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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by CanuckCharlie, Aug 29, 2017.
Great update Charlie, keep on rollin
Riding in Mexico and the rest of Latin America at night is NOT recommended.
Start early and stop early.
The farther south you go you'll miss the afternoon showers by stopping early.
My moto is parked in Lima and plan to head down Jan 2 to witness start of Dakar Rally, then continue riding north after riding Chile, Uruguay and Argentina 1 month at a time over past 3 years.
Stop by Moto's del Peru if passing thru around then.
I'm a little late, but I'm in. Ride Safe & Best Wishes.
Day 8 - 2169 Miles - Ciudad Valles, San Luis Potosi, Mexico
It rained all morning in Santiago the next day so we stayed at Hotel Hacienda Cola de Caballo for another night and caught up on some rest. The hotel was high up in the mountains and had a waterfall nearby. It was a pretty cool place where peacocks wandered freely on the property.
Amazing view from the hotel restaurant
We went to check out Cascada Cola de Caballo after the sun came out later.
Couldn’t ask for a better view at this lunch stop
We rode on N.L. 20 towards El Salto the next morning. It’s an amazing road winding through the mountains and the view was just spectacular. Too bad it’s full of deep drainage ditches, speed bumps, cow manure and gravel.
View of Presa Rodrigo Gómez, "La Boca" from afar
Some moving shots
The path to El Salto was too treacherous for our 600 lb machines so we traded 2 wheels for 4 wheels.
El Salto is a natural formation carved out by water. This valley would be flooded during rainy season but is now completely dried out.
Of course the ATV wouldn’t start after we got to the bottom…
We headed out south toward Ciudad Victoria after exploring El Salto.
More roadside tastiness…the owner was nice and let us park under the shade
Milanesa de res (breaded beef)
We scored this sweet motel with an attached garage for $20 USD in Ciudad Victoria.
Totally excellent! You're making good time and taking time to enjoy it all. I'm happy to follow along vicariously.
Man, that looks like a lot of fun! Great shots.
Lucky you, it looks like great fun. I'm leaving myself out west in a couple of days. A whole year... WOW!
Day 11 - 2459 Miles - San Juan Teotihuacán de Arista, Estado de México, Mexico
‘Threading the needle’
‘GAWR does not apply’
‘Military check point’
A red hornet flew down my jacket shortly after we left Ciudad Victoria and stung me in the chest. Good thing I’m not allergic to stings. A quick stop for an ibuprofen and we are on our way.
Represent Dearborn’s finest!
More rain came later in the afternoon so we settled in early in Ciudad Valles, did some laundry and shopping in town.
The next day we went to visit Las Pozas (The Pools) near Xilitla, San Luis Potosi. It’s more than 80 acres of natural waterfalls and pools interlaced with towering surrealist sculptures in concrete high up in the mountains.
Normally people are allowed in the pools but water level is high during the rainy season so everything is roped off.
We were soaked from rain on the outside and sweat on the inside after leaving Las Pozas. Shortly after we outpaced the rain clouds we took a break at a gas station where a kid was selling corn on cob…3 for 5 Pesos! Mexican corn is very chewy and doesn’t have any sweetness to the taste.
It has been a long day and we probably hit a few hundred topes riding through the twisties on Mex 102. Spirits were low as we went through some of the roughest roads into town where we would spend the night but the hotel shown on the GPS were nowhere to be found. We were sitting on the side of the road scratching our heads and as I look to my left there is a red BMW F800GS in the garage. A gentleman standing next to the bike walked up to me and asked if I needed help. Right after he understood that we were looking for a hotel he hopped on his bike and zipped through town leading us to a hotel and sorted the details with the hotel staff. Muchas gracias por su ayuda!
We spent the night walking around town of Huejutla de Reyes. It’s quite a lively town for a Sunday evening.
Catedral de Cristo Rey at night
Day 10 was a rough day psychologically for the both of us as we witness the truck in front of us hit a dog and the poor thing was just howling away. Not long after we saw another dog eating a dead dog on side of the road. It was just heartbreaking as strays are everywhere along the roads starved to the bone. Glen fed his last MRE to a dog at a lookout point. Other than that, weather and scenery were great along Mex 105 as we rode towards Teotihuacán.
Waterfalls are everywhere along the road.
We bought some delicious empanadas from this guy at a gas station for lunch.
Strange looking pull over area…did a truck carrying blue paint crash here?
The landscape changed dramatically as we got closer to Mexico City. Weather was cooler and dryer as we climbed in elevation. Cacti were everywhere as we reminisced the Baja trip from last year.
We celebrated our last dinner (of the trip) together with a shot of tequila in Teotihuacán!
