Scenic Road Status Report

foto por El Vigia

Highlight of my trip south from San Diego to Ensenada was the front end loader staring me down on the highway at K95 of Salsipuedes as I drove around a quick curve.  Went from 60mph to stop in a hurry and checked rear mirror to hope followers’ brakes were working well.  That machine was packing down new blacktop.  Two flag dudes plus two more supervisors were “What, me worry?”.  Yep,  cows, horses, no tail lights at night and front end loaders are all part of your encounters on the superhighway on the coast.  Had to do a diaper check.

Geezo the K 94-95 area is getting bumpy again.  How are those geologic studies going on the fault zone?

More TJ-Ens highlights:

The large pot hole at El Chaparral/TJ crossing is still prominent,  just before bridge across the Rio, right lane.

Hwy 1 toll booth traffic was backed up to approx 20 car line, likely due to entrococcus scientists doing field work on the beaches.

Wonder when the new toll booth will open on Hwy 1 at Popotla?

Gasoline is 16.82 per liter in Ensenada.  Now the gas rate and exchange rate are about equal.  Approx $3.75usd/gallon.  Paid $2.78 Tuesday in San Diego.

La Mision beach was packed.  Apparently the enterococcus crisis has not hit that beach or the contamination is simply not being monitored there.

Adjusted my reconnection to Hwy 1 on south end of Ensenada.  I’m done with the moon craters on Estancia and now enjoying the smooth pavement 1/2 mile south on Las Palmas at end of beach to jog inland back to hwy 1.  FYI, Palmas is the southern edge of Smart & Final store on hwy 1.

White markings are on pot holes on Tramo de Muerte(Hwy 1 on south end of Ensenada toward Maneadero).  Are these signs of alien invaders or is there a plan to smooth up that hot mess of pavement this year?

sobrio= sober        ebrio = drunk

Reading local(Ensenada/Tijuana) newspapers is my morning coffee pleasure.  There is always at least one article about a new financial outlay for infrastructure and at least one article on past infrastructure money losses/corruption every day.  Shoveling is not so frequent on infrastructure, but is very prevalent on the money losses.

Border Wall Design Prototypes


President Donald Trump’s proposed wall with Mexico will kick off in the San Diego border community of Otay Mesa, U.S. Customs and Border Protection confirmed Monday.

The community is home to one of two border crossings in San Diego and will be the site where 20 chosen bidders will erect prototypes of the envisioned wall. Winners will be selected around June 1, the agency said.

While funding for the massive infrastructure project is still not set, up to 450 companies submitted designs last week. The agency’s bid said roughly 20 companies will be selected to build the prototypes — 30 feet long and up to 30 feet high.

The models will be built on a roughly quarter-mile strip of federal land within 120 feet of the border, said a U.S. official with knowledge of the plans quoted by The Associated Press.

Border Patrol spokesman Ralph DeSio did not say exactly where the construction will take place, saying only that it would occur in the Otay Mesa area. He added that plans were subject to change.

Of the possible border locations in the region, building the prototypes near the Otay Mesa crossing makes the most sense because it allows companies to test out designs in a heavily trafficked area that still has room and flexibility, according to Eric Frost, director of San Diego State University’s graduate program in homeland security.

Frost, interviewed before the location was confirmed by the federal agency, said Otay Mesa would be a better place to start than the desert to the east or near a river — often empty locales.

“A lot of trucks already use it,” he said of the Otay Mesa crossing. “You want to look at how they actually interact with the fence.”

Construction of the models, which will likely take place in June, may attract protesters, but law enforcement officials said they were committed to supporting First Amendment rights.

“As part of our community policing philosophy, we work closely with any party or group that wishes to express their views in a law abiding manner,” San Diego police spokesman Lt. Scott Wahl said in a statement.

Officials declined to say if officers or deputies would be on site while the construction takes place, but made clear the location will be monitored by law enforcement agencies and Customs and Border Protection.

Security was already an issue for companies bidding on the wall. In a Q&A on FedBizOpps, the federal contracts website, some bidders asked what would happen if employees came under attack during construction, if they could use firearms in states with stricter gun laws and if the government would provide legal assistance if they had to use deadly force.

Customs and Border Protection officials said it would respond if needed to an attack, but that companies were responsible for their own security. The agency also would not waive state gun laws or provide legal support for deadly force.

