Wypers do Mexico

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Chriswyper, Dec 5, 2019.

  1. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    San Felipe seems to start 10 km on highway 5 with timeshares and RV lots, before the main strip. South of the Malecón was more local houses and real people. We stayed at Kikis on the beach, price was good and the rooms were clean.

    My only complaint is that the next morning when I fueled up my tail tank was open - clearly someone had tried to siphon fuel out during the night.

    Tacos on the Malecón and watching Les Federales doing some power play against the local seagulls.

    I must say I wasn’t all that taken win San Felipe, it was a bit touristy and didn’t seem to have as much character as other towns. Maybe just a bad vibe today.

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    #21
  2. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    Friday morning was a big ride as we wanted to get to Guerrero Negro and a decent hotel. Left around 8am and made good progress. The coast road is stunning to ride with great sweeping curves, blue sea and jagged islands to the East in the sea of Cortez, and red mountains to the West hemming us in.

    Breakfast of quesadillas in a tiny cantina by the roadside. Only complaint was the Coke being kept in the fish ice chest.

    We were making good time when I lost sight of Peter and Tony. We stopped to see if they would catch us. A car passed and said that they were some way back, doing something to the panniers. I figured to wait and see if they caught up, rather than waste precious fuel running around.

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    After about twenty minutes we turned back and found Tony fixing a puncture having removed a 2 inch nail from the rear. He had suffered a blow out at 100 kph and was very lucky to have held it. We plugged the hole but could not get the bead to seal using a strap and bike pump.

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    The F650 has had the stand removed so needed a rock for maintenance.

    There was a Pemex 10km up the road so I took the wheel to try to inflate it. The compressor was no use, and I even tried using lighter fluid ( wouldn’t burn in the wind). Bought a tin of sealant that did the job and got the bead sealed. Pumped up to 40 psi and all good.

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    We stopped a couple more times to check the pressure and it was holding OK. Unfortunately we drove past Cocos as we didn’t have time and Tony wasn’t keen on testing the tyre plug more than needed.

    Back on highway 1, just past Baja Los Angeles turning the plug blew out again. I was behind Tony and I felt sure he would lose it as the bars were being wrenched lock to lock. He steered onto the verge and got his feet down enough to slow to a halt. Twice in one day would be enough to make me sell the bike.

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    Off came the wheel and we took it to a Llantera up the road who put our tube in it. The hardest part was inflating it as the guy only had a truck inflator.

    There was no way we could reach Guerrero Negro before dark so we stopped at Rosalito in the the very cheap (P$1000 two rooms) Hotel Cactus.

    Attached Files:

    #22
  3. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Good decision to take the sleeping bags!

    Odd the tire plug didn't work. In the past I've used them and ridden the tire out until it was worn down to the plug.

    San Felipe to Guerro Negro would be too much of a stretch even without troubles.

    We often stay at Mama Espinosa's at the big bend (Cactus Motel). The ride the next day is fab. It's 205 miles from that gas station to the next one before GN. Gas at Catavina half way in 40 gallon drums...unless they actually opened the Pemex that has been built and empty for a few years. Good hotel in Catavina too...one of the Mission chain.
    #23
  4. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Well? You can't have drunk THAT much Tequila.....what's happening?
    #24
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  5. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    Update from Baja..... we spent a day in Guerrero Negro looking for a new, or good used tyre for the BMW. The BF Goodrich agent was helpful and said he could maybe get a tyre by Monday. Then he said that a friend had a good used tyre that he could have sent down.
    We hung around until 5pm but the tyre was shithouse - bald and worthless. We phoned a few dealers in the US but no one was prepared to send a tyre down to us. Took the decision that it would be safer for one of us (me) to ride back to San Diego and buy a tyre. Had an early night on Saturday and hit the road 5am Sunday morning heading north on Route 1.

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    #25
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  6. cavebiker

    cavebiker Old School Adventurer

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    I'm in. Baja Rocks! Good report, keep it going. Have you ditched any of your gear yet?
    #26
  7. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Wow...that's 1000 miles for a tire. ToeKnee is a lucky lad!
    #27
    Cal likes this.
  8. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    So glad I stumbled across your report @Chriswyper!

