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fanderson 11-13-2012 09:01 AM

Northern California to Cabo San Lucas Mexico. route advice?
Hello everyone this is my first post on here. I've been a long time lurker of about two years :eek1. This will be my first long trip for me like this. Never ridden outside of the US, but have been to mexico many many times on cruise ships.

Anyways in the beginning of january I am planning a trip to Cabo San Lucas. I will be riding a 2002 yamaha fz1. Looking to do this as cheap as possible (camping, etc).My time frame is about 2 weeks. I have my route pretty much set via hwy 1 to santa barbara to san diego, but was looking for suggestions from ensenada to cabo? I would like to do as little freeway as possible, but I would like to avoid dirt roads (I know I'm a pansy,and dont want a flat:becca) If anyone would like to ride down with me or meet up that would be great! I don't have an exact date yet of when I'm going to leave so that's workable.

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kobukan 11-13-2012 02:35 PM


There aren't a lot of roads in Baja. Avoiding dirt roads isn't going to leave many options other than the main route. Finding riding partners in Baja who want to avoid dirt might not be easy.

bisbonian 11-13-2012 02:36 PM

I think there's really only one paved road that goes the whole length of the peninsula.

Although it's called a highway it's not all the 6-lane type you see in California.

fanderson 11-13-2012 03:06 PM

Oh, I was unaware of that. I'm not totally against doing them, but I wouldn't want them to be very rough and for an extended amount of time.I ride dirt all the time(on my cr), but my friend that may be going has no dirt experience and will be riding an f4i. Looking for something scenic, I dont want something like taking I-5 here in California.

kobukan 11-13-2012 07:13 PM

Best to just stay on the main route then. It's nothing like I-5 - more like a county road in the US. The dirt roads can be rough (lots of washboard) and pretty sandy in places. The scenery will just keep getting better the further south you go. Gas can be scarce so plan accordingly. There's a ton of info about Baja here - reading the trip planning and ride report threads should be helpful.

FakeName 11-13-2012 07:18 PM

Might you be interested in a modification to your north/south California route?

Or should I shut up and go away?

Tessitori 11-13-2012 07:24 PM

Might be interested in joining as well if I can modify my bike on time to accommodate all the camping gear and the other necessities!

fanderson 11-13-2012 07:31 PM

Yeah, a little bummed that I am doing this on the fz1, but just glad I'm doing it. In the next year I plan on getting a KLR. I just dont trust my drz to much or I would ride it, that and I need to convert it back to a dual sport instead of the supermoto set-up I have on it right now.


Originally Posted by FakeName (Post 20038654)
Might you be interested in a modification to your north/south California route?

Or should I shut up and go away?

No feel free nothing is set in stone at this moment. Looks like I'm leaving January 7th, and should be near San Diego on the 8th.

@ tessitori that would be great :clap

FakeName 11-14-2012 05:33 AM


Originally Posted by fanderson (Post 20038732)
No feel free nothing is set in stone at this moment.

Possibly the best motorcycling road in California is:

Gilroy to Hwy 25
Hwy 25 to Peach Tree Road
Peach Tree road to Indian Valley Rd into San Miguel
101 to Santa Margarita to the 58
58 to Taft (some boring parts, but interesting oil fields)

58/33 to Cerro Noroeste road, which is amazing, but check weather conditions. If you can't do Cerro Noroeste, Hwy33 into Ojai is pertty damn good as well.

Then it all sucks to the border. You could do the Angeles Crest Hwy (check weather).

This combination of highways are legend in motorcycling, and I'd plan a trip just to ride these roads.

I know it's not the fastest nor most direct way to the border. But I wouldn't miss this.

Peach Tree:

Indian Valley

BigDogAdventures 11-14-2012 08:59 AM

Your destination Cabo------is considered by most avid adventure riders as the "ShitHole" of Baja as many
border towns are too.
It's about as much the Baja I love as downtown New York city.
But as they say-------YMMV.

It was the one place we worked hard at to avoid---and we did..


fanderson 11-15-2012 10:12 PM

Thanks for that route! I will definitely look into it more.:clap

I chose cabo because its the farthest.And since I'm stuck to asphalt might as well be a tourist :freaky I'm pretty sure I will also stay in La Paz because I know some people down there who own a bed and breakfast.

KLR is definitely in the future for me. Then I will explore like I really should.:lol3

tallpaul63 12-11-2012 05:04 PM

I just did a similar trip. So far, you have received spot on advice.

Considering the time of year and the short days, I would plan on a bit more hotel stops if your budget can handle it. The sun goes down early, and being awake in a tent at 0300 waiting for the dawn sucks.

Split two ways, a 30 or 40 dollar hotel is cheap. You'll have a place to put your gear so that you can wander around town in the evening and catch the local flavor. For camping, the best spots I found were just south of Mulege, on the bay of Concepcion. If you want to camp and live cheap for a couple of days, that's a good destination.

Strong Bad 12-12-2012 06:54 PM

Go to Google maps and use the street view to "pre-run" the entire only available route which is Hwy 1.

eakins 12-21-2012 05:19 PM

check out cabo pulmo, la paz and todos santos in southern baja.

our nor cal and so cal map can provide great route through cali and there is some great resources on baja

thetourist 12-21-2012 06:34 PM

A paved trip to Baja is just dandy. It may be a dirt paradise, but that just leaves the pavement with less traffic. :lol3

There are a couple of side trips. South of Ensenada you can turn east to a National Park with an Observatory. 60 mi of twistys to 10-11000 ft. Use some caution. 1000ft drop offs at the fog line and sandy corners. Outstanding riding and scenery. They would not allow motos into the park when I was there. I hung out waiting for a car load of tourist, but none came. I tried to get a park employee to give me a ride on his ATV, but that was a no go also. The ride was still very much worth it. Melling Ranch, in this area, has rooms and food.

Paved to San Felipe. Coastal town with lots of tourist businesses. Not sure you can camp on the beach, but there are camping areas. This is an in and out road it you have to stay on pavement.

Bahia de Los Angeles. 40 mi sideways to the Sea of Cortez. Nice little fishing village. Beach camping, motels, fish tacos.

Gas stations are scarce, even along hwy 1. Barrel gas at Catavina and at the BoLA turn.

There are roads to the Pacific, at Guerrero Negro and San Ignacio, to do whale watching. Not sure if they are paved. The whales weren't out when I was there.

Don't camp on unknown/unused beaches. A good way to get in trouble with the drug business.

You need a visa to go into Baja Sur.

To get a few pics and a preview read my Baja ride report. (in my sig)

You will have a great time.

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