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Old 12-17-2013, 02:40 PM   #31
bastchild OP
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Location: Biloxi, MS
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Day 15 to Gulfport, MS 0 miles on bike

I forgot to mention meeting 2 mototravellers in Barra on the day before, alas no photos though. They were George and Jordan or something like that from Portland, OR on a couple of DR650ís(?). They were hightailing it to Panama City by the 26th crossing the Darien in January. We met them at a corner and when I went back to give them our hotel room number they were gone. Buen viaje!

We had a 9am flight from Guadalajara, so we took a 6am cab to the airport for 250pesos. I think the going rate is 220 pesos, but it was early and the hotel just called a random dude, or someone who clearly wasnít a taxi, so rules donít apply. The airport is 17 km from the center, but can take 45 minutes. At 6am it only took 20 minutes.
We had left one pelican case full of gear behind. I brought the moto riding gear back so I could wash them in the bathtub at home. Also brought the helmets back because the wifeís microphone stopped working and I need to troubleshoot it at home. This was also a chance to swap out cold weather gear for hot weather gear. Or rather a chance to pack less. One pelican case weighed 22 lbs and the moto riding gear was 24 lbs. wth?
waiting to check in

We arrived too early to check in, so the wife had some Burger King. She said, ďYou can have the rest.Ē This is how it is.
"you can have the rest"

boarding

In concourse B at Hartfield International Airport, in Atlanta, there is this pathetic excuse for a pizzeria. Yeah, I know itís airport food, but Panda express and Starbucks do an okay job, right? This place made me angry. Probably because it is frozen pizza reheated. How is this acceptable? Litle Azio Pizza & More? Boooo!!!
Little Azio's Pizza and More

Little Azio's Pizza and More

Itís 50 F at 4:45 pm in Gulfport, MS. What have we done? Itís okay. We will be back in Guadalajara to pick up the bike in 8 days.
Gulfport

We are flying back to Guadalajara tomorrow! Back on the bike in a couple days (as long as the folks at Carmen Motors did a good job).
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Old 12-17-2013, 09:26 PM   #32
Blader54
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Likin' this report! If I may ask, what sort of jobs do you guys have that you take every other week off to ride? I'm SO jealous!! Looking forward to the next phase of your adventure!
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:45 PM   #33
bastchild OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blader54 View Post
Likin' this report! If I may ask, what sort of jobs do you guys have that you take every other week off to ride? I'm SO jealous!! Looking forward to the next phase of your adventure!
I am pretty lucky with my job, in that I do shift work so I just work a string of days to get my hours in then I am off. I happen to work 5 days then have 5 days off. Five days is great, but still difficult to get down to TDF with that kind of schedule. But we are doing what we can.
Glad you are enjoying this. We are having a blast.
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Old 12-23-2013, 08:23 PM   #34
bastchild OP
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Day 16 to Guadalajara 0 miles on bike

We had an afternoon flight out of Gulfport, putting us in Guadalajara at 9pm.
Flying back to Guadalajara
Flying back to Guadalajara

We arrived an took a taxi (300 pesos!) to the hotel and checked back into the Hotel Portobelo. This was the third time arriving here. We retrieved our stored luggage too. It is always nice coming back to this Hotel, but it is getting a bit repetitive and it is time to move on.
Hotel Portobelo
Hotel Portobelo

We walked back down toward the Cathedral area and found some tacos al pastor. 4 for 24 pesos Ė not bad.
El Tacazo
El Tacazo

Cool Honda c90
Honda C90

Then we discovered tacos Eldorado, 5 for 15 pesos! They are served in salsa, so they will be henceforth known as ďsoupy tacosĒ. They are delicious.
Tacqueria los Faroles
Tacqueria los Faroles
Tacqueria los Faroles

Cool church
Guadalajara at night

Bike night ride (with ATV!)
nighttime street riding

We stopped by an Oxxo to pick up a bottle of El Jimador and Fresca. They still had their sale for a 2 L Fresca and 900 mL bottle of tequila. Wait a minute, I only got a 700 mL bottle in Barra and they charged the same amount (125 mL) and they tried to do the same to me in Guadalajara, but I pointed out that the picture was for a 900 mL bottle, so the clerk sheepishly got a bottle from behind the first bottle. Strange that it would ring up the same amount. The cheek!
Tequila in us, back at the hotel, we passed out for the night.
El Jimador and fresca
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Old 12-24-2013, 09:51 AM   #35
bastchild OP
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Day 17 to Mazatlan 285 miles on bike

