Travelling south we entered the road up to the mountains Sierra de Santa Lucia to the rock paintings, an UNESCO world heritage, by San Francisco de la Sierra. On the way you have an awesome view over the valley. 30 km were remaining, but the paved road ends after 23 km to a rough path and after 25 km it was impassable for our van. We decided to camp at this place and walk 5 km to the village.
The same day Roberto, Peppi and Beneno started to hike there for gathering information and to fix a guide the next morning. After about 3 ½ km a car came along and we could get all the information we needed. The guy in the car fixed a guide for next morning at 10:00 am. Back at our campsite we prepared dinner, relaxed at the campfire and went to bed early.
We got up at 7:00 and had a big breakfast, because we knew this day will become pretty strenuous. At 8:30 we started our hike to the village and followed the rough road along the beautiful canyon. Arrived in the village we bought the visitor tickets and then we walked with a guide to the rock paintings. When you look at them you think a child with seven years can make the same. But these paintings were 10.800 years old! The elevation there is about 2400 m and nowadays it was sea level! This is also the reason, why you can find amphibians of whales and sharks at an elevation of 2000 m in the desert.
The guide spoke only a bit English and we were glad of the translation from Daniela and Roberto. They told us all the history of this village and how hard it was and is to live there. Long time ago, when the Spanish conquerors occurred and collected all the natives to build churches, they stayed hided in the mountains in the desert to keep this world heritage. Else these paintings had been probably destroyed by the Spain.
Near are also more and bigger paintings in other canyons, but you need at least two days getting there with mules and camping over night to discover them. Afterwards the guide leaded us to the upper plateau of village, where you a great view from 2600 m. He also explained us, how they use the rare plants for pharmacy and cactus for water gathering in this unlivable area. With no springs and only a few days with rain in the year the 200 inhabitants try to survive with the income of guided tours to the paintings and selling goat cheese.
We bought 1 kg cheap delicious goat cheese for 100 Peso (6 Dollar!) and walked back to our campsite. With about 17 km walking and plenty of information that day everybody was done. At evening we grilled some pork chops and barbeque potatoes. Then the “Schnitzel Koma” caught us and we went to bed early. Next day we continued down the mountain, “verscheuchten” sometimes the goats from the road and went on to the east coast of the Baja.
Our food storage was gone and so we refilled it in Santa Rosalia. This town is at the beautiful coast, but very polluted by the mining industry. Daniela and Roberto recommended us to continue, because they knew better special places to stay. First stop Mulegé! This was the beginning of our beach hopping tour!