Category Archives: Travel

Saturday Protest Fizzles

by staff Protest March Editor Bosque Bump 

Happy to find out that Saturday’s “By All Means Necessary” march fizzled and no border disruptions occurred.  Wait times at the border Saturday were significant due to the normal weekend patterns of December shopping.

Plenty of nervous questioning about the planned protest was in social media.  Como Esta La Linea Tijuana has over 300,000 members and is a too much information source for the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa border crossing waits.

As of 10AM Sunday, San Ysidro and Otay Mesa waits are normal, if not quicker than usual. Above photo at dawn Sunday, SY regular lanes.


Central American migrants who still remained outside the “Benito Juárez” sports unit in the center of the city, began to mobilize, and cleaned the place, as some have indicated that they accept the proposal of the authorities of the three levels of government, of moving to the new lodge enabled in the entertainment center “El Barretal” located in the eastern part of the city.

By 1p.m. this Saturday, there had not been any of the demonstrations that were announced yesterday through pamphlets, and that in turn mobilized police authorities, while a group of Central Americans went up a few moments ago to a transport unit saying : “Let’s go to the shelter … Let the gringos fight!”, In reference to the fact that the organizers of the frustrated demonstrations, seemed to be from groups coming from other parts, particularly from the United States.

One of those pamphlets that called for a demonstration in favor of Central American migrants demanded: “Open the border or we close it! Everyone has to be allowed to close! “And they called for a demonstration at 11 am, from the Benito Juarez shelter, where until today there were still more than 5 thousand Central Americans who had not been relocated, many of them because of their refusal to to do it, since some people inside those same caravans, assured them that they were deceived by the authorities, that supposedly would take them “to the jail in Tecate”.

Mario Osuna Jiménez, Secretary of Social Development of the government of Tijuana, informed that until this morning still in El Barretal, there were a total of thousand 255 sheltered, of which 857 are men; 166, women; 102 are girls, and 130 are boys.



Saturday San Ysidro Border Protest

by staff Protest March Editor Bosque Bump 

Hope all is peaceful today.  Good luck at San Ysidro border today.  11AM is the planned beginning of the march at Benito Juarez Sports Complex.


KUSI has learned from sources close to border security, that migrants in the caravan are being encouraged to join another march, or action, at the border on Saturday, December 1, 2018.
The flier is being distributed to all migrants, but a core of migrants, considered the most aggressive, and some paid as provocateurs, are, our sources say, planning to rush the border, and force Border Patrol reaction, which happened last Sunday.

The organizer of the march is affiliated with a website called They are known as advocates of the migrants, and are set on embarrassing the new Mexican President, upon his inauguration, this Saturday.

Our sources tell us the march will occur near the location known as the Chapparal gate.

Furthermore, around 4,000 U.S. military members, including active- duty troops from Camp Pendleton, are likely to remain at the U.S.-Mexico border through the end of January, it was reported Friday.

The Associated Press, citing anonymous sources, reported that the Department of Homeland Security recently made a formal request to the Department of Defense to extend the timeline of military support at the border for an additional month and a half. The DHS request, which the AP said has not yet been approved by Defense Secretary James Mattis, would reduce the military footprint from 5,600 to 4,000.

Rumors swirled last week that the federal government would begin sending troops home, with a full disengagement planned for Dec. 15. During a visit to Border Field State Park on Nov. 20, DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen ducked a question about that timeline, saying only that they would continue their work “until it is resolved.”

Active-duty troops, including about 1,100 from Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, have been stationed at the border since the beginning of November, reinforcing existing fencing with jersey barriers, concertina wire and other barricades in anticipation of migrant caravans from Central America.

Despite the proposed reduction in military presence, DHS officials are now asking federal agencies, including the State, Justice and Energy departments, to send civilian law enforcement officers to the border, according to NPR.

It is unclear how many officers DHS is requesting and whether they would serve as de-facto replacements for the roughly 1,600 troops that would be sent home under the new proposal.

Members of the migrant caravan have remained largely peaceful, especially toward American immigration authorities, since they began to trickle into Tijuana about 20 days ago. A subsection of the group attempted to cross the border without permission last Sunday, spurring Customs and Border Patrol agents to arrest 42 people and use tear gas and pepper bullets to disperse the crowd, much to the chagrin of immigration advocates and activists. The military members stationed at the border did not engage the crowd of migrants during the testy exchange.

