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Old 11-11-2011, 04:18 PM   #31
Shibby! OP
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Joined: Aug 2010
Location: Currently - Canada
Oddometer: 1,646
In the morning. My tent still standing after the wind storm and my attempt at putting the pegs in the firm ground. I actually bent one in the first location.



From CD east through the garbage dump. My general rule all good rides either start or stop at a towns garbage dump in Baja. This holds very true here.




Some silt beds. Don't look like much but they are tricky to ride. I equate it much more to snow then sand or mud. Way trickier to ride:



This day had me going through lots of beds of various sizes. I failed to take pics. It was way to warm to stop.




























The hills have eyes...





Lots of dead cows everywhere in the back country.. Drought, Disease?







Sea of Cortez again!



My sprocket, once mounted inside my panier rack decided to go F-off. Thankfully heard it fall with a loud bang and was able to turn around and pick it up. Might fix that tonight...



Wicked fun road back into La Paz. Highly recommended section of road, however you will need a 350+ km tank to do it.









There was a few hills where, at the 95km/hr mark you catch air over. Fun!




More pictures to come. Don't have my camera and still have to set-up icloud to get them off my phone.
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Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095

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Old 11-11-2011, 05:00 PM   #32
ktmnate
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I'm really enjoying your report. I'm just sitting here day dreaming of actually riding Baja. What I should be doing is getting ready for work.

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Old 11-12-2011, 09:00 AM   #33
Exploron
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Shibby!,
Great ride report so far!
You are putting some miles/km's on that XR.
Thanks for the Algo crossing tip. That sounds like the way to go for an Az crossing heading to SF and down.
Looks like you are doing some of your ride with others and some (most?) solo.
I love riding alone and may have to follow in your footsteps down there.
Your tent pics out in the middle of nowhere in Baja inspire a guy to do the same.
Thanks so much for sharing.
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Old 11-13-2011, 03:45 PM   #34
Shibby! OP
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Yup! Most miles are solo. I enjoy my own schedule as well. Problem is it is more expensive.

Random tenting is enjoyable and you save money. Staying in a hostel now in Zacarates. Need to replace my shoes I lost. Out of place in these fancy areas.


More pictures to come! Food, shoes, and laundry. Will hit the town tomorrow and play tourist. This place is very nice.






Quote:
Originally Posted by highball View Post
Shibby!,
Great ride report so far!
You are putting some miles/km's on that XR.
Thanks for the Algo crossing tip. That sounds like the way to go for an Az crossing heading to SF and down.
Looks like you are doing some of your ride with others and some (most?) solo.
I love riding alone and may have to follow in your footsteps down there.
Your tent pics out in the middle of nowhere in Baja inspire a guy to do the same.
Thanks so much for sharing.
__________________
Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095


Shibby! screwed with this post 11-13-2011 at 08:37 PM
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Old 11-13-2011, 09:02 PM   #35
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Ok, looks like I have some catching up to do.

Last I left off I was rolling into La Paz, Baja. I approached the city from the north along the sea of Cortez and quickly stumbled upon a Walmart store. Not my favourite place, but a place that normally has cheap items. I needed to grab a pair of sandels to cover me over till I can get something half ass decent. Sadly, they were still 20$!

Leaving Walmart my next goal was to find a place to stay. Without WIFI I had no information so I headed to the malicon to find some grub and free WIFI. I rode the strip completely and turned around. I stopped at numerous locations trying to read the WIFI label and find the corresponding place that offers it. The only one I could find was Applebees. I didn't ride 2000km to find American food so it wasn't my first stop, but without noticing anything else that I could see I headed back. When I arrived at the parking lot I was past hot and my bike wasn't enjoying the torture I was subjecting it to. Things improved when I found they had a unlocked signal so I didn't have to buy some overpriced, crappy American food.

