8/14/05 Mexican Motorcycle Diary
Just made it up from San Felipe through some very odd scenery including what appeared to be an ocean of flat salt for as far as the eye could see. Thought about riding it, but when I checked it first my boot sank through the salt crust and down about a foot into mud before I retrieved it.
The border at Mexicali was a breeze. Really diggin this idea of lane-splitting. Honestly, I didn't know what "lane splitting" was, but that's basically what I've been doing in Mexico for the last 4 weeks in Mexico to combat taxi drivers. I lane slit past about 50 cars all the way to the front of the line. The guy just said, "what's in the bags? Just clothes and stuff?" I said, "Yeah, just clothes and stuff." He then just looked at my Texas tag and said "Welcome to the U.S.". I asked, "Is that it? Don't you need to see my passport or anything? Or, don't I need to pass a Mexican check points or something?" He said no, and then asked where I was going. I told him Vegas and he asked how I was getting there. I told him just over to Interstate 8, then Hwy 95 all the way up to Vegas. He told me, "You'll save a little time if you just take 111 up to 78, then over to 95.
That was it. No search or anything. Not even a stamp. There was a U.S. border checkpoint just before going into the Imperial Dunes area, but no one was there. Is this the increased border control I've been hearing so much about? Seems like anyone with a U.S. tag and the right accent could easily pass right into the U.S. with no questions asked at all. Not even a search.
After several weeks in Mexico, I arrived in Vegas only to get robbed. It all happened so fast. I barely saw it coming, but I did notice the "bandit" only had one arm. Not to bad though. I've only lost $140 so far... then dropped a nickel in a slot machine at the Belagio and won $138.75 with one pull!
Internet access on the strip is VERY pricey $5 for 20mins. But, now I'm using the internet at the LV public library for free.
I will look for a U.S. roadmap at Borders after I leave here to find a nice route back to Texas. I need to do it in about 6 days tops since my wife informed me our tickets to see Green Day in San Antonio are on the 21st and not on the 28th like I thought. Still, I should have ample time to make a few stops along the way as long as they aren't too far off course.
I will try and type up a full report with photos that includes from where I left off in Puerto Vallarta, to Mazatlan, the ferry to La Paz, down the Baja to Todos Santos, down and around the Cabos, back up through La Paz to Constitucion, across toward Melage area, up to Rosarita, West to Guererro Nego via San Ignacio, back North East to Bahia Los Angeles, up to Chapala and up the East coast via about 100 miles of Baja 1000 route that passes by Cocos Corner and up to San Felipe, then up to Mexicali with a detour due to hiway flooding to Lake Havasu, a night sleeping in an RV lot across from the AVI Indian casino in BullHead, then arriving in Vegas yesterday.
More later, if you think of any must-see spots from Vegas to Austin, Texas let me know. I'm not sure what route I'm taking, but the most direct seems to be I10 all the way into Texas. A trucker told me I40 was a nicer ride through. Will decide after I pick up a map.
Bike is still running fabulous. My rear tire is nearly bald, but I'm guessing I might have another 1500 miles left on it max before I get to the layer before tube. I might stop somewhere along the way and just get a new tire, but I'd prefer to wait until I get back so I can start fresh and take my time researching which brand to get. I'm not too wild about this GP110s performance on wet pavement, but that might just be the same story with ANY dual-sport tire. Still, I think my stock Dunlop felt better on wet pavement than this IRC. The IRC front doesn't seem to through as many rocks up at my motor or my shins as the Dunlop did, and both the front and rear IRCs do great off-road.. it's just the pavement that I'm not completely satisfied with them.
(to be continued in part 8/17/05 Mexican Motorcycle Diary)