Moto Adventures

Friday, February 25, 2011

Back to Baja

Boy how time flies, I can't believe it has been 2 weeks since my last entry. After leaving Puerto Vallarta we continued on our way north for about 2 hours to Rincon Gyobitos where we had stayed on or way down the Mainland liked it and decided to come back for a few days on our return trip. The weather however in getting cooler as we go north, with fog in the mornings and a cold dampness in the air that has left all our clothes damp in our room. We decided to only spend 3 days at Rincon instead of our original week we had planned. We didn't leave before we were invited to the the owner of the hotel, Raul, birthday party. Again a great time was had by all, consuming too much food and beverages. Raul and his family were very gracious hosts.
From Rincon we are off the Mazatlan, to visit friends who are spending the winter there and to catch the ferry back to the Baja. We met John and Janet on the Baja several years ago but now they are making the journey to Mazatlan instead and we can see why. The stay at a beautiful park right on the water with everything they need and what they don't have now they will have soon as they build their own palapa complete with an outside kitchen. We spent a little time with them and went for a great lunch of Birra(roasted goat) and consomme with all the trimmings then it was off to the ferry for our trip back to Baja.
The great big ferry we took to the Mainland in January is no longer in service so unfortunately we had to take a cargo ferry on the return voyage. However, lucky for us there are 7 cabins and we happened to get the last one! The rest of the passengers had to spent the night sleeping on the deck or on chairs in the cafeteria, some didn't even have blankets and did I mention that it is getting cool as we go north and especially at night. We felt bad for the rest but....
We met the captain and voiced our opinion on the sleeping arrangements but...
we also met the chief chef and he and his staff gave us a tour of the kitchen on board. Later we found it is good to know people in high places as we got extra portions at dinner. After a good night sleep on relatively calm waters, morning found us in La Paz rested and ready to return to our truck, camper and STUFF parked a Gene and Elaine's place in El Centenario.
Unfortunately Gene was not able to visit Baja this year due to health reasons but Elaine and Ralph were home and happy to see us on our return. Life in La Paz never changes too much, Mountain biking Mon, Wed, Fri., visiting, and off course eating too much. Mountain biking being our main attraction, we went out with our usual group of friends and even were able to attend a race they were in, with Katt coming in 3rd and Mike second-great job guys! Eating being another of our main interests along with the fact that Elaine is here and loves to bake...need I say more except banana creme pie, strawberry cheesecake, and strawberry shortcake! Dinner with friends topped the list this stay and one dinner party (for 17 of us) Ralph, myself and Lynn made over 100 perogies and about 60 cabbage rolls, lots of work but worth it. We can't take all this eating for too much longer.
One week in La Paz and it is time to move north to Juncilito beach, before our shorts and bathing suits no longer fit us.
The town of Rincon Gyobitos hosts a show every Friday night featuring some sort of national dance group, singers etc. We were privy to a fantastic folk dance group that impressed us beyond words!
You know how we love tequila, we tasted some tequila made at the ranch of the owner of our hotel in Rincon.
Every year on Feb. 14th Raul celebrates his birthday by throwing a party and inviting all the people who are staying at his hotel. This year we were lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time and got an invite to the party and enjoyed a dinner of carne asada, beans, salads and cake that was out of this world(not to mention some of his families tequila).

Back in Mazatlan we met up with John and Janet Smith(friends from recent trips to the Baja), they showed us around their camp, which was absolutely beautiful, and then took us to lunch before we left on the boat heading back to the Baja.

It's a long and dusty, or should I say sandy, trail into the the Pacific Ocean off the highway just north of La Paz.

The perfect bike to take on those long sandy roads is the KTM 950, Ken didn't have a problem making good time out to the water and back again.

Nothing like a walk along the water to relax and clear the mind! And not a soul in sight!

Not a soul or another footprint in sight.

Back in La Paz Ralph and I got a little cooking lesson on perogies and cabbage rolls. Lynn taught us her little cooking secrets and we helped her eat the food when we finished.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Having been at the beach for a week we decided it was time to head for the hills and visit Colima and see the Colima volcano. The day we rode by here on our last trip there was a earthquake and we didn't stop so this time we thought the trip was a must. Although we were not really impressed with the city of Colima the surrounding countryside was beautiful and roads fun to ride on the motorcycle. The volcano didn't disappoint us, letting off a little steam every 1 1/2 hours or so, just in time for a good look and a few pictures.
After the short stay in Colima city it was back and the back and heading north. Along the road Ken caught a glimpses of a tarantula walking down the road, this made him very happy because it was the first and only one we have seen this trip. The spider was big and hairy, a real beauty!
On to Puerto Vallarta to meet Kelly(from SOF) and his wife Julie(who I walked with in the Breast Cancer walk last year). Meeting up with them we did a few more tourist attractions, renting a car and driving back up to San Sebastion(Ken and I had been through on our way down and really liked it), and walking around downtown P.V. and having diner on the Malecon where a whale and her calf put on great show, as well traditional dancers did a pole dance and impressed us all with their talent to climb up the the poles and swing down on ropes tied to their feet.
It was great to spend a few days with Kelly and Julie, their place at the Holiday Inn on the 16th floor had a fantastic view of the bay and P.V. no wonder they come here for a couple months in a year.
We drove as close as we could to the volcano.
Colima volcano.