    Seems you've already had one hell of an adventure and you're still in the thick of it. Seriously crappy luck about the tire, hard to believe a rip back to San Diego is the closest available. There's a BMW tour operator out of Ensenada, likely a couple given how popular riding Baja has become - surprised nothing popped up in any searching? I looked back through my pics from when we stayed in Gonzaga Bay as we ran into a tour operator there, but can't find his contact info (sorry). I'll keep digging, though you might have already found a solution by now.

    Seeing some of your pics brings back phenomenal memories of my first (and only thus far) ride in Baja last year. It's a magical place, especially once you get away from the touristy type spots.

    No clue if you're interested in any recommendations, but if you find yourself back in Bahia de Los Angeles, a great place to stay that's affordable is Raquel & Larry's; now owned/run by Ruth who's an absolute gem of a person. Hard a hard time leaving.

    I agree with your sentiment about San Felipe, felt the same when we spent the night in Gonzaga Bay...too many tourists and not the true Baja feel.

    Looking forward to following along; I think it's amazing that you're doing this with your son and Dad...hope to do something similar with my boys when they're old enough.

    Knobby side down fellas :ricky :thumb
    #28
  9. Cal

    Cal Long timer

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    Was there no vulcanizer in GN? Did he call La Paz? The bald tire would probably make it to La Paz and save you a 1000 mile trip and a border crossing. Others have found tires there.
    Following your report. You will need a new tire after the tire run. lol
    #29
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  10. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Tire was a 65 percenter when they left Claremont Los Angeles. But I heard they had two flats and two failed plugs. Plus it was a road tire. The smart money was on getting new off road tires at the beginning of the trip but the rider decided not to. Wrong decision now. At least it's an ADVenture. I'm sure they are having a great time...there is plenty of cerveza and they ARE Aussies!
    #30
    Cal likes this.
  11. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    Monday morning woke up to heavy rain in San Diego. I had checked the forecast and thought I would miss the worst of it. I was wrong. Dropped into Walmart for some fresh gloves and a few Xmas presents (M&Ms)
    Rocked up at 8 ball tires in San Diego and the staff there were brilliant. They let be do some adjustments to my bike and helped to secure the spare onto my panniers.

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    The rain radar suggested that I would be better heading East to outrun the weather front and then south. What I did not realise was that I would have to cross the San Diego mountains. As the altitude went up to 4000 ft the temperature dropped to 5C. My fingers started to freeze up and my legs were really cold. I came off freeway 80 and joined the old highway 80, stopping at a fantastic little store for coffee. I also bought a roll of cling film ( glad wrap?) and wrapped my legs in a big plastic nappy to help to keep the heat in.

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    The freeway dropped down into the desert near to the border wall at Calexico and the temperature rose slightly. Had a burger in Calexico and a very easy crossing into Mex. The run down to San Felilpe was more pleasant, getting warmer and river as I ride south. Dropped into SF at around 6pm and slept for 12 hours.
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    Attached Files:

    #31
  12. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    By 'eck. That was heroic.
    #32
  13. Lost Cartographer

    Lost Cartographer Been here awhile

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    (This is a little late, but it might help out next time)

    Here's a trick that has worked for me twice when I've gotten really big punctures and the plugs would push out:

    - Dismount the tire
    - Push a couple of plugs into the hole and DON'T withdraw the tool
    - Thread another plug (or two) thru the loop that the main plugs made
    - Use a pair of pliers to pull the plugs back out, the plug(s) that you fed thru the loop will prevent the main plugs from pulling thru

    Don't do this unless you have an air source nearby, as you'll need to re-seat the bead.

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    The hole was so big it pushed out 3 times before I did the above trick. I made it 200+ miles off road and an additional 300+ miles on pavement... then I scrapped the tire.
    #33
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  14. severely

    severely almost a noob

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    Question, if you dismount the tire why not put a patch on the inside of the tire? It's worked before on my GW in Tampico.
    #34
  15. Cal

    Cal Long timer

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    This is the correct way.
    #35
  16. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    Cheers for the tips. Jumping ahead we did indeed patch tire “Puedo vulco mi llanta de moto per favour?” In Guerrero Negro. But the patch was only rubber, and we needed a mental patch to give Tony confidence in his BMW again.

    After my heavy day on Monday I thought it was going to be another big ride to GN so I left SF at 5am. It’s lovely to ride just before dawn, with the road to yourself. Kept the speed to 80 kph because of the livestock danger - but the 1190 stock headlight does an amazing job of lighting both the tarmac and the verges. After 630am the sun rose in a spectacular pink dawn and the road got seriously good. Stopped for quesadillas at Cinque Islas with my mate Antonio (they are pretty good when you are cold).

