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La Paz summer bound

3706 Views 16 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  TopShot25
We're thinking this year to trailer (25') down from Sandie Eggo to La Paz this year---first ever actually. We're figuring between mid-June and mid-July period for 5 days (get in two days to fish) until work calls back. I know besides the tourist card, Mexican insurance for both truck and trailer and boat, extra spare engine (truck and boat), extra leaf springs and extra set of bearings and the usual carry-ons. Drive down with the boat gas tank (200 gals.) empty??

Tow truck is 95' Dodge Cummins diesel, boat motor is a 350 gasser.

Anything else missing? We want to leave as early in the morning, possible to get to La Paz in 1 1/2 days? Leave on a Thurs. and get back home on Monday?

Caravaners (sp??) interested, post up or PM me.
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i think it'd be a BIG mistake to try to do a trip like that in 5 days. you can make it to la paz in a day and half, IF nothing goes wrong. but you'd have to have a near perfect trip down and back for that to happen. assume you have a flat tire or two either coming or going. that's gonna add some time. not a ton, but perhaps an hour per tire by the time you jack up either the truck or boat, get the spare out, take the old one off, ect, ect, ect. yeah yeah, i know, it doesn't take that long to change a tire, but i'd plan on it taking that long down there with semi trucks blowing by you while you're on the side of the road. now think about how long of a delay you're gonna have if say the truck over heats? summer time in southern baja is HOT, and it's a possibility. how about if a belt breaks? what if the alternator goes out and you have to wait until the next day to get a new one? then you'd be getting to la paz saturday sometime, and you've lost a day of fishing.

these are all things to think about. you can definitely make it there in a day and a half, two days, but like i said, it'd have to be near perfect. and traveling that road at night is not the best idea.

so you leave on thursday and get there, hopefully, sometime friday. you said you'd want to fish two days and get home on monday sometime. well, if you're gonna get home on monday and you're planning on a day and a half travel time, then you're gonna have to leave sometime sunday to make it home monday. and like i said, it's not a great idea to drive that road at night. so you're gonna have to do one of two things:

1. fish half day and leave at noon or 1ish to drive home. in this case you're not getting 2 days of fishing, you're getting a day and a half.

2. fish all day, leave around dinner time, and drive at night, after a full day of fishing, when you're dead tired. in my opinion, that's a VERY BAD idea. you need to be sharp when you drive that road, and you're not gonna be after a day of fishing.

now you get home monday night sometime probably pretty late. you're tired from driving two days and have to unload the boat, the truck, the fish, ect. you're NOT gonna want to work the next day. you'll need a day to relax.

the other thing to think about is, have you ever fished la paz before? ever even been there? if you haven't fished it before it might take you two days just to figure out where to make bait. let alone figure out where the fish are. you can check reports and talk to people to figure it out, but if you get into town late friday you might not find anyone to talk to. so your two days, or day and a half of fishing time might turn into two days of wandering around trying to figure things out. now, if you've fished down there before this probably won't be the case. but even if you've fished down there on a panga or cruiser it's gonna be different on your own boat.

i'd recommend putting off a trip like this until you can take 10-14 days for that trip. plan 2 days down, two days back and then you'll have 6-8 days of fishing time. fish a couple days, take a day off, look around, ect... then if it takes you 3 days to get down if something goes wrong you still have plenty of days to fish. and you don't have to push yourself getting down there and back.

or, you could fly down and fish a panga or cruiser for two days and then fly home for a nice 5 day trip. i'm sure you could find a good deal on a trip like that at the up coming fred hall show.

anyway, this is just my two cents.

Gettin' Ugly
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Hi, Glendon:

Yea, points well taken, I know it's a bit tough given the short time to drive and fish it, like you said. One bad time for any mechanical failure and there goes the trip. We'll have to reconsider it and maybe try a BOLA trip, but prefer La Paz.

Yes, we've fished La Paz several times, talked to a few other private boaters down there, but not in any great details, just saw their catches, blah, blah... I want to try to get them bait fish with the tossed bait net and stomp on the deck, lol.

We fish somewhere in Baja every summer for the past 7-8 years: East Cape, Loreto or LP. But all those were on the fly down, hop on a panga routine, with most trips booked by Jonathan Roldan.

We'll have to see if we can get a more extended time-off, if not, going to BOLA is the 2nd option.
the farthest i've been is loreto. we did that trip in 10 days. 7 days of fishing i think. it was an INCREDIBLE trip. we're hoping to do la paz sometime too, i just don't have the funds for it right now.

