Statistics Central Mexico:
Distance: 1085 km
Daily average: 33 km
Days in the Area: 33
Days on the Bike: 16
Altitude covered: 12580m
Daily Average: 787m
Nights in the Tent: 10
Nights in Houses: 23
Breakdowns: 2 flats in the back
Daily Costs: 8,70€
Lets go to Mexico City!
Not an hour after I published the last story I got the bumper message that the start of our sailing trip was delayed cause of the weather. Another week in La Paz… I only can accept this and wait for better weather.
At least it started earlier than planned cause Mike and Peggy decided to leave the port at the first possible moment. We didn’t get far cause the wind was refreshing and so we stayed a few days in the Bahia de los Muertos. Definitely not a bad day to hang out for a while. The Pelicans were showing their fishing skills and on the Afternoons we took excursions to the resorts in the bay for a tasty dinner and some solid ground under our feet.
My biggest concern about the adventure was that I couldn´t stand the swell. Never had the chance to be out on sea except during crossing the pacific. A freighter definitely is not comparable with our nutshell now…
After two days we started and from now on we will have no land, crossing the sea of Cortez to the mainland Mexico. The wind blew well and so we started with a full 20 hours sailing period. Wind in the sail, waves below us and now other sounds disturbing the peace, awesome! In the middle of the night we caught a dorado that made our dinner for the next two days…
At one point the wind died and we had to turn on the Engine and it kept running until we reached the coast.
The sea was shaking us well, not cause of the wind but the waves were coming from different directions and the boat was rolling around very strong. My stomach wasn’t feeling well at all and as we reached the Bahia de la Banderas I was very happy that we soon will have solid ground under our feet.
Before the next sea adventure I have to think about it seriously if I am made for that.
In the Bay there were dozens of grey whales who came down for calving. They were playing around our boat, making some exercises and even none of them was jumping it was exciting to see these gigantic animals moving so easily in the water.
Puerto Vallarta was a reunion with a guy I met almost 2 years ago at the northern US Pacific coast in Oregon. We stayed together at a church for a night. A few weeks ago Jerry contacted me and invited me to stay with him in his House in Puerto Vallarta and so I cycle to him now.
Puerto Vallarta is one of the most popular vacation places for North Americans and so it is very touristic around here. I stayed here for a few days and we made some nice excursions into the surrounding area with Jerry and his Partner Annie and I could even watch the Superbowl in a Bar in town. As everyone in the bar (except the Canadians) got up for the hymn and stood straight it felt a little bit strange for me…
In Puerto Vallarta I met Belve again. I first got him to know at Tuly´s House in La Paz and we decided to cycle a little bit together in the future. Future was now and so we did. From here we crossed the Coastal Range into the Mexican Highlands. The Range is quite high and so we had to climb seriously. We made 85km of distance and a lot of altitude in the first three days. Supersteep, hot and beautiful the road winds up the mountains through the jungle. Belve realized very quickly that he did (as I) underestimated the adventure. In contrast to me he never did something like that before and that is eating away the substance. a number of flat tires and broken equipment wasn’t helpful at all and so I tried my best to keep his mood up with fun and snacks and so we reached Talpa de Allende on the third day.
A little mountain town, an important pilgrimage site and a `Pueblo Magico`. A little bit more than hundred Villages in the country got the title Pueblo Magico and the most of them got run over by tourists after that. That took away their soul. This one is still really original and we could stay at the local firefighters. We made an excursion in the night with Philipp one of the firefighters. He is also accompanying us the next day and takes the opportunity to cycle Belve´s Bike up to the pass that led us out of town.
On our way to Guadalajara we stayed on Asphalt roads and stay one night in Ameca a little town along the way. We arrived right in time for the local carnival an could experience a Fiesta at the Main square. A lot of Banda-Concert bands were playing, it was more than a touch of Bavarian brass mixed with latin American rhythms and heart pain lyrics…(Example) The whole square was filled with dancing people that were exercising a wild mix of Latin dances and Ranchero posing… (Example). Exciting to see but for me it was some kind of impossible to imaging someone not-mexican dancing like this… The dancers were super-serious about that, not a smile around… This evening I left without my camera so I can’t show you pictures, . So you have to believe my words and the two videos I found in the web…
The next morning Belve needed to visit a bike shop to get his bike examined cause of the damages the road left behind. Happily I was spared from it.
A few days later we arrived in Guadalajara and we were ready for a break. The local „casa de ciclista“ gave us a place to sleep for free and so we could stay a few days close to the city center. Guadalajara is the first Metropole in Mexico I visited and the grid it is build in is quite confusing. Everything looks the same. Some corners are more beautiful than others and these we were visiting.
The workshop at the casa de ciclista we used to look after our bikes. Belve´s Rim has cracked and has to be replaced and my freehub almost quit it´s job. We couldn´t disassemble it cause of missing tools but a little bit of grease will bring me to Mexico City to take care of it there…
From here we took some side roads up to Guanajuato. Another Pueblo Magico and by the way world-heritage site. A rich Mining town that was capital of Mexico for a while that left a lot of history behind. The City is nestled to the slope in a basin and has a lot of flair. As a University town there are a lot of young people. Friends of Belve gave us a place to crush for two nights and so we have a very central place and local contacts… nice!
Eastwards I choose the road with the most winding look on the map and that lead us again into the mountains. Even steeper than our first part it was another blocky adventure. Again we need 2 days for 60km and after that Belve explained me that this is too much offload Adventure for him. We made a stop in San Miguel de Allende another Pueblo Magico. There we have a lot of touristic program infant of a wonderful Oldtown. Its Saturday and it seems the day for weddings and proposals. The Town is full of Couples that are dancing with their wedding company and a mariachi band through town, exciting!
From here to Mexico City its another nice six days ride. We cross little towns lots of pueblos and reach the outskirts the City. The closer we get the more it stinks. The sewage runs in open channels covered with floating rubbish out of town. The Rubbish that is omnipresent gets more (even if hardly to imagine) and the vehicle’s are polluting the air to a grade that you can painfully feel while cycling. Everybody was warning me from cycling into town but it finally was easier than I thought. 20 Million people live in a wide valley (that was once a lake) that is so flat that you can’t overlook the whole City. Maybe good like that. As we reached the Zocalo, the central square, and parried us 4 intense weeks ended. Nice to arrive!
What I experienced here I will tell you in another story…
Mexico´s central high plateau is not really flat, and so we climbed like champions. the Landscape is a real pleasure and the human part of the trip is a wonderful. Every Ranchero along the easy was totally relaxed friendly and helpful. Awesome! I have to confess that I start to fall in Love with this country. The food is mostly about meat and super tasty. Based on Tortillas (flat Cornbread) that are filled or topped with meat and vegetables. In different regions they have different names depending o the form… Tacos, Quesadillas, Tostadas, Sopes… Every Region has its own speciality and that makes it surprisingly diverse.
Music is a big thing! Banda Music, Brass with Guitars and a lot of heart pain sounds out of extremely loud speakers along the road. Every shop tries to raise its attractivity with it´s own speaker… Life takes place on the street, what is nice and so it never gets boring during a break. My Spanish gets better every day and so the conversations with locals start to get a little bit deeper.
Look forward to the next story… soon here on this channel!