Expected to Rise in 2010
June 2010 - Health & Beauty Guide
By Karri Moser

The debate over Health Care reform in the U.S. is far from over; meanwhile, thousands of U.S. citizens, many of them Mexican-American rather tend to their health needs in Mexico, but experts say there are important changes in pharmaceutical legislation and other considerations that medical tourists should be aware of.

According to the Deloitte Center report, “Medical Tourism: Update and Implications,” in 2007 more than 750,000 Americans traveled abroad for outbound medical care. Since then, medical tourism has experienced a slow down driven by the economic recession and consumers putting off elective medical procedures over the past two years with an estimated 20 percent and 10 percent decrease in 2008 and 2009, respectively.

“Medical tourism has transitioned from a cottage industry to an acceptable alternative for elective care,” said Paul Keckley, Ph.D. and executive director, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, based in Washington, D.C.

“Despite the setbacks of the economic downturn, [medical tourism] may begin to recover in 2010, as quality is better defined, new business models emerge, insurers, legislators and employers explore pilots and programs, health care providers become increasingly involved in coordinating care and consumers continue to test it out to explore savings,” he added.

This growing tendency has not escaped doctors and dentists in Tijuana, Rosarito and Ensenada, whom had been working on strong public campaigns to establish themselves as trustworthy destinations for U.S. patients looking for affordable medical procedures and medications.

According to the latest census, Tijuana has over 876 pharmacies, 345 of them are located around the border and Revolution Street, showing just how great the market is for medication for U.S. visitors. But very few people may know of a new law that went into effect April 1, requiring a prescription in order to buy antibiotics, a measure that will hurt Mexican and border residents alike, according to the Head of Tijuana’s Medical Association, Germín Díaz Hernández.

According to Dr. Diaz, this measure was approved hastily and without taking into account the possible consequences to the working-class families or to an already burdened public health system.

“[This measure] has mixed consequences: on the one hand, it is beneficiary for the medical sector, because it will mean more patients, and it will also modify the culture of self-medicating or going directly to a pharmacy in order to get a recommendation on what to take,” he explains.

“But on the other hand it could generate a black market for the sale of prescriptions without an adequate assessment of the patient, and it is a hasty measure without adequate changes to the health care infrastructure, education of pharmacy personnel or adequate regulation of the pharmacies in the country,” the doctor explained.

For many Americans, visiting Mexico for a surgery or dental work is too risky, while for a large group of U.S. citizens it has become their only health care option.

Despite the divide, experts, doctors and patient-rights advocates all agree about the importance of being an educated consumer and keeping up with the legislation changes on both sides of the border. Patients should always ask for references, licenses and become knowledgeable about risks.


Scorpions in Baja

by Karri Moser

Christine Wood proudly shows off the scorpion she killed
near her home. Photo by Raine Fisher
After nearly 400 million years, scorpions still awaken from their winter hibernation to creep around seeking prey during the warm nights in the Baja region. While these creatures typically aspire to pounce on insects, spiders or other scorpions, they are encroaching more and more on humans. Or, we may be encroaching on their habitat. Regardless of how you look at it, the encounters are usually unwanted by both parties.

Scorpions have a distinctive body, namely due to their long pincers and unique tails. The tail of a scorpion is divided into five segments, with a stinger off of the last segment. Scorpions are fluorescent under ultraviolet light. With a small black light outside, it can be very easy to locate scorpions either in their natural habitat or around the house.

There are two kinds of scorpions found in Baja—the bark scorpion and the striped tail scorpion. The striped tail scorpion is venomous, but not considered dangerous. A striped tail scorpion sting can cause the same affects of a bee or wasp sting. There may be some localized swelling and burning that will generally subside within 30 minutes. Some people may be allergic to the sting and have a more severe reaction.
The striped tail scorpion is a burrowing scorpion and can be found under rocks and in sand. This kind typically grows to be around two inches in length and has dark colored ridges on the underside of its body. Because it does burrow, it can sometimes be found in sleeping bags and in shoes.

The bark scorpion has longer pincers and a longer tail than the other varieties. It has a yellow-colored body and can grow to three inches long. The bark scorpion is the only kind that does not burrow. It is a climber. They can climb fences, stucco walls and trees. You can find them living under the bark of palm and other trees. They are also the only scorpion variety that will congregate with other kinds of scorpions. The sting of a bark scorpion can be more severe than the sting of others, especially for children and the elderly. The sting may result in severe pain, numbness of the site, frothing at the mouth, respiratory distress, twitching or convulsions. You should seek medical attention if you think you have been stung by a bark scorpion.

There are a few basic steps you can take to avoid scorpion encounters or stings:
  • Try to seal any cracks around the house, such as loose doors or windows. Scorpions only need 1/16 of an inch to get through a crack.
  • It is also advisable to remove piles of bricks or wood farther away from the house. Standing water or trash may also attract them.
  • If you leave any shoes or clothing outdoors, such as wet towels, always shake them out to remove any hiding scorpions.
  • One other tip is to use yellow lights outside. Regular outdoor lights attract insects, which, in turn, attract scorpions.

