For those of you who are still keeping up with my shake-down report,
I woke up at the Old Mil (exhausted) and my feet were still keeping beat with the mariachi music on repeat in my head. I slid out of bed and looked out of the window at our bikes in the courtyard. They were all lined up dress-right-dress except for mine. Mine was leaning against the wall because it didn't have a kick stand. And, oh yeah, it was also the only one covered in bird sh*t.
"Great", I'm thinking, "What a great way to start the day." As I'm downstairs gearing up and cleaning the sh*t off my bike…you guessed it…the culprit who was crapping all over my bike all night decided to crap on me too. It went right down the side of my face and in my beard. Turns out it was an owl. And they say it's good luck for an owl to crap on your head. So I guess I won't be crashing today. Wrong.
We took inventory of our gear and realized that every Moose fender bag we had is a "Baja Fail". Fast Tech's broke, zippers unzipped, and holes were worn into the sides from sliding on rocks. Hmmm..I wonder who's bag that was that was sliding on rocks.
We realized that we (I) lost some of Brett's tools due to my bag opening up from vibrations. I consolidated what tools I had left in the remaining operational Moose Bag. I used a small carabiner to hold the zippers together. Surely that should hold…right? Nope.
The vibrations were so violent on the bike that the set screw from our vice grips backed out and was lost. I've never seen anything like that before. Now I have to buy Brett new vice grips too…
We departed the Old Mill and retraced the same route we took to get there for about 20 miles. We, then turned off the hardball road just after the infantry base to head towards the ocean. After 5 or so miles on dirt roads Allan stopped because he thought he was losing air in his front tire. He pumped some air in it and decided to re-check it in a few minutes. He thought it was a pinch flat.
Like every day, Allan was the point man leading the way. So after he pumped up his tire we motored on. Setting the scene here. We were very close to the ocean and it was extremely foggy. I could taste the salt in the air and my goggles were pretty much useless. We were riding on a dirt road that had very deep loose sand while looking for a place to cross over and ride on the beach.
Five minutes after we stopped for Allan to pump up his tire we were stopped again. I figured Allan's plan didn't work and he had to change his tube. I was wrong. Allan hit a GIANT sand hole at 70mph that was right in the middle of the road. I guess it was a rut from a truck that got stuck. I have no idea how he saved it and didn't dump his bike. He did say, however, that he crushed his…um…family jewels against the tank. Being slow has it's perks I guess.
After Allan recovered we found a way to the ocean over some dunes. The dunes were WAY cool to ride on. After the dunes it got even cooler. We rode about 30 mile on the beach in a thick marine layer. We were all definitely out running our visibility. We'd pass fisherman, barking dogs, dodging kelp mounds, and we even had to dodge a dead sea lion. There were small rolling sand whoops that were a blast to ride over. This was one of the coolest rides of the trip so far.
At the next gas station Allan was still losing air and decided to change his tube. This is where we met David. David was about 9 years old and lived in the orphanage across the street. David was our little helper. We'd give him some money for drinks and snacks and he'd run as fast as he could into the gas station to get them for us. He handed us tools and sat with us the entire time (3 hours) we were at the gas station. I'm not really sure what took so long to change the tire because I took that opportunity to catch some Z's in the grass. Thankfully no mariachi music was keeping me up.
After I woke up I filmed David jumping out of the tree a few times and then we were ready to go. We gave David some money for helping out and then said goodbye.
While we were at the gas station, I was laying there in the grass being useless watching Allan change his tube and I came to a realization. I don't recall ever seeing Chris drink water. Even on the first day when it was 114 degrees and I was having heat cramps. In fact, on the first day Chris gave all of his water away. It was like that scene in the movie 'Three Amigos' when Chevy Chase has a full canteen in the desert while Martin Short and Steve Martin are dying of thirst. And Chevy Chase throws his water away and applies lip balm.
In addition to never drinking water, Chris also smokes cigarettes at every opportunity. His hydration and nutrition consists of Red Bull and Snickers. Chris is unstoppable. He's a red bearded freak of nature and one hell of a rider. And I mean…he's fast. Really fast.
While on the hard ball road heading to Ensenada we got stuck behind a tractor trailer. It was a little frustrating but the truck really wasn't going all that slow. Not acceptable for Chris. At the first opportunity, he darted off the hard ball and onto the dirt road that paralleled us. It was a sweeping left hand turn and Chris had the outside. So he had to go much faster. He was hauling a** trying to get in front of the truck. Where the dirt road met the hard ball again, Chris zipped right in front of the tractor trailor truck. The truck never even tapped his brakes. I don't think Chris even knew how close he came to the truck.
A quick breakdown of our route: We rode from the Old Mil San Quintin to Camalu. We rode from there on the beach to Erendira and stopped to see Lulu and have a drink. After Coyote Cal's (again) we pushed on to Ensenada along the coast. This was one of my favorite rides.
Along the coast there were cliffs and sweeping blind curves. It was really beautiful. I don't remember why I fell, but I fell for the first time that day. Maybe I was distracted by looking at the ocean. I rolled down the hill a bit. Nothing too serious but I'm glad the bike didn't follow me. I was pretty far ahead of John and wanted to hurry back up before he saw me. Nope…he came around the corner just in time to see me coming out of the bushes. Busted…
After we left the coast we were riding on straight dirt roads along farm pastures. It'd be straight for a while then a 90 degree turn then straight for a few miles. And so on and on. There were some washed out areas but for the most part it was all pretty fast stuff. This is where I had 'my first jump'. If you haven't watched the video yet. It's a few posts up from this one.
That night in Ensenada I recorded the story of 'my first jump' over some beers. I think it's pretty hysterical. Please excuse the language.
After we left the farm pastures we stopped at a gas station to fill up before we made the final push to Ensenada. The conversation went like this:
Brett: (hysterically laughing) "Hey Scott did you fall?"
Scott: (thinking that only John saw my fall): "Why what's going on back there?"
Brett: "Well you're covered in stickers."
Damnit…. I had stickers all over my back from my fall.
We arrived in Ensenada at dusk and checked into Mission Santa Isabel. The front desk dude must of been having a bad day because he was a jackass to us.
After we all showered up, Allan checked hie e-mail and we found out that KC was on-board as a sponsor. They will be supplying our chase trucks with lights. Awesome!!!!
We ate at Mango Mongo and I wouldn't recommend it to my worst enemy. But it was still good company, ice cold beers, and there was lots of eye candy on display.
I was exhausted and went to bed Immediately after dinner. Downtown Ensenada looked like a fun place, but I was exhausted and needed to sleep.
We went back to the hotel and I fell asleep as soon as I looked at my pillow. I woke up a few times throughout the night because I was sleeping on stickers. On my way to the bathroom, I stepped on no less than 4 stickers. Damn my crash…
I apologize but I really don't have that many pictures from day 4.
My bike...the only one covered in bird crap. Then when I was cleaning it I got crapped on too. Not a good way to start the day.
Here's Allan tagging the Old Mil with a WWP sticker.
At the gas station changing a tube. Also here's David helping us out.
Here's a short video of David jumping out of a tree. He sat there quietly and watched us work. I mean 'them' work. From time to time he'd jump out of a tree and be a kid.
This is me (right) and Chris (middle) and Allan (left) just after we left the coast and were filling up before Ensenada.