Sand – the good, the bad and the ugly

After a good break in Bahia we left the sanctuary of the Princess motel. It was great travel all day thru a range of hills and then back to the coast to a lovely beach camp amidst the cries of coyotes in the night. In the early morning I spotted one slinking along the beach. Luckily they do not come in to visit us at campsites but it is an eerie sound.

The following day was a shorter ride to Rancho Escondido (the hidden Ranch). Arriving for a late lunch we chose to stay there as the winds were picking up and the tracks were getting sandier. Though setup to welcome tourists they are still a functioning ranch with cattle, horses, goats and chooks.

From Rancho Escondido the track got sandier and straighter and with a strong cross wind it was hard work. Alan opted to ride atop a passing pickup loaded with firewood for 20km to the next ranch when the pain in his shoulder got too sore (and he wasn’t getting relief with pain killers) so his morale was low enough to be dragging along the surface of the corrugated deep sand.

After the pass between the 2 ranches the riding was really fast due to a strong tailwind and a mostly firm riding surface. We thought we may only get to a few kms beyond the deserted town of El Arco before the much UNanticipated 10 mile stretch of deep sand that Baja Divide  riders hated or avoided. We couldn’t believe our luck as it had recently been graded so it was a firm surface with a tail wind so was as good as it gets for off piste riding. Woohoo!

We found a good campsite on an old road running parallel and the wind died as it normally does in the evenings. The next morning it was only 25kms into Vizcaíno and breakfast at Hotel del Sol where Bec was staying.

At Ian’s bike shop in Vizcaíno we were able to buy more bike oil and more tyre sealant.   It was also the first town in a while with an ATM but it would only give us cash off our credit cards and it charged us 4 times the fee for cash extraction. It definitely pays to have a couple of different cards here. With most of the day off our bike and being cashed and oiled up, we were ready for the next stage