Sunday San Ysidro Border Closure

Just before 5PM, southbound to TJ reopened.

Just after 5PM, northbound SY reopened.

This video by Alfredo Alvarez captures the chaos at the El Chaparral Tijuana border crossing Sunday:

by Staff Border Editor Esteban Escapar 

Chaos in Tijuana Sunday, 25 Nov 2018,  San Ysidro border northbound closed to USA at approx 11:30AM.  Tijuana El Chaparral border southbound also closed to Mexico.  This is third SY closure in 7 days.

Caught some mid morning photos on social media about southbound lanes into Tijuana being closed, but dismissed it as rumor.

Clearly the Mexican police and U.S. CBP+military had warnings about migrants storming the border today.  Several news outlets described the migrants as carrying out “protests”.

I have been curious about the vulnerability of the southbound El Chaparral crossing. This is one of the spots where the “migrant caravan” massed this Sunday.

The Alfredo Alvarez video shows several of the migrants walking south at El Chaparral.  Guessing this barrier, 1/4 mile north of the Tijuana El Chaparral crossing, caused that reversal.

Above is another view of the mob at the Tijuana El Chaparral crossing.

Otay Mesa border crossing, approx 5 miles east of San Ysidro is backed up for miles this afternoon.  I have never seen Otay backed up this far in my 12 years here.  Wowzillas!

Photos of some of today’s protestors:

San Ysidro Border Thanksgiving Closure

by staff Military Editor Beatriz Benjamin 

Though this planned exercise was announced by CBP, it caused long lines, confusion and stress.  The closure lasted only 10-15 minutes.  But, that was no Thanksgiving gift to travelers trying to get from Tijuana to San Diego.

This was the second time in four days that the border was closed.  This Monday morning, the SY border was closed from approx 03:15 – 06:30 during the busy morning commute.

Friday morning reports at San Ysidro and Otay Mesa border crossings are minimal wait times and short lines for cars and pedestrians.

There also was a coordinated exercise by Mexican military near the migrant caravan camps…

New Wall at San Ysidro Border Crossing


by staff Construction Editor Catalina Casco 

Still reading and searching about this new metal barricade installed Saturday evening at San Ysidro.  It seems to be in the middle to left lanes.  That is going to cause a big backup, you think?  Will update here as more info appears.  Nothing published in U.S. news that I can find as of 07:30 Sunday.


The Federal Police placed fences tonight on the left side of the San Ysidro sentry box – on the Mexican side, of course – while the Border Patrol continued to reinforce the border fence that runs through the border zone. the channeling

It is the first time that the Mexican authorities deploy this type of rustproof metal fences in the garita, provoking a great expectation of the thousands of Tijuanenses who cross every day. Those who have a general visa form on the south side of the port.

The San Ysidro port has 24 doors – with two entrances each – and connects Tijuana with San Diego County. Normally at this point the crossing could last an hour, since last Tuesday, you lose up to four hours trying to cross.

There was no official information about the operation in the sentry box, you could simply see the deployment of the improvised wall

elsoldetijuana foto

Mystery solved!  I knew I had seen these panels before.

Ensenada-San Diego Trip Report

by staff Shopping Advisor Carlota Compras 

Left my home at 6AM to head to San Diego for turkey shopping and other stuff.  It amazes me how much busier traffic is in Maneadero and Ensenada at 6:30.  Traffic was not like this 10 years ago.

Stopped at Pemex Super Servicio Modelo in Maneadero because my car was running on fumes.  19.54 pesos per liter works out to $3.70USD/gallon at 20 pesos to dollar tipo de cambio.

Easily avoided the Baja 1000 drama in downtown Ensenada and got on the Toll Road.  Surprised that from K98 to K94 is down to 1 lane.  Above photo is the southbound version later this afternoon.

Smoke was noticeable in the air and in my nose passing the still smoking remains of the “Splash Fire”.

The guy at this IAVE(Toll Road pass) office in Tijuana is always helpful, happy to see me and opens at 8AM.