I searched for hostels and found one. Marked its location, put it's address into Google and found it shows different. Marked both locations and went for another ride. 30 minutes later I was riding down some shady dark streets and didn't find anything at either location. Not impressed. Back at AB's I searched cheap hotels and came across Hotel Yeneki (sp?) Once again, marked it's location and went into the jungle of Mexican drivers attempting to find the place. I had to circle the area no less than 7 times asking taco stands and random people on the street till I found it. When I finally arrived I was one happy camper.

This place was something. Check out the pictures.

Its here where I met the (4) Aussies traveling to Argentina. (fuelthismule.com). These guys provided entertainment for the couple days I was here and helped with info about food, copying paperwork, and helping get my ticket for the boat to Mazatlan. Figured I'd crash their party for another day.

While vising at the hotel Tim from Vancouver also rolled in the second night riding to the tip of Argentina with a 82 Honda 450 and a milk crate. We all had our interesting stories which were shared over a few brew. (over 1 liter for 22 pesos, less than 2$! from the local OXXO)

This brings us too.... Thursday. The boat day/night. We got our tickets, we ran around all over getting copies of paperwork, we were off!

After a friendly chat with the local import/duties officers we were heading into the deep bowels of the boat which must have been close to hell because it had to be 40+ degrees in there. Strapped our bikes down and head up to the deck. We decided we were going to sleep on the deck with our sleeping bags. So that's what we did. When nightfall came we all climbed into our bags and we had 6 of us sleeping there. At one point the boat pitched so much from the waves that you would slide from one side of your sleeping mattress to the other. Great entertainment. Sadly the view of the stars were dampened by the bright moon. Pictures are on my Iphone so I will have to grab those sometime.

Friday morning we set shore on Mazatlan. Said our goodbyes I found a cheap motel on the Malicon once again. I walked the 1.5ish km to the touristy area to grab some grub, watch the ladies, and relax for a bit. Walked back stopping a OXXO for a beer. It was going to be a early night for me because I wanted to get up and ride the death road to Durango. Apparently a travel notice for this area. Other then the fed's looking for somebody I had no issues.

Saturday morning I was blazing down the freeway dieing of extreme heat. Stopping at a Pemex for juice and gas, I was ready. The road is like nothing I have seen before. I've rode all the good stuff on the western side of American and Canada, and I would think this road puts the Tail of the Dragon to shame. It's unreal. Turns for hundreds of KM's. Everything you can imagine with a few semi's and buses in your lane thrown in for excitement. Good fun!

I arrived in Durango in decent time (300 km's and about 7 hours). The usual issues of finding a hotel was managed by asking around but I found a place right down town in the Centro for a reasonable rate. Unforatuntely I was too embarrased to walk around with flip flops when all the girls are in dresses and high heels. Search for pictures on Google. The Colonial buildings are unreal.

Today I traveled from Durango to Zacretes where I'll stay a few days. Another colonial town with amazing architecture. Tomorrow I will head out to take in the sights and sounds and take some pics. I will also buy shoes. haha. Once I relax here for a couple days I think I will head to the coast again and get my sweat on. Thinking San Blas north of PV. I have the option of highway (boring) or offroad.. Problem is many Mexicans are suggesting I do not do it offroad. To listen to them or not? Huh..
__________________
Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095

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Old 11-14-2011, 07:29 AM   #36
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Yay, Pictures!! (Couldn't get ADVrider to allow me to paste.. Not sure what the deal was there)









The local cat... He enjoyed my french fries.



















































It actually got up to 9200 ft and must have been down to like 5-10 degrees. I was frozen since I lost my riding jacket in San Ignacio.













The mexican/spanish artwork is very erotic.



Check out pictures online of Durango. Pretty nice city.



