Copper Canyon Mexico or Will I come back alive?

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by chabon, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA

    This is the company I used for liability insurance:

    ADA VIS Global Enterprises, Inc.​
    P.O. Box 744​
    Temecula, CA 92593​
    800-909-4457

    From what I understand you can get insurance for yourself (Drivers License) and operate any vehicle in Mexico or you can insure your bike, but your restricted to driving that one vehicle. Not sure about collision insurance, I didn't get it. Cost was $83 for one year.

    For Medivac I used:

    http://www.geosalliance.com/medivac-tsandcs.html

    I used this discount code "EOY2011MV" for an additional $20 off. I think I paid $89, I think it has now gone up to $109 for a year. It is the same company I have Search and Rescue coverage through ($12/year).

    http://www.geosalliance.com/sar/index.html

    You can buy short term policies for either one, but for the small extra amount I got a year (in case I go back :D).
    #41
  2. Bgunn

    Bgunn Mucha distancia

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,551
    Location:
    Rockford Wa


    As far as beer language goes, he is fluent in all 31 states of Mexico :lol3
    #42
  3. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Didn't see any of your stickers. I might have to go back and take a look.:wink:
    #43
  4. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    57 miles, 9.5 hours.

    No Google map, roads don't show up.
    We're OFF the grid.

    We leave Juanita’s the way we came.
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    Here’s a shot of the size propane tank the guy carried up the hill!
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    Our first stop of the day will be Mission Satevo
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    The only person there is this young lady (17) holding out a laminated print out talking about how she has epilepsy and needs money for medication. Is it true, I am not sure, but she is charming and out doing her thing. Oh, and she has a handshake that will crackle the bones in your hand! Well, when I got some time I researched this and it is true. Another thread on advrider talks about her and that a family is trying to get her a Visa to Canada to live and get treatment, long process. Wonder if she knows how much is written about her on the internet? Found lots of ride reports, mountain bike sites, backpacking sites all mention her.

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    The mission is closed, apparently the money dried up funding the rehab. Get some photos, backtrack into town, have some breakfast at Carolina’s, gas up, and head UP and OVER to Urique.

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    Stuck the camera through a hole in the door....
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    Get some photos, backtrack into town, have some breakfast at Carolina’s, gas up, and head UP and OVER to Urique. Mike relayed to us that he had watched some clandestine truck activety late at night, couple trucks moving a load of “hay” bales down the river road. Not sure why he didn’t get any pictures???

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    Saw these water wheel mills down in the river and didn’t know what it was, turns out they are used to grind ore and get at the gold. Small claim holder operations.
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    These roads never look as steep in the photos as they really are. We are climbing at a pretty good rate here.
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    For some odd reason this music video just seemed appropriate. Only 260 views on youtube for this video, come on advriders, lets hit it!
    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/gcGZQzIiGEY?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>


    Not only steep, but rutted, steps, loose rock, sharp hairpin switchbacks, steep camber, not to mention a cliff on one side! This is where I start getting challenged. Now I am dealing with a finger I can&#8217;t use on my clutch hand, the need to keep rpm between 4000-5000 to keep engine from flooding, in first gear picking my line while slipping clutch constantly, can only tippy toe the ground on a level surface, and less experience the the other guys. No problem though, this is fun!
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    Brad got a workout helping lift the pig four times on this stretch alone, thanks Brad.

    Once you get up the wall of the canyon things level out and the road is pretty nice. Brad and I found Burt and Mike resting in the pine forest so we joined them. I finished off my second (and last) liter of water and we&#8217;re only a third of the way! Good thing it was overcast and mild temperature.
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    Well, once you cross the mesa, you get to descend down the face of another canyon to Urique.
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    What the whaat? Really? This is not proper descent route. It was nice of the farmer to put a brush fence there, came in handy. A little 15 foot drop on the other side of it. Of course a quarter of a mile either side of this location I wouldn&#8217;t be doing this ride report.
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    Not sure what happened, loss of concentration I think, easy area and I was probably checking out the view and caught a big rock, the size of a head. I was actually travelly left to right, bike turned 180 degrees from direction of travel and 3 to 4 feet down off the road. Good old Brad to the rescue. First thing he says is &#8220;How'd that happen?&#8221;. We tugged and pulled and dug a little, but got it back on the road. I was in granny gear after this. Brad probably didn&#8217;t know it was possible for someone to ride so slow!