Happy that traffic in Tijuana was not bad this Thursday, unlike panic reports on social media.  It is usually a good sign when traffic is not backed up to the “Tape Intersection” SENTRI entry. It was an 8 minute wait to “have a nice day” goodbye from CBP.

Repeating my photo from yesterday’s post on the “Christmas Tinsel” razor wire keeping the USA safe.

Moving toward Otay Ranch area in Chula Vista, what is with all of the radar motorcycle cops on Olympic Parkway?  Revenues were looking quite good this morning at 8:45AM.

My stops at the usual big box stores on Eastlake Parkway saw the beginnings of holiday crowds.  Glad I did not wait until next week.

This shopping area in East Chula Vista is a typical suburb with a dearth of ethnic eateries.  I am not a fan of any fast food breakfast burritos, though I have not had a Sonic BB yet.  Los Panchos at 2130 Birch does have a decent breakfast offering for such a “white” area of town.

One item that confounds me is my annual search for Kitchen Bouquet.  Note to self: buy it online.

Did find gasoline at $3.19/gallon at Costco.  I am not your typical Costco shopper with a posse of family/friends strewn three wide in the aisle. Have never had a Costco food sample.  I hear that some people enjoy a 1,000 calorie meal of samples.

My Winnebago-sized Costco cart was maxed out with a whopping four items. Yep, I get funny looks with a shady “Hey, why bother if 3 or 4 items is the only damage you can throw down?” attitude.  Guessing the average shopper packs in 100lbs of stuff per trip.

Found a 22lb turkey at Von’s for $.57/lb.  A few more stops had me escaping San Diego and at the TJ border at 2PM.  Weekdays before 3PM are usually easy southbound.

Here is your new wall along the Tijuana Rio.  There are dozens of big equipment rigs working between the border crossing and TJ Playas installing these metal pieces.

Demolition of the western/ocean side lanes here at K96 is the reason for the 1 lane setup just north of the Ens toll booth.

See those red Xs ahead?  No, the toll booths are not closed.  More protesters had taken over both the Rosarito and Ensenada toll booths and asking for donations.  Hey, it’s no drama for me.  But, why does CAPUFE(roads and bridges) allow this regular activity?

The long day fogged my mind and I forgot to bypass downtown ‘Nada for the thrills of the SCORE Baja 1000 race festivities.  It was approx a 15 minute traffic crunch delay.  Don’t call me a hater.  But, I’m just not a fan of a roaring engine unless I’m the one behind the wheel.

We are lucky to have one of the better fish and shrimp taco shops here.  Lupita’s is about 1K west on Carretera La Bufadora.  Got this Mega Burro Mixto(shrimp and fish) “para llevar” for a friend.  This is a fun burrito.  Unless you are starving, should be shared between 2 people.  Yes, she cuts it in half after rolling it up with all of the veggies and salsas added.

That was an 11 hour day and thrilled to be home.  Thx for photo IRE.  Forgot to shop for lingerie!

Ensenada Beach Tourist Development

by staff Beach Activity Editor, Candida Cobre  

Geezo, I noticed the shipping containers on Playa Hermosa Sunday afternoon wondering what that fuss might be about .  Hope this development succeeds in its attempt to “dignify” the area, whatever that means.

It is a beach.  Other than a convenience store and some taco shops, what else do you need?  It’s a beach!

The Ensenada waterfront is simply one haphazard idea slapped upon another without any overall planning.  A cement plant, military base, snail museum and other eyesores dominate and obfuscate the city’s number one attraction. Ouch!

If only we could begin again starting here:

Playa Hermosa will have a commercial and gastronomic center, a professional skating rink, a minigolf and a beach club, as part of a program to dignify that coastal area and turn it into a family and tourist recreation area.

Héctor Bautista Mejía, director of the Port Administration Integral of Ensenada (API), reported the above and noted that several partial assignments have already been granted in what is one of the most visited areas of the city.

He stressed that to give diversity of uses and attractions were granted to different assignees small areas, low investment parameters and very specific operation, this to ensure that they build and operate businesses that are familiar and attractive to residents, domestic tourists, foreigners and cruise passengers

He informed that the commercial and gastronomic center already has an important advance in its construction which has as a base element the use of containers.