On the way to Zacatecas















__________________
Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095

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Old 11-14-2011, 04:05 PM   #37
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Being that there is a travel advisory around here and I have yet to meet a Mexican that tells me it's safe in these parts (I have yet to see anything or even feel unsafe), I'm curious to know how stupid I would be to attempt this route, solo, very little not no spanish, and being white... (Canadian). It would have to be a least two days worth of travel, random camping.

http://www.gpsies.com/map.do?fileId=fjqxlwcqdmpnwpcx

Adventure calls, but lots of people are questioning my willingness to travel off the beaten path...
__________________
Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095

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Old 11-14-2011, 05:19 PM   #38
SR
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I say go for it. That is one of the most spectacular but overlooked parts of the Sierra Madre. If you need a place to stay, San Martin de Bolanos is a cool historical mining town that is not too far off of your path.

SR

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shibby! View Post
Being that there is a travel advisory around here and I have yet to meet a Mexican that tells me it's safe in these parts (I have yet to see anything or even feel unsafe), I'm curious to know how stupid I would be to attempt this route, solo, very little not no spanish, and being white... (Canadian). It would have to be a least two days worth of travel, random camping.

http://www.gpsies.com/map.do?fileId=fjqxlwcqdmpnwpcx

Adventure calls, but lots of people are questioning my willingness to travel off the beaten path...
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Old 11-16-2011, 06:03 PM   #39
danthemotorcycleman
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Good looking bike going for a good looking ride.
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:36 PM   #40
Adv Grifter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shibby! View Post
Being that there is a travel advisory around here and I have yet to meet a Mexican that tells me it's safe in these parts (I have yet to see anything or even feel unsafe), I'm curious to know how stupid I would be to attempt this route, solo, very little not no spanish, and being white... (Canadian). It would have to be a least two days worth of travel, random camping.

http://www.gpsies.com/map.do?fileId=fjqxlwcqdmpnwpcx

Adventure calls, but lots of people are questioning my willingness to travel off the beaten path...
That's a tough call ... the Mexicans you meet are likely watching TV News and getting caught up in the Narco/murder hysteria ... same as the Gringos .... but the fact remains there is a drug war going on.

I wouldn't worry about the Mota guys ... it's the Meth labs and the Speed Freaks to be afraid of stumbling upon. Fucking crazy bastards. The problem is the young guys are doing speed now. I'm sure you'll see it in your travels. Some X Army guys have joined on with the Narcos ... well armed and trained ... and when doing Meth become crazy random killing machines.

In the Sierra, on dirt roads, the Narcos control that world if the Army aren't around ... then it's their road. No idea what could happen. Mostly there is nobody around. Travel early in the day, do short days. Hide your camp sites well. Avoid getting into Tequila shots and speed sniffing sessions with guys in $40K pick-up trucks and Snake skin boots. Trust me ... won't end well.

Funny, I'm just headed back from Baja myself. I actually saw you riding in La Paz. You were right at the end of the Malecon headed South, then you came back. I was walking. I was staying with a friend at El Moro ... the last nice hotel on the strip. He has it as a time share deal. I recognized your XR.

The road you took out of Mazatlan up to Durango I believe was Espina del Diablo, (The Devils Backbone) ... pretty famous road. I nearly crashed hitting diesel mid corner there (years ago). Roads are much cleaner now, trucks leak far less than years past.

If you want good food ask for a Pollo Asado place. (La Paz has at least three of them) Plentiful and generally good. (Beats Tacos 3 meals a day) Mexicans do good Oatmeal. (Avena) Very sweet but you can ask them to add fruit and stuff.

I was going to Ferry to the mainland but just had more fun exploring the beaches South of La Paz around Cabo Pulmo. I'm sick of BIG Mexican cities ... so after a few days beaching ... I turned around, headed North. Spent time at a few favorite places on the way North. Never seen Baja so quiet.

Good luck, stay safe. Finding Hotels in strange towns is a Bitch. Check out the Hotels list in Latin America forum. Not bad. Nice to get tips when you can. I just ask locals ... usually works out OK. Tourism is dead ... as I'm sure you've noticed ... so pretty negotiable ... unless they've been "Gringoized".
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Old 11-16-2011, 09:14 PM   #41
Shibby! OP
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Pictures to come soon.