    I think the big rock behind back wheel had something to do with this.
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    Aha, destination is in site, and I am getting thirsty!
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    Its tempting, but I&#8217;m not drinking any of this!
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    As the guys are donning their tennis shoes I&#8217;m thinking, put tennis shoes in for next trip.
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    Luckily pretty dry, just under my knee and just over the top of my boots. This is my biggest, longest, deepest water crossing to date. River bottom was rocks from baseball to soccer ball size with a few bigger ones thrown in just to screw with you. The boys helped me get across and all is well. A small group of kids watched, probably waiting for one of us to do the submarine manouver, but it didn't happen.

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    Obligatory stop at edge of town
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    Now when we were in Creel we saw signs for this Ultramarathon in Urique which would occur a day or two ahead of us. Not too many beds in this town. We&#8217;re hoping all the marathoners will be gone and they are. This is a big event, 500 runners this year plus all the support team, friends, tourists. I guess people were sleeping everywhere, down along the river, where ever they could find a spot. Winner was same guy as last year, a Tarahumara, ran 80 kilimeters (50 miles) in 6 hours 40 minutes. Thats faster than we did on the bikes! Winner gets 35,000 pesos (thats like the mega lottery down there, I think about $3000). Everyone that finishes gets 500 pounds of corn. Can you imagine running 50 miles and then having to lug 500 pounds of corn home??!! And think of the Americans and how much the airline will charge for being over the weight limit!
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    Here is a little history on a previous ultramarathon. Just google if you want to learn more about it.


    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/YIyEvomUz14?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>

    [edit] Here is this years winnings: The winner was the young Miguel Lara with a new course record of 7:04! Second place was a high country Raramuri from way on the other side of the Sierra in a place called Tataguichi, in the county of Guachochi. And third was a 23 year old up and comer, Florencio Quimare, from Batopilas canyon. Like in the U.S.A; the young'ens are running strong! The winner won $3,000 dollars cash and a ton [literally!] of corn. Second place earned over $2,000 and third $1,500. The top 5 also all won a ton of corn. The second 5, places 6-10 all won about $250 dollars and 1/2 ton of corn. ALL finishers won 500 pounds of corn. The corn prizes were in vouchers at the value of the corn to purchase whatever food items are desired or needed.

    Also, this sad news. LINK
    [end edit]


    A little goat and cactus after a hard day is nothin but good!
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    State of the art well and pump
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    Rooms have TV, but the cable was cut and routed to the new hotel, oh well, I don&#8217;t really care what's going on in the world. Proprietor turned on the hot water heater and a nice hot shower was had. Falling asleep so early every nite I usually get up at 3 and go outside and check things out. Lots of stars down here, no light pollution.

    Here is the profile for today, Batopilas on the left, Urique on the right. Kind of steep going up and down the canyon walls!
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    Profile Batopilas to Urique by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Tomorrow we plan to make it to Chinipas, the third canyon we will visit.
    #44
  5. Bgunn

    Bgunn Mucha distancia

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,551
    Location:
    Rockford Wa


    Spoken like a true adventure rider......:thumb

    Doug never got flustered, and stayed frosty through the technical sections. I have a hunch he might do it again.
    #45
  6. G is for Guiness

    G is for Guiness Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 19, 2009
    Oddometer:
    51
    Location:
    DFW, Texas
    First everyone is riding small CC bikes compared to my 1200GSA. And I was thinking I should have bought an 800GS! Just goes to show you big is not better. Right dear? :evil
    Love the guys have grey hair cuz I do too - dammit!:cry
    Hard bags may not have been best afterall for me to buy - Damn there goes some mo money!:puke1
    I live in Texas and have exhausted riding in New Mexico, Oklahoma (didn't take too long) and most of Texas so Mexico is back on the bucket list. :lol3
    Thanks for the stories and music way cool trip.:clap
    #46
  7. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Stage 6 Urique to Chinipas, 95 miles, 8.5 hours.

    Up early to pack. Slathered the finger with Antibiotic Cream last night and the red is going away, but the little piece of oyster peeking out from my fingernail lives on, ggrrrrrrr.

