The Carbon family heads to Copper Canyon

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by sulgrovem, Apr 14, 2014.

  1. sulgrovem

    sulgrovem Adventurer

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    Madison, Wi
    Introduction:

    Hi, I’m Mike.

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    Recently, a group of 13 good friends and I traveled south of the border to the copper canyon region of Chihuahua, Mexico. I will try to best to give you all the details and pictures. Feel free to comment on anything. I am sure some of the others will chime in when I miss something :D.

    Day 1: It was March 6th, the snow and cold was really starting to get to me. I had only had a chance to ride my trusty steed two times this winter when there were clear roads. Those miles were not so fun compared to the miles to come in the warmth of Copper Canyon. Sideshow, Ahren and I had loaded up our bikes to head to MN the night before, so after work all I had to do was hop in the truck and go.

    That is when it really started. Phone off, email notice set.

    We hit the road from Madison, Wi and headed through Lacrosse to south eastern MN. I am actually from there, so it was nice to go home, even if just for the night. On the way there, we stopped for a bite to eat and some beer in Lacrosse. If you are in the area and haven’t tried it, I would recommend Bodega Brew Pub , great ambiance and they have something like 400 bottled beers and 15 on tap. Sandwiches are great too (I had the Cubano). Once we got to Minnesota, we ran into the rest of the inmates for the next leg of the trip. We would be taking off the next morning at around 8 am, so we loaded the bikes and gear up into the trailer and called it a night.

    Ahren checking the bikes in Lacrosse

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    At first light, we got up and took off. No major issues and the rest of the next 28 or so hours were largely uneventful. My first time in a long distance RV ride and I must admit, even in the 1992 Newport, I felt like a boss in that rolling living room.

    Here are a few notable shots from the way down:

    The Rig

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    Everything is better with NOS

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    Just keep rolling

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    Many gas stops and energy drinks later, we arrived in Presidio, Texas.
    #1
  2. dajuice

    dajuice Been here awhile

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    And we didn't even run out of gas on the way down! Is that a first?
    #2
  3. GypsyWriter

    GypsyWriter Yup, I'm a girl.

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    :lurk :lurk

    :thumb
    #3
  4. Powershouse

    Powershouse Flower Sniffer

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    :jose
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  5. joenuclear

    joenuclear Ride to eat, eat to ride... all roads lead to pie!

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    N!
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  6. docwyte

    docwyte Long timer

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    In!
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  7. LoJack

    LoJack Long timer

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    I think we made up for it on the way back.:rofl
    #7
  8. sulgrovem

    sulgrovem Adventurer

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    Once we got out of the RV, I was pretty excited. A fifty degree delta in temperature, plus freedom from being in a metal cage that long, will do that to a man. We were going to stay the night at the Three Palms and cross into Olinaga the next day. I wasn’t ready to just call it a day though. I took the time to load up my bike with all my gear for the next two weeks and hit some of the two-track behind the hotel. The trails were pretty expansive behind the hotel, and not being on the bike for a few months made it a great place to test the durability of my setup (more to come on that in a bit).

    Some of the trails you might find behind the Three Palms:

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    The WR in the last of it's American Glory:

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    After shredding the hillsides on my little 250, it was time for a beer. Luckily, John had brought a few Grain Belts along for the ride from MN, so I didn’t have to miss a few nice comforts of the northland.

    That fine northern ale:

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    John and I were involved in some funky panoramic action:

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    Sleddog and Susan reviewing the technology:

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    While I was out shredding dunes, Ahren was dealing with another issue. Burnt rubber, normally a good thing for the adrenaline junky, was proving some trouble for this adventurer.

    Ahren had just built some racks for his Dakar at sector67 , our local Madison hackfactory, and didn’t have time to make a heat shield between his new racks and his modified exhaust. We knew getting into this trip, there wasn’t going to be a hotline to touratech for accessories, so Ahren had to rough it. After coming back from some riding, I saw Ahren coming back from the store with a bag. This bag had a large metal stick coming out of it. He pulled it out to reveal… a s’more cooker. I thought he knew we weren’t going to be camping!?

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    Anyways, long story short, with the help of a cordless grinder, some zip ties, and a few clamps and this newly purchased camping device Ahren was on his way to some safe luggage.

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    The final product:

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    It turns out innovation can be contagious. Senty figured it wouldn't hurt to add a little bit of camping gear to his rig either:

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    Jay decided to join the wood rack crew, so we modified some dimensional lumber into a first class luggage system:

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    Here it is on the bike:

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    After everyone got their bike setup, we grabbed a bite to eat at the restaurant next to the hotel and put back what we could of our American beer. Sunrise we would be heading across the border.
    #8
  9. LoJack

    LoJack Long timer

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    Patiently waiting for the next update from our trip last month...:ddog

    And Mike, why haven't you changed your name yet?
    #9
  10. sulgrovem

    sulgrovem Adventurer

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    Mr Lo Jack,

    I am sorry for the delay. My post must have got stuck in the tubes. It appears it even went through twice. Take a look. More posts will be available tomorrow.