General knowledge of the scorpion and basic tips to avoid a sting can help keep the summer nights carefree and safe. While stings can be irritating and rarely dangerous, antivenins work well and can prevent any lingering effects of a scorpion encounter.

PEOPLE & VOICES - Gypsy Journal

Rachel Pack, Raine Fisher and John Pack enjoying the
"good life" at the Blues & Arts Fiesta.
Photo by Dave Anderson

Los Barriles is a small community on the east cape of Los Cabos. The area is known for great wind surfing, kite surfing and fishing. For most of January and February it was home. We met many new friends and reconnected with some old friends. We traveled the cape from Los Barriles to Todos Santos ever week, exploring all the amazing locations in between.

Now it was time to leave. The Blues & Arts Fiesta was March 27, and we had to be there. We didn't want to rush north, so we gave ourselves a little time.

Here's a timeline, so we can skip to the good stuff . . . you know, like they do in movies.

Sunday, February 21, 2010: La Paz, BCS. In La Paz you can get anything. This week we needed our generator serviced and a "movie fix." We saw four new release movies that week, in English.

Monday, March 1, 2010: Loreto, BCS. We arrived in Loreto to familiar spaces and good friends, but it was our deadline. When Rachel finally appeared from the RV, the neighbors were shocked—they thought the RV was storage and no one was inside.

Friday, March 5, 2010: Mulegé, BCS. We stayed at Playa Santispac. It was the first beach in Baja where Rachel and I camped together, six years earlier. We stopped to visit an RV park to get info; they already knew us and wanted to advertise in the magazine. Wish that would happen every day.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010: San Ignacio, BCS. Arrived at Rice & Beans in San Ignacio, three hours from Mulegé. Rice & Beans is 250 pesos per night, but has full hookups. So, we recharged our batteries and took advantage of the full hookup.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010: San Ignacio River & Lagoon, BCS. We moved from Rice & Beans to a wonderful spot on the west side of the San Ignacio river for only 100 pesos, which included water. We could hear the frogs outside on the river bank, something you don't hear much in Baja. It was beautiful and very quiet.

Thursday, March 11, 2010: San Ignacio, BCS. NO GAS. The station was out until tomorrow. We were stuck in San Ignacio, so we explored.

Friday, March 12, 2010: Guerrero Negro, BCS. GAS. We only had 200 pesos left . . . not a problem. We're finally back on the highway. I was getting anxious to get home.

The day was sunny and beautiful, and the recent rains had transformed the desert into a blanket of flora of purple and yellows. I was daydreaming, lost in my thoughts and the landscape, when SMASH . . . my driver-side mirror exploded. I could see in the fragments that remained that it was a van, and it wasn't braking. We had only traveled about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) when it happened. With no place to turn around, and no gas to chase anyone down, we continued forward to the military checkpoint. We waited in line . . . still no van. We went through inspection . . . still no van. We waited and talked with soldiers . . . still no van.

Just as we started to pull away onto the highway again, the van pulls into the checkpoint and a small heavyset woman came running from the van screaming for us to stop. I could see the van successfully pushing through the checkpoint. Soon several soldiers, the screaming woman, the driver of the van—who was also the husband of the screamer—and half a dozen teenagers had converged on the RV. The soldiers seemed to only be curious.

The mirrors of the RV and van hit so hard, the impact swung the van mirror back 180 degrees and smashed out his driver-side window. The husband wanted to head back to San Ignacio, but I told him we had no gas and no money, and all those things were in the next town, not back in San Ignacio. After a brief discussion in Spanglish and body language, we pulled out onto the highway to Vizcaino; me following the van and Rachel following me.

Vizcaino had the bank, the gas station and auto parts store. Rachel went to the bank, while I took care of the van. The husband and I both thought the other was at fault, but rather than blaming him—and since it would be easier, without any bullshit—I followed the husband into the auto parts store and bought him a new window and mirror for 1,200 pesos. I thought the price was fair, and besides, he had to drive out of his way. I told him good-bye and we were on our way. Sometimes these types of things can turn into big hassles, so we were thankful it was only 100 bucks and 10 minutes.

Here's the rest of the timeline (you know, like they do in movies). I'd get more detailed but my editor only gives me so many words.

Saturday, March 13, 2010: Guerrero Negro, BCS. We drove to the Guerrero Negro lagoon to have lunch and check on the whales. The lagoon was still very alive with whales, but only a single camper. Turned out the couple in the camper were on their way to the Blues & Arts. We shared our excitement for the event without mentioning our connection, then we said, "Good-bye," thinking to ourselves, "How cool is that?"

Sunday, March 14, 2010: El Rosario, BC. The drive to El Rosario was the most magnificent display of Baja flora I had ever seen; lush green with blossoms of many brilliant colors.