Day 17 Guad to Mazatlan

We woke up early and took the metro and bus to Carmen Motors. It was rush hour and the buses and subways were packed as were the streets, but bus 25 took us back to the BMW dealer Ė literally right in front of the BMW dealer.
Carmen Motors

We tried to get the bike but having no work invoice or receipt, they didnít know which bike I had. After 20 minutes, Martha Ruelas, showed up and found our bike. I asked for the Hyperpro owners manual back and they brought the bag of my old springs and shock and retrieved the manual and warranty and even my BMW ownerís manual and maintenance book which they had removed from the bike. The bike looked good and I confirmed they changed the water pump. The bill came to $370 usd.
our bike is back!

new hyperpro 3d rear shock

We headed off back to the hotel and loaded up the bike and hit the road around 10:30am.
buskers at intersection

It was a 6 hour ride to Mazatlan for us so we took the cuota road. We passed by volcanoes and lava flows and craters.
Volcano

Lava field
Volcanic rocks

Agave fields for tequila!
Agave fields
We stopped in Jala for lunch at a torta stand. It was great for 20 pesos each.
Torta stand in Jala

Torta stand in Jala

Carnitas torta

Torta stand in Jala

Jala for lunch

The cuota is expensive. It cost us at least 360 pesos to get there. We took the libre road for a bit but got stuck behind sugar cane trucks on mountainous roads Ė not fun to pass.
Sugar cane fields
Me and Christine

Sugarcane trucks

Kids in pickup

shadow

We made it Funky Monkey Hostel at 4pm. The wife wanted to try staying in hostel for change in order to meet other travelers. Nigel checked us into a private room with kitchenette ensuite. It was about the same price for us as the dorms Ė $17 each. What a deal! This place has secure parking, free wifi, water, use of kitchen, pool. Nigel and Salem were great hosts. I highly recommend this place to stay if you are passing through. It is in a quiet safe neighborhood 10 minutes walking from the beach.
Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

Funky Monkey Hostel

We went walking to the beach, not wanting to put on our gear again. It was pretty warm. The sun had already gone behind the islands but the sky was a brilliant orange. The water was a cooler than Barra had been. Mazatlan was the most touristy place we had been to thus far on the trip in Mexico, but there were not as many gringos as I expected. There were beach resorts in somewhat dilapidated conditions. But they have a 6 mile long malecon great for walking, running, biking, or rollerblading. We wandered about but were a bit limited as we didnít bring the bike. We ended up eating tacos which were topped with pineapples.
Mazatlan

Mazatlan

Mazatlan

Mazatlan

Mazatlan

Mazatlan

Malecon at night

Taco Time

Taco Time

Taco Time

Taco Time

Back at the hostel, we talked with Salem for a while, and met Jose, a lawyer from Tijuana on a three-week holiday and Louis, a student from Georgia Tech who just finished riding from Atlanta to Vancouver on a Honda Rebel and backpacked the Pacific Crest Trail and now wants to paddle down the Pacific Coast of Mexico. I had been hesitant on staying in a hostel but this renewed my trust in them. We didnít go to bed until nearly 2am, talking to these guys and asking for ideas on where to travel in Mexico.
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Old 12-24-2013, 11:23 AM   #36
Charmin
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For almost 400 usd they should have thoroughly cleaned the whole bike




Volcan El Ceboruco
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceboruco_%28volcano%29

This is what we call "Tacos Al Pastor"

Charmin screwed with this post 12-24-2013 at 11:30 AM
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Old 12-24-2013, 12:50 PM   #37
bastchild OP
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Day 18 to Sayulita 246 miles on the bike

Day 18 Mazatlan to Sayulita

We woke up early to get a head start on the road. It would be another 6 hour day. We had been trying to book in Sayulita or San Francisco but it was expensive or full. It was Friday.
We drove down the malecon to see more of Mazatlan. The malecon is gorgeous, but we had no time to dillydally. We had to hit the road.
Riding out of Mazatlan

Riding out of Mazatlan

We ended up taking the cuota most of the way. Once again we took the libre for a section and we were stuck behind slow trucks. No more! We turned off toward San Blas to check it out and stopped for lunch. This place was next to a Pemex station (which means clean bathrooms). We tried to order food off the menu on the wall, but the cook just kept rattling off other foods they had, even though we mentioned what we wanted. We just ended up pointing at a plate she had made for another customer and ordered 2 of them -- pork in red sauce. It was good.
riding to Sayulita

Lunch stop

Lunch stop

Lunch stop

San Blas is in a lagoon so full of mosquitos. The town looked okay but I wasnít charmed by it. We drove through the cobblestone streets and stopped long enough for the wife to get bitten by flies (and normally she doesnít) and head back out. This is one of those times I was glad I wasnít backpacking, otherwise we would have been resigned to spend a night there.
San Blas

San Blas

San Blas

Donít ride at night!
Cow in the road!

