22 October 2002 - New Sponsor: Motosbaja
** Update: The other beemers showed up at my hotel while I was out to dinner. I still have only met one of the four folks on two bikes (R1150GS and F650GS Dakar) but I am sure I will see them. The 1150 is going round the world. Not sure if they are taking the same ferry as I, they may head to Mazatlan (where I will go, but after Copper Canyon). P.S. I'm sure glad I brought MP3s and headphones, I'm rocking out to System of a Down right now.
So I spent last night hanging out at the Hotel Hacienda with a couple of guys from Columbia, CA (near Sonora).. They and three other guys fly their planes down every year and bop along Baja (including San Francisquito). And also hung out with a couple from Copenhagen who rented an Explorer and are doing a similar trip to mine. And finally, I bumped into two couples, one from England, who are on R1150GS' and are travelling the world. I'm sure I will bump into them again.
Made pretty good time down here.. Check out my math. If 100 kilometers is 66 miles, that means that you add about half of the miles to the kilometers to do the conversion. So if the speed limit is 60 kilometers per hour, you add a half, and get about 90 miles per hour... Right?
Coming into La Paz this afternoon, I saw a Honda sign, so I stopped off and talked to the guy. After setting myself in the fabulous Hotel Lorimar (a little dirty, but hey, $20 and it's a block from the beach), I went back and they let me change my oil there. They even had some decent Yamalube, which the guys thought I was crazy for spending so much money on (about $8 a quart). But, I'd rather spend the money on the oil than on the tow truck.. Anyway, he hooked me up with a discount and let me use his shop. He gave me a few stickers to add to my growing collection.. If anyone is down in La Paz and needs moto help, check them out.. Motosbaja, on the main drag a mile or so west of the beach.
I'm spending the night here in La Paz. I have to get up tomorrow and get a ticket for the ferry which leaves tomorrow night. Then I screw around here all day.
21 October 2002 - What Ferry?
So I got up this morning and headed for Santa Rosalia. Arrived there early afternoon, to find that the ferry is not running right now. Very Mexican. They said it might be running in a month or so. That doesn't work for me, so I'm heading further south to catch the ferry from La Paz. Which, all in all, is fine by me, because I get to stay at my favorite hotel in my favorite town in Baja. There's a courtyard to park my bike in, and a pool and bar as well. Muy bueno.
Anyway, tomorrow I am off to La Paz. Then the next day (Wednesday), I try and get on the ferry to Los Mochis.
P.S. This log may have multiple tenses in it, and they are not always gonna be right. I am writing this daily, but will not be able to post daily. So deal with it.
20 October 2002 - Racing for the Ferry
Had to bust ass a bit today, as I read that the ticket office for the ferry I am trying to take tomorrow closes at 3:30, even though the ferry doesn't leave until 10pm.. So, I had to get close enough to safely get there before they close.
Only eventful happening today was coming upon an 18 wheeler that had driven off the road and rolled down a hill.. filled with fresh tomatoes. Long line of people waiting as the road was blocked by two tow trucks.. Once one of them moved though, I was able to sneak by the other, just barely. In Guerrero Negro now, watching the World Series is Spanish..
19 October 2002 - Baja!
Yesterday I rode the freeway down to San Diego, as I got a late start from Vegas after riding down the strip and searching for the perfect cheesy Vegas bumper sticker. I cruised through Escondido and stopped by to say hi to Kendall, then down to Brattin to pick up my tire.
Finally made it to Mike's about 5:30 or so. Had a few beers and munchies, then off to meet Papa Murf at Di Mond Jim's, the largest dive bar around. Then Mike and I took off and checked out the San Diego Irish bars.. Good times.
Left this morning after last minute phone calls with the grandmother and parents. Managed to get through the border and get all my required paperwork without too much hassle, but it took a while. I got down here to Ensenada and wanted to park it, grab some tacos, and chill. So here I am. I finally made it out of the US, after 1200 or so miles and four days. It's good to be here, really on my way.
I spent the afternoon picking up some antibiotics and my anti-malarial pills, as you can buy them over the counter and for little money here in Mexico. Also bought some sunglasses, as I realized I didn't have any. Street vendor wanted $22 for the cheapo ones you can buy at gas stations for $4. After some debating about the quality of said vendor's glasses, some discussion of what they were worth, and me starting to walk off several times.. I got them for $4.
Off to ride further down the peninsula tomorrow, and then figure out where to ferry from, either Santa Rosalia or La Paz.. We'll see how it goes.
17 October 2002 - Last Minute Maintenance
I spent today in Las Vegas with Dave.. Ed at the BMW shop here changed the tranny fluid and helped me check the rear tire for signs of any holes from the burrs. I got a new extremely small 12v air pump here, so I don't have to carry all the small canisters.. It's about the size of four canisters, and will in theory last for as many flats as I get, and then some.
Blair at Brattin in San Diego has a new spare front tire waiting for me. I'll pick that up tomorrow afternoon or Saturday morning. See ya.
16 October 2002 - Things Smooth Out
Today was much better.. Nice smooth beautiful ride past Lake Isabella and through Death Valley.. Got to Dave and Cary's house, where I will spend a night or two. I need to find a few things for the bike here in Vegas (i.e. a new tire and new air canisters..) Off to San Diego when I leave here.
15 October 2002 - An Auspicious Beginning?
So I wasn't really planning on posting today.. but it was an odd one. First, Allen had to cancel on escorting me south for a day. So I got on the road by myself, and came inches from nailing the biggest damn bird of prey I'd seen up close. Had to swerve, duck, and of course, close my eyes to avoid hitting what I assume was a California Condor.. We brushed each other, but he flew on and I rode on.
Then I pulled off of Indian Valley Road for a break. What I didn't know was all the dead grass on the gravel shoulder was scattered with millions of small burrs, with big pointy and strong needles. Fifty miles later I was replacing the front tire. Luckily, I had a new one. I had hoped to get a few more miles than the 211 I got on the first front tire though. Oh well.
Finally, in the omen category (as if the condor wasn't enough) I damn near ran over this really cool looking snake... Check out the picture here.
Anyway, I'm off to see Grumpa in Las Vegas tomorrow, then down to San Diego and the Murphy's.
14 October 2002 - The Packing Process
Well, it's my last night in San Francisco for a while. The Ark is dead. I have mixed feelings, as I will miss all of you, my friends. However, I'll be having more fun than you, so I'm ok with it.
Follow along as I plod south, and I will update this site with pictures and stories as much as possible.
Also, I will be checking emails, so feel free to drop me a line and let me know how things are going.
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