Discover Our Sierra

Here is a brief description of the representative elements of Sierra La Giganta.


The main agricultural region from the State [of Baja California Sur] known with the name of Valle de Santo Domingo [Valley of Santo Domingo], is out of Sierra La Giganta, but the survival of this valley depends on the sierra, because the water used to develop the agriculture is collected from the high areas from Sierra La Giganta.

The Valle de Santo Domingo generates almost the totality of the production of potato, asparagus, chickpea, wheat, orange and alfalfa provided by Baja California Sur.

The harvested area total [in Valle de Santo Domingo] during 2013-2014 was 34, 881.0 hectares, with a total volume of production of 373, 271.8 tons. The contribution [of the Valley] to the state production is 60%.

According the volume of production, alfalfa (28%), potato (20.5%) and orange (14.5%) are in the first place. The [agricultural] production is complemented with wheat, corn, chickpea, chili, tomato and sorghum, between other products [categories].

In terms of value, the main product is asparagus that is the 30% of the total. After asparagus, potato, alfalfa, orange, and chickpea are in prominence, which represent 24.9%, 7.6%, 6.2%, and 5.4%, respectively.


There are ecological processes that depend on the nutrients that come from inland and that keep productive activities, such as fishing, Aquaculture and tourism. Sierra La Giganta has two [rivers or streams], one toward the Pacific [Ocean], where Bahía Magdalena [Magdalena Bay] system is very important, and the other [goes] to Golfo de California [California Gulf]. In terms of value, the most important [sea] species are round clam, sardine, scale and shrimp. Another species fished [in those sea areas] are lobsters, dogfish sharks, crabs, scallops, and [manta] rays.


Saeasonal Lagoons:
The seasonal or autumnal lagoons are endorheic river basins in whose plains important size water bodies are formed after Summer Rain, whose formation is associated with cyclones and hurricanes. All these [water bodies] are considered part of the seasonal [activities] and they are unique and limited systems. All these lagoons can be natural environments with two extreme conditions, because their own [formation] characteristics. The first condition happens when [the lagoons] are overflowed by rain, what make them a unique place for a great amount of species, [such as] amphibian, aquatic birds and some endemic yearly plants. The second state is presented during the long periods of drought, when the lagoons dry themselves and become pasture grounds plains. The seasonal lagoons main users are the cattle raisers, who put many animals to survive in those water resources during seasons with abundance of green fodder.


Cattle Raising:
In the region [of Valle de Santo Domingo], this [productive] activity mainly focuses on caprine and bovine cattle although people look increasingly for more ways of alternative cattle (apiculture, aviculture, etc.). [These two productive activities] are practiced in traditional and extensive ways although the insistent activities for raising cattle in stables have had important advances and successful cases. In both ways, [this last method of raising cattle in barns] continues being the productive activity that makes more jobs for more people in Sierra La Giganta.


Oasis is an environment with water bodies or permanent springs. Generally, the Oasis have had a key role in the human population and the human, animal, and vegetal reproduction in the peninsula [of Baja California Sur]. Oases have some economical and environmental values and have produced a socio-cultural component because they build the South-Californian cultural identity. In all the oasis of the region [of Valle de Santo Domingo], people have identified a total of 184 different plants, from which 24 depend on the permanent contact with sweet or briny water or with humid ground.


They are open watercourses because the concentrated drainages of waters during temporary intensive rain falling, which are able to excavate and to plough ground because the force with which the water runs through it. The conditions of aridness and the type of ground make many of these beds of watercourses do not present surface water for long periods of time. These constitute the majority of the bed watercourses of the net of drainages of the region. In some places, the ground’s type and characteristics cause that the subterranean water that runs through some of these [spaces] remains exposed in a temporary or permanent way, forming in some cases puddles of water and inclusive oasis.


High Sierra:
Because of the arid ecosystem characteristics in the region [of Valle de Santo Domingo], the evergreen oak forests occupy a reduced area [and] the evergreen oak groves are located in the high areas of La Giganta hills and of Cerro del Mechudo [El Mechudo Hill], ([which are] the highest points of Sierra La Giganta). In these places, there is more collecting of water, which recharges the streams, the seasonal lagoons, and the underground water reserves. These places are very important for the reproduction of bird and wild lamb species.

At present, the productive activities that gave traditional and historically sustenance to region rural economy, such as raising cattle, agriculture, cheese-making and artisan sweet-making, already left to be very good many years ago.
The drought, the lacking of a just marketing, low prices and the absence of job opportunities, are affecting our wellbeing in rancherías [the settlements made of huts or shanties], making many people prefer to sell their properties and move to the cities, while those who stay [in the rural areas] more and more have to face bigger difficulties to live with the minimum money.
On the other hand, we also see that hills natural resources more and more are affected by many problems, such as felling of trees, illegal hunting, overgrazing of pasture lands and bad management of resources.

Cartography of the region


Productores Sustentables Sierra La Giganta A.C. Las Pocitas S/N Municipio La Paz, BCS

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