My Baja crash 9-12-12
10am-ish we left the Mision Santa Maria hotel just south of San Quintin for a late breakfast at Mama Espinozas in El Rosario. Nice little ride, lovely food, interesting place. We gas up there and decide to ride to Guerro Negro without stopping..210 or so Pemex to Pemex. Great winding roads with elevation changes and fantastic scenery changes. About 50 miles from the first Pemex before Guerro Negro, 4pm-ish, my gas lights comes on. No big deal. I keep one eye on the road and one eye on my speedo/odo. GPS log shows fastest time of the day 125km or about 77mph, no big deal. I signalled Colleen that I needed gas (as if she didn't know) and we slowed down to conserve fuel. In the distance I could see the Pemex sign, looked at my odo 205 miles...looked ahead and thought...."we've made it". Just then a cow steps in to the road about fifty feet in front of me and stops...three things happen in that 50 feet...I say "cow"..I say.."hitting cow"...I hit cow broadside. It's about a 400 pound cow, a small one. I'm on a BMW R1150Rockster. Next thing I know I am landing arse over tit about 100 feet over the cow, all I can think is "relax".."yes it hurts...relax...open your eyes" I am doing forward rolls, I don't know how many, 3 or 4? I hear my bike scraping and then go quiet. I see sky, rough blacktop, sky, over and over. I pat the ground to make sure I have stopped moving and actually stand up. I'm 200 feet from the cow I'm sure. The bike is in the ditch further up than me. I hurt so much from my fingertips to my shoulders I want to shit my pants. Turns out I have a shattered left hand and not much else. Just five breaks in my left hand. My helmet has a big scar, the face shield is gone. My Joe Rocket mesh is shredded. My leather gloves are torn to pieces. My leather pants seams are ripped. My SIDI boots just have cow shit on them.
The front wheel complete with my new wave rotors and new front tire and bottom fork legs are about 30 feet from the bike..curious...the bike is a dirty pretzel lazing on it's side with no front end. Colleen parked her 1150GS up the road and ran back...stunned and shocked...amazed I wasn't dead, she saw it all from behind.
The extraction mission mounted to recover me from half way down the Baja peninsula is a short story in itself.....
lesson is...if you see even one animal, even if it's not so close to the road, slow down..a lot...a real lot...like to 10/15 mph. It's buddies and family are surely around and they have no road sense. Plus hitting a cow will literally knock the shit out of you.
I hurt all over, am black and blue in funny places. YMMV.
James and Colleen Tucker.
Aut viam inveniam aut faciam
Beat our time, Los Angeles to Ushuaia 70 days