    Head over to the mercado and get some pastries, snacks, and water.
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    A large paved road turns out to double as a residential street and runway.
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    No water crossings today. Turns out the road is better and we actually see several (less than 6 or 8) other vehicles.

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    Still a steep climb!
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    Big scenic overview/rest area. Under construction for a while
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    We just came from here! You can even make out the runway / street.
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    Burt asked a local guy &#8216;Which way to Temoris?&#8217; at the fork in the road. Of course the guy tell us the wrong way (what is with this?). Quick correction to the route and on the way again.
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    Stop for lunch. Look, you can grind your own hot peppers so they don&#8217;t loose any &#8216;hot&#8217;!
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    We just wanted something light so asked for fruita. The cook sent her husband to get some fruit. When he comes back she asks if we want it con dulce, sure why not. She sends him to the store for a can of condensed milk. Want some orange juice? Okay, it's off to the store again. Had some instant coffee and and asked for some leche, (I don&#8217;t really like those envelopes of &#8216;non-dairy fat&#8217;). You know the routine, it's off to the store again! I figure it&#8217;s her way of keeping him busy and in shape. Not much else to do in this little town.
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    There is a large mine along the route today. They just basically tore a mountain down! I&#8217;m thinking the Mexican version of the EPA may not be as strict???
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    Palmarejo Mine is an underground and open pit gold and silver operation, it produces an average of approximately 120,000 ounces of gold and 9 million ounces of silver annually. Now I&#8217;m thinking this must have stirred up the Mountain Gods and let me explain this while you listen.


    A little VOODOO CHILE to set the mood.
    <iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/5-IXuZzKfTI?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    We&#8217;re traveling on a big, wide (40-50&#8217;), compacted, clay road. Big equipment running around here, look out. So I catch myself heading down a hill and notice a hairpin turn is at the bottom so I downshift to second and the rear end just starts sliding out. Quickly go back to third and apply very light back brake, rear end just locks up and slides. Seems like the hard dry clay has a layer of grit or sand on it, just like ice. Well I&#8217;m drifting towards the edge of the road and a 15&#8217; gully and nothing is working. It&#8217;s at this point I put all my weight on the footpegs as I am getting ready to jump off (YES, it&#8217;s bailout time) and it must have been enough to get my direction changed. Again, no witnesses, Brad&#8217;s too far back to see this move, I bet it looked impressive. Maybe I should contact the mine and see if they have a surveillance video, I would bet the miners sit in the lunchroom and just keep replaying the &#8216;crazy motorcycle guy&#8217; video over and over. I&#8217;m able to slow and make the corner only to find a water truck in front of me.

    This brings on a whole new set of circumstances. The guy is flooding this hard clay with water. Water running across the road, the mountain gods are laughing now. I find the driest line and survive. A little advice to anyone going past the mine. Stop at a nearby village first, there you will purchase (not very expensive) a chicken. You will then break the chicken's neck (the chicken has to be alive, it doesn&#8217;t work to break a dead chickens neck) and swing it around your head 17 times while singing &#8216;Yankee Doodle Dandee&#8217;. This will grant you good voodoo juju for about 10 minutes, now ride like the wind and get past this place.

    What&#8217;s this? We must be close to our destination, here&#8217;s the beer store!
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    And here comes the Calvary
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    I was watching for Chihuahua dogs the whole time - we were in Chihuahua after all. Well my total count was 3. But today I saw my first &#8216;working-herding&#8217; Chihuahua. When we were up in hill country there were 3 cowboys and their herding dogs. 2 Queensland Healers and 1 Chihuahua! This little dog had the spirit and cajones of a fierce warrior. I think he was the alpha dog, tail up in the air, chin up, high steppin it down the road, wow, who would have thought!

    Let me just unwind here for a moment and contemplate life and death.
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    Photo compliments of Bgunn

    It&#8217;s not that the horse is so small, this guy is tall. Lots of tall people in Mexico.
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    Our Hotel, this kid on the bike would follow us all over town. Burt would yell at him and tell him to go home, hehehehehe.
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    Anybody like Cheetos? How about a bag the size of a child, I think it was 3 kilos.(There's that pesky kid again!)
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    I&#8217;m looking for a rustic front door for my house. I wonder if they ship?
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    Today's profile
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    Chinipas will from now on be known as &#8216;The Town with No Topes&#8217;. Maybe the Mayor hit one and spilled his beer and then had them all removed, not sure. It is strange to not have any. After all, the only vehicles in town are new expensive SUV&#8217;s. Maybe the government subsidizes vehicles for the farmers?


