Day 224 to 237.

February 15th to the 28th, 2008

From San Ignacio to El Pabellon.

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          after /  après >>

Feb. 15th, 2008.

Ricardo, owner of the "Rice and Beans" restaurant and bar, makes a few phone calls. Him and his brother Luis, way up in San Felipe, are looking for a replacement tire for us. We thank them very much for doing that!

Around 6:00pm, Ricardo announces his brother found a used tire that would work for us. It's a little thinner than ours but it's our best option. The price: $100 US including $20 to ship it down here...By bus!

It's a deal! We should get it tomorrow night (Magnana...).

Of course that was'nt taking into account the fact that today is friday...The weekend...

The tire got here right on schedule...Monday afternoon...

The machine used to take tires off the bead on this type of wheels simply does'nt exist in Baja (Or in Mexico...). The guy at the llantera (tire shop) has to do it the old fashion way...

Guess we're still lucky to have a "new" tire and to get it installed the same day!

It's 4:00pm now, definitely not worth packing everything up to ride, maybe an hour to unpack again... We'll leave tomorrow ready and rested.


You remember the date this Adventure began? The 7-7-7.

Well, after a little over 7 months, we have now ridden 7,777 miles.

Too bad these machines don't spit quarters when you hit 7777...


Feb. 19th, 2008.

San Ignacio is really an oasis in the middle of the desert. As soon as we leave town, we ride through a forest of palm trees!


The San Ignacio river. Awesome!


After riding about 30 miles of particularily tough trails, we end up on a much better "road". Looks kinda-lost-in-the-middle-of-nowhere, right? Gotta trust those quads.



     Polaris Industries - Canada                            Polaris Industries - USA



As we can see here, we had the older tire repaired (installed a hot, vulcanised, patch inside) and we'll carry it on the trailer, as a spare, if needed.

One little detail we learned: Tire plugs are all but unexisting in Mexico! Here they still use patches inside the tires. That means, to fix a flat, you have to take the tire off the bead... Something we are definietly not equipped to do on the trail...Lets hope all those cacti don't puncture our old and worn tires, since we have no tire plugs left... Fortunately, we added a bottle of Slime to each tire before we got into Mexico. Slime automatically fixes small punctures but, it has it's limits...


...The better part of "the road" sure did'nt last long...




Ouch !!!

Not to forget! We are in cactus land!

Those ones did'nt seem to get through...


...Good night!...


Feb. 20th, 2008.

One of the tallest Cardon cacti we've seen! Gigantic!



Lunch break in front of a very, very abandoned house...
After lunch break, potty break...Click here to enlarge!

We were warned: The weather is always bad in Guerrero Negro. Cold and often gray. But this is unbelievable! It's windy, it's cold, we're freezing!


February 20th, incredible! We're in Mexico!! Folks from Québec who ride quads in the winter will think this picture looks familiar...Will the ice hold, will it break??


What's most impressive about this trip is the diversity of sceneries and environements in such short periods of time.

Here, we are Feb. 20th...

Oh! By the way! It is sea salt, not snow or ice, they collect in Guerrero Negro.


The next day, Feb. 21st, as soon as we get out of Guerrero Negro, what a change! Blue skies and flowers!!


There is in Baja a section of the peninsula called the "gas gap". No gas stations for over 300 kms (180 miles)... On the road!! We evaluate at over 300 miles the distance we would have to ride without seeing a gas station from here to El Rosario. Impossible. All our tanks and jerry cans, once filled, will give us an operating range of about 250-275 miles, depending on the terrain. At the Villa Jesus-Maria gas station, we are told that someone sells gas by the gallon in Catavina. Catavina is about 240 miles from Villa J-M. If we fill everything up, we should be good. It is understood that, no map, be it as precise as can be, will show the miles we must ride through switchbacks or to circle around a mountain so, we must always include a margin of error. Sometimes as much as 30%...

And so we get going on that section of Baja where there are very few villages (only one, actually), loaded down like mules. Heavier than we have ever been. We carry close to 300 lbs in fuel only! Plus water and food for three, for four days!


Cash please!

$454.92 pesos plus 50 more for one more jerry can!

Thank you!


Feb. 22nd, an arrid desert where almost nothing grows...


Still Feb. 22nd but in the afternoon, back to the ocean.