Toured the city in the last few days with Niome from France. She's traveling for another 1-1.5 years yet and has plans to head north, then down Baja. From there head to Brazil and tour S.A via bus.

We saw one of the local museums, the gondola above the city, and plenty of main and side streets. The following day we walked around some more, got some ice cream, and found out the next museum which was supposed to be better was closed because it was a Wednesday. I guess they are closed Wednesdays.... If I stick around tomorrow I'll check it out. Sorry, no pictures. Not allowed.

Another two Americans arrived today. One traveling by bus, and the other a teacher in Durango. Both very nice and interesting people. Sadly I can't speak to the other Spanish speaking people. I have been putting some work into that.

Welcome to Zacatecas:



From Hostel Villa Colonial rooftop patio. Amazing location (90 p/night):



Going to get my laundry:















While here I had some bowel issues. I'll leave out the stories knowing most ADV riders don't like "real" story, but lets say I a few days of lounging around and not riding has been nice.





Overall, people dress very well here. I felt really out of place wearing flip flops. I went to no less then 13 stores looking for shoes. No size 12 in Mexico I guess. One store had three options, one was a crappy pair of shoes, the other were 90$ CAT shoes, and the last I would wear here, but never again. I decided to wait and order shoes to my parents and meet up with them when they vacation in PV.





Why aren't these in Canada?



Turbo Diesel? Screw the ugly Hilux. I'd buy this! Keep in mind this is a base model. I saw a much nicer one at a dealership on the way in and was going to take a picture of it when leaving.



The closed Museum:







Sadly, it has to be said. Niome's dark skin took a lot of the stares off my flip flops.... I felt bad.





Dodge Raider?!





They don't make things like they used to:



David. The American traveling around the world on KLR showed me his skills on the violin. He packs it on his bike..



Last one:





As I was finishing up this post, the owner of the Hostel came up and said "I don't think you got the welcoming shot?". I replied with "Yes, actually I received two!". He then poured another shot of Tequila! This place is great.

The owner, and his cousin both speak amazing English so if anybody is worried it's no problem here. The town itself has very few English speaking people, but I met somebody on the street last night with Niome, and the previous day a skate store owner that both spoke perfect English. I went back the following day to have another conversation about bikes and travel and to buy a belt off him. He tossed in two free stickers too! Wicked.
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Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095


Shibby! screwed with this post 11-16-2011 at 09:34 PM
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:36 AM   #42
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Heading South! You weren't kidding. Great report More please. Hey Adv Grifter, if you are ever in the Cabo/ La Paz area in the cool months, Please look me up.

Baja Ho screwed with this post 11-18-2011 at 11:42 AM
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:51 AM   #43
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Beautiful pictures...nice job. Congrats !
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Old 11-19-2011, 04:44 PM   #44
Shibby! OP
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I have gone where no man should go and survived. Two days, mostly off road through one o the claimed most dangerous areas of Mexico. I traveled over mountains, streams, desert and "rainforest" to land in San Blas.

Pictures to come. Lots of eye dropping scenery and amazing roads. It may have just been te best ride of my life.

So far on this trip ive almost hit:

- truck
- cows
- mouse
- iguana
- snakes.

And I've lived to tell about it!

First food. Might try BBQ fish. . . Not really A sea food guy but have to try it at least.
__________________
Tour of Idaho T1 Challenge - https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...551f1642711d75
Eat. Sleep. Ride - The Great Divide: http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...4#post19193704
Go, Get Lost - Heading South: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=735690
Dirt Donkeys Do Baja: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671095

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Old 11-19-2011, 05:37 PM   #45
Traveling_Turtle
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Wicked!!

Hi, Shibby!
Glad you're enjoying my country depite all the bad rap! Hope you can make a tour of the Yucatan Peninsula before heading to CA and SA! I know Cancun is price but I'll be happy to welcome you home! Send me a PM I'll set you up!
Keep having fun!
Great RR!!
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