ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-30-2010, 08:31 AM   #1
gsstampeder OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
gsstampeder's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2006
Location: Displaced Calgarian
Oddometer: 1,044
5 weeks in baja

Riding my bike down the Baja had been my dream from the day I bought my bike. Trying to make this dream a reality was always a struggle. Always one thing or another came in the way. Every summer I would plan to do it in the Fall, and by Fall I would always end up postponing it to the Spring. Then Spring would roll around and I would have to wait again til Fall....It became a vicious circle of me never getting to the point where I could actually DO the trip. I wasn't sure either if I should be thinking about such a trip alone. I had some (read: a bit) experience riding dirt and even a few rocky trails....but would that be enough experience to prep me for the Baja? I had read lots of RR's and something about doing this trip solo had me intrigued.
I had a lot of personal.....stuff I was dealing with and thought perhaps the whole solo experience was just the ticket to get my life figured out. Or even just figure how to get it back on track. Or if nothing else, just to get away from the mess I was leaving behind.....

Now was the time....this year was different. I had the time-no job. I had the finances-sold my house. And then.... g/f....well things kinda took a turn for the not-so-good just as I was planning to leave. Shit....

Now, this year, this time, there was nothing stopping me....just kinda bummed not to be meeting my g/f along the way.
But I was going....I had to.

My plan was to ship my bike to Tucson and fly down and begin my adventure from there. My son lives in Newport Beach so I figured I'd ride out and spend some time visiting him before heading south into Baja.
I left Ottawa, and it's four feet of snow, on Dec. 15th. I wasn't scheduled to return until Jan. 20th. Should give me enough time to explore Baja?!?
I'd never spent more then 4 days riding consecutively, so I wasn't even sure how I was going to handle this much time on the bike. I knew (or thought I did) that Baja riding was going to be much different then anything I had ever ridden before. Little did I know how different. And five weeks? Really?

My plan was....well I had no plan. I wasn't sure even how far south I was going to get. I knew there were some places that I really wanted to see....Gonzaga, Bay of LA, Punta San Franciquito, Bay of Turtles and....I have a buddy with a rather nice place (palace) in Cabo, but I wasn't sure I wanted to do the drive from Loreto to La Paz. Too much highway. Although, judging from my maps and research, I thought that from La Paz to Cabo could also be lotsa fun. All I really knew was I wouldn't know until it was time to know...? huh?.
I'd ride til I got tired and if I needed a break, I'd stop and take one. I had driven down Mex 1, several times, but never on my bike. And this trip was more about avoiding Mex 1 - as much as possible. I was looking for dirt. Lotsa dirt! And beaches. Lotsa beaches!
Never really figured the rocks and sand into the equation.....Yeah, I knew Baja - Right!

I had shipped my bike to a fellow Baja adventurer. Frank, from zmw's in Tucson, handled everything for me in getting my bike ready the day I arrived. He helped me pick-up the bike from the shippers warehouse, put new tires on. Gave me some good Baja maps, heck he even picked me up at the airport! Whatta guy!

So there I was, finally on my bike, all geared up and ready to go.....but it was already 4PM, it would be dark soon and I hate riding after dark, especially when I don't know the area. But I had to get a start. I was itchin to go. And so made tracks for California. I got as far as I could that day/nite before finally getting a hotel in bum-fuk-nowhere. I would get an early start in the morning and reach Newport Beach by afternoon. Perfect!

Frank had suggested to take Highway 8 to the coast. Said it was more interesting then the #10 highway. Told me about the dateshakes in Dateland. I set my gps to Dateland and started out the following morning. I finally made it to Dateland and pulled off the highway in search of a dateshake.
[IMG][/IMG]
Hmmm...did Frank forget to tell me something about 'Dateland'?