BOLA is a VERY cool place. if you're never been there before the first time you see the bay when you get to the top of the hill on the road is a site to see. it's awesome. but that road can be TERRIBLE. it was when we were there, but that was a LONG time ago. i think it's only like 30 miles, maybe less, but it's like 15 miles an hour the whole way dodging pot-holes. who knows, it might be better now, but i doubt it. but BOLA is a fun place with many areas to fish.

anyway, wherever you go, good luck, be safe, have fun, and take LOTS of pictures for the report when you get back. oh, and GREAT idea starting to plan now.

Gettin' Ugly
Personally, I think that's WAY too much driving stress for only 1.5 days fishing at best. And what if the wind doesn't cooperate once you get there; assuming the drive is uneventful?

I think you should consider Bahia de Los Angeles. The fishing can be quite good during your time period, for both YT and possibly billfish and dorado. BOLA is easily doable within the daylight hours of that time of year.

In addition, and G.U.S. may be interested in this, the 43 miles in are now all paved and there is a Pemex station operating at the Bay, although on somewhat limited hours. Diesel available.

One other option at BOLA....the Vagabundos del Mar Club, easily the largest Baja boating club of it's kind, is scheduled to do a modified 40th anniversary "re-enactment" of the voyage that led to the formation of the club; a cruise from BOLA to the mainland and back and including the Midriff islands south of BOLA down to San Francisquito. Details aren't complete yet and it may only involve a mid-Sea rendezvous with members who will be coming over from the mainland side from Bahia Kino. It is anticipated that the trip would also include some overnight stops at anchorages in the Midriff area. Probable dates are during the last week in June. I did a trip with them a few years back that hit San Francisquito, the Midriffs and La Guardia. Most beautiful boating trip I have ever taken and we (as a group) caught YT, sailfish, dorado and WSB. Probably 10-15 boats were involved so there was a degree of safety in numbers. Trip will probably be about 4-6 days but you could return to port early, if you choose.

There is usually no charge for their small boat cruises; just your own expenses.

I am still trying to decide if I'm gonna do this.

Anyway, on any drive down you do, tow EMPTY. Diesel much cheaper in Mexico and most find the quality much better.

There is also now word coming out of Baja California Sur (below guerrero *****) that boats must now have a Temporary Importation Permit (TIP) that can only be obtained in Mexico at certain locations. This is a permit that has been required on the mainland for many years. It's a 10 year permit that costs 50.00 but obtaining one will be dependent on getting to an Mexican office during their operating hours and supplying the usual amounts of paperwork. This may not coincide well with your driving plans. I am trying to get more details on this.

BTW, if you are determined to do La Paz on the schedule you mentioned, I would make every effort to get as far as San Quintin by Wednesday night. The traffic between Santo Tomas and San Quintin is really getting bad during the daylight hours, due to all the agricultural trucks and buses and the hills. From there you ought to be able to make Loreto, at least, if you leave at first light on Thursday.
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I've done this round-trip several times (trailered to Loreto, La Paz, Cabo and back)with 24-26' boats and also down the mainland several times since the 60's. It's an extremely stressful white knuckle trip, no matter how many times you do it.

You can't drive at night, only in daylight hours and can't go too fast. Each lane is only 9 feet wide, compared to 11' in US, and there are no shoulders, so you end up driving down the middle of the road when you can. 6" of road way to left and right of trailer tires in your lane. Free ranging cattle will sometimes run out into the street with no warning (almost hit a couple at night between Loreto and Trupui). Chuckholes can appear and sometimes go for miles. If (when) you get a flat tire, you will have to park and change it in the traffic lane due to lack of shoulders, with Semi's and busses whizzing by at 70 mph just a couple of feet away. This gets really hairy when the flat tire is on the left side. I carried 3 spare tires on my boat, all 10-plies @ 100psi and a baja-ready, beefed-up trailer.

If you have only five days total, you should assume 1-1/2 to 2 days to get down and 1-1/2 to 2 days back which leaves 1-2 days for fishing. In my opinion, going to La Paz is not worth the stress and costs involved, and that's assuming everything goes well (no broken axle, leaf springs, etc), in a 5 day trip.

As a maximum southerly baja destination for 5 days, you might consider Loreto, although this is somewhat far also. Excellent fishing in Loreto at that time of year for dorado, some yellowtail, some billfish, and much closer to fishing destinations than La Paz, which it very far from harbor to fishing areas. Other closer options to consider for 5 days might be BOLA and Mulege. You can make BOLA in about 1 day which would leave you 3 days for fishing.

