Mike's Sky Ranch
Mike’s Sky Ranch
|Trail in Google Maps|
|creator:||Jeremy Edgar (edgear)|
|Distance:||72 miles / 116 kilometers|
|Trail time:||5 hours|
México, Baja California Norte, Valle la Trinidad, Sierra San Pedro Martir, Observatory
Heading east 52 miles on MEX3 from the turnoff to Parque Nacional la Constitución 1857, turn south onto a fairly maintained dirt road heading which goes up into the mountains to almost 5,000 ft. elevation.
Mike’s Sky Ranch is a popular destination for desert racing enthusiasts, and makes for a great stopping point for overlanders. The trail is maintained by local ranchers, but at times can be in bad shape. As you turn south from the MEX3 there will be great views of the Sierra San Pedro Martir mountain range.
The water crossings are not generally very deep, but could be during rainy/snow season. Adjacent to Mike’s Sky Ranch is one of the only places in Baja to fish for trout in a stream. During summer months, a swimming pool is available for guests.
Continuing on beyond the ranch is a road leading up to an observatory. This is a much more difficult trail, recommended for 4WD vehicles with lockers. This road is no longer passable. Due to the heavy winter rains in late 2009 - early 2010, the road has been washed-out.
Terrain type / brush factor
The terrain is mostly hard packed dirt and decomposed granite, with a few water crossings.
Low brush factor.
Permits? Fees? Seasonal closures?
Rooms with hot showers are available for rent, or you can pay to camp on the premises. During some of the desert races in the area, Mike’s Sky Ranch can be very crowded. There are also desert racing tour companies that take groups here on certain days. Fishing permits are required to fish the trout in the creek that runs by the ranch.
2004 Toyota Tacoma / Jeremy Edgar (edgear)
History, geology, etc.
This ranch was started in 1967 by Mike León, and is now run by his son, Mike Jr. It is on the outskirts of the Sierra de San Pedro Martir national park, and to the west of Picacho del Diablo, Baja’s highest peak at 10,157 ft.
The closest fuel is at the Pemex in Valle la Trinidad, which is about 10 miles to the west of the turnoff into the dirt road from MEX3. Be on the lookout for cattle in the road, and the potential for desert racing vehicles.
GPS units/laptops used for tracking/navigation: Garmin cTrex, MacBook
Navigation software used for planning/navigation: Baja Navigator & Baja Expeditioner from lbmaps.com
Books/maps used for planning: The Baja Adventure Book by Walt Peterson
Baja North adventure map from National Geographic Total Escape website Good description of Mike’s Sky Ranch, with contact info.
Mexbound website Another descriptive website with photos.
Important waypoints as coordinates
Continue SE on MEX3: 31.864243° -116.115499°
Turn south onto dirt road: 31.337453° -115.573699°
Head southwest at Y: 31.296182° -115.585114°
Continue straight on: 31.179746° -115.651578°
Stay left at Y: 31.171643° -115.653526°
Stay right at Y: 31.153575° -115.643445°
Cross creek into Mike’s Sky Ranch: 31.110594° -115.633487°
Mike’s Sky Ranch: 31.109617° -115.635410°
Valle la Trinidad: 31.409887° -115.724714°