Adventure Bike Taco Ride Day 1

Day 1 of 3 – Our Taco Ride

The 10 adventure bike riders met at the local IHOP in Lake Elsinore for the start of a three day taco ride. BMW was well represented along with KLM.  The other single bikes included a Super Tenere, Yamaha and Africa Queen, Honda.

It’ called a taco ride because we were suppose to sample tacos along the way. As of day one non sampled until dinner a little while ago before they sweep up and put away the sidewalks in Yuma.

Dinner at Tacos No Rancho, Yuma, Arizona.  Nothing to brag about.  LA has the best tacos and we know it.

Our goal:  A taco run put on by gpskevin who is not on this ride because he is still healing after dumping his Africa Twin Honda on a ride.  Two broken ribs and a punctured lung. Kevin is the best spokesperson for this sport.  Non humbler.  Did I tell you he rode a scooter across America?

Today we stood near the border fence. And on this side of a moat.  The guys asked if this was Trumps fence as parts of it looked a gold color.  Must’ve been a mirage or the setting sun.

No tacos on the border but, the view was amazingly pictureresque and the air much warmer the further south we rode.  Temperature is about high 60s to 70+. Met two guys 31st the gas station grim Oregon who trailers their bikes down.  Said it was 10 degrees back home.

Why tacos?  The perfect food?

1)  You have your shell.  – i.e. the shell is healthy only if handmade.

2)  Then you have your protein part.

3) Then you Salsa.

Taco salsas are divided into two categories: red and green.

If you’re lucky enough, there might be a runny Green sauce called – guacamole (yes, it is watery on purpose to better dress your tacos.

4) Then your toppings

Standard toppings for tacos are onion, cilantro, and lime. A good taqueria should have finely minced onion and chopped non-wilted cilantro, unless you like biting on a huge chunk of raw onion and soggy greens.

If eating fish tacos, toppings should be finely minced crisp cabbage. These chopped vegetables and fresh herbs are here for textural crunch and for their fat-cutting vegetal qualities.

Our final destination today and lodging is in Yuma, AZ ad the Coronado Hotel.

Yuma is still a place where traces of the old western way of life still exists.  Take for example the downtown area and our lovely Best Western – Coronado hotel.

During 1849, more than 60,000 people headed to the California gold fields from here after crossing a rope ferry bridge that would carry them across to Colorado.  If you were after gold in the 1800s then you probably came through Yuma.

Just an hours ride away, near Fisher’s Landing, you can enjoy the pristine landscape formed by the Colorado river.

Our day 2 takes us to Twentynine palms.  Our day mileage was 291 Mike’s.  Not bad for less than 4 gallons or so of gas used.

Tomorrows mileage is about the same.  Maybe I will eat more tacos.

Today we went down the great spurn divide and two, country two, deserts.  The Anza Bodega and Yuma.  Lots of Indian Reservations spotted.  Lots of mansions in them hills, and orchards everywhere.

Calexico is probably as close to crossing into Mexico as we got.  Tomorrow Blythe for gas and lunch.  And a visit to Bosnia Tree National park.

During WWII General Patton’s troops trained here (Yuma) or nearby here before embarking across to fight in Africa.  Bob Hope held USO shows here and there is still a USO lounge somewhere in Yuma.  Yuma is one of the largest military testing grounds for the military and has a museum open to the public.

Yuma Territorial prison is another landmark, it operated for over 75 years. The local school uses the school mascot name, they call themselves the “Criminals”.  Not making this up.

Amelia Earhart also landed in Yuma while competing in the powder puff airrace.  She is also said to have nosed over her propeller while landing and required a new propeller to continue the race.  Of course we won’t get to see any of this as we came to ride.

Pictures are on my camera so they will be loaded here later.

Adios from Yuma.

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1959 Willy’s Picture Preview

Yes, I am sharing the before pictures before I get too far ahead of myself on this rebuild project.  Thank you Nestor.  Also, the blog gives me a place to stop and look at the before and after.  I am planning on using the Willy’s sooner rather than later so, the restoration may stop and go, as required.

Pictures above:  New brake pedal coming to accommodate the power steering master cylinder and booster.  The wheel above – we needed to cut off the wheel nuts and replace all wheel studs; they snapped off as i tried to get them off.  Note the damage done by the twisted front drive line – new pan was given to me.  Tomorrow we tackle removing the master cylinder and brake system.  Thank you Nestor!

