EL CAMINO REAL in Baja (Part 3), Comondu to La Purisima

David K - 10-11-2003 at 07:30 PM

Baja Almanac page 39:

The original Jesuit Camino Real left the Comondu valley at SAN MIGUEL (de Comondu). However, after that mision was closed in 1737 and moved to/absorbed by the relocated SAN JOSE de COMONDU (just two miles away), the "King's Highway" was also moved.

From SAN JOSE COMONDU the trail first went to EL PABELLON and a modern graded dirt road was built on or near the mission trail in this section.

From EL PABELLON, the Camino Real is shown partly in the Baja Almanac going directly towards LA PURISIMA.

The trail passes just south of a peak named CERRO JESUS DEL MONTE. Jesus del Monte was an important point on the old trail because of a large tinaja (water hole) about 20 feet by 60 feet in size. This spot became a visita of the mission at Comondu and a cut stone chapel was still visible and photographed by Crosby, 30 years ago.

The name 'Jesus del Monte' was derived form a natural formation on a near-by volcanic cinder cone that resembled Jesus and the cross to early travelers.

The next point on the old trail is EL RENEGADO then the trail passes along the east side of CERRO TEZONTLE, a mountain once mined for porous building stone that was highly esteemed.

The next place name on the original Baja road was a little oasis called SAN VICENTE.

When Harry Crosby arrived at Rancho San Vicente he was made welcome by Maximiliano Arce and presented with fruit from Arce's orchard. One fruit that was interesting was the 'limon real' (royal lemon), a pear shaped citrus that appeared to be a hybrid of lemon and grapefruit.

From San Vicente the Camino Real continued to LA PURISIMA and dropped into that valley via switchbacks, that can still be seen.


TMW - 10-15-2003 at 07:41 AM

David, this is great.