6/17/13

Operation Wrong Way 2013

Last month was the fifth El Diablo Run and you can check out the story, pics and videos on ChopCult to get the scoop if you missed it. When everyone was ready to head north on the last day, me, McGoo and a handful of friends hit the road south instead. We called it "Operation Wrong Way" and the goal was simple: make it to the tip and back. So, we rode down to the bottom, stopped in Cabo for some tacos and headed home. We tried to lay around a bit and not just hammer down the whole time and it mostly worked. We did a little surfing, a little snorkeling and kayaking, a bit of bike tinkering, but mostly we rode in the day and drank at night. Not bad work if you can get it. I won't bore you with a daily blow-by-blow account of the trip, but I will share some pics and captions. Huge thanks to the Biltwell team back home for keeping things running so we could dick off in Baja for two weeks.

We deviated from the route only on the last couple days. Since we had already seen it on the way down, we hauled ass and added an afternoon and morning of surfing at Cuatros Casas and still made it home a day early.


Camping night one in Catavina. We broke the trip up with a few hotels but did a fair amount of camping along the way.

Shandra the stow-away was a good sport traveling with jackasses like us.

Black Rob learned a bit about motorcycle maintenance and his trusty, crusty CB made it almost the whole way.

S&S Panhead and Poler tent. Neither let me down.

Kyle from Lowbrow Customs crashed in the curves east of Julian a few years back. I know some of the long days and twisty Mexican highways weirded him out, but he stuck with it on his Gasbox colab rigid sporty. When he got back to SoCal, he hopped in their team's box van and drove back to Ohio. Rod Dawg shit right there.

Whatchoo looking at, Gringo?

JD Sansaver of Flying Monkey Fabrication. His trusty shovel was a crowd pleaser everywhere we went. Infinitely capable and always ready for adventure, you couldn't ask for a better guy to ride with.

Real outlaws probably stop and drink and fight. Us? We know all the shady ice cream spots.

JD's bike at the mission in San Ignacio. We learned more about this town on this trip.
If you go there, try a new place called "Tootsie's". It's worth it, trust me.

Team Canada went as far as they had the time to go, which was San Ignacio. Lee wins MVP for being the most polite guy at the firepit who could gladly snap your neck if he felt like it. Tanks!

Three-Star earned it on this trip! Dude's trunks and hoodie got jammed in his sprocket on a fast section of road with no shoulder. Think fast, young man!

Team Captain for the north, the venerable and articulate, not to mention handsome: Canada Shawn.
Always a pleasure, and I sincerely mean that!

San Ignacio is where baja gets some shade and starts to get interesting.

2700 miles and I shot a lot of selfies. Some on purpose, quite a few on accident.

Jesus loves Mexican highway designers because they build us some fun racetracks, I mean roads!
Note the lack of barriers. Uh-huh, you are on your own if you run out of talent on this stretch.

Over the shoulder.

There are two ways into my friend Ron's place in Mulege; the kinda smooth way and the totally not smooth at all and much longer way. We took the latter. You are welcome!

Retired off-road racer Ron Brant built a great shop under his house to store his baja bug and boat.
This night it was chopper sanctuary. Thanks Ron!

Kyle's sporty sunbathing at a cove called Santispac. We hired a panga boat and driver who taught us to catch scallops, made fresh ceviche and wrestled an octopus. No shit. Nick and I paddled kayaks back from our fishing spot and it felt good to get some exercise after taking a pounding on bikes and drinking way too much nearly every night.

Yep, we brought the team van. Glad we did too. Matt Frick hauled extra gear, five surfboards, snokel junk, spare tires and extra fuel. We needed all of the above. Three times bikes went on the trailer until we got to the nights final spot where we could work on 'em. Only Rob's stayed on for the last two days with a nagged-out sprocket that couldn't be fixed. Matt is working on putting together some off-road tours in Baja, you can check that out here: Camp 4Lo

Million dollar view. I think it cost us $8.00 US for each palapa. We splurged and got two.

Santispac is between Mulege and Loreto and is probably the most obvious of the coves. There are more secluded ones that are even better...

Camp Life.

Early morning and on the road before it got too hot. Sea of Cortez around Burro I think.

Our only stop in Cabo was for tacos. McGoo stayed one night here while we went up and secured a camp spot on the beach in Pescadero. Something about a shady solo mission? I don't ask anymore. That's Nick's Buell.

Dirt roads and improbable bikes. Why are we so dumb?

JD rules the washboard with that springer. We both ended up with a few small rocks embedded in our open belts but those things are tough and held up the whole way.

We camped here two nights. I could've stayed for a lot longer.

JD's bike is a true piece of road warrior art.

Fish scales by the sea, anyone?

Gabe from Afterhours sent Frick some cash and instructions to buy the best tequila he could once we passed the tip. Thanks Gabe, that was a hilarious night.

You mean you actually have to work on Hondas?

My burrito hammock. I torched all the paint off the inside of a juice can, lined it with tin foil and made a few warm tacos out of bagged refried beans and some lumps of cheese. Delightful. A strand of safety wire for a chunk of bamboo to pick it out of the fire and it's ready to rock. I could see one of these in cast iron... Poler, you listening?

Kyle shredded a tire one day and we were sure glad to have an extra Avon on the roof rack of the van...

More dirt roads? Yep!

You can tell I was running out of photo ideas. Bike in front of taco shop, bike at beach, bike in epic sunset. We should've brought a real photographer. That gas can worked great the whole time BTW and came in super handy on several occasions.
 
The last night we got to Cuatros in time for a session. Richard treated us with a great dinner and warm beds. 

In conclusion, this one of those bucket-list trips that none of us will forget anytime soon. It's rare to find a group of guys who can ride together day in and day out and not want to kill each other by the end, but I think we pulled it off. Next year? Canada man, I'm sick of the desert, I want some green trees!

-Bill


3 comments :

bigshoulders said...

You guys are an inspiration. Thanks for sharing!

I enjoyed seeing pics on Facebook as it happened, but it was great to read it all in one spot.

Tim Burke said...

Good read and great photos. Looks like an epic trip. Take me next time. - Cincinnati Cafe Racers

Social Direkter said...

So RAD! This has been a dream of mine forever!!!