June 14th, 2013 | By | 5,074 Comments

Road Tripping: Baja or Bust Volume 1: The Complete Guide to Cheap Weekend Trips with Your Friends

Road trips are a right of passage for anyone who anyone who calls themselves “adventurous” and the travel junkies at SWELL are eager to share their secrets to scoring that all-time trip. The fist stop of the series follows  the SWELL crew south of the border to Rosarito during that big south swell in June.


The inbound Tijuana border crossing just got a complete face-lift, redirecting traffic away from the formerly collision prone turn that steered rookie travelers into the belly of barrio. Rumor has it that TJ is cleaning up the border corruption and violence to make a bid for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games.


Border Tips
-Cross During Daylight Hours
-Stay in the right lanes to reach the coast. Stick to the Toll Road
-To avoid car emptying searches at drug checkpoints, slip the federale a nudie magazine


Guys can basically wear one outfit the whole weekend


Surviving In Style
Dakine Backpack -If it doesn’t all fit in 1 bag, you don’t need it. Wet/dry, laptop, more…
Hybrid shorts -For hitting the lip, or hitting the town. Stay classy my friend.
SurfTop -Don’t get barred by burns & rashes. Billabong makes em for marathon sessions
Xcel Dipped Booties -The reefs of north baja are littered with urchins, they suck.
Kanu Locking Tiedowns -Most crime in Mex is petty theft, and board banditos will burn you.
Tide Watch -The tide swings drastically further south.  Get dialed into any beach with Nixon

Other Essentials: GoPro, Swim Fins, Sunscreen, VonZipper Shades, Wax, Trucker Hat



Tips for Tagging
-Agree on a unique # album for all your friends to tag during the trip like #HahaBaja
-DO NOT USE ROAMING DATA. Only upload using wifi, or your bill will skyrocket
-Bring a Mophie Juicepack for extra battery life. Its worth the memories…and safety
-Take photos of all your documents, in case your passport, insurance, etc vanishes


Someone needs to skip a session for the good of the group…thanks Morgan.

Tips for Surf Shots
-You can never be too close to the action, but shots from a distance appear tiny
-Wear a lanyard or floating strap in any size surf
-Speed up shutter speed for complete sequences
-Try to get other object in the frame to gain perspective
-Read more about the WATERSHOT iPhone housing on the SWELL Blog Product review


Tequila and Explosives Don’t Mix


For the Federales
-Fireworks aren’t legal anywhere anytime. Every community has rules and hefty “fines”
-Security guards and random dudes try to extort $$ for fake infractions. Dont fall for it
-Mexican fireworks have short fuses, dont end up with short fingers
-If you try to tie M80 fuses together, one will send the rest flying like cluster bomb


Be a tourist. You’ll never see these people againbaja-tourist

Tips for Touristas
-Booze Cruise Boat Tours, mechanical bulls, body shots…YOLO
-Street hustlers aren’t always trying to burn you, get chiclets & crap for your nephew
-Just like knocking out surf spots, go do touristy stuff just to say you did.


One bad taco will have you puking in the border line. Yes, This actually happened on our trip

Avoiding Montezuma’s Revenge
-If the fish tastes funky, it is. Spit it up and wash out your mouth with tequila
-Street tacos will eventually bite you in the ass
-Ask taxi drivers and locals where the grindest joints are

Our Favorite Post-Surf Grinds: TACO SURF at K38


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