November in Sun Valley = slack season. Only the locals remain in town, and many of them head south to catch some final rays before the busy ski season starts.
I had been planning my escape for about 6 months, and I finally succeeded in making a plan with my two best girlfriends and their boyfriends to join me and Chase and his lovely parents at Chase’s parents’ incredible home in Cabo Pulmo, Mexico. Here’s a look at the trip — I highly recommend exploring this incredible area!
the hurricane: You may have seen the Cabo area in the headlines recently due to Hurricane Odile. Thankfully, Cabo Pulmo didn’t suffer too much damage aside from windblown satellite dishes and lots of water. The effect in November was beautiful — it was so green! The hills looked like they were coated in a deep green velvet, and the wildlife was a little out there…including tarantulas the size of my hand, other giant spiders of unknown origin, moths the size of my face, grasshoppers the length of my middle finger, and also some truly beautiful butterflies. I’d never seen anything like it! In the case of the large insects, minus the butterflies, I really don’t need to again.
the preserve: All that aside, Cabo Pulmo, Mexico, is a true gem. It’s about 1.5 hours north east of Cabo San Lucas (where all those crazy kids go to rage during spring break) and located on a marine preserve. You access the town after about 40 minutes of winding dirt road flanked with skinny vacas, topes (aggressive speed bumps) and lots of local flair. Cabo Pulmo is run on solar power and generators, has a bustling recycling system, three scuba diving businesses, four restaurants with charmingly unreliable hours, and is free of pesticides and other toxic chemicals to preserve the incredible sea life. There’s a true Idaho and Ketchum connection there, and the population is comprised of both gringos and Mexicans.
the beaches: Find your beach. Every beach in the area is like your own private Corona commercial. It’s uncommon to see another soul on the same beach, especially one that camps out right next to you. Our favorites are Lighthouse Beach, Rincón and Arbilitos.
the fare: A trip to Cabo Pulmo = clean, simple living. The days consist of fruit salad, smoothies and coffee for breakfast (with some occasional bacon), sandwiches or tacos made from leftovers for lunch on the beach, totopes (tortilla chips), fresh made salsa and guac, insanely delicious and fresh corn and flour tortillas and fresh caught fish (either via bait, spear gun, or fly rod). And then…There are Steve’s/Pablo’s margaritas. These things are legendary for a reason.
the trip to town: While I’m appreciative of the pace and simple living that Cabo Pulmo brings, the company and atmosphere isn’t very varied, and the “culture” is very quiet. A trip to San José, which is close to the airport, is always a great call. It has a charming, almost European feel, which is filled with a pretty church, a central square, lots of art galleries, a brewery and some great restaurants.
There’s an art walk most Thursdays in the evening, and the past two years, we’ve eaten at Mi Casa, which has an incredible outdoor patio, delicious food and great gift shops. Baja Brewery is a must-see — their peyote and mango wheat beer are incredible, and their t-shirts make for a great souvenir gift.
the great company: I was thrilled to spend the week with Chase’s incredible parents, my best friend from home, Kacie, her boyfriend Taggart, who is also great friends with Chase (we introduced them in high school), my best friend from college, Jen, and her boyfriend, Carson, who is an Idaho boy. It was a great group, and I hope to take a trip with all of them again soon!
the hosts: A huge shoutout and thank you to Ingri and Steve for hosting so many groups of crazy kids throughout the years. what a special place! We are so lucky to be able to share it with you.