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Old 04-04-2008, 10:36 AM   #1
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Nobody is Home

Maps are good...when you can find them.

maps-of-mexico.com had the best information - much better than the Guia Roji we carried - but, as usual, not all roads were shown. The maps, along with a mix of compass-use, identifying landmarks that could be related to the maps, and gut feelings were used to lead the way. Being misplaced (lost) was never for too long of a time, but even though we had water, food, and shelter packed, the next source of fuel was somethimes a concern. Big Single, my riding partner and much more familiar with this area than I, carried the GPS - the one that didn't work when moving because the batteries rattled around like dice in a cup. Cool, we were going to make some sht up as we rode.



We started this trip into Mexico from Del Rio, TX and our plans were loose. We had about a week to spend in Northern Coahuila, retracing a few past steps, bumping up to some old Rio Grande border crossing towns - all closed since 9/11 - visiting a hot spring along the Rio, and making our way SW to the Zona del Silencio.

Other than some revived mine activity in places, motorized traffic could be counted on two feet - ten toes. We both wanted remote and that's mostly what we got. Why go - few services, an area active in drug smuggling and humans headed north across the US/MX border, and Zeta activity - I don't know, but we wanted to see what was and wasn't there.

Lone Rider screwed with this post 04-04-2008 at 01:04 PM
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Old 04-04-2008, 10:45 AM   #2
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been waiting for this one!!

I've also been researching the zetas' and there is some scary shite going on down there!!
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:46 PM   #3
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Wow!, Zona del silencio, there are shure facts that any compass or electronic device gets all crazy when in that area, .........so maybe that´s why you got lost

http://www.qdeansloan.com/articles/Mexico.htm
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Old 04-04-2008, 01:18 PM   #4
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Old 04-04-2008, 01:38 PM   #5
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Old 04-04-2008, 01:46 PM   #6
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Old 04-04-2008, 02:12 PM   #7
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I was riding my DR that turned 47k miles when hitting Del Rio. Two new tires, a 606 rear and 908 front, rode on top of my bag-o-junk from Arkansas.

BS (Big Single) had initially planned to ride his old and well-traveled KLR, but found out a week before this trip that it had the clap - lots of noise in the motor. His dealer located a new black and white DR650 up in Michigan that would be shipped down to Houston and BS started ordering stuff he'd need, like a larger tank. Normally, all kinds of things go wrong when you do something like this, but his bike arrived and all was well. His new DR had 500 miles on the odo when he hit Del Rio. He did an oil change and I changed out my tires.

Mostly smooth, that is. The Mexican border dude wouldn't accept BS's paperwork. The temp bike registration had the wrong middle initial in his name. We were leaving in the morning and an emergency visit to the Del Rio DMV got him fresh paperwork just after they opened. Now all is well.


Sporting new red fuel jugs in Acuna
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Old 04-04-2008, 02:17 PM   #8
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Old 04-04-2008, 02:56 PM   #9
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Old 04-04-2008, 03:15 PM   #10
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Old 04-04-2008, 03:36 PM   #11
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Old 04-04-2008, 03:57 PM   #12
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Pemex stop, pesos in pockets, muchas agua...we gone.

Not too far west of Acuna there's something that could be mistaken for a super highway. What little I could see was fenced in and some F150s were making good time. I assumed it was a new highway to somewhere - Hell, perhaps - but BS explained that it was a test track, something like 8 miles around. Shortly after that the pavement ended.

We stopped at an abandoned town so I could smoke a cig and BS could eat some more peanuts. He ate a lot of peanuts during this trip.
"They're good for you and have protein."

BS had recently lost about 100 lbs - not by eating peanuts - and planned to live on rice packs mixed with salmon packs...and peanuts. I carried heavier canned foods...and some Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pies.

Anyway, this town isn't totally abandoned because two guys were walking towards us. BS mumbled something about 'hands in pockets', but no guns were ever shown. I offered cigs and we talked a bit. Braulio Fernandez Aguirre, as marked on the map, had been an old mining town, and now just a rancho in the middle of nowhere. We did see a couple of horses, but no ganado. They said it had been a long time since they'd seen any gringos.


Braulio Fernandez Aguirre

The roads weren't that bad and we were making pretty good time. BS pointed out where we'd camped a couple of years ago, but I didn't remember the spot. So far we were seeing all the roads marked on the map, but new roads were also there. Judging the correct roads to take can sometimes be interesting, but the older, main roads were usually apparent. The compass helped determine right from wrong.

We found the split north to Valencia and were now on new turf. Nether of us had been on these roads, and they were less-traveled. Valencia isn't a town. It's a small ranch, and while obviously occupied, nobody was home. The only road that continued north, where we wanted to go, was in a small wash with a closed gate. This was just the first of several gates we would open and close.


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Old 04-04-2008, 04:17 PM   #13
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Old 04-04-2008, 04:30 PM   #14
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Old 04-04-2008, 04:36 PM   #15
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The map had some squiggles on it that indicated elevations and this helped us chose the right road going up a very wide valley, but didn't keep me from taking a wrong spilt to a canyon. I knew it was wrong after a half mile or so, but kept on going to see what was there. BS voted to go back and continue towards San Rosendo. We'll do this route on another trip. Big, big country.



There are some low, grassy spots in this valley that must collect the run off. If you didn't have brush guards and gloves, you would be a bleeding fool because there's little room to maneuver in the ruts. We kept our speed down through these in case a bush or cactus wanted to hook us and take us down.



Los Burras was a small ranch, not a town, and nobody was home. La Pena was a small ranch, not a town, and nobody was home.

I was starting to get the clue - no towns in this part of Coahuila.

At La Pena the road became sheets or layers of limestone, but the road was still clear. Cresting a hill, I saw some wild donkeys and these suckers were fcking huge. They must have been wild mules. Beer wagon pulling stock...
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