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    I realised that I was passing the spot where we had the first puncture and it was barely 8am, so I had loads of time to make the RVP. Part of the reason I came down the Sea of Cortez route is that I was sorry that I didn’t get to meet Coco, and I figured I might have time on m heroic tyre run.
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    It’s and easy 6km from the 6th bridge (puente assuade VI) to Coco’s. I was pretty excited, standing on the pegs of the lightened KTM with wet sand flying behind me. There had been rain overnight and there were some big puddles but the grip was awesome.

    Coco was waiting outside and waved me into his compound. The night before I had been to the Supermercado in SF and bought him a box of praline chocolates (diabetes be damned right?)

    Coco was polite, charming and every bit the character I had heard about. He showed me his books, and made me sign the last page of number 11 and the first of #12. His kitten climbed over me whilst Coco told me stories and tall tales, whilst his friend Dan gave me hot coffee. I really wished I could have stayed longer, and maybe camped at his place. Coco knows what a special piece of desert he lives on and is keen to share it with anyone. We took a few more photos, left some stickers and I reluctantly left the way I came. I was happy to see another 4WD with a family inside coming up the track to give him some more company (and fresh knickers) for Xmas eve.

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    Made it to Guerrero Negro at 12pm - nearly took out a dog at 160 kph (me, not him) but the rest of the journey was easy.

    Good to see Tony, Ben and grandpa and they were happy to see me alive and well.

    We were booked into an eco lodge at San Ignacio for Christmas so we had some lunch and had an easy 80km ride down there.

    Attached Files:

    #36
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  17. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    We booked into San Ignacio Hotel la Huerta for 2 nights, to spend Christmas in one place and to give us a break from riding.
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    The hotel is wonderful - it was $50 per night and had a beautiful garden, lots of friendly dogs and a supermarket that was closer to the hacienda than our rooms, selling cold beer and nacho chips. 3F5A5FCD-9E03-41B8-A46A-8E813B01DB28.jpeg

    In the morning we took a walk into the charming square and had a good look at the church. Tony very kindly lent Ben his F650 so that grandpa, Ben and I could ride out to the lake.

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    As happens every time Ben borrows a bike the top box fell off (my top box!) but no damage done. Will have to teach To. The toolmaker how to tighten bolts I fear.

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    It and easy 50 km of tarmac and 5km of dirt, sand and greasy mud that keeps you guessing. It was too early for the whales (next month) so we turned around and rode back. Had a fine Xmas dinner in La Huerta and got a good nights sleep.

    Attached Files:

    #37
  18. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    Boxing Day we rode down to Santa Rosalía. Tony and me both work for the same company who specialise in minerals processing equipment, so it was really interesting to wander around the museum, and the abandoned copper smelter isn’t he town centre. Even better some of the decades old gear was made by our own company.

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    The museum is well preserved but doesn’t have many exhibits, and it’s mostly Spanish. Great views over the town and man made harbour. The industrial heritage is really evident here.
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    #38
  19. Chriswyper

    Chriswyper Adventurer

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    We swung into Mulegé and were delighted to find the Hotel Hacienda. We could ride into the courtyard and have the bikes outside our rooms.
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    We loved Mulegé, with the narrow streets and old charm. The museum was closed so we just walked around and toomthe chance to do some laundry. Dinner of fish tacos in El Candil bar. Definitely good food and lots of it.

    The next morning we swung down the coast again stopping to admire the view. At one such stop Tony was asked for some help by a householder. He was building a balcony to his house and wanted to lift these 20 foot long beams onto the roof. Difficult by yourself, but with all of us working made it easy. We chatted to Richard about his house, his life and why he lived here. Riding a motorcycle brings you into contact with people in a different way to any other form of transport. No way would we have met Richard, seen his amazing house or been invited for a beer if we were in a car.

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    Sitrep on my tyres - the front has taken a beating. It’s a very soft Tractionator and I am running 32 psi. It getting chiselled on the leading edge quite badly. Still grips OK but I am looking to put roadies on it next. We aren’t planning any more off-road riding and some hard compound road tyres will see me out the trip.


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    #39
  20. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Thanks for the report. I know the effort and your words and pics are really appreciated. How are Daddies tires?
    #40