Beyond just prototypes, CNN said it reviewed documents revealing that wall construction could start in San Diego. The initial $999 million request would fund 14 miles of new wall along the city’s border with Mexico, 28 miles of new levee wall barriers and six miles of new border wall in the Rio Grande Valley region. The request would also cover 14 miles of replacement fencing in San Diego, CNN said.

Frost said San Diego would be a good place to start the wall, as opposed to Texas where rivers and private property will likely complicate construction. Those locations are also a long way from resources needed for building.

“You’re not spending all your transportation out to nowhere,” he said.

Frost added the wall could be a benefit to both nations if, for example, it helps alleviate notoriously slow wait times for trucks crossing through Otay Mesa. He envisions an “intelligent wall” with sensors and wireless technology that can start tracking trucks before they reach a border guard, speeding up the process to move goods between the two nations.

“There’s a positive in here, if you can design a wall that works way better,” Frost said.

Funding for the wall has not been secured. Trump said during the election that Mexico would pay for the wall but has since sought out federal money. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” that in a recent meeting with Mexico Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray they did not discuss Mexico paying for the wall.

Punta Banda Horseshit and Gastronomy

foto por Bajadock

Bajadock: Wowzeritos Punta Banditos!  A Gastronomic Corridor is shovel ready for the neighborhood, as soon as the horseshit is mitigated.

The peninsular and Estero area of ​​Punta Banda registers contamination of canyons, streams and beaches by garbage, discharges to the sea of ​​commercial and restaurant waste water, as well as horse excrement in the sand, so that civil authorities and associations will attend to the problem.

During a meeting in which representatives of the three orders of government participated, it was determined that a series of actions and plans will be undertaken.

They pointed out the risks to the physical integrity of people by traffic of motorcycles and horses by the beach, as well as the increase of population of dogs, cats and wild animals killed in the beach, besides cloud of agrochemicals in inhabited zones, originated by spreading pesticides In agricultural areas with aircraft.

The meeting was held on April 7, where the Community Environmental Monitoring Committee of Estero de Punta Banda, with the support of Pro Esteros, AC and the authorities, emphasized the attributions of the different departments competent in environmental matters.

Gabriel Camacho Jiménez, from the coordination of Community Strengthening Pro Esteros, AC, stressed that in the meeting, citizens and officials, a series of cooperation actions were determined.

Cooperation actions
It was agreed to follow up, is the construction and operation of a collection center, separation and transfer of domestic waste.
For this, the Environmental Monitoring Committee of Estero of Punta Banda already has economic resources for the construction of the first stage of the project and the ejido Esteban Cantú would be lending a land.
Gabriel Camacho explained that environmental surveillance tours and operations will be carried out jointly with various environmental authorities, talks will be held at local schools and there will be brigades to clean beaches and streets.
Likewise, work will be done on the formation of a local lifeguard group, as well as delimiting horseback riding to a trail or route, in conjunction with the service providers.
He emphasized that development will be planned in the area to generate economic benefits, conserving landscapes and natural resources, which endow the area with a high potential for the development of the ecotourism sector.
Two projects were designed to be compatible with the Punta Banda Estero Ramsar Site, which are a high-performance sports center and gastronomic corridor.

The meeting was attended by Oswaldo Santillán, delegate of the Profepa; Érika Jiménez, representing the Sub-Directorate of Municipal Ecology; José M. Sánchez de la Parra, on behalf of the Secretariat for Environmental Protection of the State (SPA).
In addition to the César Agustín Martínez, municipal delegate of Maneadero; Officer Rodolfo Amador, commander of Public Security of the delegation of Maneadero; Saúl Sandoval, president of Ejido Commissariat of Ejido Esteban Cantú.

Damage and pollution:
Contamination of creeping streams and beaches by garbage
Burning trash
Discharge of sewage from shops and restaurants to the sea
Horse excrement on beaches
Transit of motorcycles and horses by the beach
Population increase of dogs and cats
Dead animals on the beach
Cloud of agrochemicals in inhabited areas scattered in agricultural areas with aircraft

Mountain Bikes and Cheese Cellar

Bajadock: followup to our Casa Marcelo Restaurant post, I still have not visited their Ojos Negros cheese cellar.  Trip planner?

Water Off in TJ, Ros, Ens


TIJUANA BC, APRIL 8, 2017 (AFN) .- Despite the announcement by the State Commission of Public Services of Tijuana (Cespt) that the repairs announced in two days (Wednesday, April 5 and Thursday, April 6) have concluded. Service was suspended in all of Tijuana, Playas de Rosarito and part of Ensenada, until today Saturday 8 at 14:50 hours the lack of vital liquid affects a hundred colonies.

