After a very pleasant stay in Ligui I started my ascent of La Giganta. The Sierra de la Giganta is the range of mountains that run down the east side of the Baja California South peninsula. If you want to go south then you have to cross them a couple of times. Today’s crossing would stretch about 40km and during the course of that it is predominantly up hill – add a 30kg running stroller and suddenly you have a challenge. There are some rewards for undertaking this climb. Firstly the views are breath taking (see pictures below). After tracking along the bottom of this mountain range for so many km it is nice to finally be amongst them. The rock formations are dramatic and the valleys amazing. It is not a continuous climb. The first section is pretty brutal and you spend some time panting at the side of the road but then it starts to mellow out and the climbs become more gradual and road starts to weave in big loops, skirting past massive cliffs. The road them drops into a canyon and follows a river that mirrors your direction but stays tantalizingly out of range – all I wanted to do was strip off and dive in…
Once you have managed to complete the climbs and the winds you are jettisoned out on to a vast plain that very gradually descends into to Ciudad Insurgentes. I knew this was coming and was looking forward to more gentle terrain after completely a marathon distance while crossing a mountain range but it wasn’t to be that easy. As soon as you arrive at the beginning of the gentle descent the road is diverted due to road repairs. For about 8km you have to navigate a rough dirt road while dodging large lorries that are kicking up vast clouds of dust.
Finally I arrived on the smooth tarmac and fell into a nice gentle pace as the sun was dropping behind the cacti. There great thing about today was that I saw the sun rise on one side of the peninsula and then managed to watch it set on the other – both equally beautiful.
The last challenge of the day was finding somewhere to camp. It was getting dark and I was over 40km from any form of civilisation. The road was long and straight with nothing but impenetrable fields of cacti on both sides. The km clicked by and a slight feeling of desperation started to set in… After a total of 50km I found a little track cutting into the cacti and decided to chance it.
I am now hiding in my tent with all sorts of creepy crawlies circling my tent. Something as brushed past a couple of time… fingers crossed for a good night sleep!!!