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1959 Willy CJ5 Renovation

As you are now reading, I now own a December 2016 project.  Thanks to Craigslist, I was easily able to trade my Seadoo straight across for this 1959 Willy’s CJ5.  Short term – he got the better deal!  Long term – I get the better deal!

This Willys is already equipped with a “crate” small block Chevy V8. No need to add one.  Crate as in that is what the engine came in; it is not from a donor vehicle.  Also, the front hood and fenders are a one piece fiberglass unit.  The entire unit comes up.  The last owner also gave me a stack of receipts going back to 1997, (two previous owners also added receipts to this stack) showing every $$$ spent from shocks to bearings.  Woopeee!  And now I get to add $$ to this stack as well.

So, this is a 1959 Willy’s, serial number 57548 85297; presently equipped with a Chevy small block V8; Mallory Uniflite SPC Pro Master Ignition; Edelbrock fuel, carburetor, also a Cagle feedback fuel control, Edelbrock manifolds; mated up to a THC 350 automatic transmission three speed, connected to a Sprinter 18 transfer case.  It has a four-inch lift kit; warn premium manual locking hubs and a Warn M6000 winch with the Warn fairlead to keep the cable from wearing.

The Willy’s also has headers, and it is too loud, as soon as I can drive it to the muffler shop it will get quieted.  One of the previous owners spent a little $$ and added a new dash and Auto Meter competition instruments; they all work, 160 mph speedometer, fuel, water, amps, oil and even a transmission gauge.  The gas tank is under the drivers seat; not a large tank so, a new tank will be ordered and placed below the rear bed – like newer Jeeps.

I am having the 4 Wheel Supply street seats upholstered and they should be ready tomorrow.  Sommers Brothers did the axles and someone added rancho springs and a Con-Fer Mfg. spring shackle lift kit. Says so in all the receipts.

Also, MD45 Lockers – LOC 2413 purchased from 4 Wheel Supply, out of Phoenix.  The chevy heads were rebuilt in 4/18/1989; and sometime later spent $$ on a HD Dodge Radiator at a cost of $338.00.  The overdrive kit – M3329-3SP TH350 autoshift kit cost $995.00

The LM1 engine may have originally been purchased for a cost of $1426.46 on 7/13/1996 at Chapman Wholesale, Tempe, AZ

There is a 2″ bar tubing that was constructed for the roll bar.  The Rancho Springs lift kit is 4″ and the current BF Goodrich tires at 33″ mud-terrain tires; preceded by a set of Yoko tires back in 1994.  So there you have it!


And now here you have it!  So far, we have disassembled the following:  removed the headers; tires and wheels (the front left tire needed all studs cut as they would not come off); the front axle also needed attention as it was already twisted.  Custom Axles has this piece; Nunez Upholstery has the seats.  The Sandblaster gets the entire tub soon.  4WD parts has already overnight delivered the shocks and I did not have to pay shipping.

The Willy’s already has power steering but, we are now waiting on delivery of master brakes and overhead pedal from Sumitt Racing.  Can you imagine trying to stop a V8 with a single master cylinder, it just won’t do.  Safety first.  Address brakes, noisy mufflers, driveline, fluids, then simultaneously cosmetics.

Yes, a stack of more receipts is starting to pile up.  Blew the December project budget.  First I needed to start with a compressor and tools.  Also part of the budget.


Also no – don’t confuse me for a mechanic, having mechanical skills, maybe.  I just know how to read manuals and watch YouTube.  Besides, a CJ5 Jeep is less complicated than one might think.

Seriously.  UTube saved my butt on two occasions and taught me lots of other things.  1)  The front differential pinion nut would not come off.  Turns out I needed either a metric 28 mm or a 1 1/8″ socket.  Purchased both and voila, one end was 28mm and the other US Standard.  I ended up grinding through the u bolt clamp to get the twisted differential off.  2)  How to add power steering or upgrade from a single master cylinder.  3)  What are those two gear shift levers to the right of the transmission shifter?

Much, much, more to follow.

