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March 02, 2012

WiLDCOAST Team in the Wild

Boojums, Osprey and Waves on the Valle de los Cirios Pacific Coast
WILDCOAST in the field on the Valle de los Cirios Pacific Coast

Even though it has been a few days I am still cleaning the dust out of my ears and I have yet to unravel my camping gear to see what critters came back with me. We did the ten hour jaunt home (which always ends up being twelve) in one swoop leaving me weary and apathetic to cleaning and unpacking. The smells of the wild quickly return when I do finally unzip my bags.

We awoke on an isolated and uninhabited desert point with the sun and broke down camp. The local Osprey monitored our departure from high above and a Boojum Tree’s twisted arms waved goodbye as we began our three hour dirt track journey before reaching the highway. Just after sunset we were jamming up the 5 freeway in desperation for home with hundreds of miles of desert behind us. A full day’s journey had transported us from the depths of the Baja wilderness to the comforts of home.

A few days on this undisturbed stretch of Pacific Coast allows one to reevaluate daily necessities. A cell phone, television, bank account and running water become frivolous. The leaky water jug, a headlamp and a good book become the most important possessions. With the winter sun setting in the early evening we are usually “lights out” by eight. Come morning, there is no need for an alarm clock when the din of the waves and the day’s first ray of sunlight rouse even the deepest sleep.

Nature’s calls to action get the camp moving and soon we are surveying swaths of pristine points and bays for conservation opportunities. The purpose of this trip was to document the flora and fauna of several of WiLDCOAST’s protected properties and evaluate the biological significance of potential acquisitions.

The end results are 1500 photos, a horrifically muddy car and the tranquility of knowing that an escape from the bustle of home is just down the road. Even though my sleeping bag remains unwashed and the camping gear is still in disarray, I am ready to venture south again. - Zach