Flying El Golfo de Santa Clara, Sonora Mexico

El Golfo.  The answer to crowded, dirty, noisy, expensive Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco).    A sleepy little fishing village with only one RV park run by Colorado River Adventures.  Our friends, Glenn and Susie, invited us down to share the benefits of their membership.  The manager Pat and his trusty sidekick, Hurricane, make sure everyone at the park has a great time.  There is usually something happening every day or night, if you want to party, play Yankee golf or karaoke with Bones and Rose, two of the nicest people you'll ever meet.  But, you can also find plenty of quiet time if you feel "peopled out".  Beaches that go on forever and amazingly rugged but picturesque, beach front hills make for plenty of quad riding and exploring.  There are several places with great prices on renting ATV's.  Most of the time you have all this to yourself, but an occasional fellow desert beach lover may come along to share a view or a drink.

There's plenty of free camping on the beach with nice shady wood or palm palapas or you can stay with full hookups at the RV resort if they have room, which they usually do.  Either way, the beach and LZ are right at your front door and the air is amazingly smooth and steady all day.

From left to right:  Jeanie and Bubba, Glenn and Susie our hosts,  Jacqueline and Kerry and Steve having lunch in one of the few local restaurants.  This meal was served family-style and everyone shared the excellent dishes brought to us.  No skimping on portions or service.  Good prices, too.  We ate out often when we weren't sharing meals at each other's RVs.

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The Poker Run

The Poker Run
We had great fun doing the poker run.  About fifty vehicles from quads to SUV's made a trip out through the rugged terrain South of town.  Our friends Richard and Leanne loaned us a Yamaha Rhino.  We drove up dry washes, along very narrow ridge tops, through sand dunes and along the beach as we drew cards at designated stops.  Halfway through the trip, we stopped for lunch at the bottom of a huge sand dune, where quads tried to make it to the top.  Kerry was the only one able to and became an instant celebrity.  He was immediately swamped with requests to take cameras to the top.  He made several trips with cameras dangling from straps around his neck before we all moved on again to finish the run.  Back at the RV park clubhouse, we had a wonderful pot luck dinner.  The winner was announced.  If I remember correctly, five aces won!

Flying on the Beach

Flying on the Beach
Flying the beach at El Golfo is wonderful.  Smooth air and very wide beaches, at low tide, make launches and landings very easy.  That is, unless you snag a front wheel on your powered parachute in a sand rut and get turned into a rocky tide wall.  Which is just what happened to Kerry when he tried to get re-airborne instead of killing the engine.  But, all's well that ends well, because within a few hours, fellow beach front campers had torched and bent the front fork back and a local tire (llantera) shop dude had patched Kerry's tire.  The edge of the rim was missing some pieces, so we zip-tied the tire to the rim and he was ready to fly again!

Shell Beach

Shell Beach
South, down the beach about 30 miles is a great place to find shells.  There are two types.  Modern species and ancient fossilized species.  You find the former along the beach as the tides bring them in.  You find the later in the sandy cliffs that have slowly eroded over millions of years.  Perfect, fossilized sand dollars and small nautilus shells sprinkle the foot of the cliffs and as others protrude from the cliff face.

The Olympics

The Olympics
As I mentioned above, there is always something to do at El Golfo.  But, there are some activities you don't want to miss.  One of these is The Olympics.  It covers two full days and you will attempt to master sports you never would have dreamed of.  I won't go into detail here, but the guys and gals who think up these antics have great imaginations and an amazing sense of humor!  Teams of six compete.  Each team gets a flag and a mascot name handed down from previous years.  We were the Sea Lions.  In the rules, it states that "heckling is encouraged".  It turned out that Kerry, our team captain, took this suggestion very much to heart.  He's an excellent heckler and with his expert coaching, we proceeded to raise as much chaos as possible while other competitors attempted to ignore us, as they tried to toss, putt, throw, run, bounce, bat, fling and roll a variety of objects into every type of goal imaginable.  In the end, they all got even.  The last event was passing a water balloon back and forth, farther and farther.  The other teams saved up their unbroken water balloons and the second the head judge proclaimed the games over, they descended upon poor Kerry without mercy.  Cornered, with no place to run, they pummeled him until he was drenched and then threw him in the swimming pool.  This was made worse because the pool heater had stopped working and wasn't scheduled to be fixed until the day after the events.  A cold, shivering Kerry was pulled from the pool and cheered by all back to his RV for dry clothes and a warm evening meal.  If you make it down to El Golfo, ask about Kerry and the Olympics.  I know you will get some warm smiles and hearty laughs as they fill you in on all his antics.  A true folk hero of Mexico.

  Haste La Vista Baby!