Monday, March 15, 2010: San Felipe, BC. Highway 3 from Ensenada to San Felipe junction was the worst road in Baja. The rain storms had created potholes too large and too frequent to consider driving around. It was a matter of driving slow, dodging the bigger of the holes and hanging on.

The last 20 miles into San Felipe was a race. Rachel slowly shrank in the rear view mirror as I accelerated towards home. We were looking forward to relaxing and being with friends and family.

The 2010 Blues & Arts Fiesta ( was a day to remember with double the crowd from last year, as a couple thousand people filled the baseball arena in downtown San Felipe. The morning winds caused some concerns and disruption to vendors, with gusts so strong I watched a large, 50-gallon-drum-sized BBQ get lifted and toppled. One artist's EZup actually flew into the air high enough and far enough to carry it over a row of parked cars and a 10-foot wall.

By early afternoon the wind had stopped, the magnificent sound of blues filled the air, and the festival goers enjoyed a fun-filled day of music, the region's best artists, food provided by local restaurants, along with plenty of libations and beverages throughout the day.

We are happy to be home. ;)

ENSENADA - 8th Annual Festival del Caballo, Arte y Vino

May 23, 2010: 8th Annual Festival del Caballo, Arte y Vino
10am-6pm: Equestrian and charrería exhibitions, Andalusian dancing horses, folkloric & flamenco dancers, music, arts & crafts, wine tasting and regional foods.

Festivities take place at Adobe Guadalupe Vineyards & Inn in Valle de Guadalupe. Info at tel. (646)120-5878 or cell tel. (646)947-7146; e-mail

PEOPLE & VOICES - Illegal Tuna Pens & Gill Nets

Sportfishing vs. Tuna Pens and Illegal Gill Netting

by Dann Manz

I want to address what I perceive as a serious problem in Baja. I live in northern Baja, near Ensenada, which used to be called the Yellowtail Capital of the World. Today, yellowtail are almost nonexistent in this area. White sea bass are also not visiting our area with any regularity. The question then becomes, "WHY?"

To me, it is as plain as the nose on my face. Tuna pens (a floating round netted enclosure to hold and raise tuna) are having a huge impact on sportfishing in Baja. Today Baja has eight permitted tuna pen operations. They feed the tuna three times a day, six days a week. Sardines are their favorite food. This year 300 tons of tuna were raised, and 95 percent are sold to Japan at $9.50–$45 per pound, depending on the size of the fish. The larger the fish, the more it is worth per pound.

So, in order the get the tuna to their highest value, they have to be fed huge quantities of food. In order to feed the tuna, the tuna companies own boats that scour the ocean looking for the proper food—sardines and anchovies. The problem is that is exactly why a yellowtail would want to come to Ensenada. They like sardines and anchovies, also. If they come to the store and the store is out, they go elsewhere, where the shopping is better. So, our sportfishing industry is suffering due to a few rich men who own these tuna pens.

Sportfishing can represent a huge portion of the economy of a city like Ensenada. Sportfishermen spend money in motels, marinas, restaurants, gas stations, grocery stores, etc. The decline in sportfishing is very apparent every weekend. The charter captains are also noticing a decline in reservations and fish.

The other problem the tuna pens are causing is pollution. They will refute it, but, again, it is only common sense to see what is happening. When you crowd hundreds of large tuna in a confined space, and feed them large amounts of food, their excrements are also going to be in a confined space. That is pollution! Nitrogen in large doses to the ocean in a small area changes the environmental equilibrium of that ecosystem. Pelagic fish (fish that migrate seasonally) will avoid areas of pollution and look for bluer, cleaner water, where they can also find dinner.

Another reason for the extinction of the sportfish is the illegal gill netting that is going on, at least in my area. I fish Ensenada Bay at least once or twice a week. I see all the buoys, pop bottles, corks, etc., that mark the illegal gill nets. I have witnessed the nets being pulled and set. Most of the time trolling becomes an obstacle course. I have lost dozens of expensive lures that get snagged in the poorly or unmarked nets.

I know of only one licensed gill netter in our area. I know where his nets are, so I can pick out the illegal ones. I have witnessed small boats running up on shore, before they get to the boat launch, and a guy will jump out with a burlap sack or two over his shoulders. He then climbs up the hill to meet up with a vehicle waiting for him, thus avoiding any possible run in with authorities. They are all blatant in their activities. It is done in the daytime or after dark. There is no enforcement that I have ever seen. I have been fishing here for four years and have never been stopped or asked for my fishing license (which I always have). I understand the economy is slow, but I don’t see how that gives illegal gill netting the OK to continue.

I also fish the local estuary. I have seen the same activities going on there that I see in the ocean. I have never seen any authorities in the estuary, nor do I think they care. Mexico has decided to turn their heads the other way when it comes to the ocean, the fish and the environment. I don’t understand why, as the Mexican government is losing huge amounts of money, with the reduction of sportfishing in the area.