ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-19-2005, 04:21 PM   #1
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
Creel by ST1100 and Virago 750. Tantas Curvas!

When I close my eyes I still see what looks like the last scene of Mad Max- mile of straight pavement scrolling past at high speed, endlessly. I've just returned from nearly 3000 miles of riding from, Colorado, through New Mexico, into Chihuahua, Mexico, to the Horizons Unlimited event in Creel, around Copper Canyon, down to Hidalgo de Parral, and back home to Colorado. The road seems burned into my eyelids.

I guess this trip started a year ago, when I read about the event on Adventure Rider. I love traveling in latin america, and the thought of doing so by bike definitely intrigued me. My friend Jasen Mommer had just taken his motorcycle license test on my '84 Sabre in September of last year. This past spring I mentioned the Creel event to him, and he said "let's go!" I didn't really take him seriously at the time- I had never done more than a two night trip, he had about a thousand miles under his belt and a 750 Virago- a fine bike but not an "international travel" kind of bike. Never done a tour before? Let's go to Mexico! Why not? It's an adventure, after all.

The month leading up to our departure was pure torture, we were so ready to go. We had to work on Oct. 8th, so we anxiously watched the weather. The 9th looked bad. Snow was forecast for the afternoon, so we figured we'd better get an early start. We beat the snow as we headed out of Colorado, but just barely.

Ready for departure, October 9th, 2005. 6:45 am-


We had fog and rain as we retreated south, then hail at Sante Fe, then sun, then a downpour in Albuquerque, then horrible crosswinds at Truth or Consequences. We could have continued on, but the wind was tiring and the promise of good weather "manana" made up our minds- get a room, a twelve pack, and a good night's sleep. The next day was much better and we flat hauled ass to the border-



Two hours later, we were across, and searching for some authentic comida mexicana.



We were definitley a bit nervous about riding in Mexico that first day. And the landscape was mostly what we expected- big open desert with craggy mountains, dust storms and donkeys. But after a while we were comfortable with the ride. There is very little traffic, and in congested cities and towns, the drivers drive much more slowly than in the States. Close together, but slower. After a few interesting detours in Casas Grandes, we were blasting down smooth open highways at 100 mph, enjoying the changing scenery. The valleys became agricultural, and grassy, and by dinner time we were in a nice small town called Buenaventura. The pretty Zocalo and the smells from the many resturants beckoned, and we found a nice cheap hotel (Hotel Valle Grande) with secure parking for the bikes. Cervesa Carta Blanca never tasted so good.





__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 04:22 PM   #2
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
The next morning dawned clear and crisp and we were excited to get on the road. Immediately out of Buenaventura, the road starts climbing toward the Sierra La Catarina. Golden morning light sparkled off dew covered cholla as we blasted down the straights toward the mountains.



Soon we were into some great twisties, climbing higher and higher as the views opened up. The curvas were so much fun, but the view was distracting, so rather than risk disaster, we pulled over for some photo ops. That's the road down below, behind my shoulder.



Over the mountains and down into Gomez Farias, where lush mountain meadows are surrounded by pine trees, and the smell was fantastic. The altitude around here is about 8000ft, I believe, and the air was cool. West over another mountain pass, then dropping into another high valley, we could have been in Montana or Colorado. The valley from Temosachic to Santo Tomas and Ciudad Guerrero was one of our favorites. I could see myself retiring around here (retiring! Hah!)

The iglesia in Santo Tomas. We met a guy later in Ciudad Guerrero who said his grandfather had built this church, and was buried under the front stairs-



Tami and Mommer at the plaza in Ciudad Guerrero, where we stopped for lunch.-



Mike and Robin, a couple from California also on their way to Creel, came into the same resturant. Really nice people. We ended up hanging out with them a bit in Creel and hope to see them again next year. Wish I had a pic.

We rode through some great roads and beautiful scenery as we headed south to Creel. When we arrived, several bikes were already there, and we pulled up, unloaded, then, what else, got some cervesa. Ahhhh!



Michael, John, A.T., Tami (Haydukewife), and Mommer.-

__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 04:55 PM   #3
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
Wednesday morning was cold, and frost covered our bikes, so we were in no real hurry to get anywhere. Besides, we had this place for three nights-



We took our time, had a great breakfast at the Hotel Villa Mexicana, then rode out to Divisedero to see the best views of the canyon. The road out there was great, with nice sweepers and a few tighter turns, and the views were spectacular.





Tiny Tarahumara women were selling baskets and trinkets, and we bought a few things that would fit on the bike. A lady was frying up chile rellenos right at the train station so we had some lunch.

