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The Original WWP (March 20, 2004)

Robert Bilsland

The Malvern Hills

Landis Bennett

TransPeninsular Cardonal

Puerto Chapala, Baja California (Norte), México

12:15 PST (20:15 UTC)

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© 2004 Landis Bennett, All Rights Reserved.



México's Baja Peninsula has one major road to take you from the US border all the way to Cabo San Lucas at the southern tip: Mex-1, The Transpeninsular Highway. Its construction was completed in 1973 and it immediately became the life line for the Baja Peninsula's southern state: Baja California Sur. The Transpeninsular runs through some very fascinating country. It winds 1,054 miles (1,696 km) from Tijuana through Ensenada, Guerrero Negro, Ciudad Constitution, La Paz, and Los Cabos.

This panorama was taken just south of Laguna Chapala about two-thirds of the way between Tijuana and Guerrero Negro. The view opens towards Puerto Chapala (Chapala Pass) and shows the truckers plying their trade both up and down the peninsula.

The cardonal is a forest of cardón cactus. Cardón, also known as the Giant Cactus, are the tallest species of cacti and resemble the smaller Saguaro cactus seen in the Southwestern US. Also nearby in the panorama is the very unique cirio. Trying to describe this plant to people without a photo is a very difficult thing indeed. Cirio means wax candle in Spanish and that is a pretty good description, although I've heard it described as an inverted carrot as well. They are the tall thin plants with very short leaves coming out from them, and one is even in bloom with some yellow blossoms at the top. The cirio is also referred to as the "boojum tree" after Lewis Caroll's Hunting of the Snark. The cirio grows almost exclusively in Baja California and is probably the plant most people who have driven through this area will remember. Among the other plants in this photo you'll find the Elephant Tree, Nightshade, Palo Verde, and the Old Man Cactus.
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Hardware: Nikon D100, Nikkor 18mm Lens, Kaidan QuickPan III Spherical
Software: QTVR Authoring Studio, Photoshop, Kekus PanoTools, QT Player Pro, VRPrep

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