Breaking the Cycle - Baja Divide

Mar 03

La Aguja (-7km) to La Paz

Published at 00:05
Dispatch created from email
1st March 2018
Distance - 83km
Total distance - 1668km

Day 23

The final day started well; we packed up camp from our remote spot near
the Pacific shoreline and did some filming before setting off.
The rough unmade track continued through sand and over rocky outcrops
for a further 7km to La Aguja before we turned away from the coast on a
better maintained gravel/sand road. We worked our way back towards MEX1,
eventually picking up a newly surfaced asphalt strip from a village
called Ley Federal de Reforma Agrarian No. Uno (sounded a very socialist
name to me).
I had been managing with just the rear brake for about a week - the
front pads had worn out. However over the last three or so days, the
rear brake had been going and was now at a point where it too was
virtually ineffectual. Travelling along the steep, rough tracks really
wears out the brakes.
I didn?t fancy entering the busy traffic without being able to stop! I
thought I?d brought along a spare set of brake pads, but by mistake I
had packed a set that would have fitted my fat bikes. The brake shoe,
where the pads attach to the unit was a different shape. Chris?s spare
brake pads nearly fit, and by filing the part down with my Leatherman,
he was able to fashion the right shape and fit the new set of pads.
Nothing like a touch of bush mechanics on the last day!
Back on the road, it was a slow grind; into a brisk headwind, slowly
gaining altitude to reach 280m. By this stage, I just wanted to reach La
Paz, but there is always a sting in the tail. Eventually we reached MEX1
and cruised the last 38km into the city.
We worked our way through traffic and eventually along the famed
Malecon, the well-kept promenade which seems to be the big draw card for
tourists. By 6pm, the streets were buzzing with activity. It is a lively
place, completely in contrast to our coastal campsite from where we
started the day.
We had arrived a day early enabling us to have a rest day, enjoy taking
it easy and sorting out the bus ride north to Tijuana. Our plan is to
ride back across the border to San Diego (about 40km) and on to Bree and
Crosby?s place, where we started. I will be flying out early on Monday
morning; Chris will be heading back to Melbourne in the evening.
Chris and I are quietly ecstatic as to how successful this trip has
been. Not only did we get to see and experience Baja California, it was
also exactly what I needed to prepare myself physically and mentally for
the year ahead.
The first two weeks were tough for me, to ride day after day without a
break, on a loaded bike through rough, mountainous terrain. As with all
of my previous longer journeys, it has been a case of biting the bullet
and facing the challenge to get over the fitness wall. The cold did not
help, but it was just another obstacle to manage and get through. With
only 24 days, I could not afford the time to rest as I usually do to
adapt to the new workload. I?m feeling petty fit now and hopefully
won?t be starting from scratch fitness-wise for the expeditions to
follow this year.
Images are of:
The unmade coastal track;
Chris fixing my brake;
Sculpture on the Malecon;
The finish point in La Paz


  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-04 22:22:05 Mark Hillebrand says: Congratulations. Awesome achievement. Really appreciated your dispatches to follow you on the journey. C U soon.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-04 18:25:20 Greg Y says: Well done on successfully reaching La Paz. Sounds like a tough journey with plenty of route planning decisions along the way to keep things on track. A solid start to the year's programme.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-04 07:10:25 Lynn Craig says: Great to hear you made it to La Paz. Safe travels on the return journey.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-04 04:24:57 Dick Friend says: BAJA = Bloody 'Ard Journey All-over
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-03 08:37:37 Jane says: Well done to you both.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-03 06:27:02 Rob Granter says: Congrats on doing so well. Fantastic outcome
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-03 01:11:47 Merike Johnson says: Thank you for the daily dispatches. I loved reading them. Amazing journey.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-03 00:31:23 Claudio von Planta says: Congratulations to both of you for the completion of your first major training expedition of 2018. Wishing you lots of energy, fun and good health for the next adventures.
  • Report as abuse...
    2018-03-03 00:22:29 Eric says: Another great journey under your tyres. Quite the contrast from the snow and ice of Alaska, Greenland and Svalbard. Congrats

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