I’m posting about Los Barriles because it has one of the “premier” pickleball spots in Baja California – Tres Palapas. My wife and I attended a Tyson McGuffin pickleball camp this past week, something I will block about in my next post. The information I’ll give here will be beneficial should you ever decide to go to Tres Palapas either for fun or for a camp. In particular, I’ll discuss getting into the Cabo San Lucas airport, our rental property, the Tres Palapas resort (but more about that in my next blog), where to eat in Los Barriles, how to get around, and how to get out of the Cabo San Lucas airport. For my friends who fly out of Atlanta, I will rant and rave about that a bit.
The flight to Cabo (on Delta) was pretty uneventful. I did try to watch a movie on the flight, one that was, fortunately, subtitled (a bizarre Korean movie called Parasite). I say “fortunately” because with all the cabin noise, you can barely hear the movie using the ear buds the airline gives you. I had brought along noise cancelling headphones, but they don’t have an input jack – I use them with Bluetooth.
When we got to Cabo, the fun began. First, when you exit the plane, you have to get on a bus that takes you to the terminal. That’s how Dulles Airport in DC used to work, but it no longer does. Anyway, once you get off the bus, you get into a LONG line where you have to show your passport and the documents you signed with your home information, how long you were planning to stay, etc.
Once you get through that line, you get your luggage. Then you get into another LONG line to have your bags inspected. Being that we are “senior citizens,” we were just waved through. I guess customs thought we were not ones to try to bring illicit stuff into the country. One of the few benefits of being old.
Then we had to find our transportation. A bit more chaos, but not too bad. Then we were on our way. We used a company called “Wolf-PM Rentals,” and it handled everything, including ground transportation, house rental and ATV rental. I’ll put a link to their website at the end of the blog. The ride from the airport was about one hour and I got to practice my Spanish a bit – I am very rusty. Within minutes of us arriving, a person came to open up our rental house, followed by a couple of guys who delivered the ATV we rented.
RENTAL HOUSE AT NIGHT
OUR RENTAL ATV
LIKE I SAID, NOT YOUR USUAL ROAD
If you go to Los Barriles, you really should get an ATV, because most of the “roads” consist of sand, and you will encounter some interesting animals.
The paved roads that exist have very low speed limits, so an ATV is perfect. Also, you’ll want to drive on the beach if you want to jump in the water or if you want to eat at a beachfront restaurant. If you go during the time of the year we did, you can drive in the arroyo to a waterfall, but you will definitely need 4-wheel drive, which the ATV had.
IN THE ARROYO (PHOTO BY JAMES TUCKER)
TYSON MCGUFFIN IN HIS ATV (BEFORE HE MADE WATER FLY ALL OVER US)
After we checked in, we went to a supermarket, where, we got tequila, margarita mix, chips and cheese (AKA dinner).
By chance, there was a full moon our first night. Below is a picture of the moon rising over the ocean, followed by a picture of the sun rising in the morning.
FULL MOON RISING
We took one day to explore and relax but, of course, we had to walk up to Tres Palapas to check it out. Very nice – 14 courts, all surrounded by relatively high walls. It helped with the wind, but wind was still an issue. We found out after the fact that we were in the windy season (one that lasts about 6 months).
IN FRONT OF TRES PALAPAS
Finally, where to eat (a blog about the camp itself will follow). We found a place called La Casita where Donna had a sushi roll platter and I had sea bass in a lemon caper sauce. Donna also had a BIG Vodka Collins (mad with Tito’s) and I had a Modelo Negro. Finally, I had the hot chocolate avalanche cake for dessert, served with homemade vanilla ice cream. Total bill? $57 US (we paid with pesos). If we were in the US, it probably would have been $57 each. We ate at the restaurant two more times.
When the camp ended, we spent a day walking on the beach and exploring the town. Quite by accident (we heard the distinctive sounds of pickleball play) we found another pickleball complex – the Tony Krause Pickleball Training Center. It seemed plusher than Tres Palapas and, to our surprise, one of the pros in our Tres Palapas camp was playing there when we checked it out. I’m not sure, but I think the level of play is higher at the Tony Krause place.
Finally, after three days of camp and one day of walking on the beach, it was back to Georgia. Here is my big tip about the Cabo airport – if you have pesos you want to exchange for $US, do it BEFORE you go through security. There are no money exchanges once you go through. And there is a reason for that – the vendors, knowing that you might have pesos you want to get rid of, will rip you off. How bad? How about $14 (not kidding) for a candy bar, or $22 (again, not kidding) for a bag of snickers. What are you going to do? You are stuck.
Oh, well. We go to our flight (again taking a bus to the plane) where I decided to use my headphones and listen to old radio shows (like The Whistler) that I had downloaded to my phone. My headphones were amazing. They were not the most expensive on Amazon, but they really cancelled out noise. If you are interested, here is a link to them on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3uYlbaM
Then we had to deal with arriving at the international terminal in Atlanta. If you have not done so already, apply for Global Entry. You skip all the lines. But you don’t skip the hassle of having to take a shuttle bus to the domestic terminal. What a pain in the ass. Because we were getting in late, we decided to stay a night in a hotel where we had parked our car. So, we were ready to take the shuttle to the domestic terminal and then call the hotel to get its shuttle.
We waited and waited and waited for the shuttle to take us to the domestic terminal and then we gave up, got a cab and paid $25 plus tip to get to the hotel. It was well worth it. The Atlanta airport has to do something about the shuttle situation, or do they? Maybe they just don’t care.
Next – a blog about the Tyson McGuffin camp.
Here are some links for you.
Tres Palapas: https://trespalapasbaja.com/
Wolf PM Rentals: https://www.wolf-pm-rentals.com/