I don’t know why I even bothered with the map, but here it is, in all it’s mostly-inaccurate glory.

View Larger Map

Truthfully, we did start and end in San Diego, but since this is listed [STRICTLY] under traveling in Mexico, I can’t really include that, now can I?  Also, I have no pictures, so it’d be pointless.  Much like this map.

The only solid parts of the maps are the three points and the fact that you can drive between them.  In actuality, the driving between these three points is easier than the map suggests because [as truth would have it] you can drive on areas of Mexico that Google does not consider a road…  Like, the much smoother lake bed leading to Guadalupe Canyon Oasis/Hot Springs.  Furthermore, you don’t really need an exit to drive off the highway.  At least, not an official one.

Also, I’m glad I didn’t drive through Mexicali alone.  I would have got very lost.  Actually, on that note, I did get lost immediately after crossing the border…

120 seconds later I was in Mexico for the first time in my entire life. 121 seconds later I was lost.

So everyone told me that you can go into Mexico with no trouble, but ohhhh no, the Mexican border patrol has to stop ME and ask if I have anything to declare.  Meanwhile, the people we are following disappear into the depths of Mexicali…

Thank god for still being in US cell phone service range, as that very immediately saved my ass.

Mexican Toll Booth

I don’t really know where people get off thinking they can make any money charging people to drive across a dry lake bed, but it works.  It apparently also has a list price of 10 tacos per vehicle, but you can totally talk them down to five tacos, for two vehicles.  (This is assuming you can pick up a taco for 10 pesos, as advertised in Mexicali)

It's ok if this picture makes your eyes hurt

This is the road you want.  I’m serious.   Not even the Mexican highway (which is honestly nicer than many American roads) is as smooth as this puppy.  Sustained ~60mph for the following 20 miles.

Das Bier!

Why would I put a German caption on a picture taken in Mexico…


aaaaaannnnnnndddd this is why you buy a 4wd vehicle.

NOCONOC may or may not be a legit license plate number.  You be the judge.

Now I don’t mean to insult any culture by saying this, but it’s worth noting that I was fucking filthy only 1.5 hours after getting into Mexico and having to dig a truck out of the goddamn sand.  It might just be the way of the land.

Furthermore, you don’t actually need a four-wheel drive vehicle to make it to Guadalupe Canyon Oasis, you just need to not drive through the easily avoidable sand dunes.

Stuck again. Dammit.

Maybe, on second thought – just get the 4wd.  On to the campsite…

Close Packed Oranges!

After digging out of the sand and finally arriving at the Oasis, we got to bust open the close-packed oranges!  Chemistry joke, anyone?  Anyone?  Close packed, get it? Grain structure?

Livin' it up

I know it’s only the middle of the photo series, but this might be THE quintessential photo of what Guadalupe Canyon Oasis can offer you.  Not the PBR – you have to bring that yourself, but a very, very nice place to drink it.  They maintain the sites very well.  The whole grounds are very clean and the tubs were inviting, with a natural feel to them.  The plumbing was hilarious though, and required us to bust out the duct tape no less than two times.


That covers all the campsite photos, next up are from hiking up the Canyon, to look at the many available waterfalls.  I think we saw three of them, officially?  Hard to know, for sure…


Waterfall #1

This waterfall drains nowhere, visibly.  Just seeps into the sand.  I’m told it usually flows much more than that, though.


Moar Rocks!

A bit colorful, no?

Stabby plant doesn't want to be touched.

Waterfall #3 Pool

So if you can imagine taking a 10ft deep swimming pool, and placing it  in a rock ledge, I’m pretty sure this is what you would end up with.

Waterfall #3

[no pics of waterfall #2, or #4, or #5, or #6, or #7]

Cactus Skeleton

Oasis. Desert.

Well, that’s it for the Oasis.  We rolled outta there, filled up just outside of Mexicali and headed to the Tecate border and got extremely lucky (no line!).


Great Wall of 'Merica

And that wraps it up.  If you’re looking for a great place to spend the weekend, and want to just get away from civilization, Guadalupe Canyon Oasis is an excellent choice.  I know I’ll definitely be going back.  This was a very pleasant introduction to traveling in Mexico.  If you want your trip to be sans-digging out of the sand, just don’t drive through the sand dunes!  Also don’t drive through the lake bed after it rains.
Oh, and we stayed in La Playita.  Very nice site.  A bit more secluded than some of the others, with a large tub.

Final words of wisdom:
Shirtcock is the counterculture to topless women.  And it’s not pretty.