Be sure to keep us posted regarding what you decide and how your trip goes.
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RE: BOLA bound now June 16 and 19th

Thank, guys for all your input and advise, BOLA, it is, plans are now changed to leave SD on the 16th and return on the 19th of June.

Anyone interested send me a PM for more details.
No Msg dude. Major mistake to think you can do a trip of this magnitude in your ultra-short time frame. Ensenada or SCI would be a much better choice, especially during this time of year.
i tend to agree with mike on this one. you're really stretching it with a trip like that as well. or anything past san quintin, you should really plan to make it at least a week trip. and like mike said, ensenada is great for a weekend trip. stay at the coral, put the boat in the slip. you can even launch in san diego, we've done it that way a few times.

Gettin' Ugly
RE: BOLA bound now June 16 and 19th

Be SURE and get the Fish N Map chart of the area. There are some hellacious wash rocks in and around BOLA, some that are not near land at all. Be advised.

Good map for fishing info, too.

There is a chance I may be there at that time, too. Turns out I cant make the Vagabundos gig, as I have a work committment.
RE: BOLA bound now June 16 and 19th

Do not drive at night.....the bulls come very close to road and sometime on the road with no warning...hairy to say the least. Trailered to Loreto last year and only drove during daylight hours and the trip went very well. Although we took 8 days to do it. Five days is way to short.

If you do go for it be very careful and I hope you have good fishing.

RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

Okay, chiming back in and after going thru this thread many times and trying to get 2 guys to extend their vacation days, here's the latest:

The main idea is to fish for a 3 days in La Paz, if we can do that, we're golden.

Sept. 23...leave SD
Sept. 24...travelling
Sept. 25...travelling and arrive in La Paz
Sept. 26...FISH
Sept. 27...FISH
Sept. 28...FISH
Sept. 29...leave La Paz, a sad day, and starting for home
Sept. 30...travelling back home
Oct. 1.....travelling and arrive home

9 days total, tight, but do-able, yes?? The three days of fishing is accomplished and back to work on Monday (oh God), maybe.

Staying at the Club El Moro (buddy's timeshare)...
Slipping the boat for a few days at the

Anyone else want to caravan with us, let me know...they'll be at least two other boaters coming down.

BOLA's still on too for June 16 to the 19th, let's buddy boat this one too.
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RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

Okay, any last minute boaters interested...we can actually fish four (4) days, with the above date-time frame, if we make the drive in two days: SD to GN or SI, GN or SI to LP.

We have 2 boaters in tow now, one boater has been up and down for the past 12 years and figures without any delays, 2 days is very likely.

Last check (past weekend), diesel prices are $1.86 a gallon, not sure what premium gas was, but cheaper than the States.
RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

Dude, you guys are hard core......

Even with the road in perfect condition (which it certainly is NOT, after the hurricane), that's four days driving for four days fishing!

If I wuz you, I'd head back to BOLA again. The dorado and sails are apparently still there, south of the town and the whale sharks are in, too. Two days driving and six days fishing and you avoid the destruction further south. Stay at Costa del Sol in their A/C.
RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

>Dude, you guys are hard core......
>Even with the road in perfect condition (which it certainly is
>NOT, after the hurricane), that's four days driving for four
>days fishing!
>If I wuz you, I'd head back to BOLA again. The dorado and
>sails are apparently still there, south of the town and the
>whale sharks are in, too. Two days driving and six days
>fishing and you avoid the destruction further south. Stay at
>Costa del Sol in their A/C.

Hey, Capt. Hook:

Hard core, yea, guess you could say that, lol. We just need to get away from the hustle and bustle of the urban city life and chill out.

Yep, that's two days down, and two days up, there's a chance we might fish it for 5 days and leave on the 30th of Sept. and call in sick on Monday, just to rest up for a day.

Just got an e-mail from someone who came back this Sunday and reported the roads are all good, there's a few sections btw Santa Rosalia and Loreto that are currently uplifted with dirt but passable. Those big trucks have to get supplies and deliveries thru come hell or high water, of which there's no water crossings, whewww.

They got the military boys out there packing them with earth.
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RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

Good fishing to you guys.

I am hoping to go somewhere in mid-October but it might just be a Pacific Coast trip.
RE: La Paz..Sept. 23 to Oct. 1--UPDATE!!

>Hard core, yea, guess you could say that, lol. We just need to
>get away from the hustle and bustle of the urban city life and chill out.

I donâ??t know about you but two long full days of WHITE KNUCKLE DRIVING each way does not seem like getting away and chilling out. It does sound awesome though, good luck.
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