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Rainbow Farm rides Baja

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by PJ Bren, Mar 3, 2019.

  1. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    Inspired by many of the ride reports about Baja, we decided our winter trip this year would be discovering the in's and outs of Baja with our motorbikes. The trip was 2 months, from the beginning of January until the end of February. I'm intending to post photos here to help document the trip for anyone interested in our style of travel, and I'll post links to the youtube videos as we make them. This will be much the same style as our Americas ride report, except this one won't be real time.

    Feel free to ask questions and comment; I'm just trying to give a little back to the community here. Enjoy!

    We loaded the bikes into our van in WV and after a quick jaunt through through St. Louis to pick up another inmates bike, headed towards San Diego. Camping is always our accommodations, so we picked our way through the country over the course of a couple days finding public land to throw our tent down on. GOPR7638.JPG

    An inmate was generous enough to allow us to leave our van at his home, so we unloaded our bikes about 40 miles from the border and headed to Tecate. A mellow crossing and we were in. Note that Baja doesn't require vehicle importation permits, and if you plan to ferry to the mainland a permit can be obtained in La Paz.

    Our first destination was Laguna Hanson, in Parque Constitution. It is a bit cool up there this time of year, but we're equipped for cold and so had a nice ride and camp up there. GOPR7688.JPG Laguna Hanson.jpg

    From here we headed south, fueled up in Valle Trinidad, then headed in the direction of Mike's ranch. We weren't too impressed with Mikes, so we kept heading up the mountain in the direction of El Coyote (rough in a few spots) and camped in an awesome spot for the night. Camping El Coyete.jpg
    #1
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  2. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    Episode 1 : WV to the Border is available on YouTube. Not sure how long it'll take me to put together these videos - it is usually pretty time consuming. It'll happen eventually.

    Attached Files:

    #2
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  3. Ladybug

    Ladybug Bug Sister Supporter

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    :lurk
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  4. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    Forgot to mention that we drove a touch over 4000 miles on this trip, of which about 75% was off the pavement. So this report is skewed a bit towards roads less traveled for anyone interested in that type of thing.
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  5. mx813

    mx813 Been here awhile

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    Mikes is an iconic destination for the off road community. Most visit at least once to say they’ve been there.

    Where you camped, we were getting dumped on snow Feb 17 and stopped in that grove to throw a layer on and try to clean our goggles.
    #5
  6. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    We headed down from our camp spot the next morning past El Coyote. GOPR7697.JPG
    We didn't stay here but a cursory scan of the place seems like it has much nicer grounds than Mikes; maybe something for other riders to consider?

    We slabbed it up to the observatory San Pedro Martir where they give complementary tours. The elevation is close to 10,000 feet so the temps aren't high, but that's why its a good observatory. GOPR7721.JPG
    The free tour was awesome, then we headed back down to the highway, north a bit, then took the cut off road to Valle Trinidad where we camped for the evening.

    A quick ride in the morning brought us to San Felipe where we got some food, then headed south to Puertocitos for some hot spring action. This was my first experience with ocean hot springs; very cool. GOPR7745.JPG

    After a short following day because of illness, we booked it to Bahia Los Angeles. GOPR7766.JPG
    #6
  7. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    Attached Files:

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  8. Saso

    Saso Happily sporting the DRD4 gene Supporter

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    Great to see you guys back at it!
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  9. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    In, looking forward to following your adventure :thumb. I'd kill to get 2 months to go explore Baja, fantastic that you trekked 4k miles.

    Curious on your route from Mike's - did you take the rough road up and over to El Coyote? If so, how was it once you passed the rock steps following the tight left switch-back?

    We didn't have time to go all the way to the observatory, that'll be a next time thing.
    #9
  10. yamalama

    yamalama wet coaster

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    looking forward to seeing another Rainbow Farm adventure.

    :lurk
    #10
  11. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    We did continue on the rough road up and over to El Coyote. The worst part of the road is the section you described - we helped each other through that section. Once that section is surmounted the riding mellows out. There are some rocky sections on the other end descending down towards El Coyote, but we took it slow (if your on loaded KLRs like us) and it was fine.
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  12. Mud Bucket

    Mud Bucket Been here awhile

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    It's doable past Mike Sky ranch. Me and my friend did that last year in late March with fully loaded KTM's, a 990R and 1290. Once past the ascent its works itself out. I was worried last year when we went down some of the descents that what goes down must come up, thinking there would be a monster of a hill to come. Never happened.
    But your right about some great camping spots along the way. Good choice on the spot you picked, I believe there was even a fire pit/ rock ring from others using it. I remember that area.
    We stayed at Mikes because of the Idea of it. Have to try it once. Staff were very friendly and that is what my memory serves after a few shots. It was a ghost town / shining "The movie" experience since we were the only ones there, lol.