    Regards,

    Soon to be name changed Mike.
    #10
  11. Powershouse

    Powershouse Flower Sniffer

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    Kieth Collins siting? How's he doing?

    I thought those mods were limited to KLRs?
    #11
  12. longobard

    longobard n00b

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    This noob is in!
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  13. sulgrovem

    sulgrovem Adventurer

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    The next morning, Sunday March 9th, it was time to go just a little farther and take the journey south of the border. All bikes were packed, and tire pressures checked. We got to the US-Mexico border crossing around 9:30 am. After a little bit of paperwork, some significant bribes, and a lot of waiting, we had our visas and vehicle permits. We didn’t stick around Olinaga too long, and without much ado we took off towards Chihuahua city.

    Waiting in line at the border crossing:

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    This first overlook:

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    Solo shot of dajuice near a nice cut in the landscape:

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    Soon we found ourselves in Coyame eating breakfast. I say breakfast, but I guess it was close enough to lunch. Me being a virgin to Mexico, this would be my first culinary experience south of the border. I was fairly excited to experience the wonders of a Mexican Tienda. To that end, I got a coke, some chokis, and a burrito; unbeknownst to me, the staples of a motorcycle traveler in this country.

    At this point, the reader might be wondering who I am actually traveling with. Besides the aforementioned, John, Sideshow, Jack, John and Ahren, there were quite a few other inmates in my chain of bikes. Here is a shot with all our bikes in Coyame.

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    L:R, Hallis’ wr250r,TX; John’s KLR 650, MN; Charlie’s DR 350, MN; Jack’s wr250, SD; Brant’s KLR400, MN; Craig’s DRZ400, MN; Sideshow’s DRZ400, WI; Jay’s DR 650, MN; Bob’s DR 350, IL; Ahren’s GS650 dakar, WI; My wr250x, WI; and Senty’s Sherpa, MN.

    (I'm the guy in the orange coat. A little more pano magic)

    After eating, we hit the pavement headed for Chihuahua City. I was already having a great time taking in the few curves 16 had to offer, little to know what was to come in just a few short days.

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    We arrived early in the afternoon. This was great timing because the market and downtown area were booming on this particular Sunday afternoon. We quickly unloaded at the Maria Dolores and a few of us headed over to check out the town.

    Where did we go? Here is a track map and elevation plot of our ride from Olinaga to Chihuahua city.

    Track:

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    Elevation:

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    That's all folks! More tomorrow.
    #13
  14. sulgrovem

    sulgrovem Adventurer

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    The Beautiful Maria Dolores

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    Awesome Mural

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    John likes to make sure his combat touring boots are nicely polished before any ride :)

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    A few things I found: Street food is delicious. You will probably buy something, I now have a scorpion belt. Bicycles RULE.

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    After loitering around the square for a while, we noticed a huge surge of activity coming near. I am not so sure the event, but there was quite the biker gang beginning to gather in the square. I am a big bicyclist and having been to Denmark and a few other bike friendly places, it was cool to see so many people out. There were even a few chicks in skirts…. Wish I could have went along for the ride.

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    Some Sunday Dancing:

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    After that, it was back to the hotel. We were going to meet up with the rest of comrades for the next two weeks at a local restaurant. The last two were Niko and Turi, locals of Chihuahua city. With these two, we were now 14. I had never ridden with a group of this side, so I had my reservations. After a refreshing dinner of tacos and a beer or four, it was back to the Maria Dolores to make camp.
    #14
  15. MikeS

    MikeS Fur shur! Vamos!

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    Miguelito is doing a great job of narrating this ride report. I'm going to add a few photos to the mix:

    More of the mural:
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    Choices, choices....
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    The rest of these are from the central plaza of Chihuahua City:

    I enjoy the detail of carved doors and intricately detailed architecture:
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    No idea what this stature is all about:
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    Boy at play:
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    #15
  16. LoJack

    LoJack Long timer

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    From the rooftop of the Maria Dolores:

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    Mas chicas que montan las bicicletas:

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    Y un par de chicos:

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    How do you add accent marks to letters? Mike, remember that mole? Oh, that was good!
    #16
  17. FBR

    FBR Been here awhile

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    In for the ride! But, Grain Belt? Did you guys wear diapers after?:rofl
    Cool report.
    #17
  18. Sleddog

    Sleddog Ridin, again:)

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    Thanks to Mike for getting this report started.

    Ah yes, the square in Chihuahua City always fun & entertaining.

    There were boys showing of their fancy footwear.

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    Several were intrigued by the long toed versions

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    The long toed.... boots were not hard to spot!

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    There were singers

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    And more Sunday Dancing.

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    There's always plenty of Street entertainment

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    How about a Dog of the Day....

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    #18
  19. MeinMotorrad

    MeinMotorrad Long timer

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    In.

    :lurk
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  20. cwc

    cwc .

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    #20