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Old 06-02-2014, 01:32 PM   #16
redog1
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Location: Magalia, CA./ Butte & Siskiyou C.
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Thumb I'm in,

Nice start.
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:49 PM   #17
Jenn
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If you get up to the Bay Area, there's a place near Lake Merritt with Brother Thelonious ON TAP!!
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Old 06-02-2014, 09:53 PM   #18
themadone
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Thumb Ah! Finally an true adventure!

I,m in!
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Old 06-02-2014, 11:19 PM   #19
TouringDave
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Definately in!
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:40 PM   #20
BRUTSQD OP
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Joined: Apr 2011
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Day 2

Mono Lake to Morongo Valley of the Phoenix

Woke up at 6:30 with a splitting headache and cottonmouth. Looks like Brother Thelonious hurt my feelings once again. I owe a couple rather embarrassing nights to the good brother, sneaky beer. I'm sure the altitude and likely coffee induced dehydration had a hand to play, but still, that beer just has my number. Luckily it's cold as balls outside which should hopefully make the hangover a little better with the cool air.

Glad I went with the Badlands pants over my Mojaves. Noone wants frozen man parts.




Excited to finally get a chance to see Mono lake, I pop, er, drag out of bed and load the bike up. Today will be a decent ride as I'm shooting for meeting up w Rocketgrrl in Morongo Valley by nightfall, 371 miles away.

Mono Lake














Breakfast in Mammoth




Back to 395




Bad shit happened here




A few weeks earlier I did a trip with the girlfriend down to Joshua Tree and back, as seen HERE, where we stopped off in the Ghost town of Randsburg. While we were in town I meant to stop off at the general store and get a hand mixed Sarsaparilla but never did. Figured I'd swing a little wide and grab one in the desert heat.

















Juvenated once again I hit the freeway for a head down assault in the hot wind towards Mojave. The heat was getting brutal and my underpants were getting saucy so I put the camera away and just made for time. 151 miles to Morongo Valley to meet up with fellow inmate Rocketgrrl aka Phoenix.



I pulled into Morongo Valley in the evening after getting caught in some San Bernardino traffic.



Exhausted, hot and stanky I pulled up the driveway where Phoenix was staying and was immediately offered a towel for the shower and coffee, sweet salvation.



Phoenix: Up to this point, Phoenix was largely an unknown and admittedly a source of a little bit of travel trepidation as she was, well, an unknown.
We had corresponded a couple times on ADV and talked on the phone a few times but this is the first meeting and didn't really know each other. Plus, considering I've grown rather accustomed to traveling solo over the years, it's definitely outside my comfort box introduce an "unknown" into what is potentially a challenging 20 day adventure into Mexico. Lucky for me... Phoenix is fuckin rad! We spent the evening tinkering on the bikes, talking shop and porking out on Mexican food as a warm up. Turns out we agreed on travel style, lack of planning style, food, humor, life outlook, politics and even spirituality. We already get along like peas and carrots. Huuge relief. This should be a damn good trip.





A few tasks to be completed before we depart for Tecate in the morning. I need parts for my electricals and P needs metric hardware for her crash bars. Plus we still need to sit down and figure out where the hell were headed to once we cross over. Hopefully tomorrow we get a mid to late morning start time departure then camp near the border for an early crossing.

UP NEXT: Twisties, pie and one last day in the states.


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Old 06-06-2014, 05:30 AM   #21
OtterChaos
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Count me in!
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Old 06-06-2014, 08:25 AM   #22
prsdrat
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You had me at "Baja". Aside from Baja, my most 'other' place is the
eastern Sierra/395 corridor. Bring it on.
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Old 06-06-2014, 12:55 PM   #23
Dansrc51
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what is it about breakfast burritos after a night of drinking? Good choice on the monk. great beer.
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Old 06-06-2014, 04:56 PM   #24
Kowalski
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Ok, i gotta ask this as i got to know both of you pretty well in baja, which one is the pea and which the carrot?
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:47 PM   #25
BRUTSQD OP
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I'm the pea, Mike. Definitely the pea..
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:54 AM   #26
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D3

D3: Morongo Valley to.. someplace near the border.

Up early to start chipping away at a few tasks before heading out. But before any of that, coffee and some informal trip planning. This happened most mornings as nothing important was to be discussed before coffee. Bad shit would have happened otherwise.



Planning for this trip goes as follows: check out ride reports, look up things I might want to see, find them on google maps and then save the gps coordinates. P has a map of Baja so over coffee we highlight places of interest then once everything is on the map we come up with a idea of where were headed to. Planning never really included looking any further then the next day and the route made sense of itself as we would drive near places we highlighted on the paper map. Today we're just trying to grab some hardware for P's crashbars, grab some electrical parts for my LEDs that were already on the fritz, and try to camp somewhere near the border to set us up for an early crossing. Having neither of us ridden in Mexico yet, we both just wanted to get across the border and put some miles between us and the bordertowns where millions of Americans have been robbed and slaughtered for spare parts.

Found this little guy in the shower.


Pack up and hit the road, we'll grab parts on the way.




Tried the Harley dealership for metric hardware.. No luck but plenty of snooty attitude from the counter guys. Turds.


No luck, we'll find parts in a bigger town, on to Palm Springs. The road south was super windy, a good portion of the ride was spent leaning into the crosswind laced with sand.