    Your post is very timely as I had to change our route and was going to chose the way you went or the pine forest route closer to Tecate. We were going to stay at Canyon de Guadeloupe but they are closed for a private function till April 8th. So some minor changes I'll make it work for the last leg of the trip
    Looking forward to more of your trip
    :photog
    #12
  13. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    There are 2 pretty decent spots to camp between Mikes and El Coyote. We chose the first "grove" which is only a couple miles from Mikes. The second "grove" is closer to to El Coyote but has the same sort of live oak/flat spot configuration.
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  14. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    Have to make the effort next time and just do it. It was late in the afternoon and we weren't sure we could get the Tiger 800 rider up the steps safely (his clutch was already slipping). We turned back and wound up in San Vincente for the night. Great street tacos were had there, but I would have liked making it to Meling (as that was our original destination).

    Looking forward to following along :thumb :thumb
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  15. rockydog

    rockydog just a guy

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    having trouble finding your videos....

    edit...I'll wait until it's worked out, XX.XXX ?
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  16. CanadianX

    CanadianX Don’t leave a steaming pile for others.

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    We visited Mike's just to see the place and I thought it would be cool with a bunch of riders to BS and bench race and sink some pints, but as a couple destination not so much. I was very tempted to take the route from Mike's to El Coyote but 2up on a GSA and the advice I was given nix'd that idea. Looking forward to the rest of your RR.
    #16
  17. CanadianX

    CanadianX Don’t leave a steaming pile for others.

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    Meling was a cool place, we enjoyed our room and little potbellied stove. Dave tells an interesting story, he's an expat from the US who moved there a long time ago, married into the family that owned the ranch. At that time it the land had been parcelled off and over the years he's slowly reacquired the original land to run cattle on. He used to work in some tech business travelling around US and Asia and now rides a horse rounding up cows. His wife had gotten sick and as a deal to his wife and probably between him and god he built a nice little church on the property for her. Funny enough when we were there a bike tour was staying, all Canadians. There was also a father and his two sons from Kansas. Made for a good time sitting around the chow hall shooting the shit till the generator was shut down.

    Our RR for Baja - https://advrider.com/f/threads/2up2-baja-via-new-brunswick-canada.1273304/
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  18. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    If you click on the wording "Episode X: XXX" it should take you to the videos. For some reason the links we are trying to attach to the images aren't working. I'll work on that, eventually.
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  19. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter Supporter

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    Sounds like you are going at the video thing wrong-----at least it's not the way I've been doing it forever.
    If the video is on you tube-------start the video----then click the share thingy----and then click "embed"-----then copy and paste that. Always works for me.
    I have always thought that was the way everybody was doing it------but them I'm old :D

    BigDog
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  20. PJ Bren

    PJ Bren Been here awhile

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    From Bahia LA we headed about an hour south and then 45 minutes east to a beach called Las Animas. The spur section towards the beach is sandy, but your rewarded with a secluded beach.

    We returned back to Bahia LA and killed another day there before heading southwest via the San Borja route, which is pretty mellow and brings you close to one of the historic Baja missions. San Borja.jpg

    Once we got to the hard road we headed toward Asunsion, with a quick night camping at a lighthouse close to sealions, then south via a coastal road (which would probably be heinous when wet but was easy but not too interesting in dry condtions) to Abre Ojos. Camp spots abound.
    El Faro 2.jpg
    Desert Camp.jpg
    We ducked around a lagoon then headed in the direction of Laguna San Ignacio, but ducked south on the "high" road through some beautiful country all the way to San Juanico.

    From San Juanico we headed back north for a bit, then headed east via a backroads way to Mulege. This takes you through some beautiful country with many water crossings, canyons, some rocky bits, and generally perfect backcountry Baja. River.jpg

    In Mulege we setup camp next to the bar out on the lighthouse point.
    #20