The Seri Indians of Tiburon Island
By Eric Hall
This is a trip we have been doing every year for a few years now. This year it was: Me, Rich, Mike, Mark, Erik, Tomek. Along the way, we joined up with Dave Coe, his girlfriend Mel and Steven Green. I decided to bring my good camera along this time but I'm nowhere as good as Steven Green.
We normally meet at the Denny's in La Mesa but this year Franco invited us over to his home nearby for a hot Italian breakfast and espresso. Stefano, a professional chef, helped prepare our meal and was joined by Bruno, Eric and Sam. They escorted us via some scenic twisty back roads to Tecate where they said goodbye and wished us luck.
Mark on his sweet HP2
Mike on the BMW F800 GS
Erik on his GSA
And Tomek on his GS
Chris Parker of Rottweiler Performance and his crew of 950/990 riders happened to be on the same track as us, so we leapfrogged each other a few times and then eventually met up at the gas station and then lunch. Great bunch of guys.
Mark at the water crossing
Lunch in VDT
Mike was already tired. I could tell.
Mark Stickelmaier. Mark has a lot of years on a bike down in Baja and was very valuable to have with us. I learned a lot of great stuff. He and some others are starting a new expedition and training group called "Black Swan" that I look forward to hearing more about.
Rich laughing at something
By Eric Hall
We have done this trip between Christmas and New Year's now for a few years and it is a ton of fun. People freak out about going to Mexico but it's really an amazing place filled with friendly people, cheap and delicious food and miles of incredible dirt roads to ride.
Mexico does have problems with drug cartels but they are for the large part killing each other and not tourists on motorcycles. We have quite a significant crime problem here in the US as well but none of us would be planning a motorcycle trip to So Central LA, Detroit, Oakland or Newark would we? There are places in Mexico you just don't want to go, for sure. I have been to Mexico about 22 times; 8 on a bike and have never had any issues. Just your insurance, passport and a good attitude is all you will need.
This trip had us staying at: Mike's Sky Rancho, Alfonsina's in Gonzaga Bay, Hotel Mision in Catavina, Hotel Cactus in El Rosario and Coyote Cal's in Erendira.
Attendees were: Me, Rich, Mike, JD and Maria.
I will post pictures next, but here's the video I put together...
By Eric Hall
If you check the XLADV site calendar you'll see I have a trip scheduled for 12/26-31 to Baja Norte. Intermediate and above only; prior Baja experience preferred. $20 fee to me because I'm poor right now. You can do a similar two day trip w/BMW of Escondido for around $400 I budget around $70/day for food, gas, hotel and beer. Must have Mexican insurance printed and with you prior to departure. I use Bajabound.com. Must have passport, bike in good working condition, fresh knobbies, tools, spares, patches, pumps, etc... Because it's so cheap, we aren't camping so don't pack any of that unless you're camping on your own. I bring a few pairs of socks, shirts, underwear, flip flops and shorts, toiletries and that's it. NO hard panniers.
At this point we have:
Me Rich Mike Mark Erik Tomek Plan is:
Day 1: San Felipe (Kiki's) Day 2: Bahia de Los Angeles (Costa del Sol) Day 3: Catavina (Hotel Mision) Day 4: El Rosario (Hotel Baja Cactus) Day 5: Erendira (Coyote Cal's) Tracks attached (may change)
By Eric Hall
Eric L and I spent a few days south of the border. Great time. Great food. A little unexpected bike trouble, but it all worked out great.
Day 1 saw us leaving Orange County headed south around 6:30 am. We stopped in Chula Vista to top off on gas and so I could go to a Kinko's and print my Mexican insurance docs and sign a few online documents.
We went through Tijuana, which I usually never do, or only in the daytime. We took the toll road south to Ensenada and ran across this group of riders on the new CSC Chinese adventure bikes headed down.
Lunch in Ensenada was awesome.
Eric on his phone
We hit the dirt at Santo Tomas and made our way down to Erendira. That road is quite easy. Very big bike friendly!
Got to Coyote Cal's quite early, maybe 1:30. We clearly didn't do enough riding! We ended up just relaxing, had a cigar, few happy hour drinks and then a great dinner of fried ling cod.
By Eric Hall
Andreas (Edelweys) and I are headed to Baja tomorrow for a few days of some more authentic Baja destinations most people never see. We got some good intel from Scotty Breauxman (Baja Rally) and Christian Parker (Rottweiler Performance).
It's getting warmer so we are sticking to the Pacific side where the cooler water keeps the temps down a bit.
Our plan is to slab it to Ensenada for lunch then pick up these dirt trails out to the coast near Santo Tomas and then down to Coyote Cal's for the night.
Day 2 will be further south along the coast to check out some beach riding, sea caves, shipwreck then staying at El Coyote.
Day 3 will be more beach riding with a stop at our southernmost point, La Lobera.