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Author: Subject: March 2017 Baja Bound Article: Comondú Viejo
David K
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[*] posted on 3-15-2017 at 11:10 PM
March 2017 Baja Bound Article: Comondú Viejo


Comondú Viejo is nearly a lost mission, but with good directions and motivation, you can find it like I did, last month!

READ IT HERE: https://www.bajabound.com/bajaadventures/bajatravel/comondu_...

Here's the area where it is located:



Older Photos at Comindú Viejo:


1956 by Howard Gulick


2002 by Jack Swords, also the next three...









[Edited on 3-16-2017 by David K]




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fishbuck
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 01:57 AM


Thanks interesting.
I still have difficulty understanding why the Spanish thought the whole mission system was a good idea? Very expensive I would guess.




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David K
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 09:01 AM


In my book, Baja California Land of Missions, I cover why and how the missions were the method of first contact and conversion as well as how the program was paid for. Initially, it cost the government nothing. The Jesuits obtained the financing in exchange for autonomy over California. After the way the soldiers treated the natives in 1683 during their first mission attempt, the Jesuits knew to have success in California they would need authority over the soldiers.






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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 01:13 PM


Ah. I have your book! I shall study and understand. Thanks!!!



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fishbuck
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 01:20 PM


I kind of gathered a bit of info recently when I was studying the origins of Newport Beach.
I study that because I see a real parallel between Sourhern Ca and Baja.
The land in Newport was once part of the San Juan Capistrano mission. So I now understand that the missions owned all the land around them when Spain still owned the Californias.




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David K
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 01:27 PM


The Franciscans and Dominicans did not have the sweet deal the Jesuits got.
After 1768, Spain took over California civil government and the Indians got a raw deal, IMO. The Jesuits were far more interested in learning the language and honoring the free movement of the native Californians than those who followed.






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Jack Swords
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 03:36 PM


Quite remote and good ranch people in the area. The only other difficult site to access was Misión San Pedro Mártir de Verona and both are worth accomplishing. Well done David.
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David K
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 04:33 PM


Thanks, Jack!
Our "mission" (yours, mine) for 15 years or so has been to preserve these sites through photographs and knowledge.

Writing my book, Baja California Land of Missions, really helped put them into perspective and discovering how little known the facts were when reading other books about the missions, preparing this one.

I wish I spent more time there at Comondú Viejo. Perhaps if I could have driven to the site and thus camped out of my truck. In re-reading Harry Crosby and Ed Vernon's books (they both devoted extra pages to the history of Comondú), I think I would like to try and see more.

It seriously was badly overgrown and mostly with thorny plants! I would have liked to try and make out the church foundation and other evidence. I couldn't even get a good clear shot of the floor of Mayorga's house...





If the area was clear-cut and turned into an archeological park, I think it could really bring in some interest? I saw long walls parallel to the arroyo to the north, where the old road is briefly on the west side of the riverbed. They may have been natural but I think more they are mission planting fields? Tree cover makes satellite viewing unavailable.




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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 04:45 PM


So much history. Love the photos over time.

I just read a book titled: The Mapmaker's Wife which takes place in the Amazon - quite a bit of history of the missionaries (think death and destruction) as well as the local Indians who were as wild as they come.




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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 05:13 PM


My 1st baja trip was through Orange Coast College and included a few missions. I wasn't very interesred in old rock piles then.
But I think your efforts are diffinately sparking some new interest for me. Thanks
Keep up the good work!

[Edited on 3-17-2017 by fishbuck]




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David K
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 06:00 PM


Piles of rocks and stumps of adobe are clues to what was once an enterprise affecting hundreds to thousands of people.

My hope is that in sharing the history of these sites it will add to the value of your Baja vacation. There is so much more to Baja than many realize.




"So Much Baja, So Little Time..."

A NEW Baja Missions History book in 2016: http://oldmissions.com

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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 06:31 PM


That is one ugly road on a bike. Like a long day riding over bowling balls down a river bed.

It will take more than an old mission to get me in there again.

I don't think the site will suffer much from vandalism. Maybe a good site for an insane asylum for back road explorers.
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David K
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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 07:12 PM


The road to where the hike began wasn't bad, only used 4WD where it climbed just before Rancho San Juan for a half mile. Now, the 1/2 mile hike crossed the arroyo twice, and that was boulder hopping!



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A NEW Baja Missions History book in 2016: http://oldmissions.com

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[*] posted on 3-16-2017 at 07:17 PM


It was an ugly road in my Tacoma....just after a hurricane and all the dirt was washed off the road leaving only rocks. Local rancher showed me the waterline from the flood that was half way up the walls of the casa. Lost all of the stock (mainly goats). By the way David, there was a dam a short way down the road (south) and there could be other evidence of habitation. Not too thorny back then as the hurricane had cleaned much out.
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