After an hour the sky darkened in the distance and it looked like we might get rain. We put the electronics into a drybag liner and continued on just in time. When we pulled into a bus rest stop the skies unleashed it was a hard rain like in the movies. We waited for 45 minutes until the rain stopped and enjoyed a fresh pineapple juice for 15 pesos.
Our first rain

waiting out the rain

Fresh pineapple juice

We finally made it to Sayulita around 6pm and checked into the Hotel Villas Sayulita for $75. This was expensive but so nice with a kitchen in each room.
Hotel Villa Sayulita

Hotel Villa Sayulita

Hotel Villa Sayulita

Hotel Villa Sayulita

Hotel Villa Sayulita

Sayulita is gorgeous. We were kicking ourselves a bit for spending 4 nights in Barra de Navidad instead of coming here. Sayulita is the perfect tourist town. Not dead, and busy enough for you not to be lonely, but not packed yet. It is full of hippy yoga surfer types and expats living there driving around hefty golf carts. If you are in the mood for a tourist town in Mexico that wonít scare your friends, this is it. The town is split by a river. Our hotel was on the north side and while there were a few restaurants with pretty lighting, it was by no means busy. We crossed the river and found where everyone else was. There were loads of sidewalk dining options.
Sayulita

Sure the prices are touristy but it also was good food. We were lured into Carmelitaís for some baja-style fish tacos.
Sayulita

Restaurant Carmelita

Restaurant Carmelita

Restaurant Carmelita

They were delicious.
Restaurant Carmelita

There was a political rally going on so it was busy in the town square.
Sayulita

Restaurant Carmelita

We walked around on the beach which reminded me of Hat Rin in Thailand.
Sayulita

Sayulita

Although our waiters invited us to party with them when they closed at 1130pm, we didnít do anything crazy and headed back and drank more of our tequila before bed.
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Old 12-24-2013, 04:15 PM   #38
severely
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NICE report, Thank you
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Old 12-26-2013, 11:58 AM   #39
Eagletalon
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Are you in the medical field? Where i work I can do 6 in a row and then have 8 days off.

Later
John
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:57 PM   #40
bastchild OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charmin View Post

For almost 400 usd they should have thoroughly cleaned the whole bike


Volcan El Ceboruco
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceboruco_%28volcano%29
This is what we call "Tacos Al Pastor"

Yes, I wish they cleaned the bike too! thanks for the link for the volcano!
We love tacos al pastor!

Quote:
Originally Posted by severely View Post
NICE report, Thank you
thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagletalon View Post
Are you in the medical field? Where i work I can do 6 in a row and then have 8 days off.

Later
John
yes. your schedule is fantastic!
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Old 12-28-2013, 03:22 AM   #41
mka
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.
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brilliant writing........!!!
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amazing pictures............!!!
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fantastic places....!!
.
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well done you two, looking forward to more. you two prove the theory on how to live in the here and the now !
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keep her lit !
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Old 12-28-2013, 07:39 AM   #42
Baja_Bound
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You have the first ride report that that I have requested my wife read and we are enjoying it immensely, especially the photos. She is petrified of me wanting to travel to Mexico, and I am trying to show her not to believe everything she sees on the news. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 12-28-2013, 08:37 AM   #43
bastchild OP
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Day 19 to Puerto Vallarta, 40 miles on the bike

Day 19 Sayulita to PV

We took our time leaving Sayulita. We wanted to stay longer, but the hotel was full for the day and we had made plans to meet up with padalinskie from advrider down in Puerto Vallarta. The skies were a bit overcast, so we hurried up and walked around town to see it during the day. We ended up having breakfast at Chocobanana, a tourist place on the town square. The surf was choppy. There were only a couple standup paddleboarders out.
Sayulita

Beehives on travelerís palm fronds
Beehives on traveler's palm leaves

Hopefully the only river crossing we will do on this trip.
hopefully our only river crossing

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Choco banana

eggs with ham on tostada

chilaquiles

Choco banana

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

Sayulita

We checked out of the hotel and headed up towards San Pancho-San Francisco just up the road. We had initially planned on staying there but there were no rooms we could find on the internet. I am glad we ended up staying in Sayulita after seeing San Francisco. It was cute but nothing like Sayulita, but the beach at San Pancho was a lot nicer.
San Pancho San Francisco