    Get settled into the motel, showers, beverages, storytelling. Mike does some maintenance on some part under his bike. He has a technical term for the part but I can&#8217;t remember what it is, seems like it was related to the human anatomy in some way. It&#8217;s a hose that he thinks was sucking up water during the crossings.
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    I think this was the only guy without a SUV. Didn&#8217;t actually get a picture of the guy. I was shooting from the hip to be discreet and missed, got the mule though.
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    Mike also has some medicine I put on my finger, it wasn&#8217;t mercurochrome but something more toxic. I find the more toxic something is the better it performs. You know, those low VOC glues that are environmentally friendly but don&#8217;t stick, herbs when you can take a nice chemically derived pharmaceutical (better living through modern chemistry). But then, I&#8217;m a child of the &#8216;60&#8217;s, and it was all about radiation, nuclear bombs, mind control...... ahhh, the good ole days.

    We take a walk around town looking for someplace to eat but it&#8217;s too early for dinner and nothing opens until 1900. While walking we notice a trainer riding one and leading another thoroughbred down the side street. They disappear and I ask some kid where the hippodrome (horse track) is. I guess my accent is off because he just stares at me with glazed eyes. As we continue walking I glance through a gate and there is the track entrance. Thought it best not to walk in uninvited. We end up back at the hotel and the restaurant door is unlocked.

    We order the combination plate directly off the menu. Our waitress takes careful notes and writes it all down. Carne de Bife, ensalada, guacamole, papa fritas.....(She&#8217;s also the cook). She sends her daughter to the store to purchase the items (low inventory) and gets to work. They also have mixed drinks on the menu, haven&#8217;t seen any mixed drinks down here so I order a mojito and Brad orders a Margarita. The mojito turns out to be a glass of tequila (when I asked what it was she said &#8216;Johnny Walker&#8217;! I just smiled and drank it. The Margarita turned out to be a glass of rum. Brad smiled and drank it. Brad also ordered a &#8216;Blanca&#8217;, or light beer. He got a glass of Vodka, he smiled and drank it!
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    Next the food appears. We get goat, rice, quesadillas, and beens. Not sure why she wrote down the order, nothing had anything to do with anything here? It was all good, and maybe they were just messing with the gringo&#8217;s, maybe they had seen the &#8216;Crazy Motorcycle Guy&#8217; video? A memorable meal to say the least.
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    Now every once in awhile Burt will come up with some story that you just couldn&#8217;t make up. For example, his brother was Evel Knievel&#8217;s mechanic. One night, Burt and a few of &#8216;the guys&#8217; are beckoned to the hospital that Evel has been laid up in. Turns out Evel owes a tidy sum for his hospital stay (I wonder if he had a hard time getting insurance?) and needed to get smuggled out.The boys carried him out! Hehehe, bet you couldn&#8217;t do that these days. Don&#8217;t worry Burt, I think the statute of limitations is up, but you might want to check on that. Both Burt and Mike are veterans, hats off to them for their service. Burt was Korea and Vietnam, Mike Vietnam. I was in the Vietnam draft lottery, but that&#8217;s as close as I got. Thats one lottery I really didn&#8217;t want to win.

    Again, off to bed rather early, didn&#8217;t even try the TV here, I bet it worked though, nice hotel.

    Tomorrow we head to Navajoa, this will take us out of the canyon and back to civilization. I&#8217;m thinking the road was better today and probably will be better tomorrow as we&#8217;re getting out of the canyon and starting to see more (6 cars) traffic.
    #47
  8. Idahosam

    Idahosam Set Adrift

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4,179
    Location:
    Back in the Saddle
    Excellent, Excellent outing so far. :clap Just ran across this RR, I must say looks like a great time so far. I would liked to have been there no alas just getting home from my last odyssey south moma didn't take to me hauling off again.

    Hi Burt and Brad :wave.

