In Baja California Sur, including Los Cabos, La Paz and the other areas, in general, you have to be very careful not to use too much water. Many places do not have potable services, because there are no pipes carrying municipal water, even in certain areas of La Paz and Cabo. As a result, you have to order your water from a water truck and it’s your responsibility to use it wisely. We’re a desert so water is a precious resource.
In the areas with no municipal water, you have a truck which pulls up to your house deposits it you’re your pila, which is a water container on your property. Usually, a pila can hold 10,000 liters or more. The cost for 10,000 liters in our little town of El Sargento is 1,000 Mexican pesos (about US $53), and would last a typical family of 4 for about a month.
There are other places that are connected to municipal water, but even then, that doesn’t mean you’re going to have water every day. You will have water maybe every day through a period of time or you would have it one day yes or one day no or every 3 days. In other places, the water is constant.
If you have a pila and then you get water only every three days, the pila acts as temporary storage, so you use it until the municipal water comes back on, and you fill your pila again. It’s not a big deal. I always have water and I never worry about not having water in my house.
There are very few wells in the area. I believe we have 2 to 4 here in our little area and La Paz has perhaps 7 to 12 wells.
We have a desalinization unit but it’s not working or hasn’t been set up to work yet. I believe it’s too expensive and there’s not the real knowledge of how to run it. Other places do use desalination. For example, there’s a little tiny town separated from anything right on the beach and those guys do have a desalinization plant that works really well. But these are like tiny town at the edge of nowhere.
(A pila, an inground water cistern on a lot in La Ventana Bay, Mexico, pictured.)