Next day we visited Teotihuacán, one of Mexico’s most iconic archeological ruins. It’s an ancient Mesoamerican city north east of Mexico City, known today as the site of many of the most architecturally significant Mesoamerican pyramids built in the pre-Columbian Americas.
Some excavation are still going on here.
Pirámide del Sol (Pyramid of the Sun) behind me
This photo reminds me of a scene from the movie ‘Apocalypto’.
Atop Pirámide del Sol
Pirámide de La Luna (Pyramid of the Moon) is down the far end.
Atop Pirámide de La Luna
We went into town afterwards looking for a bank to exchange some money but none of the banks would do it and the ATM did not accept US debit cards. This lovely couple passing by offered to exchange at market rate and wouldn’t accept anything extra even when we offered!
We had a quick lunch and bid our farewells as Glen heads home to Michigan and I continue my journey south. Glen, thanks for being a part of my adventure and have a safe trip home! I will see you next year on your KTM 1290 Super Adventure! :)
Wonderful! I have a business meeting coming up in D.F. This inspires me to ride rather than fly there.
If you can pull off Chicago to Panama in 9 days, this should be a piece of cake!
Hey Charlie just subscribed! Appears I was 2 days ahead of you guys in Santiago and Xilitla. Looks like you are having fun . I'm in Cholula tonight and we'll meet up in Oaxaca - look forward to it!
This rider has a great website with details about Latin and South America.
Meet up with him in 2012 in Oaxaca, great guy.
Go Charlie Great pics so far
Day 15 - 2786 Miles - Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca, Mexico
Day 12 is the start of a new chapter as I will be traveling solo. I set off to Mexico City and what a mistake that was. Traffic was congested and drivers were aggressive. Roads are also in rough shape as some potholes are big enough to swallow my front wheel. Once I entered the main street in town, traffic came to a complete halt for 15 minutes and I was just sitting in a cloud of diesel fumes. As I grind my clutch away and watched temperature gauge rise on my air/oil cooled bike I finally lost my patience and started lane splitting. It was quite a challenging task on a big loaded bike that has width of half a car but sometimes you just have to confront aggression with more aggression.
I went to check out Xochimilco which is a southeastern borough of Mexico City that’s like a little Venice. It has an extensive canal system filled with gondolas like boats called “Trajineras”. I did not bring enough money and the boat rides were way over my budget in the range of 500 to 2500 Pesos. I tried to find some people to share a boat ride but the gondoliers turned us down so I left in disappointment. I did meet a nice couple at the pier who offered me a car ride back to my hotel.
I took off early the next morning hoping to beat the Mexico City traffic but had no luck. A couple of hours later I finally reached top gear cruising down Autopista 150D.
135D had some breathtaking views!
Big smile behind the helmet
It’s free for all whenever traffic builds up.
Finally reached the colonial city of Oaxaca
I found the cheapest hotel in town for a basic room and bed with common bathroom. It does have an oasis of a courtyard.
Oaxaca has a lot of colonial-era structures and is a very touristy city. (Beware of hipsters!)
There are at least 10 churches within a mile radius.
I met up with another motorcycle traveler Joe a.k.a. ‘LoneStar’ from ADVrider and spent the night walking around town. Joe is a professional photographer and truly captures the essence of people and culture. Check out his thread here.
The next day Joe and I go check out a petrified waterfall in the nearby town of Mitla called ‘Hierve el Agua’. It’s a set of natural rock formation that resembles cascades of water created by calcium carbonate deposit from a fresh water spring. There are also a few natural and artificial pools that capture the mineral spring which hang over the cliff edge.
The infinity pool is the main attraction here. The whole area is filled with aroma of ocean breeze and I hate to admit…water tasted very salty.
Joe is having a good time at the pool. We both would have stayed longer if it weren’t approaching dusk.
The less popular upper pool
The source of natural spring
Photo credit: Joseph Savant (Thanks Joe!)
We shared a cab with some locals…6 people in a Nissan Tsuru!
Mexican Independence Day was yesterday and there was quite a crowd at the Zócalo. Unfortunately it wasn’t very festival due to grieving of the recent earthquake.
Police were everywhere armed with massive machine guns. It’s good to see the product I worked on in action!
Great stuff, thanks for sharing Charlie. Ride Safe. I'll be following your RR.
Looks like a seriously good ride, Charlie!
Fantastic you are definitely living the dream
Are you going to chill in Mexico for a bit or are you heading for Guatemala? Or maybe checking out Belize? I missed that one on the way down.
Plan for now is to exit Mexico by end of September and head into Belize at Chetumal. I want to go through every country in central America.
WOW! great report and awesome pics! I am getting very excited. Hope to catch up to you soon. Stay safe and keep the pics coming. Cheers!