    Oh and Burt's Komfort Inn on wheels...... nothing but the best. Now I wanta go back down. Molina is a nice clean little spot:deal Wasn't the restaurant open there, I think she opened at 5 PM.

    waiting for more... :lurk

    Mike, not riding the Honda huh
    #48
  9. GoinPostal

    GoinPostal Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    387
    Location:
    Sonoma, CA
    Very entertaining, love your style of writing. Great pictures and story. Don't stop now, keep riding and keep writing :clap:clap
    #49
  10. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Glad your liking the trip.

    It's not so much the equipment, but the ride and what you make it. There's advantages and disadvantages to all the different equipment and bikes, Nothing is suited for everything. Just make the ride work for you.
    #50
  11. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Hi Sam, glad your liking it. I followed you and Radioman through Mexico. Your videos were like a training film or flight simulator for me. When I got down here its like I had already been here before! Better give moma some time and then you will be free again.

    Chateau Ste. Burt.... Best place in Yuma. Would be nicer if he would hook up the toilet! Thanks for leaving the suite in a proper condition, bed made, etc.....
    #51
  12. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Thanks for following Postal. There is more to come, I'm not out of the 'death zone' yet! :wink:
    #52
  13. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    Stage 7 Chinipas to Navajoa, 101 miles, 7.5 hours.

    We have breakfast at hotel and get on the road to find the water crossing. Last night during my usual 0300 go outside and look around, there was some nocturnal activity going on. A black SUV drove past the hotel. The SUV stopped and started to back up. I noticed that it had no tail lights or backup lights. I slyly moved behind a column and waited. The truck turned up a side road and a couple minutes later returned with another -no lights- truck following. Seems like a person could make a good business of selling vehicle light bulbs down here, a lot of them are burned out, maybe its all the bumps in the roads?
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    IMGP1169 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Takes a little looking around, but we get to the water crossing and the boys put on their tennis shoes. My boots are almost dry from the first crossing and now they will be wet again, double rats. Once we get across the guys get their riding boots on and we head off. It's at this point we realize we forgot to get water! Not one of us had thought to pick any up. Too late, not going to cross the river twice more. There must be a kiosk along the road somewhere not too far.
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    IMGP1170 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1171 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr


    A little THEME music for today's ride.

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/rNQRfBAzSzo?rel=0" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>

    Immediately come to a big deep mud puddle. Nobody thought they would get wet and therefore no tennis shoes were donned. Now I&#8217;m not alone with wet feet! From there on the road starts climbing with areas of polvo (dust). Now I&#8217;ve read about this and seen pictures but never experienced it myself. Stomach tightened up a bit and in I went. Not so bad, maybe six inches deep only problem is you have no idea what is in and under the polvo. I manage to hit a rock in a fairly straight stretch and topple over. Poof, I&#8217;m enveloped in a cloud of dust. This is kind of like hunting for lost treasure except without the fun or reward!

    Okay, this goes on for a while, so far I think I have endured about every surface condition possible on this trip. Again, climbing steep, hidden terrain, sharp hairpins. I thought this road might be better, but no, tough road today. It&#8217;s all fun and games for a while but then your mind starts wandering and you wonder how much more of this can there be, is better to keep going or go back - going back was not an option, I knew what was there!
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    IMGP1172 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1174 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr


    Then I meet my match. Not a long stretch, but very steep and lots of polvo. Burt and Mike make it up and then I hit a hidden rock half way up and over I go. Brad helps me back the bike down the hill and I try again, same spot and off I go again. This time the bike was thrown perpendicular to the hill and there was two ways to fall. The easy way, uphill, or the hard way, downhill. Gravity and fate determined that I was to fall downhill. Slow motion, 8 feet to impact, bike misses me, and I start sliding on my stomach. I mean this hill is steep, hard to walk up. Well as I&#8217;m sliding along thinking how good it is to be conscience my helmet starts scooping up silt powder. I must have been breathing through my mouth because once the helmet was full the polvo found the next best cavity, my mouth. This will become known as the &#8216;Mexican Dust Slide&#8217;.
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    cc 2012 131 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    cc 2012 133 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Notice how wet my shirt is? It&#8217;s beginning to get a little warm!
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    cc 2012 134 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Now this is where the lack of water was becoming a concern. Not only hot and dehydrated, but my mouth was full of dirt. I did have a ceramic filter and could have found a stream if it got too bad, but Brad appears with a water bottle with about a half cup of water in it. Not sure where he got or found it, I didn&#8217;t care. Rinsed my mouth and spit out a landslide of mud, twice.