He added that in what will be the Beach Club different services will be offered to members and users and in what refers to the skating rink according to the project will have the characteristics of a professional installation for that sport and recreational activity.

Other works
Regarding the pending works of the current administration, Bautista Mejía said that the extension of the breakwater to 400 meters is about to end and that construction has allowed not only the arrival of large boats, but also when the large ships are in docks can be calm

He also announced that it is expected to conclude, before the end of November, the Monument to the Fisherman – which is built at the beginning of the coastal walker – and will be completed for the month of January the reconstruction and renovation of the docks of El Sauzal.

Macroplaza Overpass on Reforma

by Staff Construction Editor Casco Calafia 

Did anyone studying this plan for flooding?  Guesstimate is that the trench they would dig would be below sea level?  Remember this flood in that same block in February?…


Members of the Mexican Chamber of the Construction Industry (CMIC) of Ensenada met with the Secretaries of Infrastructure and Urban Development (Sidue), the Secretary of Fisheries of the State (Sepesca) and Cespe, to whom they presented the “Project Bank” “In which they have worked and put at the disposal of the dependencies.

Héctor Ramos García, spokesman of the CMIC on behalf of the president of the same body, said that the Bank of Works seeks to accelerate the work of the dependencies, with the development of priority works for the city, highlighting above all, works of urban mobility.

Among the works they have done, there are underpasses along Reforma Avenue, which would give the city more agility and stop the pollution growth that the Port is experiencing at this moment;the work planned was Calle Hierro, which includes an overpass that would prevent the road from braking at peak hours.

“The creation of a project bank is a good way to contribute to the link between companies and government, between students and companies, since students from different universities have also been added,” said architect Eduardo Hernández Castro, president of the commission Young entrepreneurs

This work seeks to speed up road mobility on Reforma Avenue, from Antonio Villarreal Street to Pablo Horta, this, as part of the strategy of linking the camera and educational institutions.

The presence of the student of the faculty of architecture and design of the UABC Okairy Yoselin Salazar Beltrán, who has developed this preliminary project, also stood out.

In the end they agreed to leave open the working tables between Sidue, Cmic, Sepesca and Cespe to know the projects in which they have worked and that are applicable, backed by serious studies, to be executed in the city.

Sidue announced that currently works on 5 priority works for the city, the first of them is: Carretera Tijuana-Ensenada intersection with Teniente Azueta Street (UABC Road Node), Reforma Extension, Chapultepec-Maneadero; Road to Ojos Negros-El Chinero, Eje Esmeralda and the modernization of the stretch Maneadero a la Bufadora, where there are already advances and have been invested so far 1 million 274 thousand pesos.

fotos por



San Ysidro Border Closure

One of the victims managed to escape from a pipeline and ask for support from the municipal police. Photo Antonio Maya   La Jornada BC

by staff Tunnel Task Force Editor Carlos Excavar   

Thanks to this excellent post by BajaMarita in TalkBaja Facebook page, Friday’s closure and delay at San Ysidro crossing, diversion to Otay Mesa crossing and reopening of San Ysidro were accurately reported.

I got an alert on my phone about SY border closure Friday evening.  So I scrambled to find out exactly what that meant.  Yep, little info available except for BajaMarita’s post.

Yes, Friday crossing south into Tijuana can be challenging with 1 hour delays, but, yesterday’s delay was unusually painful.  The SY closure was between 5 and 6PM and was less than 1 hour.

We reposted this on other social media formats and were criticized and questioned on its veracity.  For many, unless they see it on the “nightly news” of ABC, CBS, NBC at 6PM, it is not real news.  I’m okay with that, but, I gave up on the “news” many years ago.  

Still not finding anything about the tunnel or closure on traditional San Diego news outlets as of 8AM Saturday.

Here is the scene from GoogEarth shot of Av Padilla(aka av Amistad) looking north.  This shot is before the new parking structure on US side of border was constructed in 2018.  It is the same spot as Alfredo Alvarez’ excellent photo at the scene last night, thx AA!  You can see the colorful wall mural in both photos. Luv the “Casa Del Tunel” sign on the wall.  Map is below.  Red star is the spot. 