The picture above was taken near the only real town we'll see in 4 days: Santa Rosalillita. We even found someone there who sold fuel by the litros. We put 10 litros in each machine, just to be safe...



Again on Feb. 22nd but, in the evening, in the mountains, in the rain. Yes! We did have rain!

Bah! It's not a little mist that's going to ruin our evening.

A good cactus fire, a good bottle of wine (...well it was the only bottle available...). Both of us sitting at the table in front of a spaghetti...

Well, that's quite the mist...Actually, it's more of sprinkle...Now that's just plain rain, here...Hey! I had no idea spaghettis got cold so quick in the rain!

...The fire's dying and we're soaking....

Good night!

Feb. 23rd, clearing.


Feb. 23rd, mid-morning, the usual early fog over the Pacific.


...Couple hours later...





Yeah ! Over 8000 miles!
Yeah ! If we're going to go on a ride, might as well go on a real ride!
Bof... The invisible trail festival!
Bof... About 9 out of 10 trails that we see on the ground does'nt show on the maps! Every intersection, it's the guessing game: Should we go left, right or center?? Sometimes, for a change, the trail that shows on the map does'nt exist on the ground! Now that's even worst! We plan a route, get and carry fuel accordingly and when we get to a certain place...No more trail! We have to take whatever trail seems to be going somewhat in the right direction and...Hope...


Feb. 24th.

All that goes up...




...Must, one day, come down...Sometimes pretty quick!!


Feb. 25th.

Near Catavina. All in all, it's during the last 10 days that we'll have ridden on the most beautiful trails we've seen in Baja yet. Not only was the scenery fabulous and changing, the trail itself was, in general, smooth and fun to ride. A welcome change from most of what we rode yet. Plus, our tires are holding up!


Ah Ha! The gas guy is right there, where he's supposed to be! Total miles Villa Jesus-Maria to Catavina: 236 miles. Expected Mileage: 240 miles. Since we got a little gas on the way, we get here we 2 jerrycans full on each quad.



Hey Hey! We're not alone having fun in Baja

They have 2 cars like this one, 4 seaters, a highly modified pick-up truck and a dirt bike. They are 5 couples and a moto rider and all of them can talk back and forth or listen to satellite radio through a communication system!

Nothing too fancy!



It is today that we broke the Guinness world record for the longest ATV-QUAD ride!!

Yes! The record established by a German quad rider is XXXX miles and we have hit XXXX miles today.

Now, let's see if Guinness will homologate our ride. It is known that they are pretty serious about their requirements.


There's not much to do in Catavina and so, we have a good shower (after 4 days in the desert...) and spend an horrible night trying to get Minnie to stop barking at the roaming dogs and horses on the campground, and we leave in the morning...

February 26th.

Before we leave Catavina, we evaluate, once again, approximately, how much fuel we'll need to reach our next destination. Filling the machines plus 2 more jerrycans over the 4 we still have should be enough for the 200 miles we have to go. The point of all this figuring out is, of course, to carry as little weight as possible.


Here's the mining town of Marmol...
Or actually, what's left of it...



Will there be or has there been a house here??

No matter what, a TV antenna is a must!!


It's not just the scenery that's changing, the vegetation is also!

It's like riding in a botanical garden for miles and miles!

Just look!











If this lizzard gets any bigger, we'll have to call it an iguana!


Today we met a group of dirt bike riders. They happened to be coming precisely from where we're going and were heading for Catavina! They figured they would get gas here at this ranch-restaurant-convenience-store but, surprise! They don't sell gas anymore! They tell us we actually have less miles left to ride than we thought. 110 miles exactly. That means we'll have a jerrycan to spare. We sell them 2.5 gals of gas that they share between them. It's all they needed to make it to Catavina!


The group's leader wears a pretty particular piece of equipment.
An helmet mounted GPS bracket!!


Feb. 27th.

Since Catavina, the trails were back to...let's say...average...

This morning, we have the pleasure of riding 25-30 m/h! YOOHOO!!




But that's short lived...The last 90 miles between us and El Pabellon will be an endurance test for the machines and a patience test for us... The trail is so washed out, there's hardly any dirt or sand left. Only deep cracks between big rocks that roll under our wheels. It's just too much for France. Marc has to ride through the obstacles, walk back, and ride through them again with the other quad. It takes for ever. It's hard on the relationship...