gsstampeder screwed with this post 03-25-2010 at 08:59 AM
gsstampeder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 10:45 AM   #2
gsstampeder OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
gsstampeder's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2006
Location: Displaced Calgarian
Oddometer: 1,044
Ater spending a few days visting my son I was finally ready to get south. Baja was waiting. And so was I. I decided to drive out to Palm Springs and take the highway south from there to 'see' the Salton Sea. Don't ask why. I just thought it would be interesting to see this sea. I pulled into Palm Springs and decided to take a look around, still had lotsa time before I needed to be in El Centro, so I'd have some lunch and stretch the legs. During lunch I thought about staying in Palm Springs and riding out to Joshua Tree.
Is there really a tree named Joshua?
But I'm anxious to get into Baja. So I decide to get riding. I could always swing by this way after and see this tree named Joshua....So I get to my bike and immediately notice my back tire is flat. Ahhhh crap! A flat this early in my trip? My bike is parked near main st. And it's pretty busy, and i'm all geared up in my Charlie suit looking like I just landed from the moon. I think some smartass even asked me where my spaceship was parked But anyways, I get to checking my tire loooking for obvious signs of puncture and found none. So I pull out my airpump and start filling the tire. I get it filled to the point that I can now here the air leaking out. Crap again! I figure to fill it reeeeeeal full and dart to a bike shop. And I do. There was one not too far away, but then again, is anything really far away in Palm Springs? So after changing the tube and reinstalling the tire I'm set to go, but dammit, it's already 4PM. Might better just spend the nite in Palm Springs. Palm Springs is nasty expensive. But oh well, it's all part of the fun. I just wish fun wouldn't cost so much.....so early!
Well, one nite turned into two nites, what with all the hot sun and pools and ice cold beers and then the effect it was having on me and my pasty white Canadian...soul. So I stayed two nites. Big Deal I was not on any stinkin schedule. What's another day? I woke up early the next day and by mid afternoon i was ready to start packing for El Centro. I can make it to El Centro in a coupla hours, no sense rushing.

I pull into El Centro and find one of those $40/nite hotels and call it a day. I wake up early the next day and get my bike packed and ride around the corner to get a coffee. When.....what's that I smell? Ahh Crap - coolant. Sure enough, I check the weep hole and it's leaking. And it's Monday. Isn't Monday a universal holiday for bike shops? I did manage to find an open shop in San Diego, so back I go. $400 dollars and 4 1/2 hours later I'm out the door. Except by now it is 'already 4PM....guess I'm staying in San Diego tonite. San Diego is another nasty expensive town. But I check into a room and check the weather report back in Ottawa and suddenly I feel really good about being in San Diego.
Next day I am up and packed and ready to ride.....in the rain? This trip is definitely starting on a weird note. Cold and wet in San Diego? Furtunately it dries up fast and I'm in Tecate by 10 AM and in 'the bank' in line paying for my tourist card after which I pull out some American pesos and try and convert to Mexican dollars. Nope....the teller told me I needed to go to 'the bank'. Huh? I was in 'the bank'???....I left.
Welcome to Mexico - land of the confused gringo!

But alast, finally...here I was in Mexico. Riding the Baja on my bike, c/w new waterpump, and doing so by myself. It felt great. I made tracks for Ensenada, which I really had no plans to see. Ask me why, no wait don't ask please. I'd rather forget that nite!
Except for the detour into san Diego...my plan was to highball it to San Felipe and then let the Baja happen as it might...But now I was riding to Ensenada on wet roads and it was cold. Dam cold...well cold for baja. By the time I hit Ensenada I was having second thoughts about getting to san Felipe. I was cold and the clouds looked threatening. And it was windy. Very windy. But after lunch at some sidestand in which I ate two of something. I had no idea what I was eating...but boy, was it good! Now, I was ready to ride again. So it was off to San Felipe. Did I mention the wind yet? I took the #3 across the mountains to san Felipe and I had stopped to take a picture...my battery recharged itself?...and while stopped, the freakin wind knocked my bike over! It was windy! And my nice clean shiny bike was on it's side...getting all dirty. And scratched!
Dust storm in the valley
[IMG][/IMG]

gsstampeder screwed with this post 03-25-2010 at 09:05 AM
gsstampeder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 11:03 AM   #3
Michhub
Major Medical
 
Michhub's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2006
Location: Queen Creek AZ
Oddometer: 3,622
This sounds interesting...
__________________
Mike
Reinheitsgebot
'07 990ADV '08 530EXCR '04 XR650L
Bonsai Elephant - "
Life without a 990 is no life at all!"
Michhub is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 03:18 PM   #4
GB
Mod Squad
 
GB's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2002
Location: Toronto, ON
Oddometer: 55,251
you got the right idea.. a great way to get your life figured out by riding the 2 wheeled therapist and some sole helmet time..

