We recently returned from a nostalgic trip to Mulege and Loreto in Baja, Mexico. We've driven the road many times, even before the road was paved, but not in the last five years. What we expected was numerous washouts and potholes. What we found was a well-paved, rather well-marked, relatively clean road that varied from good to excellent, mostly very good. There were no washouts (as bridges have been built) and no potholes below San Quintin except for 25 miles on each side of Vizcaino, and that's being fixed. To be sure, there were places where you want to drive slowly and quite carefully, but on the open stretches I felt quite comfortable driving 60-70 m.p.h., and 50-60 through the mountains was not unusual.
But all is not perfect yet. For whatever reason, a number of gas stations, particularly between El Rosario and Santa Rosalia, still run out of gasoline, especially Pemex Extra, which most American cars require. So it absolutely behooves the motorist to fill up the gas tank whenever you see a gas station, even if you need just a few gallons.
While not opulent, we found the El Presidente Hotel in Loreto ($54 double) to be as tastefully designed and decorated as any seaside resort we have ever seen.
JAMES McN. STANCILL