The how to books supplied and small stack of the large stack of receipts.  And I also forgot the soft top, brand new rear seat etc, etc, etc

More to follow – 1959 Willy’s Jeep CJ5 rebuilt project.

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‘Ol Blue and PWC Riding the California River Delta

Sunday, October 30, 2016 – 1:15 PM

‘Ol blue as she is affectionately now known has until recently sat quietly with a blown engine since our last ride up to the California River Delta.  And now in her old age she can easily be compared to an old rescued pound dog, as she has found the shelter of a three car garage; compared to her old life of a cement car port slab, albeit about a five-minute drive from an ocean launch ramp.  In her PWC world she outlasted one single and one double brand new Zieman trailers; both dying an agonizing constant battle with salt water metal fatique before succumbing to the scrap heap.  Ol Blues Seadoo Icatch trailer now supports an eight year old hull that is timeless.  This same boat hull has pounded some of the roughest seas the San Pedro channel from Ventura county to LA County down to San Diego can dish out.

Fortunately or unfortunately as you may now see it our small group of West Coast PWC club riders tempted fate the day her rotax engine blew by taking a run way out past the San Francisco’s Golden Gate bridge and returning on an ebbing tide.  Two of my bucket list PWC rides in one; riding out the Golden Gate and California River Delta.

Yes folks, with winter and snow skiers now starting to look upwards at the mountains and slopes; we are proudly the snow boarder equivalents of the boating world.

And this weeks West Coast clubs upcoming Delta Wussie Ride is now just the perfect opportunity to put Ol Blue back in the water, starting at Ouray with the cold California river delta that eventually turns brackish as we head north towards Sacramento and the cold unforgiving Pacific ocean.

Simply put the last time we rode this way, on the second day of riding Ol Blues rotax engine ingested some bad fuel mixed in with maybe a little saltwater that subsequently steamed up; blowing out an exhaust valve that finally seized the Seadoo rotax.  With her hull at nearly 300 hours of running time and her engine modified and rebuilt several times in her career, she is the $$ equivalent of a small Mercedes.

Thank you Ol Blue for going out when you did and in style.  Thank goodness we were fairly close to the start of our run from Ouray, California to Sacramento when you died.  As fate would have it, a welcome short tow back (forever humbly grateful to Lewis) and loaner Kawasaki 300 Ultra from David is the difference between a great ride and an ordeal.  Fast forward to the first week in November 2016; and returning to California delta waters.

Thanking you in advance Jim Walker for a most excellent rebuild.  For those not already familiar Ol Blue is a 2008 Seadoo GTX LTD purchased new from the LA boat show the same year at a cost with trailer for 15k.  Sort of my learner ski that continues to take a beating and still keeps on ticking.  She has outlasted two Ultras; one sold for parts.  Ol Blue is a real veteran of the PWC world.  She has made at least fifty runs to, from and around Catalina island; including the inaugural first and multiple trips from Los Angeles to San Diego and back, plus riding to far away places like Lake Mead.  Ol Blue was loaned out at least once to compete in Northern California and at least once in a S. Cal race; she is a twice Mark Hahn 300 mile endurance race veteran in Lake Havasu, NV, once in the stock class where she trophied.  In the race modified class she did not fare as good; she has also competed in the Long Beach to Catalina Island race, Dana Point to Oceanside and Dana Point to Avalon.

“There are other things that I could do but, there is really nothing I love doing as much as I love riding ‘Ol Blue”.




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For Sale By Owner


1989 41′ Defever Trawler

No – not for sale yet but, it may happen if I don’t get back down to La Paz and start cruising soon.  Earlier today, a quick and easy FaceBook comment about cruising to Key West, Florida via Cuba.  A firm YES comment by someone also willing, able and ready to make the trip with me may be all it takes to get this new adventure rolling.  When?  Cruising season 2017.

So what happened?  We came home after our first year of cruising and decided to sell the little beach home and soon a gentlemen farm came in the picture.  Can you say lots and lots of work.

And if I were selling the M/V Western Flyer the asking price of $125k (Nov 2016) would include FREE delivery to either U.S. coast.  Over $100k spent on getting her cruising ready since purchased.  Custom hardtop, all new electronics, liferaft, detailed engine room, everything on the twin Ford Lehmans is new, dual racors, heat exchangers, starters, alternators, etc.  New refrigerator and stove, air conditioning, new water tanks, etc.

