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Old 11-03-2010, 01:11 PM   #1
burrohas3wheels OP
Gary Smith
 
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Is Mexico Dangerous

That is a question I hear a lot, so I wanted to add my perspective as I spend a lot of time touring in Mexico. Apparently the article I attempted to post in this forum is to big so I'm leaving a link for the entire article. http://burrohas3wheels.com/Is Mexico Dangerous.htm

Here's a portion: I knew the journey would be traveling within the dangerous region of “Mexico’s Golden Triangle” where most of Mexico’s marijuana and heroin is grown. This region is traced by drawing lines between the cities of Chihuahua, Durango and Culiacán.
Figuring that a new road would be a quick and safe way to travel thus reducing the need to backtrack into the canyon bolstered my enthusiasm. As Marilyn, my riding partner and wife, was spending time at home in Portland, Oregon I departed Mazatlan on my own. The plan was to pick her up in Phoenix, Arizona before completing our circumnavigation of Mexico’s coast lines.
About 40 km north of Culiacán I turned east joining the new highway for Hidalgo del Parral. An hour later I was dealing with heavy road construction as widening of a mountain pass was underway. The tarmac turned into gravel then simply a single dirt road with enough width for a small vehicle. What! Me worry? Not on your life because currently there were plenty of other vehicles climbing into the mountains, besides I had a new road map. I was confident the tarmac would reappear once we all reached the other side of the mountain. Sure enough it did…But not that day or the next.
One and a half hours later and seeing less and less vehicles upon the road I came to a village. There was Y intersection and next to it stood a small restaurant operated out of a home. As no road sign indicated the direction to take I asked the owner which way would take me to HidalgodelParral. Looking back on the scene I seem to remember a look of puzzlement upon her face before she pronounced I should take the road to the left.
One half mile later the road that was had turned into nothing but a trail. Stopping to consider my options a small pickup truck with passengers in the back bounced up beside me. Again I asked for directions and everyone agreed I was headed the correct way. I trust local knowledge but I have also learned that in many parts of the world people do not want to discourage you. I have to say that in the time I have spent in Mexico I have learned that Mexicans are nothing if not optimistic. This made me think of the map designers who produced my beautiful new road on their piece of paper. Was this just being optimistic? I was going to find out.

View the article at http://burrohas3wheels.com/Is Mexico Dangerous.htm

burrohas3wheels screwed with this post 11-05-2010 at 12:21 PM Reason: Didn't get the post inserted.
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Old 11-03-2010, 01:31 PM   #2
tedder
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yes. avoid it. Too many gringos already.
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Old 11-03-2010, 01:33 PM   #3
socalmoe
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Nooooooooo.....

Not this again look here and be convinced. Its in Spanish but you get the idea. Keep in mind, the whole country is not fucked up but be careful where you go.
http://www.blogdelnarco.com/

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Old 11-03-2010, 01:58 PM   #4
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Here we go.............again..........
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Old 11-03-2010, 02:01 PM   #5
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You might be thinking, “Who is Gary Smith to be contradicting the wisdom my government officials, media professionals and others stressing danger"?
Well I have crossed hundreds of borders over the years including Eastern & Western Europe, Asia, Africa and most of Latin America. I can affirm "borders are dangerous places". Why? Because when jobs are scarce the border is where people congregate who endeavor to find opportunities believed found in neighboring countries. Those with courage do so. It is seen throughout the world.
As a side note; Have you ever wondered why so many young Mexican men try to sneak across the border? Well I've been told that in Mexico if a young man does not go into the military it is nearly impossible to get a Mexican passport. Hence no foreign VISA.
Let’s say that you are one of those individuals and have gotten to the border. When you finally arrive you find the borders are packed with others desiring a better life. You’re hungry and need shelter. Jobs are scarce. It is a rare person under such extreme circumstances who will not eventually grab for anything even if illegal just to stay alive. Try going without food or shelter for 24 hours and see how you feel. Think about doing it for a week or more. Enough said. View the entire article http://burrohas3wheels.com/Is Mexico Dangerous.htm

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Old 11-03-2010, 02:11 PM   #6
crashmaster
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relax Gary.

There has been a good thread going for a while now.

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=546927


Also FWIW, the black font is really difficult to read.

Since you have spent so much time in Mexico you should be aware that the only legal way to pay a ticket is to go to the police station. Just sayin. Dont pay the cops. It encourages them to shake down other riders.


Oh, and welcome to the asylum.
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Old 11-03-2010, 02:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashmaster
Here we go.............again..........
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Old 11-03-2010, 03:32 PM   #8
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Oh, I'm relaxed because I'm in Mexico. I thought it might be a help if someone wrote about Mexico who actually spends a lot of time there.

As far as the legal way to pay fines...I've only been fined once for something I did not do. And that includes all of latin america. In addition different cultures operate differently. You have to adapt to where you are. It is unreasonalbe to think everyone should conform to one way of doing things. Once a Mexican national told me.."In Mexico laws are just a suggestion".