Ken's always glad to find a new friend!

Vacation pictures just wouldn't be complete without a few floral shots.

Kelly, Julie, Ken and I wandered around San Sebastion and checked out the square and shops.

Amazing sand sculptures on the Malecon in Puerto Vallarta.

Traditional Mexician pole dancers preform several times everyday on the Malecon.

Quite the performance...

from the top all the way to the bottom.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Let's hit the beach

It only seems right that the road out of the interior and down to the beach should be yet again one of the twistiest and most scenic roads, average speed at the end of the day...48 km/hour and that is taking into account that the first couple of hours were spent zipping along at 120 km/hour. As we descended the speed decreased and the temperature increased, we came down out the mountains shedding clothes and looking for water.
Water we did find! Miles and miles of beach that was calling Ken to try out the body surfing waves. First stop...Zipolete, a beach we had visited on our last trip, we still found it lost in the 60's with lots of Europeans enjoying the surf and sun "au natural". Along with the tourists come their restaurants and seeing as most of them were Italian pizza and pasta where bountiful and amazing. As much as we love Mexican food a change was appreciated. The room prices were somewhere around the same as you would pay in the 60's as well, ours was the cheapest rate yet coming in at 150 pesos/night or about $12.50( and it was very livable, maybe no a/c or hot water but on the beach there is usually a nice breeze at night and the weather is so humid this far south that cool water is more than welcome). We enjoyed kicking back for a week reading and body surfing but then found ourselves looking for more white sand, clothes clad Mexican tourists and a taco. All these we found in a brief stop in Puerto Escondito and then in Acapulco. We didn't stop for any length of time until we arrived in Zihuatanejo found the cutest little boutique hotel for less than we thought possible in this area thanks to Ken's great negotiating skills. (Once again I thought of Brenda as we lounged around the pool.) Casa Celeste Hotel, a most stay in downtown Zihuatanejo and right across the street from a little bar owned by a guy that used to bar tend at The Duport Pub in Westbank! And if the world isn't small enough as we were walking around the Zocalo one night we came upon friends of Kens from Peachland Tom and Susan Nichols, Donna Sweet, and Bruce Britten. We spent a nice evening over a dinner of lobster salad and coconut shrimp and laughed a lot about old times and weren't they crazy!
Uh yes, yet again it was time to hit the saddle and head north to Melaque and Brian and Sandi waiting for us in their bungalow they had rented for the month of February. The ride from Zihuatanejo to Melaque was a butt buster, 505 km, but what magnificent coastline. Actually the whole coast north of Acapulco through to Manzanillo and Melaque was amazing, miles of coconut groves, mango groves, and continuous bays of white sand edged with rocky cliffs. We just don't get tired of it! So the last week has been spent here in Melaque taking in all the local sites, with Brian and Sandi as our guides, a little beach time but a lot of eating and drinking like the thousands if other tourists here from Canada (it seems every other person is from B.C. and half of those from the Okanagan). Ken and Brian took in the Super Bowl yesterday, today Ken's washing up the bike and tomorrow once again we head out for the mountains and the city of Colima and hopefully a ride to and as far up the volcano as we can go. Apparently, it is somewhat active right now and it had snow last week, so we will see how far we can get!
Here's our ride with a great view of the mountains in the back, the last time we will see them for a while. One month on the road in mainland Mexico and we have put on 5000 kms, not many for us.

When Ken thinks I'm not looking he reaches for my lunch, a wild mushroom and choriso tyuluda.

6:26 a.m. on Zipolite beach!
Bet you thought I wouldn't see that again!

The women's work in this area is removing the coconut meat from the shell. Hard work using elbow grease and a tool that looks similar to a crowbar.

Mangoes are not quite in season yet, they should be ready in about 6-8 weeks. They are actually pretty good eaten green with a little lime and chili sauce on them.

Miles and miles of beach and not a soul on it.

Soaking up a little sun and enjoying the life in Zihuatanejo.

Did I mention the miles and miles of beach?

Not much can beat a mango margarita on a hot afternoon. Brian and Sandi join us for a happy hour in Melaque, down at the beach.

Doing a little sightseeing in the little town of La Manzanilla you really have to be careful where you go. These fences are there to keep the crocs where they belong but they have been known to stray.

Some ruggedness adds to the beauty of the Mexican shoreline.

Now isn't he a beauty, not quite as good looking as the Thai boys we saw last year but still a head turner.