__________________
ADV decals, patches & flag? Here
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 04:21 PM   #5
Jman955i
Falls Down A Lot
 
Jman955i's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Martinez/Augusta, Georgia
Oddometer: 1,710
in
__________________
Josh
Somewhere in North Carolina I purchased 2 miles of roadside flowers for the low price of $850.00
Jman955i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 10:14 PM   #6
Bgunn
Mucha distancia
 
Bgunn's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2004
Location: Rockford Wa
Oddometer: 1,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by gsstampeder
my plan was to highball it to San Felipe and then let the Baja happen as it might...

This sounds like a working formula.....
Bgunn is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 10:30 PM   #7
Roguester
Adventurer
 
Roguester's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2009
Location: Vancouver, WA
Oddometer: 13
Wink

OH! very nice start. I'll be along for the...adventure.
Roguester is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2010, 10:42 PM   #8
xymotic
Beastly Adventurer
 
xymotic's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Federal Way, WA
Oddometer: 8,364
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Just_Sean
Oh for ***k's sake Aaron. Please link us to my fascist, racist or homophobic posts.
"Anyone who doesn't take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either."
Albert Einstein


Baja trip to the tip
6:10 to Yuma
trials and tribulations in the Mojave
Baja Blitz Yard sale
View Current Location via Spot Tracker
xymotic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2010, 12:59 AM   #9
Thorne
Sherpa-ing around
 
Thorne's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Lone Pine, ON, Canada
Oddometer: 1,204
__________________
I'd rather die living than live dying.


Thorne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-04-2010, 06:47 AM   #10
gsstampeder OP
Beastly Adventurer
 
gsstampeder's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2006
Location: Displaced Calgarian
Oddometer: 1,044
Somehow I thought I had more pics of the ride into Agua Verde, but I guess not. I will just say that it is definitely worthwhile.
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
As I mentioned there are two ranges involved if you wish to reach the fishing village, I never even made it there myself. Not all the way at least.
After coming out of the first range you reach a gorgeous sandy beach but there are a few houses in the area, so I kept following the road until I started to climb up and over another range. Nothing too serious or scary, just more beautiful vistas and tight narrow, rocky, steep sections. And then when you come down the other side there is a wide open playground of sand and cactus brush to pass thru until you reach this -
A perfect place to reflect, or solve all the worlds problems....or just drink beer and swim naked in the ocean
[IMG][/IMG]
I hung out on the beach and took my panniers off my bike and tried to ride the sand...but the bike was just too heavy - still - or I just don't get it! Likely the latter. But I had a journal of sorts I was trying to keep and I wrote in this til my fingers bled.....And then it was time to get out. Yikes, I had been so absorbed in the day and staying lazy I hadn't noticed it had gotten a bit late. I did not want to be riding back in the dark. And I wanted to get some pics that I missed taking on the drive in....When I got to my bike and tried to push it back....i had driven it pretty deep in the sand...I noticed my headlight had worked itself loose and had melted the plastic housing that should hold it in place . GREAT! Now I have no headlite. I got packed in record time and wasted none driving thru the passes. I made it thru the mountains no ploblemo and then I had a few miles of pretty straight, graded, gravel roads before reaching the highway.
And i was highballin 'er! I had to make it back to Loreto before dark....I was likely doing 60-70 down a straight stretch with my dark dirty visor on when I came to a sharp turn....unexpectedly. Shit! There was no way I was making this turn. This is my account of what happened...
I locked the back brake, and watched the rear tire start to slide out beside me. I was going down and it was happening at high speed. My first thought was where am i going to go off? There was no way I could make this turn. I knew that....and there were huge cactus trees along the edge of the road and I knew that crashing into these would not be good. My bike was going down almost in slow motion...while traveling 60+ mph when, first my foot, then my footpeg caught in the road and suddenly I was jerked upright and heading straight down the road. WTF? Really? Cool!
I finally caught my breath and slowed to a crawl while I tried to get my sphincter to relax from it's ultra-puckered state. I have no idea how I avoided this certain disaster...other then my guardian angel was not ready to witness my death. Not like this, not here.....I slowed down as much as I could and finally made it back to the highway in good time. I was back in Loreto with my friends at La Damiana.....sharing my story.
I just wish I knew how I did that!
The following morning I said goodbye to Debra and Herardo and off I went. They had told me of another beautiful beach between Loreto and Mulege, so I figured I'd check it out too. I like beaches!
[IMG][/IMG]
The ride in tho was pretty tuff. Lotsa sand. Deep sand. And my bike was down many times. Again!
And then just more Baja dirt
[IMG][/IMG]
I hung out on the beach and ate my lunch, drank a coupla beers and wrote in my journal. I was really getting in to this beach-bum life
And with beaches like this-no wonder
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
If I had more food (read) I would have stayed here for the nite...but I knew of another beach not far from here that had both food and beer....so I headed out and rode on to Santispec. And set up camp....for the nite?[IMG][/IMG]