    There will be no third try. Everybody pitches in and we power walk the bike the last fifteen feet up the hill. The other option was to roll it backwards to the bottom, no thanks.
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    tough hill by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    tough push by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr


    We get going again and come up on Burt standing in the road. I guess a picture is the best way to explain this.
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    not a good scene by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    He caught one of the little bastard hidden rocks and got deflected, well towards the wrong side of the road. Looks like that one rock stopped his forward momentum, lucky for him. See that bush just past the edge, well that's not a bush, it's the top of a 80 foot tall tree! And so it goes.... At least there is no traffic, but then again, I don&#8217;t think any sane person would try to drive a vehicle on the road.

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    no harm, no foul by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    road back to Chiniapas by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Found a little creek to clean up a little. Water was nasty, even way out here.
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    nice wash area by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr



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    IMGP1175 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr[​IMG]
    way to Los Tankos by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    I was reading ride reports on Advrider and came across this and would like to quote it here. It seems to sum things up pretty good and has some information that might be helpful to others that travel to Chinipas.

    Qouted from Sjoerd Bakker on Advrider.com &#8220;AND NOW FOR A SITUATIONAL UPDATE FROM THE FRONT LINES....This morning in Chinipas Chihhuahua I awoke to the sound of choppers overhead. looking outside from the hotel I counted 5 choppers and two fixed wing aircraft of the Mexican armed forces circling low over the town center and then several of them let off groups of soldiers at the riverside behind the plaza Choppers kept circling for over an hour.Obviously it was a military action in search of narcos who may have been in town for the horse races yesterday .
    While getting breakfast at a plaza side restaurant I could see militaries doing car and house checks. Upon leaving town for the new river bridge I had to wait a while in line as the army checked documents and detained several people.The soldiers were very courteous and friendly to me , professionals all around. While there the choppers landed at the airstrip giving a dust shower to us.

    Now , the new river bridge is a bit of a cruel joke as there is really no direct road leading to or from it, and no useful directional signage to get you there or to the entry of the actual continuing road to the west.It took me a while to glom onto the fact that one needs to go north by the airstrip,over the bridge then back south to the old river crossing and the immediately beside the fancy horse paddock start the gravel road. It is marked as being 110km to Alamos, which it is. But hoooo boy!!! what a road!!! It is far more difficult than I was led to believe from other travel reports. It climbs steeply into the mountain , zillions of curves, many very steep sections ,lots of ruts,rocks, deep rock flour stretches as it travels through deposits of volcanic ash rock, Verrry challenging to say the least. I had some sweaty moments at first but got into it and kept my cool and stayed in first gear most of the time, dragged the back brake and rarely used the front, always searching ahead for the easiest line around the bad bits... No hero stuff for this lad! Slow and easy did it and I never once dropped the bike or got stuck or damaged the standard KLR plastic engine guard,YaaaaY. What a relief to be getting down out of the sierra and finally some more level desert ranches and finally pavement 20km before Alamos , Reached the town at five twenty CHIH time, long before sunset, and directly went to a motel.&#8221;

    Hold on, back up here, there&#8217;s a bridge? Well, I&#8217;m not going back now, but that would have made going to get some water a lot easier. Need to file this information in case I go back. Will have to look at google maps and see if I can spot this...... next time I get internet. In any case, the road does get better, in some sense of the word and we continue.

    Find a little gas station kiosk along the road. We all have some drinks, the girl came out with a pitcher of water and I drank the whole thing!
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    IMGP1177 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1179 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    beer and rest stop by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    We stop in a little village called El Tanque, named after the old fashioned water tank elevated above the small buildings. Pull up to the ever common Tecate Six store and small market. This is our first chance to really quench our thirst and I down a 1.5 litre bottle of water and another liter of Coconut Electrolyte drink. We hang out for a while chatting with the locals. The local guy is smoking his hand rolled &#8216;smoke&#8217;. A kid is sitting on the ground smoking his joint, not very concerned, just the way it is. Burt spends some time talking to the guy, it's kind of a Spanglish conversion. I think Burt might be getting some second hand smoke, he says getting hungry! Mike breaks open a can a spam which makes a good snack.
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    IMGP1183 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    cousins at Los Tankos by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

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    IMGP1180 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1182 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

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    IMGP1184 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1185 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Mike also tries to find out if his lost cell phone is still here. Mike is learning spanish, and the best way to learn is to try to speak it. Thing is, Mike thinks speaking louder and waving his arms makes it easier to understand him, hehehe, it&#8217;s fun to watch. He pulls out his little note pad and resorts to drawing a picture of a cell phone flying through the air. I should have taken a photo of his sketch, it was that good. No one knows about a cell phone.