Hey, how do I get rid of the black background?
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Old 11-03-2010, 05:34 PM   #9
markharf
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No one posting here ever spends any time in Mexico, it's true. More's the pity.
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:35 PM   #10
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I've gotten to love riding in Mexico. It has become a staging area for me. I loved riding the Trans Labrador Highway including up to Prudhoe on the Haul Road.

Currently I am completing a circumnavigation of the Americas. I still have to finish the eastern coast of Central and South America.

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Old 11-03-2010, 07:19 PM   #11
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Ok, now I'm confused. You must mean the other Trans-Labrador highway. The one I've been on doesn't go anywhee near the Haul Road.

Where's the emoticon for biting sarcasm?

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Old 11-03-2010, 09:14 PM   #12
crashmaster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burrohas3wheels
As far as the legal way to pay fines...I've only been fined once for something I did not do. And that includes all of latin america.
Uh huh. OK. Gary, many of us have spent quite a bit of time in Mexico. In fact, many of us live in Mexico.

Well there is what you did to supposedly deserve a "fine" and there is local custom. If you are viewing this through your myopic US eyes, then you have got it all wrong.

My friend, it appears as if you have not been on the road very long from your take on this. Thats OK I guess. It would seem that you might have a bit to learn about Latin America. Just dont preach to us that have been there and done that. My comment is not meant to be sarcastic or caustic, FWIW.
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Old 11-03-2010, 10:07 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashmaster
My comment is not meant to be sarcastic....
Mine was, but it's apparent I failed miserably. Maybe if I practice diligently....
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Old 11-04-2010, 05:59 AM   #14
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Is Mexico unsafe?
Yes it is. Same goes for say, Baltimore. It is a frame of mind thing. The old Jedi mind trick.

If you come here and ride around all the time thinking about how you are going to get robbed, you are going to really miss out on the beauty of the country.

If you come down here looking for the beauty in the country, you are really going to miss out on getting robbed.

Common sense and trusting your instincts make up the best insurance policy that you can get.
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Old 11-04-2010, 06:07 AM   #15
burrohas3wheels OP
Gary Smith
 
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Myopic or Realist?

Regarding Prudhoe and Labrador I could have been clearer. I do mean to say the Trans Labrador Highway that goes to Goose Bay NF. Yes I traveled it, also the Haul Road to Prudhoe Bay besides riding the popular roads on the U.S. east coast.

Ok I guess I need some sarcasim, here goes.


I've spent my whole live on the road in one country or another. Heck I've been running away from home since I was two. As far as living in Mexico, count me in however most adventure riders aren't going to be living in Mexico just touring. Mexicans depend upon tourist dollars. Paranoia strikes deep, deep in the heart it may seep as The Buffalo Springfield so elequently put it. By the way marijuana smoked in Mexico is known to cause paranoia in Gringos. It's simply amazing how 1 million Americans can live in Mexico. My god...the bad guys must only be after white gringos on motorcycles. I have to admit it is ego boosting to talk about my rides to people who are afraid of such adventure in the States. Most of us know in our souls, it's no big deal. It's just a ride through a foreign land. Come on...let's go riding but not be stupid about it.

If you're hangin out in bars you aren't familar with. You're taking a chance. Places like Puerto Vallarta, Cabo, Cancun have every low-life, pick-pocket and huckster looking for inexperienced travelers but lets add New York, Boston, Miami and any other tourist local.

Ain't any preaching, I'm simply stating my experiences. Myopic in this case might be termed realistic. I'm not going to attempt to change the world. Cops in Mexico barely make enough money to live on. Have a heart consider the payment a road tax and get on with life. It's like getting along with my wife Marilyn. Do I want to be right or do I want to be happy? This is small stuff and nothing to get a stick up your behind about.


In my article I stated I'd spent time in a Chicago jail, guess why? The cop wanted me to pay the fine to him on the road. Well I stood my ground and found myself falsely accused of assaulting a police officer (Felony). Seven other cops were called to the scene and I went to jail. Did I feel better because I stood my ground? Heck no. The judge was in on it and they split the bail money. When I beat the rap, ($1000.00 dollars later) the Chicago cop and judge whose feelings were now hurt, didn't stop. One month later I was identified as the driver of a tractor trailer rig that drove over the top of an Illonois State Patrol car. Portland dectectives were knocking on my door. Thank god I had proof as to where I'd been on that day. To this day I wish I would have just given the cop $35.00.


Because I travel a lot, I've been held up at gun and knife point in Puerto Rico, Florida and South Carolina. Two of those times being shot at. I've never had that happen south of the U.S. border, Puerto Rico is considered U.S. territory. My wife has been held up by shoot gun in Portland.


Last March I returned to Portland, Oregon from Mexico, the first day home there was a drug related shoot-out in a shopping center down the street from me.

As my article stated, there is a war in Mexico, but it's between the government and drug dealers. Yes, now and then innocents are caught in the crossfire. Hence stay away from both of them. Everytime I drive by one I duck and cover my head. LOL


Bottom line, If you want trouble, have a crappy attitude, you'll find it. View the article at http://burrohas3wheels.com/Is Mexico Dangerous.htm

burrohas3wheels screwed with this post 11-05-2010 at 10:37 AM
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