During the dark and cold days of January and February, I hatched a plan to haul my bike to Yuma, Arizona. I have ridden Baja a few times now and it seemed like a good time to go again.
Long story shortened.......all the local riders were "working"......or "vacationing".......so it was looking like my first Baja solo.
BUT..........then I stumbled into an invitation to ride the mainland with this group of riders......so it was easy to say.....I'm in!
I loaded my 690e onto the hitch hauler, packed the pickup and headed south towards warmer temps and some solid sunshine. I arrived a day before the ride was scheduled so that I could make the trip to San Louis Rio Colorado to pick up my FMM (Visitors Permit) and TVIP (Temporary Vehicle Import Document). The TVIP is expensive at $460 for 2008 and newer vehicles (including moto's) but $400 is refundable when you leave the country. I understood that the two Yuma residents had their papers already and the two Kali riders had pre-registered. I didn't want to be the guy who held up the long ride on day 1, so this was a good plan.
The bad: I was practicing my peg work on the road and got pulled over for standing on the bike. The officer then said I had run a stop sign. Since I'm 6'3" plus the pegs are 20" or so off the ground, I look like a 4x8 piece of plywood when I'm on the bike and standing.
The good: I sweet talked myself into just a warning with the statement: I've taken classes to be able to stand and stop that bike. I was really just practicing.
Whatever, it worked.
The Kali folks rode in late that afternoon and we unloaded their bikes. The mechanical lineup consisted of #2 Yammie WR250's with 17 inch wheels, #1 '97 Suzie DR650, #1 old style KLR and my '08 690e. All the bikes were wearing Shinko 244's except for my brand new set of MT-21's. Mine were the only set of tires that got used up on this trip.