Found a True Value hardware with the parts we needed, plus the guy that worked there stayed with us and helped us out in the parking lot to make sure all the goofy bolt lengths were right. Grabbed some Chipotle, picked up from freeze dried food from Big 5 and got back on the road south. P found some roads on the map that looked like they might be pretty decent and boy were they.







The roads South of of Palm Springs were gorgeous. I honestly don't remember the route now, but somehow we come into Julian on Farmer road. As we roll into town we see a pie shop on the right, sounds like a decent break after a bunch of twisties.





Fantastic


Hwy 79 out of Julian
























Getting sidetracked with detours, pictures and coffee stops, we lose the sun and wind up scrambling to find a camping site. It's pretty easy to tell we're getting close to Mexico by the constant presence of border patrol SUVs all over the place. Time to pass out and be ready to cross the border in Tecate tomorrow morning.

Woke up to this little gentleman around midnight.


Stay tuned, the real pictures start tomorrow.

UP NEXT: Tecate, sand and an oasis in the middle of a Mexican desert.







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"I never drive faster then I can see and besides that it's all in the reflexes." -JB
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Old 06-10-2014, 10:09 PM   #27
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D4

Got an early start as both of us were pretty jazzed to be 15 minutes from the border. Downed some coffee and packed up. We figured we'd grab food on the road.



Last stop before the border crossing. Food tasted good, but not great. Plus the meat seemed a little, old. Hopefully the food is better in Mexico.







Hit a money exchange before the border so we didn't have to mess with trying to find a place in Tecate. Figured it would be a safer idea so we weren't walking around town or having to get off the bikes in a border town.

15 minutes of filling out a paper, paying a fee and.... Holy Shit!!
We're in MEXICO!!!!


Tecate is relatively clean, pretty and had a cool little park area in the middle of town with the usual tourist carts selling stuff for whatever the merchant thinks they might be willing to pay. Cool town but we're both itching to get some miles behind us.




After Reading Da Foole's RR on Baja, I looked up Canon de Guadalupe and highlighted it on P's paper map. Seemed like a cool destination to kick off the trip with. As we rode from Tecate towards Mexicali we stopped off and picked up supplies as it looks like we're going to be on our own once we head South for a while.



Funny thing happened in the grocery store.. A federali pulls up in a patrol car, walks into the store, walks up to the two of us.. Meanwhile I'm thinking 'oh shit, here we go.." He asks us if everything is good and that we just wanted to make sure we haven't had any issues. We tell him it's been great so far, no issues.. He's glad to here it, says goodbye and continues down the road in his car.. Definitely a sharp contrast compared to the kidney robbing scenarios I've been playing in my head about border towns. Perhaps this place isn't as bad as the newsmedia would suggest???


Threw some eggs in a container for breakfast


Grabbed some lunch before we hit the freeway. Every place of interest down here is covered in Baja stickers, love it.


1st Mexican meal....


Hit the road, E on hwy 2 to the dirt road south Accesso Canon de Guadalupe.




Halfway to Mexicali, hang a right and ride into the desert.










The dirt road starts of like packed gravel with plenty of traction and lots of irritating washboard. Turns out the washboard smooths out the faster you go so we made decent time. Somewhere between the vibration and the dreamscape of the desert, both of stopped paying attention to road and started getting sloppy.. Enter sweeping turn and a sudden patch of moderately deep but loose sand and I found myself wrestling the bike to not dump it. Got caught sitting down. P wasn't so lucky and had an easy get off, no blood no foul. But definitely no more taking the road for granted.


Noted. Back on the bike.


Moooooooo!



It's a good thing I had a renewed effort to pay attention to the road, otherwise I might have hit P's pannier when it ejected itself off her bike while she was riding down the road. Glad I was riding behind otherwise we may not have realized it for miles.


Turns out from the little get off earlier, one of the aluminum bolt holes stripped entirely and fell out. I offered to help(I think) but she seemed to have the situation well in hand so I walked around, took pictures and flipped rocks over looking for critters.








The heat wasn't too bad at full clip, sitting still and exposed it was down right oppressive. Started getting cranky...


Problem solved..


Back on the road and running out of sun.




Right turn Clyde






By the time we figured out that the ropes blocking the road were for cows and actually found the campsites the sun was gone. We ran into a couple that was camping there for the week, Phil and Mackenzie. North Dakota transplants living in AZ whose family has been coming to the hot springs for a generation. Had a few beers and hit the sack. That was a long loong day on the road.



Looking forward to waking up tomorrow so I can actually see what the hell this place looks like.

UP NEXT: 2 Days in the Canyon, waterfalls, relaxation and vomit.



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"I never drive faster then I can see and besides that it's all in the reflexes." -JB
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:21 AM   #28
CJ5K
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Location: JAX, FL
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Nice man!

Love the pictures! How bad/good were the roads down there? did you ever find yourself thinking "so glad I'm on a dual sport right now!" or conversely, that a dual sport was overkill and you could have gotten away with a street bike?

Looks like a fantastic ride... I may have to copy it in the near future

Stay safe,
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:52 PM   #29
benport
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Loving it!!!
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Old 06-12-2014, 05:19 AM   #30
Naughty Pyne
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Well done sir, maybe one day I will be able to get out of the studio and officially break in my bike.
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