Cespt workers, consulted via telephone line 073, pointed out the above, in which they report that due to leaks and lack of pressure, the service has not been restored to the moment. In the attempt to communicate to the 073, the contact with staff of the parastatal took up to 30 and 50 minutes, according to the workers themselves because of the saturated lines of citizens desperate to know the causes of the problem.

A Cespt employee pointed out that among the affected colonies of Tijuana and Rosarito are the eastern neighborhoods of Urbi and Geo, such as Villas del Sol, Villa Fontana and El Dorado; Besides the Altamira, Residencial Agua Caliente, Hipódromo and diverse sections of Beaches of Tijuana. At the moment you can not inform, he said, about what hours the service will resume, but they are working to get it to you soon.

Hotel Burbuja(Bubble)

Bajadock:  Hmmm, count me as a questionable curmudgeon on “glamping”(glamorous camping).  At $200USD/night at Burbuja, am I in an observatory or part of a zoo(privacy)?  Wait, these are “state of the art” bubbles, not just any bubbles, Lawrence Welk.

Just met a couple who stayed at Encuentro‘s little boxes.  They described it as an “anti-resort” getaway from their San Francisco fast paced lifestyle.  $400+USD/night is certainly not my pop-up tent.  

Back to Burbuja, where is the complimentary champagne offer?  C’mon, Bubbles, pop your cork!

+52 (664) 380 6467


Decantos Winery

by the Lusty Napkin     

One of the newest and most impressive wineries in Valle de Guadalupe is Decantos Vinicola.  This architectural jewel offers one of the best panoramic views of the wine valley while you enjoy their extensive wine selections.

If you have time, a tour of this unique winery is highly recommended.

We enjoyed Decantos Petite Syrah and Tempranillo to get acquainted with the quality of the wine production.  Alonso Granados is the winemaker.

We arrived too late to enjoy the tapas menu from their kitchen.  But, the kitchens now on site at the wineries is a welcome trend.  Just a few years ago, it seemed that the Valle de Guadalupe food choices were only upscale/special occasion or taco stand.  Now you can sip and snack at wineries as if you were at a good friend’s home.

We did manage to get a tour of the winery from Decantos‘ Alex Ford.  Behind the open seating vista is the engine of the grape processing, fermentation, barrells and a bar for more wine consumption.  Soon, Decantos will be releasing their sparkling wines for consumption.

Here are the stainless steel tanks, a stemmer and the sparkling wine storage.  The sparkling wine storage allows for the turning of several hundred bottles at once, like a lobster trap.  What could be better than champagne and lobster?

Old, make that ancient school concrete tanks are used for some wine aging.  This trend is becoming more popular.

These stainless tanks are patented for their gravity feed and made in Spain.

Down deep in the ground is the barrell room.

Decantos is open 11A – 7P every day and located on the El Porvenir side of Valle de Guadalupe.  Signage is excellent.  Phone 646 688 1019   Facebook  


Scenic Hwy Alternative Route

Bajadock: this Bajamar alternate route was proposed shortly after the December 28 2013 landslide on coastal Highway 1(aka “Tijuana Ensenada Scenic Road”). What will be happen first?  The Alternate Route, Ensenada’s new airport, repairing the Tramo de Muerte(stretch of death Hwy 1 south of Ensenada) or the Desalination plant?
In addition to the investment of 2 thousand 171 million pesos for the construction of an alternative road to the Tijuana-Ensenada Scenic Highway, it is necessary to obtain 520 million pesos for the payment of the right of way, according to a report by the Ministry of Infrastructure And Urban Development of the State (Sidue).
Among the advances, in addition to the executive project, it was indicated that the Manifesto of Environmental Impact (MIA), is in process.
Staff from the Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT) were requested to seek resources from Fonadin for the payment of the 23.5 km long rights of way that the alternative route would have.
The work, which will run for two years, includes an A4 section of 22 meters crown and the construction of 12 structures: four bridges, three uneven junctions, a tunnel and 7 PIV (Lower vehicular steps).
A report from the Sidue states that the cost of the work is estimated at 2 171 million pesos, in addition to an additional investment of 529 million pesos for the liberation of the right of way, which will be “non-recoverable”.
Alternative route
Dealer: Fonadin
Estimated capacity: 13 thousand vehicles per day
Execution period: 2 years
Total length: 23.5 kilometers
Total investment: 2 thousand 691 million pesos
MIA: In process

Viña de Frannes Winery and Restaurant

by the Lusty Napkin        

A Valle de Guadalupe winemaker friend just introduced me to Viña de Frannes this weekend.  I had read a little about this new winery and restaurant, but, was waiting for Idon’tknowwhat to explore.