After lunch we decided to go back to Creel, then take the road south to the turnoff for Batopilas. Since we had two street bikes, we couldn't make it to Batopilas (at the bottom of the canyon on a steep dirt road), but everyone said the twisties were incredible. They didn't lie. One guy we met at the meeting said he had started to count the curves on the 20 or so miles to the turnoff, but lost count at 518, and he was no where near the end. The other amazing thing about this road is the elevation change. The curves are damn near 360 degrees at times and always going up or down. No wonder I've never seen pics of this road. There is no time to take them from a bike and nothing but cliffs on the side, so you can't pull over. I remember seeing the road snaking far below me, visible in several places to the left , and several places to the right, and it seemed impossible that these disjointed sections of pavement could somehow be connected. Un-friggin-believable. We had a light, un-loaded bike for a change, and feeling good, so we were ripping the corners, pegs scraping all the way around in a few. In one corner my right peg actully lifted up and the push bar for the center stand sent sparks flying. At our next stop, the bridge across the Urique river, I noticed balls of rubber on the edges of the tires.

Tami looking off the bridge at the bottom. It was hot down at this lower elevation.-


The Urique River-


The next day was a day off. We attended some talks by Grant Johnson, the founder of (Horizons Unlimited
and learned how to change a tire by the roadside. We also walked around Creel, and met alot of cool folks, including Howard and Elsa, who live in Arizona, but are from our neck of the woods in Colorado. We really had no plan for the next day but wanted to head further south. They said they were riding to Hidalgo de Parral, and we should join them. This would take us on the twisty road south again, then continuing on through some beautiful country. Also joining us was Rex, or BMW Dog, who was riding to South America. Sounds like a plan.

Clockwise from top left- BMW Dog, Howard Schultz, Elsa Schultz, Jasen (Mommer), and Tami (Haydukewife).-
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 05:18 PM   #4
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
On the road the next morning. Scattered clouds foreshadowed what was to follow that afternoon, but for now we were enjoying the ride. South of the Batopilas turnoff, the road stays twisty, then opens up a bit, passing through indian villages where women in bright dresses carried sacks of apples on their heads. The kids all watched and waved. It is so strange riding around here, like we are travelers from a time machine. There are indians living like it's a thousand years ago, surrounded by mexicans living like it's 50 years ago, then 5 motorcycles roll through, with full faced helmets, armored clothes, communications systems, gps. "I am an alien in a strange land", I thought.



Howard and Elsa in the lead-



Eventually, the road drops out of the high country. It started to rain, but the views were still gorgeous, with valleys far below lit by rays of sunshine piercing through the clouds. Like a painting. And I've never seen so many rainbows. We stopped at a military checkpoint during a brief respite from the rain-





After this, we had 30 miles to Hidalgo de Parral. I'd like to say the whole days ride was fun, but this stretch was terrifying. Rain came down in sheets, followed by painfull hail. Waterfalls were pouring off the roadcuts and mud and rocks flowed across the pavement. There were no shoulders, and the busses and trucks on this road weren't stopping, so neither could we. Mommer was riding with an open faced helmet, so the hail was really bad. The worst part, though, was that the road had recently been oiled, so it was slick as ice. In one corner, I was being carefull not to get on the gas or brakes, but the back tire broke loose and I saved it by riding flat-track style- sideways through the curve. A fully loaded ST1100 with a passenger is not a good flat track bike. Finally, we made it into the bustling city of Parral, and after getting lost, a nice local led us to the Hotel Tourista, right downtown in the old colonial mining city. Arrival time- BeerThirty.

After dinner, where we ran into John whom we had met in Creel, we decided to go to a bar. At first we couldn't find one that allowed women, at least women lacking a hookers license, but eventually a local directed us to a hidden bar on a medieval looking side street. After a few beers, the locals wanted to talk, with me being the best at speaking spanish (broken at best). I ended up in gear-head talk with a local mechanic, for awhile. He was interested in my bike- one he had never seen. As more cervesa flowed, things got crazy, and a couple of hookers tried to pick me and Jasen up. "My wife is right there," I told them in spanish. "Is that a problem?" they asked. "Possiblemente." We quickly retreated to the safety of the hotel.
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 08:38 PM   #5
Lobby
Viel Spass, Vato!
 
Lobby's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2003
Location: San Antonio, Tx
Oddometer: 28,681
Nice trip. Nice post. Thanks!
__________________
Gracie's Gold
Lobby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 08:44 PM   #6
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
Next morning, nursing hangovers and checking emails, we got a late start. Rex was anxious to head south, so he was up and ready early. We said our goodbyes in the hotel lobby. Good luck, BMW Dog!-



Yes, Tami is short. Yes, Rex is tall.

We walked around Hidalgo de Parral for awhile. It is a really interesting old mining town from colonial times. It seems to have no planning at all, with little medieval looking streets twisting up and down hills in every direction. There are several large, old cathedrals.