San Pancho San Francisco

San Pancho San Francisco

San Pancho San Francisco

San Pancho San Francisco

We headed back south to go see Punta de Mita, a ritzy place in the guidebook, to see what the fuss was about. Punta de Mita has high-walled resorts, so you canít see what is going on inside. There are supposed to be some good beaches but we didnít know where to turn off and see them. We ended up finding the small harbor at Punta and talked to the panga boat collective. We had planned on going to the Marieta Islands at some point, and it was supposed to be cheaper to hire a boat from Punta de Mita. They still wanted 1800 pesos for a twin engine panga. Ouch. I guess it is cheaper if you already have a boatful of friends or if you share a boat with others.
Punta de Mita

Punta de Mita

Punta de Mita

Dude with a Predator helmet. Didnít a view of the front.
Puerto Vallerta

We continued south and entered the Puerto Vallarta area -- traffic halted at lights. It was packed. It was hot on the coast, but when youíre on a bike, as you know, you cool off if you are moving. In traffic, you bake. Tempers shorten. People get snippy.
Puerto Vallerta

Puerto Vallerta

Puerto Vallerta

We found our hotel, the Villa del Palmar, but rode past the main entrance. The wife went to sort out the hotel details and we finally were able to check in an hour later. I rode the bike on the sidewalk to get back to the main parking area, not wanting to make a huge loop on the main road.
Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

The hotel is great and even better at $60 a night for a room, secure parking, pools, beach, and a kitchen. The room was almost as big as our condo back home.
Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort

Most of the clients are all-inclusive but we paid pauper prices for the privilege of being on the beach. The water was warm. It felt like being back at Waikeke. It was great. So this is what itís like being a resort. I get it.
Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

Beach time

It was so tempting to spend the next day behind the Sedona orange-colored walls, but we had an appointment to meet up with padalinskie so we could drop off the bike. I found padalinskie on advrider, of course, and he lives in Puerto Vallarta, and he was kind enough to offer our bike a place to stay behind a locked gate at his condo. His place was less than 4 km from the hotel, but we first headed toward Walmart to get a bike cover. By the way, they donít sell motorcycle covers at Walmart in Mexico. They do sell bedsheets, but you should probably get a double bedsheet, not a twin.
Cheap motorcycle cover

At Walmart, we ran into Mathieu and Pamela, a French couple on an 1150 GS. Mathieu has been on the road for 3 years and 6 years backpacking before that. He actually gave a talk at a Horizons Unlimited meet earlier this year. It is always great meeting other motortravellers on the road, even if only in passing.
We met up with padalinskie and locked up the bike and he took us in his car to the centro area for sunset drinks.
Secure parking!

We sat under a palapa at Sea Monkeys. First of all, if you stayed in PV and didnít check out the centro area at night, you missed out. It is beautiful down there. It still has a Mexican feel without feeling like you are at a resort. Sea Monkeys has $1 beers and margaritas on the beach. It is great. We had chips with guacamole and I had aguachile and the wife had a dried burger, and padalinskieís fish tacos looked great. We saw a sea turtle burying her eggs 50 feet away. What a great place! And thanks to padalinskie for letting us store our bike with him and driving us around and giving us a tour of his town!
playa los muertos

Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkeys

Christine and Ed

aguachile

burger

sea turtle laying eggs



Back at the hotel, we laid on the beach chairs and watched sky lanterns float away and come drifting down into the sea. We could spend a few more nights here!
night time jacuzzi!
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Old 12-28-2013, 09:42 AM   #44
acejones
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baja_Bound View Post
You have the first ride report that that I have requested my wife read and we are enjoying it immensely, especially the photos. She is petrified of me wanting to travel to Mexico, and I am trying to show her not to believe everything she sees on the news. Thanks for sharing!
Tell your wife to consider a quote by Mark Twain: "Those who don't read the newspaper are uninformed; those who do are misinformed". That's probably not exact, but its close. The same principle would apply to television and internet news in our modern era.
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Old 12-28-2013, 03:17 PM   #45
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What a fantastic report! Nice choice of bike for the region as well. I've always wanted to do a ride for weeks on end in that area but haven't gotten around to it. One question and one observation.

Traveling in that area of the world, I've heard that non natives such as yourself have been victims of robbery and worse. Did you ever feel threatened or uncomfortable?

The observation is that of your luggage. It appears that you drilled and mounted the lids of the Pelican cases instead of the other way around. In other words, it looks like you mounted them backwards...

Great read and thanks for sharing! especially your lovely wife. You're a brave man to post pics of her on ADV!!!
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