City: San Gabriel , Mexico
Kilometres ridden: 152
Cumulative kilometre: 24119
Our plan was to get to Colima tonight, so we packed our bikes, took a couple of pictures (there was a golden mirror in the garage 😀 )
and started to get out of the city. We had a small detour planned, riding to the Plaza Panoramica Bugambilias to have a look at Guadalajara as it was recommended by Salina (we meet her in La Paz). We missed the plaza somehow but we got a good view from a small chapel.
The view was limited; I believe it had more to do with the humidity than with pollution.
The houses around this area looked pretty expensive.
Then we turned towards Colima and stopped after a long stretch of roadworks. We bought a coffee and while we were sipping on it, a Mexican motorcyclist arrived. His name was Fernando and he was a wealth of information.
He gave us a list of good motorcycle roads, names of cities on these roads and recommended taking another road to Colima. At the same time we would pass the volcano, which is the main attraction of Colima. So we changed our route and drove into the hills instead the boring Mexican 80. The progress was slow but the view and the streets were amazing. Unfortunately our camera gives up whenever it’s a bit hazy, so the pictures don’t do the real view any justice.
With climbing up the hills, we started to see the clouds coming closer. No surprise there since the weather forecast predicted rain. So after seeing the first drops on our visor we changed into our raingear and continued. The biggest challenges were the potholes, some were big enough to create serious problems. When it’s dry they are already interesting but now the holes were filled with water and they were barely visible whenever there was any standing water on the road. But we took it slow and arrived at Tapala safely. I entered Tapala as a via point into my GPS, so the GPS guided us to the Church in the middle of the town just to bring us out again. However getting out was not as easy, since the recommended street looked like a one way street where somebody had randomly dug trenches. So we tried to find another way out, but the one way street system brought us back to the church. After the rain the cobble stones were slippery, we had plenty water puddles and potholes. We continued, ignored the road that the GPS was showing us, trying some other roads, but the one way system brought us right back to , you guessed it the church. Close to the church was a pub and people were sitting outside at the tables. After we passed them the third time, they started to smile. I guess, somebody who likes mazes designed the streets. Finally the GPS gave in and showed us another road that we could use, so we did. On the way to the next township, the roads wound up some small mountains and we passed a couple a ‘small’ hill slides which sometimes blocked off more than half the road. It must have just happened after the rain. As before, we took our time and we arrived in San Gabriel around 4PM safe and sound. We went to one of the two hotels and at the front desk we met Eva, she was very helpful and we had fun trying to figure out if we could park the bikes securely. Finally we established clear communication using Google translate 😀
After we parked the bikes we chatted about what we and she were doing. Then we went shopping and had a look at the local church. 🙂
After Fernando’s recommendation we are reviewing our central Mexico trip plan again. Not sure where we are going tomorrow.
City: Colima , Mexico
Kilometres ridden: 122
Cumulative kilometre: 24141
In front of the hotel they served breakfast, just right for us. During breakfast we discussed which route to take. We decided to take the easy way out and would continue the picturesque way today, continuing along the coast to get to Puerto Angeles as fast as possible. There we would stay for a couple of days and rework the rest of the trip as a baseline. The current plan finishes one month too late and we have to see where we can save the time. So we took off, had a nice ride through windy hilly roads.
Then we came to a T junction where a car clipped Sigrid at the panniers, just at the beginning of an embankment. Sigrid griped the brakes but the side of the embankment was just a bit too high for the bike, so Sigrid tipped over and the bike landed on the side on the embankment. I saw it happen in my back mirror, but had to drive until I could turn around, because of the aforementioned embankment. When I was back, one driver has stopped and helped Sigrid to get the bike from the embankment. Sigrid was ok, the side protector in the new BMW trousers prevented major bruising and the bike has now a leaking pannier, other than that, everything was ok (water leaking pannier on the right picture).
Both of us were relieved that nothing more had happen. After a while we recovered from the shock, and continued. We decided to make it a short day and stop at Calima, at a hotel that I had looked up. We arrived there early in the day, got a room and parked the bikes in a secure area near the pool. We did some maintenance, I oiled and examined both chains and Sigrid polished our boots.
After so much work we had a swim and a short nap before we went to the central plaza where schools had a competition to the topic, Altares de muertos – Altars of the dead. There we found exhibits made out of vegetables, fruits and other materials. I was impressed by the creativity of the kids.
On our way back, we visited, yes you guessed it, a church, before we had dinner. At dinner we went to a restaurant and I had an enchilada, this time it was sweet. It still tasted nice, but it was unexpected. At night we sat on the balcony,
in nice warm weather and briefly planned the next four days. It will take us at least two days before we arrive in Acapulco and then another two to get to Porte Angel, so the next four days will be a lot of solid riding.