Our ride was set to begin in Tecate, navigating all the way to Cabo, then returning by a different route to southern California. All told, we would cover 2,500 miles in 10 days. But first was the motorcycle selection, which needed to suit both challenging off-road routes and some very long paved sections. Jimmy chose a Honda CRF250 Rally with new Dunlop D606s carrying heavy-duty tubes. For me, it would be the Royal Enfield Himalayan, which had no performance upgrades, but did have several ergonomic changes: Seat Concepts’ tall seat, handlebars and handguards, and Doubletake mirrors, along with heated grips. Stock tires were the Pirelli MT60s with heavy-duty tubes.
We met our chase vehicle driver, Thomas, in San Diego, and were off to Tecate for the border crossing in temperatures barely above freezing. The crossing was quick and painless, though we did have to ask for directions in getting our visitor forms.
Each day we had three types of tracks to choose from, but we’ve never been able to ignore the more challenging “red” options. Thomas would stick to the green route, paved and civilized so he could arrive hours ahead of us on most days, book our rooms and haul in our gear from the van—talk about first-class service.
We picked up our first day’s track just south of Tecate, turning onto the Compadre Trail, a winding, dirt path through rural Mexico. It was one of the most amazing we’ve traveled, taking us through ranches, hills, villages and arroyos, and making it quickly obvious that Baja’s fauna require appropriate levels of caution.
Off-road challenges were plenty, with lots of sand, but not overly difficult. Some rocky sections required speed checks, and surprises lurked around blind corners with obstacles including local rancheros in farm trucks. Midway through, I could tell Jimmy was finding my pace a tad slow, so I encouraged him to open up and stop every 10 miles or so to wait on me. The Himalayan, though capable both on and offroad, does reach its limits rather quickly when the pace increases. It much prefers a sedate approach to riding, a mule as opposed to a horse. That said, I would not have wanted to ride the more difficult terrain on a larger adventure bike, as it was terrific fun on the smaller, lighter machine.
Shortly after one of our catch-up stops, we approached an option on the tracks: A turn to the right led to Ensenada and an easier route to the hotel. The red option led to a fantastic section of the Baja 1000 route that wound its way through mountain passes with dizzying edges and incredible scenery. Underway, Jimmy had a full head of steam and didn’t notice the transition from red to blue on his GPS. I tried to catch him, knowing he’d be disappointed to miss the Baja 1000 section. There was a lunch stop marked in the guide eight miles from the intersection. I rode there but he was nowhere to be found. Well, what the hell, it was lunch time and if he figured out he was on the wrong path, he’d have to ride back that way to get back on the red track.
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DESERT ADVENTURE BIKE TRAINING
The Southwest desert is arguably one of the most uniquely scenic areas of the United States. Its vast majesty, laced with a network of roads of every kind, encompasses six states. These backcountry byways can take us to some amazingly beautiful and desolate destinations. The catch? They are mostly unpaved and many are technical, sandy, rutted, off-camber desert trails with stream crossings and frequently changing slopes. Wind and rain ensure that no two days will see the exact same conditions.
PEACE, LOVE & NAMASTE
A Venture to the Top of the World
WANNABE COWBOYS RIDE THE CONTINENTAL DIVIDE
It was our first visit to the U.S. While indulging in stale airline snacks in cattle class on our way to Texas from South Africa, we had a good laugh about all the contradicting and varied opinions of the U.S. we’d heard.
2021 DUCATI MULTISTRADA V4
In many ways, the Ducati Multistrada set the bar for sport touring motorcycles when the first model rolled out of the factory in 2003. And while either you loved the ’80s sci-fi aesthetic or hated it, it was a game changer.
LOST IN BAJA(Sort of)
Passing Rosarito Beach on Highw ay 1 is the moment stress melts away. The headache of crowded southern California interstates, the border crossing, and the packed streets of Tijuana (with Google navigating, of course) disappear when you finally see Baja’s western shore for the first time.
GET ME TO GONDAR!
JOURNEY THROUGH ETHIOPIA
TRIUMPH TIGER 900 RALLY PRO
Long-Term Bike Review
When the Road Ends Lost in the Pacific
A film by Dylan Wickrama Distribution and production: Ride2Explore Available from: Journeyman.tv/film/7775 | iTunes | Amazon Video | Video on Demand Fees: Rent – $5 | Buy – $8.50
THE YOUNGEST TO TRAVEL AROUND THE WORLD? JACK GROVES
In the age of electronics, hyper-communications, and convenience, it’s untrue that the world’s youth have lost the taste for adventure. There will always be an element within the human spirit that demands and grows from new life experiences—an instinct as old as Mankind. And you don’t have to look far to find it.
Alpinestars Tech 7 Enduro Drystar
Motocross boots have evolved considerably over the last 20 years, but that hasn’t been the case in the ADV segment, and we often have to sacrifice proper protection for dry feet. Meet the new Alpinestars Tech 7 Drystar enduro boot. We’ve been waiting for a boot like this for quite some time and, to this day, it still boggles my mind that it took so long.
A LIFE AT SEA
HELEN FRETTER TALKS TO THE DOYEN OF BLUEWATER CRUISING TO FIND OUT WHY, AFTER 46 YEARS OF SAILING, HE’S NO LONGER GOING TO SEA
Resilient veteran Verrett to miss rest of season
Will Mostert run for 49ers again?
Raheem Mostert was primed this year to be the centerpiece of one of the NFL’s most dynamic offenses, featured as the lead performer in San Francisco’s grinding rushing attack while making his climb among the league’s top running backs.
WE'RE WITH HER Jane Levy
On the Emmy-winning Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist she plays a computer programmer with special powers. In real life she’s mastered insomnia and RV maintenance.
flashback to 2016 Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend: Naomi (then Robin Riker, r.) dropped in on es tranged daughter Hayden (Rebecca Budig), in no small part because she was seeking a valuable diamond in Hayden’s possession.
INQUIRER GEORGE THOROGOOD
LONESOME GEORGE TALKS ROOTS, HIS FIRST GUITAR AND THE WONDERS OF THE ES-125
5 HOME REMODELING TRENDS TO WATCH FOR IN 2021
After a year of spending more time at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many homeowners are looking for ways to make their homes fit their new realities.
JIMMY'S JAM: HE PLUMPS UP AS RATINGS THIN - SOURCES
STRESSED “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon has been packing on the pounds as his talk show continues to battle with Stephen Colbert’s “Late Show” and “Jimmy Kimmel Live” in the late-night ratings, according to sources!
Notes for new breeders
Experienced breeders will tell you that there are a number of things they wish someone had told them before they had their first litter. This article will share a few of those items with you in the hope that it will encourage you to read more and ask more questions.
HOT ON THE HEELS OF HIS AMAZING NEW BOOK, JIMMY PAGE DISCUSSES HIS EVOLUTION AS A GUITARIST, HIS LEGENDARY GEAR, THE CREATIVE PROCESS THAT WENT INTO THE HOLY TRINITY OF LED ZEPPELIN SONGS — “WHOLE LOTTA LOVE,” “KASHMIR” AND “STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN” — AND THE TIME HE PLAYED AT “FULL ACCELERATION” WITH THE ROLLING STONES