Newest entry to Tijuana Trolley?

Here is the only article found at 7AM Saturday… by La Jornada BC, gracias!….


The attempted assault of two alleged traffickers of persons to three migrants who crossed undocumented to the United States provoked a binational mobilization and the closure of the Chaparral port of entry to Mexico by Customs agents and United States Border Protection (CBP).

The migrants, of Mexican origin, were transported to US territory through a pipeline flooded with sewage and mud located on Alfredo Padilla Street in the Federal neighborhood, and when they tried to assault them, one of the nationals was able to escape to Tijuana and ask for help. an agent of the Municipal Police who was in the vicinity.

According to police sources, the officer asked for support from the Navy and while on the Mexican side an operation was being carried out to rescue the two migrants who were in the pipeline, in United States customs agents blocked traffic for about 20 minutes. He was going to Mexico.

Tijuanenses police entered the corridor where they arrested one of the two alleged traffickers, who carried a weapon, and firefighters entered by the nationals, who were treated by paramedics of the Red Cross, in a preventive procedure since they had contact with sewage.

The other alleged criminal fled the scene – it is unknown if he managed to cross into the United States – while the detainee was handed over to the corresponding authorities to determine their responsibility.

Tijuana Periferico Aeropuerto Project

by staff Construction Editor, Catalina Casco   

Gadzooks, this will be a mess in Tijuana. Connecting the Tijuana Airport(east) to Avenida Internacional(west), the road along the TJ Rio that leads to the Pacific Ocean, Tijuana Playas and the Toll Road is a big thing.

Excited to have lane closures and cone zones at San Ysidro border crossing.  Place your bets on the 20 month project timeline, beginning this coming spring(2019).

In map below, the 90 degree blue elbow is the section that crosses the Tijuana Rio.  Photo below the maps shows the planned raised platform(blue dots) crossing the Rio just east of the TJ El Chaparral “U” bridge.

“Today: 40 minutes; Tomorrow 4 minutes”


One of the most important infrastructure works for Tijuana that will begin construction in the Spring of 2019 is the so-called ‘Periférico Aeropuerto’, a flyover that will connect the air terminal of our city with Zona Rio and Centro, cutting the times of transfer of approximately 35 to 40 minutes to only 4 minutes, under the concepts of modernity, fluency, improvement of the environment and environment, and, of course, time saving.
Álvaro Giménez, General Director of Cointer México, corporate responsible for the project, after the corresponding tender in which 4 companies participated, stressed that it is a work that will close the circle of the Periférico de la Ciudad, since in the stretch it is still a bridge of 4.2 kilometers will be built that will begin at the roundabout of the Airport, just where the dirt road starts next to the metal fence that separates us from the United States, since it will begin to rise to pass over the train tracks, the Federal colony, to reach the River Zone, turn north and finally descend to the height of the department of the fire station adjacent to the International avenue.
Giménez explained that all these projects are carried out with the vision of improving the mobility of a city, in this case Tijuana, but also with effects on the environment, since hundreds of cars would circulate there every day, once the work is completed, they would spend much less fuel and they would be for a much shorter period of time circulating in the streets, which in the end also pays the economy of the users, in a high road without traffic lights that will be let down at the international booth of San Ysidro, or follow it to the city center, to the international avenue and connect to Playas. This, deepened, applies both ways.
The Director General of Cointer Mexico informed that the work would take 20 months to be built in different stages and that work will be mainly carried out at night so as not to hinder the roads or the international crossing.
Regarding Cointer, he explained that it is a company with more than 20 years of history, always doing civil works, with projects in Mexico such as the 330 kilometer mega-highway of Michoacán, under the same concept of building, operating and maintaining, always as an investment private in addition to other works in Sonora, Chiapas, State of Mexico, Campeche, and in countries such as Spain, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Eastern Europe, among other places on the planet.
The ‘Peripheral Airport’ will have a minimum rate of recovery for users, which can be paid in cash, credit card, Iave card, among others, but also, after a period of 20 years will be delivered to the city, as at the time it happened with the Coronado Bridge in San Diego County, which was a toll road, and then, after the financing period was over, it was released and today its use is free.
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