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The coast to coast Baja California trek: A five-star hike through a unique desert

In 1685, Franciscan missionary, explorer, cartographer and astronomer Padre Eusebio Kino led the first non-indigenous expedition across the width of Baja California, through the high walls and treacherous canyons of La Sierra de la Giganta.

pg8aToday you can repeat Kino’s feat — albeit via a much more hiker-friendly route — thanks to an organization called Adixion, which operates out of Mexicali. Their Coast to Coast trail is 111 kilometers long and is perhaps the most popular of only a few organized trekking routes to be found in Mexico.

Retired Guadalajara businessman Hector Casas walked this trail last year and told me it was one of the best experiences of his life.

“So what’s so special about trekking in Baja California?” I asked him.

“Baja California has always been one of my favorite places,” Casas replied. “Just for starters, take the Sea of Cortez. Jacques Cousteau called it the ‘world’s aquarium.’ Its turquoise waters are filled with thousands of amazing and rare species of sea creatures. But in addition to marine life, I love the desert, the cacti, the dunes. So I decided to give this route a try, to see if I could walk all the way from one coast to the other.”

Casas continued: “I found out that Adixion Tours organizes the walk every year in November. They only do it in the winter because in the summer the temperature in the peninsula can reach 45° (113° Fahrenheit). In the winter, however, it’s a pleasant 24 degrees, with partly cloudy skies and even a bit of drizzle.”

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