gsstampeder screwed with this post 02-06-2010 at 09:26 AM
gsstampeder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-04-2010, 08:45 AM   #11
mcnut
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Apr 2006
Location: Bakersfield CA & Sammamish WA
Oddometer: 1,337
Quote:
Originally Posted by gsstampeder
The following morning I said goodbye to Debra and Herardo and off I went. They had told me of another beautiful beach between Loreto and Mulege, so I figured I'd check it out too. I like beaches!

[IMG][/IMG]

[IMG][/IMG]
Looks like a nice one, care to drop a name????

Bruce
mcnut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-04-2010, 09:28 AM   #12
Salsa
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Dec 2006
Location: Kalifornia, Alaska, Arizona
Oddometer: 311
Cry

" My bike was going down almost in slow motion...while traveling 60+ mph when, first my foot, then my footpeg caught in the road and suddenly I was jerked upright and heading straight down the road. WTF? Really? Cool! I finally caught my breath and slowed to a crawl while I tried to get my sphincter to relax from it's ultra-puckered state. I have no idea how I avided this certain disaster...other then my guardian angel was not ready to witness my death."

Back in the mid 60's Sammy Tanner rode flat track for C.R. Axtell. In the pits on a very early ride, Sammy's then wife said to Axtell "Did you see Sammy fall?". Axtell said "No, but I did see him slow down in the south corner".

What happened was, Sammy slid out and turned the wheel into the turn until he slowed enough and then he straightened the wheel and the bike came up and he went on his way. Sammy insisted that the front wheel had to turn almost 90 degrees.

Sounds like you are ready to be a flat tracker!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Don
Salsa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2010, 11:44 AM   #13
Jay
Redbear Rides
 
Jay's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2001
Location: Mariposa, CA
Oddometer: 159
Wicked

Quote:
Originally Posted by gsstampeder
Somehow I thought I had more pics of the ride into Agua Verde, but I guess not. I will just say that it is definitely worthwhile...
until you reach this -
A perfect place to reflect, solve all the worlds problems....or just drink beer and swim naked in the ocean
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
In about 1990, I spent 3 days on a Moorings charter sailboat at Agua Verde with some friends. An extremely beautiful place that we had a great time at, except for the strong northerly storm that blew through one night. It blew 50 mph right across the beach between the mainland and the big rock. We dragged anchor and had to set a second one from the dingy at 2 AM. Two other boats dragged also.

Did you see the little cemetery up on the hillside directly west of the beach to the rock? Very old - people have been there a lot of years. The girlfriend and I had some fun up there.

Thanks for the memories with your pictures and good ride report.
Jay (formerly of Calgary)
__________________
"The Ride is the Reason"
1998 Suzuki DR350SE Bearcub
1995 BMW R1100GS Redbear
2001 Suzuki DRZ400S Yellowbear
1981 Suzuki GS850G
1980 Honda XR500 Big Red
2001 F650GS Dakar w/ Ural - Fast Kitty (Wife's Bike! )
Member: CCBR, AMA, BMWMOA, NRA, CRPA, CCRKBA
Jay is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 10:02 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014