Summer, Saguaro, and Surf
By Rick Olson
Stereotyping says our concern should be banditos, drug warfare and disease, but all we can wrap our heads around is finding good waves and making sure we don’t run out of Tecate.
The pace is just right in Baja Norte. Sleepy fishing camps where a little broken spanish can get you a fresh lobster and a few cooking tips for ten pesos. Dilapidated dirt roads make sure you don’t travel too fast and humongous saguaro cacti remind you there’s still lots of time to grow.
It’s liberating reading a map warning that roads my be outdated or have become non-existent. Unlike the surveillance we’ve placed on every break in North America that makes them viewable from a desk chair, the morning ritual in Baja is spreading a map on the truck hood and pointing to geographical points then debating how to get there. Then you get lost for an hour, an afternoon, or days. When you find the wave, you can imagine staying there forever. No crowds, no beach front real estate; no bullshit.
Rick Olson would rather sleep in an uncomfortable bed for free than a comfortable bed unfree. He considers Portland, OR a second home to his tent, but one day intends to dwell in a windy coastal town with a single power line.