    After our break we head off on a nice graded road. Seems to be rock overlain with a layer of sand. Some places no sand, others a few inches. All is good until I drift into the center of the road at 40-50 mph and start oscillating in the sand and I start thinking how this is not going to be a good way to end the trip. Takes me a second to remember to get the weight back and get on the gas. I thought about stopping to get a picture of the serpentine track I left but thought it best to keep moving. At the next stop Brad mentioned to me how impressive the track looked! And then, out of nowhere a brand new paved highway appeared. We were the only souls on the road and it was good to get up to speed and blow some of the dust and talcum powered off. Although the dust storm inside my helmet was a little disconcerting! Next town was Alamos which we just drove through, but it is a tourist town with some very cool colonial architecture. At this point I would consider that we had returned back to civilization.
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    IMGP1187 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr


    Motored on to Navajoa, our destination for the day. Checked into the Oro Negro Hotel. Probably the cleanest most modern of the motels we were in, although smallest room. Motel is located outside the edge of town at a truck stop area.
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    IMGP1188 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1189 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Had a restaurant that was closed for dinner already and a seafood kiosk out by the highway. We ate at the kiosk and enjoyed the music of the jake brakes from the passing trucks. Great seafood soup comprised of whatever they dredged out of the gulf on that particular day. Shrimp, scallops, fish, octopus and ???
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    IMGP1194 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1190 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1193 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
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    IMGP1195 by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Here&#8217;s today's profile, steep climb in and out again.
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    Profile Chinipas to Navajoe by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Tomorrow's destination will be back to Santa Ana, completing our southern loop.
    #53
  14. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA
    And here it is, right from google maps, the elusive Chinipas bridge to nowhere. Just north of the landing strip. Chinipas has a nicely paved landing strip, not one of those dusty dirt ones!

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    Chinipas Bridge by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr

    Here are two other options at south end of landing strip. Push across pedestrian bridge or take the water crossing, we opted for the water.
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    Chinipas Pedestrian Bridge and Water Crossing by DDMcGinnis, on Flickr
    #54
  15. KHVol

    KHVol Long timer

    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Oddometer:
    2,568
    Mr Chabon, soak that bad finger for a 1/2 hr to hr in warm salt water and the "oyster" part will be healed in very short order...try it before you go to bed.
    #55
  16. Bgunn

    Bgunn Mucha distancia

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,551
    Location:
    Rockford Wa


    Hey Sam, glad you checked in. No comida at the Molina. It never opened up.

    I was gone for about 2 months this winter, so its the juggling act between adventure riding and keeping things good at home.

    Get up this way stop by.
    #56
  17. chabon

    chabon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    385
    Location:
    Carpinteria, CA

    Sounds like it might work. It could work as a marinade also. :eek1
    #57
  18. Idahosam

    Idahosam Set Adrift

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4,179
    Location:
    Back in the Saddle
    Outstanding, great witty narrative on an adventure that I am sure is deeply implanted in your cerebral cortex. Oh and the lay terminology is "Poof Dust" cause as you found out it goes poof and is NOT a good substitute for "Monkey Butt" powder:lol3


    It was a good thing Brad was along as sweep...... you need to buy him a couple of beers.
    #58
  19. Idahosam

    Idahosam Set Adrift

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4,179
    Location:
    Back in the Saddle

    You Betcha, I'll pop in this summer sometime. Looks like I wished out on a good ride. WOW, 100 miles in 7.5 hours on that one leg......... that's like 13 miles an hour or so.

    Maybe you can break away this summer for one day to ride with me.
    #59
  20. SenorPeligro

    SenorPeligro Proper Naughty

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,967
    Location:
    Off the wrong map
    :wave Hey Doug!

    Mexico... it's not like the said is it? It's better! :evil

    Looks like you've been having some fun!
    #60