She started in Poulsbo, Washington and then moved to Portland, Washington before making her way to her home port in Los Angeles, California.  In 2016 she cruised with over 140 sailboats on the Baja-Ha-Ha to Cabo and presently is enjoying the facilities at La Paz, Marina Costa Baja.


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More Colorado Motorcycle Ride Picture


On a training ride with Ed.  Note the RotoPax.  This is where I carry all my tools to fix a flat or other roadside emergency.


Since I enjoy hiking in the back country but, don’t necessarily enjoy getting lost.  Marking the trail.


Tacos and beer at the town of Durango.


Mother and calf got separated with calf on one side of the road and mother cow watching from the other side.


Ride to Mesa Verde National Park and visit to the Anasazi Heritage Center.  One of the best unplanned stops and riding.


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Colorado Backcountry Motorcycle Trip – August 2016

My Colorado Backcountry Motorcycle Trip – August 2016

The Western Flyer is safely moored in La Paz so, upon returning home from La Paz, Baja California, to escape the summer heat I began researching adventure motorcycles.  To be honest, I was actually looking for a great used convertible sports car to purchase for under $10,000.00.  The Porsche Boxster S made the final cut but, common sense prevailed and I became the proud owner of a 2009 (BMW F650GS).  It did not take me long to get back up to speed with riding and soon I signed up for a road trip to do the Colorado Backcountry trails.


Photo above:  Ourphir Pass

And yes of course there are the details of searching for and acquiring the correct bike and bike brand the first time.  Then onto getting licensed again, the registration, all the associated riding and maintenance equipment and finally becoming one with bike.

Our one week (7 days) riding itinerary ( took us from the town of Dolores to Ouray; Ouray to Buena Vista; Buena Vista to Leadville to Diamond J Ranch; to Steamboat Springs; to Meeker; then backdown Steamboat Springs to Meeker; Meeker to Crested Butte; Crested Bute to Dolores.

I trailered my adventure bike from Los Angeles to Flagstaff, AZ.  The very next day freed from the trailer I rode down to Sedona.


Photo Above:  If you fear heights then this ride is not for you.  Yes, I dropped the bike on two occasions on this very trail.  When I purchased the bike the guy also gave me the original front and rear sprocket.  The aftermarket parts provided a longer riding first gear.  Great for on the road but not so, for trail riding.


Photo above:  Looks easy but, for fear of going over the side, I opted to stay on the inside left where I was easily thrown by the loose and falling rock.


Photo above:  Beautiful and amazing country.  On our ride up we encountered about seven vehicles (Subaru, Jeep, Toyota).


Photo above:  Now this was more my type of riding.  Stopping to enjoy the scenery and take a few pictures.

On the surface that first paragraph you just read plus a few pictures may easily describe this seven day large adventure bike backcountry ride for those that don’t ride.  Here is my first attempt at making this report somewhat useful for anyone wanting to follow one of the best road trips around.


The state of Colorado has more varied high altitude backcountry rides than any other state in the USA.  Given a choice of hiking, bicycle, jeep or motorcycle which would you take to traverse the most country for the least cost?  If you chose motorcycle then you are correct.  And, if you chose an adventure bike then consider your trip through both high altitude passes and single track riding possible.  Yes, we got hailed, rained and snowed on.  The forest service roads changed constantly from loose gravel to no gravel to avoiding cattle, deer, water crossings.  Thanks to riding with good, well prepared friends we all came down the mountain.  Final tally, one went home with a broken ankle, another with hurt ribs, a few bumps, bruises and scrapes.  Lots of broken BMW parts on anything from a 650 to a 1200.  The larger bikes outnumbered the smaller bikes.

To be continued:



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Colorado Motorcycle Ride Pictures


Photo above:  On the trail.  Couldn’t help comparing what looked to me to be some of the largest bales I’ve ever seen.

Photo Above:  Note the gps.  The star of the show.  What we did is follow a prearranged track line.  No one got lost.


Just a short hike from the road and you can walk right up to this 1200 or 1300 era structure.



Small detour to the town of Durango.


My campsite for the night.


Elvis’ camp site.


The town of Marble.  Just up from this church is some of the best bbq you will ever enjoy!


