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10 March 2014

Baja Bound, Part 15. Trip to San Javier and La Mision San Francisco Javier de Vigge-Biaundo, Baja Sur, Mexico


Our day Trip from Loreto to San Javier



From Loreto we decided to drive up to San Javier in the La Giganta mountains. According to tourist information the road was suppose to be partially paved, good,  but narrow. So off we went. About 2 km south of Loreto we turned right onto the mountain road to San Javier. 
On the Way up to San Javier

Fast we realized that  "paved and good" was a misconception. As we found out, this road was washed out about 2 years ago by heavy rain, and very little has been repaired since. I was very happy to be in our truck. The grade was steep in places, the road very narrow, some places with half of the road missing, some riverbeds ( Arroyos ) flooded we had to drive through, and all along, the road was very bumpy and rough. Anders just loved it. One curve was so tight and narrow, we hardly made it through.
The Road to San Javier




All of a sudden around a sharp curve, a over-loaded construction truck was stuck with a flat tire. We gave one of the men a drive up to the mission. In very broken Spanish we learnt that he would contact someone in Loreto from up there to come and help fix the tire. But he was actually the person giving guided tours in the mission. 

So once we dropped him off in the village, it took him about 10 minutes, and he reappeared in a blue T-shirt and  greeted us as the guide of the church of the Mision San Francisco Xavier de Vigge-Biaundo. Needles to say that we had a great tour.
Mission San Javier

The mission was founded in 1699 by Padre Francisco Maria Piccolo. Little remains of the original structures. Except the Church which has been rebuilt in 1744 and is well maintained. It features detailed stonework around its doors and windows, and inside a gilded altarpiece with the statue of San Javier. Every December 3rd, hundreds of pilgrims celebrate the saint's fiesta up here.
Interesting stonework














The village of San Javier is very clean and pretty. The missionaries brought seeds to this valley to grow a variety of fruits and also cotton and sheep, from which the indigenous people learned to weave fabrics. Around the church, beautiful orange trees are growing. One of the main crops in this valley today are onions. Irrigation canals from the time of the Jesuits still water the local fields.
Saludo from a Rancher

On the drive up and down the scenery was beautiful. The Sierra de la Giganta in its rugget best. There are some ranches along the way, but the one visible about half way up is the pretty Rancho Las Parras.


Village of San Javier







Before driving back down to Loreto, we had coffee and homemade date loaf with a date and soft cheese spread served by the owner at the Palapa San Javier. Delicious. We were probably the only clients all day, because besides the broken down truck, we only met one more vehicle on the way down.






This is one of the most memorable side trips we made on the Baja and well worth it.


Beautiful Trip


For more pictures of this trip, please go to our Link to our Web album













Click on any of the links below to go to other parts of this wonderful trip.

1.       2.      3.      4.      5.      6.     7.      8.      9.      10.

11.    12.    13.    14.    15.    16.    17.    18.    19.    20.

21.    22.    23.    24.    25.    26.    27.    28.    29.    30.

31.    32.    33.

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