The setting places you in the middle of a canyon of moutains and vineyards.  The building design is modern, but, the interior decor is rustic to match their wine styles.  The patio faces east to the vineyard and shades you from the afternoon sun.  Inside are two spacious levels with terrific views.

The winery enjoys the creativity of winemaker Michel Rolland, from Bordeaux.  We had some time to visit with  Manager Emanuel Morena(photo right), and Chef Saul Flores to discuss the history of the property, wine and food.

Emanuel gave us a few nice stories on the beginnings of the winery and the team philosophy of relaxing with friends, wine and unpretentious food.

As I have shared in past, a traditional “flight” wine tasting of 5-6 samples is not my thing.  Frannes had a tasting available, but, I’m more of a goforthegusto kind of guy.

The Cabernet Franc was my choice, as that grape is normally only used as a 5-10% splash for other varietals like cab and merlot.  Terroso(“earthy”) is a good descriptor here with dark berries.  Cab and Merlot are in the supporting actor roles for this bottle.

We also tried the Chardonnay, that was light on both the oak and that whole butter thing.  This Chard was perfect for our coming seafood selections.


This little silo of bluefin tuna, avocadoes, beets and fruit was a good start to enjoy Chef Saul’s creativity.  No, it did not offend my cab franc.

Here is Chef Saul and his smoked marlin quesadilla dish.  This flavor is still on my mind and tongue, thanks.

Our third tapas dish was the swordfish on cucumber with pineapple, onion, scallops and a jalapeno pepper cap.  While my host properly used a knife and fork on of these morsals, I decided to devour one whole, sushi style.  The explosion of flavor combos along with the little pepper cap sliding down my throat had me smiling through my tears.  That chardonnay came in handy to ease the flames.

Always like seeing a simple printed menu.  A menu that resembles a wedding album usually tells me to run away. A simple menu tells me that they are all about fresh, as well as change. Tapas, salads, pizzas, a few entrees and dessert are all that I ever would need.  This is a winery, so the emphasis is on enjoying the grape juice here.

We are awarding Viña de Frannes 5 out of 5 French oak barrels for their wine, food and service.  Will return early and often.

Viña de Frannes has good signage from El Porvenir road(the northern road that parallels Hwy 3).  General location is toward north end of Valle de Guadalupe, toward the little town of Guadalupe.  Phone:  646 -155-2433    Hours are 12 – 5pm     Facebook

Thanks to Bibesia!

Thug’s List Ensenada

Bajadock: As Angie’s list provides a listing of service providers, Ensenada now has a Lista de Ladrones(“Thugs/Malandros”) via Facebook.  We know that criminals are often caught then released.  Public servants?  Ai Yai Yai!!!


BC ENSENADA APRIL 2, 2017 (AFN) .- Given the increasing number of stolen vehicles, thefts in commerce and assaults, citizens of this port spread through social networks, photographs and data of alleged thieves to find their whereabouts, Recover their belongings or at least prevent the population.

This is a Facebook group called “Gallery of Malandros Ensenada“, which is about to reach 5 thousand members in just one month. According to its first publication, it was created on 28 February.

The description of the forum says “Welcome to the group, which will expose injustices and make public denunciation against the bad citizen or public servant; It remains this space to make nonconformity, complaints of robberies (in any of its kind).

He also points out that users can freely form a “gallery of mischief” to warn people, be wary of assaults, abuse of authority, corruption, or any act of “bad government” or common citizen.

Due to the implementation of the New Criminal Justice System or Adversarial Accusatory System, which prohibits the media from exposing detainees for crimes, Internet users use the social network to spread the uncensored faces of those who are criminals.

Among the publications are photographs of individuals, captured after citizen assurances or even when they are on board official vehicles. There are also images downloaded from the personal profiles of suspected thugs.

Members of the forum have shared their experiences in becoming victims of illicit acts, they also disseminate photographs of stolen vehicles and their data, they also circulate videotapes of thefts that occurred in commercial establishments or on public roads.

In the same group there are users who promote the execution of citizens against criminals; Likewise exhort the denunciation of those who sell stolen items.

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