Showing posts from October, 2019

Day 59

There was another heavy dew in the morning, and again, just before getting all my stuff packed, I heard cowbells. Oh boy... not again. It had been a scramble to find a way into the cacti and low trees yesterday, especially with all the sand, so it took me a minute to retrace my tire tracks back to the road. I got back to the loosely tied fence and undid it to get out, trying to remember how it was tied yesterday, but the cows wouldn't know the difference.
It was 77 km to La Paz according to the highway, but I figured it would be a little more since breaking into a major city always involves some extra effort on a bike. I didn't expect to see much of anything between here and theres except open road.

I had gone about 30km when the morning cloud cover was wearing off and I was looking for an easy place to lean my bike and sit in the shade. I came upon an empty-looking rancho thinking it might work, when I saw them coming: 3 dogs, two black, one brown, all head to the ground sp…

Day 58

There was dew in the morning. It shouldn't have been a surprise with all this grass around and the valley so well irrigated, but I haven't had it for weeks, so it was.

I was loading my things and the sun was beginning to pierce the leaves of mesquite above me when I heard a cowbell. I stopped. It wasn't far and I listened again. It could be just a wandering cow but a cowboy could be nearby. I listened again and heard a horse neigh. I thought of how I might explain myself in Spanish, but it quickly became clear I'd be better of just getting out of there. Everything I own is a bright color,  so I stayed low as I finished the rig and then pushed it out through the brush in the opposite direction of the noise. I got to the road and hopped on, not looking back and skidded here and there on the loose sand of the tire tracks. See ya.

Back on the highway I realized I hadn't stretched, so I pulled over a kilometer later and made got over looking like a bafoon to the few pa…

Day 57

The sun rose late in the canyon. Cool air had settled in the bottom and I made ready with cold hands. I was slipping through the hole in barbed wire fencing when the sun breached the rim. 
The road climbed steadily along the canyon wall while the canyon itself broadened, until the road reached the rim where both road and rim began to descend slowly into the plain. It was quiet there, and when I stopped to stand still for a moment and the wind on my face and past my ears stopped, all was still.

Soon I was in the valley and the road was very straight. I took a break only when it began to warn up, and I spied a shady bunch of bushes.

By mid morning I had made it to Ciudad Insurgentes, and my first priority was water. I had made it through the night and morning, but I was fown to 2 liters. I rode the strip along the main highway, which seemed to be the defining characteristic of the town until I found a water station with excellent hand- painted exterior.

I filled up every vessel I ha…

Day 56

I awoke with a gasp from an uncomfortable dream. Roosters were crowing outside and it was still dark. I set about getting ready a little shaken but determined. 
Lluc would stay another day here. He wasn't clearly sick, he hadn't passed a movement in 2 days. There was coffee made and I hoped that would do it. Otherwise, I entrusted Abel, the caretaker of the hostel to look after him.

When I was ready, we had another hug, a bit more sincere this time. "See you in La Paz." Abel waved adiós after me from the iron gate as I rode down the cobblestones.

I rode out of town on a nice stretch of highway with real shoulder for a stretch before returning to the usual 2 lane, no shoulder to speak of as I got out of town. I would leave the area again here for 4 days and it must have known, because it gave me a real show. The Isle de Carmen and all of the Loreto bay some brilliantly, fading out into turquoise infinity, almost perpendicular to the vehicle ccliffs of the Sierra de…

Day 55

When I got in bed I thought perhaps I'd forgotten how to sleep in a bed-- my limbs felt uncontained and I sprawled in ever more absurd positions... but I got over it. I suppose I resembled a skant tostada on this hard mattress than my usual burrito of a sleeping bag.

I slept in but couldn't stay in much past 8 on our schedule. I walked to the market and came back with oatmeal and bananas. The hostel had a kitchen and it was nice to use real pots and a stove. Lluc rose and we ate. He was better but still very much taking it easy.

We took some time to talk about our options. It was casual and I told him I wanted to keep riding and I thought I could make it to La Paz in four days, if he wanted to meet me there before the last leg to Cabo. There was still a few days ride from there to 'land's end' in Cabo. It seemed like a good option though it wasn't a resounding YES. Neither of us were sure what he would do with himself that week, but the three prospects of havi…

Day 54

The bay settled into an ethereal calm during the night. The waves ceased lapping on the stones and shells of the shore, and in the silence, the energy in the glow of the coming sun was a near audible hum. We sat on the water's edge, so still in the cauldron of desert mountains, it seemed like an alpine lake. The water rippled, alternating blue/black and a luscious orange. Lluc got up, stripped down and waded in. "I'm going to my people... tell my story," he teased.

When the sun did come we rolled back up to the carretera and began our ride, down around the bottom of the bay and up over the hills on route to Loreto. The first climbs made no attempt at easing us into our first 60 mile day in a while. They were tough and Lluc began to lag behind me. I waiting for him at the top of each rise, not wanting to be too attentive, but wanting to keep him in sight. His back was hurting bad and after a few more stops he couldn't go any further. No point in trying. He was be…

Day 53

I heard Pancho and his boys around 4, getting ready for another day of fishing. We were slower to rise. We aimed for a shorter day today, riding along the Bahía Concepción to put us in a good place to shoot for Loreto rhe next day. Besides, we had heard such good things about the bay, it seemed worth a day.
Over oatmeal with ripe plantains, a hummingbird with a purple face flew directly up to mine and stared into my eyes for a moment. And a good morning to you too, little fellow.

Lluc had thought of staying in Mulegé for a while, and letting me ride on alone, but a short day along the bay souded appetizing, so we rode together on an unsaid agreement that we would play it day by day.

We rode back through town and over the river. There were a few steep hills that brought us around the cliffs between the hills and the water. We only rode for a few minutes before the first sweeping panorama of the bay came into view. The stil shaded mountains cradled the crystal blue ocean like wrinkled …