On the other hand, since we drive less than 10m/h, Minnie takes advantage of the situation and enjoys her jogging...


AAaahh! A well deserved pause near one of the few rivers in Baja.


They had some rain here recently, that's for sure! For the first time since Idaho, we camp on a blanket of green grass!

Once again, Minnie's happy! She can run as fast as she can...There's no cactus!

February 28th.

Big disapointement when we wake up: 3 tires are flat! The rough trails of the last few days tortured them badly.

When we were in Guerrero Negro, we were fortunate enough to find 3 tire plugs in a hardware store. 3. That's not much to cover the 800 miles of trails between Guerrero Negro and the US...

These are small punctures. We'll air the tires up 2 or 3 times a day if we have to. And hope the Slime does it's thing...

After 10 days of moving everyday, we set up camp on the Pacific, in El Pabellon for a few days. We'll take this time off to relax and work on the computer a little bit. It will be nice not having to pack everything up for a few days.





The tent lamp.

Made by Coleman, it can be installed almost anywhere thanks to it's magnet base and metal back.

Put the lamp outside and the back inside to have light to work outside the tent. Do the opposite to illuminate the inside of the tent.

The best part is that it's activated by remote control! Back after a late evening walk? Turn it on about 50 feet before you get to the tent! Or, if you have a large tent, turn it off directly from your bed!

Many THANKS to our friend Dave who kindly gave us this lamp as a gift. It sure came in really handy.

A portable tent lamp.

Pour voir la liste de
tous les trucs,
cliquez ici

to see all the
tricks and infos
click here


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            after /  après >>

Vue d'ensemble/
general view

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carte  détaillée, 1ère partie/
detailed map, part one/

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carte  détaillée, 2e partie
detailed map, part two/

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>> Click to enlarge








Au / At    Catavina
Date        25 fev. / Feb. 25th
Lat    N    29 43 47,2
Long  W   114 41 49,7





50C   122F
  40C   104F
30C   86F
20C   68F
10C   50F
0C   32F
-5C   23F
-10C   14F
soleil.gif (1277 octets)



50C   122F
  40C   104F
30C   86F
20C   68F
10C   50F
0C   32F
-5C   23F
-10C   14F
meteo_lune.jpg (1865 octets)

At night.
A bit of a chilly wind and little mist with that?

Here's the ideal receipe to how to dress not to shiver too much when close to the Pacific on a regular February evening:

Start with a 2 piece long sleeves underware, top and bottom. Slip on a pair of socks before you put your sandals back on. Add a pair a pants and a sweat shirt. Put on a neck warmer followed by another sweat shirt, this one with a hood. You are now ready to put your coat on. Then, simply put on a baseball cap, throw the hood over it and tighten it over!

You should be good to make it through the night.












It's all or nothing.

Either they're smooth and easy.

Or they're horrible and rough...

...Let's say they're moderate...






Les statistiques

Total 14 jours / 14 days

589 Miles
8363 Miles: à date/to date
$274 Resto
$165 Épicerie/Food
$227 Essence/fuel
$95 Camping
$190 Divers/Misc.
$951 Total






Dû à la très faible disponibilité de bouffe fraîche, et aussi dans le but de pouvoir goûter les mets Mexicains locaux, nous avons décidé, pour la durée de notre séjour à Baja, de manger plus souvent au resto.

Si nous découvrons quelque chose d'extra-ordinaire, nous vous en ferons part.

Due to the very limited availability of fresh food and also to enjoy local Mexican food, we decided to eat at restaurants more often for the duration of our stay in Baja.

If we discover something worth mentionning,we'll let you know.

Aujourd'hui /Today:

After the Spam tacos and the spreadable Spam, here's the Spam sandwich! Hummmmm!!

Should we run out of Spam, we have an emergency replacement item:
The corned beef!

Our impressions:


No jokes, here's the best Mexican dish we've had yet.
Too bad we have no idea what it is...









Come on Minnie, we're leaving!!!







Nous sommes fiers de vous présenter nos partenaires.
Ils nous ont fourni un soutien important afin de nous aider à réaliser cette aventure. MERCI À TOUS



We are proud to introduce you to our partners.
Their precious collaboration helped us live this fabulous adventure.


Polaris Industries - Canada
Polaris Industries - USA

RM Motosport

lbmaps_navigator.gif (31852 octets)

Durocher Transirt













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