8/Cataviña to Santa Rosalillita

Distance: 120 mi (193.1km), 126 miles from resupply point in Cataviña to Santa Rosalillita

Notes: the longest section of the Baja Divide without resupply, unique ecosystems between Cataviña and the coast, remote fish camp at San José del Faro might sell fresh seafood, short steep hills in the first half of this section, the final miles to Santa Rosalillita tend to be washboarded, Cataviña is 6 miles off route on MEX1

Warning: This is the longest section of the Baja Divide without water. Pack 8-12 liters of water from Cataviña to get to rancho El Cardon, over 100 miles away, where you can ask for water from the well.

Resupply: Cataviña-FWMCR Bus, El Cardon-W ask for water, Santa Rosalillita-fWM

Cataviña, six miles south of the route, is an essential resupply as there are no stores until Santa Rosalillita 126 miles away (120 miles once off pavement).  The only official water resource is found at El Cardon, 100 miles from Cataviña, where you must ask for water.  

Fill up to capacity in preparation for the most remote section of the Baja Divide and the best access to the wild Pacific Coast. Be prepared with 2-3 days of food and 8-12 liters of water. A morning start from Cataviña is recommended to reach El Cardon during the second day and Santa Rosalillita by the end of the second day. Another strategy would be to leave Cataviña in the afternoon, get to El Cardon by the end of the second day to fill up on water.

The area around Cataviña is characterized by large boulders. The road to the coast is used by fishermen in San José del Faro and the few ranchers in the region. It climbs and descends steeply over a series of ridges through a protected region featuring some of the highest plant density on the route, including some species which are unique to this section and thrive on coastal moisture. About 25 miles from the highway is an ejido community center with a few picnic tables and trash cans which would make a good campsite if leaving Cataviña late in the afternoon.

You reach the Pacific Ocean at the small fish camp of San José del Faro. This is the beginning of the third and longest section of the Baja Divide along the Pacific. Ask to buy lobster or crab in season. The track from San José del Faro is rocky and steep at first, but improves towards BahíBlanco. The coastline is also famed for a series of surf breaks called the Seven Sisters. Raúl– a charismatic man in his 80’s who once crossed the USA by Harley Davidson– lives at El Cardon and offers campsites on the beach, primarily occupied by surfers. Water is available for a small fee, as this is the only well on this section. You may be provided with water out of plastic drums, which comes from the well on site. The road continuing to Santa Rosalillita is wider and washboarded at times. Santa Rosalillita, an active fishing village, has two small stores and four rooms for rent.

The total distance between resupply is 126 miles and considering both food and water requirements it is best to move quickly to complete the section within two days. If more time is planned, adjust supplies accordingly.

Next section: Santa Rosalillita to Bahía de Los Àngeles

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