On our way out of town, we stopped at this motorcycle dealership, Sport Motos. Mostly 125cc singles and honda scooters. They gave me some cool stickers.

__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 09:05 PM   #7
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
From Parral, we had a quick blast north on some straight high speed roads, then met up with the couta (toll road), ruta 16 heading west, through Cauhtemoc. Highlights of the day were when the guy who owned the Pollo Loco in Valle de Zaragoza watched our bikes while we ate, then talked with us as I practiced my spanish on him. As we were leaving, I thanked him, and commented on his t-shirt he was wearing featuring the ubiquitous picture of Che Guevera. I said "Che had a motorcycle, too, and rode around South America." "Yo sabe" he said- I know. He was pretty psyched that I knew about Che, and pulled off his shirt, handing it to me. "Esta regalo"- It's a gift he said. We're amigo's. If you ever need anything, call me, and gave me his card. Literally gave me the shirt off his back. He wouldn't take no for an answer.

When we came to Cauhtemoc, we stopped for gas, and a guy came running over, speaking broken english, but excited to check out the bikes. "There were 200 bikes in Creel" he said. Word gets around. We were there, we told him. He proudly anounced, hand on his heart, "I am el presidente of our motorcycle club!" He was amazed that we had ridden from Colorado, all the way to Parral, and back to his little city. Nice people everywhere in Mexico.

On the way south, we really liked the small town of Ciudad Guerrero, so we decided to find a hotel there. Hotel Victoria was the old town stage stop. It has adobe walls four feet thick, and the rooms in the courtyard were rooms for stage passengers. The gate is locked at night, so the bikes were secure. Nice place.



The next day we headed for the border. Great twisties, and high speed straights. I lost Mommer in the twisties south of Buenaventura, but on the long downhill straight before town I was doing about 75mph, and I looked in my mirror. Oh shit, here comes Mommer, past me at 115, middle finger extended in my direction. It's on. I gassed it and was starting to gain when a little voice inside my head told me to back off. Actually, it was Tami's voice inside my helmet (via the intercom). Anyway, we both slowed way down, and just before town there was a Polizia car off on a side road. We had passed cops going way over the limit several times, but I'm not sure what they'd say about 115. Anyway, across the border, no problems, and a night in Deming. And of course, cervesa! Little did we know, the adventure was not over yet.
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug


Hayduke screwed with this post 10-19-2005 at 09:52 PM
Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 09:09 PM   #8
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
BTW, my buddy Mommer has just signed up here at Adventure Rider, as rookie2005. Give him a nice warm welcome, or a
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2005, 10:29 PM   #9
gaspipe
Wandering Soul
 
gaspipe's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2004
Location: Pickwick Lake, Tennessippi
Oddometer: 11,354
Cool pics. Great to meet ya down there!

__________________
gaspipe [the original]

Hair of the dog that bit me, Lloyd...
gaspipe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2005, 07:09 AM   #10
cavebiker
Old School Adventurer
 
cavebiker's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
Oddometer: 850
Super ride report. Sounds like a great time for sure. The HU event looks like it's growing every year. I have to go next year.
cavebiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2005, 10:08 AM   #11
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
Ok, where was I? Day 9. We headed out of Deming on a boring straight road towards Silver City. Riding these roads at just over legal speeds takes alot of will power after the freedom of Mexico. Feels like we live in a police state here in the US, with revenue enhancement officers everywhere. Isn't there a real crime being committed somewhere?

We stopped in the historic downtown of Silver City and walked around a bit, checking out the interesting art deco buildings and the gift shops with virtually the same stuff as back home, so we decided to get on the road. The plan was to ride up a road I had heard about up to the Gila Cliff Dwellings, then that afternoon, cross the mountains on another great road, Hwy 152, and hopefully make Socorro by dark. That way we could hit the slab and be back home before snow was expected on Tuesday night. Well, plans get changed.

Silver City New Mexico-


Heading out of town, we got on 35. It quickly becomes a skinny, winding road, with no center line, meandering through the shady forest. "Great grip", I commented to Tami in the intercom. "This is awesome" she said. "If I were making a perfect private motorcycle road, it would be like this. Without the pine needles," I said. We were in pure cruise, sightseeing mode, but enjoying the tight continuous curves. We came to a really tight right hand switchback, shady and sort of view- obstructed, but I could see that no cars were coming on the other side. As I set up, I could see that there was a muddy puddle right in the inside of the corner, so I set up alittle wide. We were both looking through the corner, at the exit. I said "mud", and BOOM!!!, we were on the ground. Quick as that. I still had my right hand on the throttle, and bike was in gear, so the rear wheel was spinning and trying to push the bike all the way around. My first thought was to hit the kill switch so it didn't come around on Tami. After a couple of quick tries, I killed the engine and jumped up. Tami was up and hobbleing, trying to get out of the road. I could see there were no cars, so I told her to sit still, and I waved Mommer to slow down. He avoided us and stopped, then helped me get Tami out of the road. She said her leg was hurt, so we checked it. Nothing obvious, but the swelling was already setting in. Mommer and I got the bike out of the road, and I took this shot-


When I saw that look of pain on her face, tears came to my eyes and I had to run over and hold her. Here is my highschool sweetheart, my wife of 16 years, hurt, and I'm responsible. I suck.

