Isla Carmen...... is hiking not allowed?

jackiep - 5-11-2011 at 02:34 PM

I am hoping someone on here can help me clarify a question I have regarding hiking at Isla Carmen. This morning my husband and I took a hike from the west side of Isla Carmen to the east side (over by the salt ponds). Once we got close to the the salt ponds we saw a fast moving jeep approaching us. The gentlemen in the jeep where from the big horn sheep hunting company located on the island. They told us in no uncertain terms that we were not allowed anywhere past the beach and that there lease covered the interior of the island and no one was allowed to hike there. We were very confused by this since we have not been able to find any signs or information in our yearly pass booklet stating that we were not allowed past the beaches. Can someone please let us know what the rules are when it comes to hiking at Isla Carmen?
Thank you!

dtbushpilot - 5-11-2011 at 03:23 PM

Welcome to Nomads jackiep. I don't have an answer to your question but I'm sure someone will come along soon with some info.....dt

rhintransit - 5-11-2011 at 03:39 PM

the island is privately owned. the hunting concession is leased. the public is allowed on the beaches but not beyond. all the beaches I have been on there (most of them) have signs to this effect. not sure where you started nor ended, but the guy in the jeep was correct.

jackiep - 5-11-2011 at 03:45 PM

Thank you for the quick answer. We started at the anchorage in Balandra and there definitely was no sign stating that we were not allowed past the beach (we looked carefully when we got back). There had once been a sign at the start of the trail but it had been destroyed....possibly that sign HAD stated that we were not allowed any further than the beach? We stopped when the guy in the jeep told us.
Good to get clarification but it would be nice if was more public. We know of at least two cruising guides that state the hiking is good and even show a map of the trails on Isla Carmen.
We will pass along this information where possible.
Thanks again!

jackiep - 5-11-2011 at 03:49 PM

I am also curious if this is the case with any of the other islands in the Loreto area?

Paula - 5-11-2011 at 04:23 PM

Last time I was on balandra there was a sign.Isla Carmen is privately owned, and as I understand you used to be able to get a permit, though I'm not sure how. A friend hiked there a year ago without a permit and was not bothered by anyone.

The hike to the top of Coronado is nice, there are two ways to go-- up from the white sand beach, or up the backside.

rhintransit - 5-11-2011 at 05:45 PM

I believe that you can hike on the other islands, but most do have signs about protecting the environment, no dogs, etc. remember you do need a park permit, either a day pass or annual, available from the Marine Park Office.

Floatflyer - 5-11-2011 at 07:25 PM

Sad to hear this. Makes me long for the "good old days". Back in the mid 80s we flew our Cessna onto the island, got one of the caretakers to drive us to the NW side of the island and drop us off for 3-4 days of camping, diving, fishing.

Last time they didn't come get us and we had a 5 mile walk to get back to their camp. The small dump truck they used was parked on a ramp so that they could jump start it!

A wonderful time to visit.

Sallysouth - 5-11-2011 at 10:30 PM

Who or what owns Isla Carmen?

vandenberg - 5-12-2011 at 07:41 AM

Originally posted by Sallysouth
Who or what owns Isla Carmen?

Always heard that Salinas de Gortari and family owned the island. The little crooked weasel.:no:

ElCap - 5-12-2011 at 08:25 AM

We hiked all around the salt flat area at the southern end of Isla Carmen in 2002, and the place was deserted. I have lots of pics somewhere if anyone is interested. We even found some un-used bags labeled for the old saltworks, and I think I took one for a souvenier. But we had heard that ex-Prez Salinas had bought the place and it would soon be off-limits - guess that was more than a rumor. This was before the whole region was declared a protected national park.

Mexitron - 5-12-2011 at 10:20 AM

Were the sheep always on Isla Carmen or were they introduced? Imagine that--an entire island off-limits so a few folks with lots of money and nothing better to do can kill beautiful animals for sport. What a waste.

BajaBruno - 5-12-2011 at 10:53 AM

I believe Salinas del Pacífico owns the island. That is "salinas" as in "salt," not Gotari. The bighorn sheep were introduced in 1995.


for a good article on Loreto, Isla Carmen, and the conservation of the area.

Martyman - 5-12-2011 at 01:02 PM

Gortari brought in the sheep for his extra curricular activities.