Rip to Cabras

I know, I know…daylight savings, winter, darkness, holiday jingles and jiggles, Wedge is now a reef break, months ’till you get to the North Shore…

Let me take you back–if only for a few minutes.  Rip to Cabras 2015.

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Horsepower Weekend (Pt. 4): Off-road Hippies

Horsepower Weekend (Pt. 4): Off-road Hippies

Why hippie?  I don’t know, it just seems to fit.  A sub-culture from the 60s and 70s that loved being in the desert, tweaking machines to go faster, and always on the lookout for a pristine place to enjoy nature with friends and family.  Hippie.

The collection at the Ranch and at pre-race check-in for the NORA Mexican 1000 did not disappoint.  Vintage machines bristling with trickness and horsepower, and good old fashion know-how.  Events like this are the reason we keep a Bultaco in the back of the garage waiting to be restored.  Because some day, we’re going to race that damn event and enjoy every minute of it.  I spent a good number of hours on Saturday night getting Bruce Manx’s buggy race ready (light tabs and wiring were still being welded on at 2:00 a.m.), but I never heard one guy complaining — it was all jokes, laughter, and, when it was done and the lights were on, a few minutes to enjoy a cold beer before going racing the next day.

Hippies…all of ’em.

One of the original off-road hippies and the reason we were in Baja.

One of the original off-road hippies and the reason we were in Baja.

 

 

 

Baja Weekender

Sand Washes and Sandwiches

If there are better days than spending it with your son, on a dirtbike or at the beach, let me know, because I haven’t ever found one.  Daniel, my youngest hero, has taught me that a well timed ‘No’ is more powerful than 10 ‘Yeses’ (e.g., Me: “Are you sure you don’t want a snack?  You did a heck of a ride out here.”  Daniel: “No, I don’t want to get anything too expensive.”).  Well played my man [scene: Dad going for the $20 in his wallet].

Number Uno

The Teaser

Just got into San Ignacio (redux) and am looking to run to Guerrero Negro tomorrow.  First, let me just say that Mulege was nuts.  In 24 hours I was party to almost getting eaten by a whale, a dinner party replete with artists and singers of the highest caliber, new friends that could party like tournament trained professionals, crashed cars (two), and all followed by a wonderful town party that kept the magic going through late last night.  It took some effort, but I had to throw myself out of the mix this morning and head for San Ignacio.  A ton of bikers in SI with expectations of 20 or more RVs coming into town tomorrow.  Glad to be on the move. 

Visited the Tres Virgines this afternoon (a beautiful volcano) and spend much of the time in the shade of a cactus tree having a sandwich.  Perfect.  Pushing for Guerrero tomorrow, but looking at the ride into San Franciscito and up through Bay of Los Angeles.  I will try and work out the details on fuel tonight.

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I Could Have Been Doing Laundry Today

But, instead I almost got swallowed by a whale. No shit. La Boca de La Muerta.

So, E. sends me a message and let’s me know that I need to go slower and that that I need to look harder for the kinds of things that constitute Baja magic. Heeding her advice, I met two interesting folks last night, one of whom turned out to be a fisherman with a gift for poetry (“Beto” – oh, no, not another ‘Bob’). He invited me out fishing with one of his local friends (Max) and I decided to take the next day off to do absolutely nothing. Nothing in this case meant getting a ride on the backs of two 40-50 ft. whales in a 17 foot boat. I can assure you that humility is the largest mammal in the world pushing you backward with its lip. The video still doesn’t do the moment justice, but it comes damn close.

Oh, maybe the best part of this story is that just moments before I shot this video, Max turned to Beto and me, and said, “Have I ever told you that my real name [no joke] is Jonah?” WTF? Are you kidding me…?

Puertocitos, Gonzaga, “Oh, Hell It’s Dark”

Reality check; mile 55: the fully loaded bike (including giant bag of gas) was WAY heavier than I expected. The bike wallowed side to side in the sand, picking up speed and rhythm until the front wheel would literally leave the ground. The road to Gonzaga was m-i-s-e-r-a-b-l-e, but I kept thinking it was just my PTA, so I pushed on. Something needed to be done, however, which is when I discovered that a bike gremlin ‘somehow’ put 35 psi. of air into my front tire. I aired down, gassed in Gonzaga, and kept pushing forward. The breakfast in San Felipe had burned valuable daylight and it would catch up to me at 3:30, which was the time I hit the pavement at Chapala. Not good.

Realizing there was NO way I was going to make Guerrero Negro by dusk, I pulled off the road, tucked behind a little mesa, and prepared to camp out for the night. Having made the decision, I was stoked. 20 minutes of daylight remaining, Steely Dan on the iPod speaker, and a shot of Dewars put me in a great mood. So here it was, Day 1, and already I was camped in the moon shadow of a Boodjum tree (sp?) under an almost full moon. 190 miles of riding made for a perfect pillow.