Here is the curve that kicked my ass. Note the mud, the shade, the dark colored sand. And the scrapes in the pavement made by the tipover wing on my ST.-


Another rider came into the curve on a VFR and we slowed him down. He said he was riding pretty quick and that the sand would have gotten him, he thought. He made sure we were ok. After we all calmed down, we considered going on. Tami said she thought she was ok, but when she tried to walk, pain shot up her leg, so I said we're going to the hospital. She rode back to town and to the emergency room. Que fuerte. She is pretty tough, as every bump hurt her leg.

At the emergency room, they thought it might be a bad sprain, but after X-rays, saw that the fibula had a fracture. Luckily it was not displaced, so they splinted it and said to let the swelling go down, keep it elevated, and get a real cast in a few days.

Tami holding her X-rays, me holding her foot.-


Well, riding home was out. We got a room at the Comfort Inn, and the owner came and gave Tami a ride in his car. Now we needed to figure out the next step in this adventure. A friend from Salida offered to drive down and give Tami a ride, but it was still like 600 miles away and would take awhile. Thank you anyway, Dan Howard. We looked into a plane- El Paso or a charter. $$$$$. I remembered a ride report on Adventure Rider last winter where someone rode to the Keys from Ohio or somewhere, then ice storms kept him from riding back, so he rented a Uhaul. Problem solved.

The ST, completely humiliated, accepting a ride from a cage. Note the "Cars Suck" bumper sticker.-


Tami in her nest-


We did get to do 152- in a damn truck. It would be a great ride. Next year. Mommer rode ahead on his Virago, and said it was sweet, except the east side had tons of gravel in it. Recent rains had washed loads of sand, rocks and gravel onto the road, and usually right in the apex of the curves. Mommer, wanting to avoid a repeat performance, rode cautiously.

Now we were ready to put the miles on and just get home. Here is the first of MANY gas stops on the way home-


So much for the gas money I saved by riding the bike-


Mommer's gas bill-


We took turns that day riding the Virago. I rode from a bit north of Sante Fe, almost to Walsenburg, CO, crossing Raton Pass at sunset. Beautiful. Riding in the dark is new to me. Exciting, fun, but a little spooky. I was really paranoid about deer or elk in the road. The 750 Virago is a fine bike, but I don't know how Mommer rode that thing almost 3000 miles, through crazy weather, traffic, burros, etc. That rookie is hard-core, and full of determination. I guess after a trip like this he isn't really a rookie anymore. Your the Man, Jasen Mommer!

We pulled into Canon City, Colorado about 10pm. This is were we would split up, Mommer heading to his home up near Cripple Creek, us west for about an hour to Salida.

Last stop. "Oh, my ass hurts!"-
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2005, 10:09 AM   #12
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
This whole trip, we had not taken a picture of the 3 of us together. One more photo op. FYYFF's! Arrrrghhh!-



Well, we made it home. Mommer rode through sleet, with suicidal muledeer lining the road, and we drove through a downpour, worring about Mommer. We called when we arrived and he was warming up in a hot shower. What a friggin' TRIP!!!!
Which route are we taking next year?
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2005, 05:22 PM   #13
mtbh2o
El Dorado Hills, Ca.
 
Joined: May 2005
Oddometer: 53
Creel

Hey Duke, send me your email and I'll email you back the web page with photo's of our trip. This is Mike of Mike & Robin.

ours is,

mtbh2o@aol.com
mtbh2o is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2005, 02:48 PM   #14
Hayduke OP
///SAFETY THIRD///
 
Hayduke's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Salida, coloRADo
Oddometer: 43,984
Hey Rookie2005. You got any pics yet to add to this?
__________________
"What these people need is some mental psychology."-Bonnie Abbzug

Hayduke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2005, 06:18 PM   #15
mommer
bring on the world!!!!
 
mommer's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Location: maui, hawaii
Oddometer: 1,964
Wicked no digital pics from me

i only had my 35mm camera, and only got one roll of film.. i spent all my picture taking concentration trying to keep up with you... maybe i can scan some in when i get them back from the photo place!!
perfect details of the best trip ever for me... maybe next year we can sell our kidneys or something for a dual sport,, and ride the dirt,, like the cool stories from so many at the hu meeting??? my fire is lit!!
mommer is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 05:27 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2015