Nov 02, 2010
THE FOLLOWING ACTUALLY HAPPENED OCTOBER 31, 2010.
A long long day with 430 miles under the tires. Left Totonaka RV Park at 6:30AM and arrived at Celestino RV Park at 5:00PM. The exact same timing as last year. However this year due to a number of incidents we only had 51 minutes when Colin was not driving. A very long day for all.
Just before Ciudad Obregon at KM 27/28 we came across a group of ‘guys’ in some sort of uniform, using red cones to direct traffic to one lane….they did not look legit to us, but they did not flag us down so we all just passed by. They did stop some Mexican vehicles. They did have some sort of weapon. We did not feel threatened. They could have been some local group…..????
At the final left turn off the perifico from C. Obregon back onto HWY 15, the last of our group went through a red, following someone else as well as a local next to them.. They were stopped and a fine of 400 Pesos was quickly folded into the palm of the officers’ hand and quickly placed in his pocket. Word of warning…if a sign says “Alto” or the light is red….STOP! A Mexican may get away with it daily but those cops are just waiting for you….!
Then came Navojoa….detour big time. Never mind using the turn left at the Best Western as the perifoco, it is now Main Street. The real main street is under construction so everyone is using a perifico. Only problem is that there are no right of ways being observed so be very careful.
We got seperated from our group and seriously got lost! Somehow we got onto a different detour and caught up to them even though they were way ahead. This is a 17 KM detour starting at the Best Western left turn. Unfortunately the speed limit is 40/KPH . We are so glad we did this on a Sunday with less truck traffic.
As we drove today I kept looking for signs of the Day of the Dead, alters, roadside memorials but nada. At 2 or 3 cemeteries that we passed I saw a very few families tidying up the grave site. There was the one family who was have a picnic graveside. I was disappointed….so very different than Patzcuaro with all the alters done up and the decorations for the entire village. Hopefully we will see more the next 2 days;
Once we got on the Culiacan/Mazatlan Autopista we noticed a HUGE militalry presence. We saw several sandbag bunkers along both sides of the road, the odd solitary police patrol and then between 8-10 military vehicles in convoy with soldiers standing looking out in all directions with guns ready to do business. What a relief!! They are patrolling this dangerous area. I felt safer than I had earlier. So folks don’t let fear be your guide south this winter. At KM 126 Northbound the military have set up a camp in a closed Pemex lot.
Due to the uncertain conditions of the vados from exit 78 to Villa Celeste (Noe could not confirm that we could get through) we chose, for our first time to use exit 75 to Celestino RV Resort. We has a few surprises along the way, nothing serious but certainly entertaining.
Despite advising the park that we were arriving on the 31st it seemed they were not prepared for out group of 5 and odd requests. However within 30 minutes we are all parked. Off to the beach to catch the glorious sunset with the shrimp boats in the foreground. Longs walks on the beach were in order with the exception of one who went in for a dip, came out and gave us an “au naturelle” show!!! Beware the mozzies are here at sunset. Sad to report that today no colorful shells to be found, just huge, almost enormous lobster carsasses.
We were advised that the wifi was working but not told that it only worked at the front office!!
Also we specifically asked re being able to do the turn around and out through the field…well Chris never did mention that the field has not yet been cleared. Colin chose not to drive through the high grass and so on Nov. 1 we will have to disconnect the car and back out of here…and then reconnect. In fact the 3 5th wheels also chose to turn around within the park and not risk the field. I’m sure it will be cleared eventually.