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California Delta – West Coast PWC Club Ride Report 06102016

West Coast PWC Club Ride Report – California Delta Adventure Day 1

Our West Coast PWC Club Delta River ride is now another one for the books.  The eighteen riders that showed should all be safe and home by now.  I for one feel totally spent and recharged at the same time – in a good sort of way.  To say we partook in two days of pure unadulterated joy of world-class PWC riding adventure is possibly an understatement.  Final tally for two days of river riding fun is well over 250 waterway miles; day one is 133 miles, followed by day two at just over 134 miles.

GROUP PHOTO HERE – Please forward to me!

So how does this ride compare to say any of my other PWC (personal watercraft adventures)?  Let’s just say that riding the California delta for hundreds of miles on one day and riding San Francisco Bay on the same trip up to Northern California qualifies as possibly the greatest PWC riding adventure around.  And not for bragging but, for comparison purposes let me add that I’ve jet skiied Alaska!



Yes, since 2009 my personal watercraft adventures include riding down the Kenai peninsula from the port of Anchorage, Alaska to Homer, across to Kodiak Island (with friends John Lang, Petr, Ron and Gina).  On the USA east coast I have also jet skiied my way from Key Biscayne, Florida down the Florida Keys to Key West (with thirteen friends who I never met till the start of the ride); and back to our west coast, from Los Angeles around Catalina Island and down the coast into San Diego bay (also with friends).  There seems to be a common theme here!



Group photo above – 2009 – Down the Kenai peninsula – Alaska

Once again YES, the best riding and racing waters hands down in my opinion is now the California delta!  And if you feel like exploring a little further to confirm if I know what I’m talking about then just google PWC and trawlercat or Wet Dog race and trawlercat or Bahamas PWC ride and trawlercat.   Those aforementioned rides were all thoroughly discussed before hand on PWC rider forums.  Someone on the forum may start the conversation with possibly their vision of a future PWC adventure ride.  Others contribute.  Soon it takes a life of it’s own.  People like John Lang conceived a 2,000 mile jet ski ride around Alaskan waters.  Another friend Brad Rice asked the question, is it possible to jet ski from the US mainland to the Bahamas?

Add to the above West Coast Club President Lewis who with the last two California Delta rides just placed the California Delta and Golden Gate bridge ride on everyone’s PWC riding bucket list.  If you have yet to ride Catalina island then stay local.



To do what we just did this past weekend you and your friends need to trailer your personal watercrafts about 400 miles north on the five freeway to a friendly and historic town called Brentwood, California.  One of our members (West Coast PWC club) came from as far away as San Diego for this ride.  Him and I both truck pooled our way up to our meet up location at Orwood Resort where some of the club members camped while the rest stayed at the Hampton Inn,  Brentwood, California.  This hotel is a perfect home base from which to start your California delta riding adventure and Orwood Resort is the perfect launch, dine and camp location.  Their signature steak and lobster at $21.95 is their claim to fame.  Now that we’re done exploring the delta waterways I just may return soon to do a motorcycle adventure by also exploring the beautiful area by road.

Eighteen riders showed up for this ride, most from Southern California.  The best question posed to the club’s leadership?

We trailered our watercraft about 400 miles, is this ride really worth the drive?



West Coast Club President Lewis once again totally delivered.  No, not by personally guiding any part of the ride but, by setting the stage for us adventure thrill seekers of the water world.  The kind where half the fun, like in the mountain climbing world is summitting and in the snow skiing world is spotting that red diamond snow ski run and saying the hell with the risk of avalanches or moguls and going for it.


Most of what we got served up on this ride we honestly can’t find back home.  Several of us in the group are current and former racers.  We know and have possibly already ridden the best offshore and inshore waters around.


Hector, son and Jay





Lewis, Club President


Ninja Turtle


Riding towards the Mothballed Fleet – former site of the USS Iowa.

DSCF0898  DSCF0949

Everyone in this group on this trip got to ride their own ride.  No compromises were made based on the wide range of watercraft riding experiences and abilities.

Either by design or fault, Lewis seems to find a key person or persons in the area willing and able to provide the resident expert guiding service that our riders are looking for when traveling to a new area.

Our day one guide on this trip is Chris on a flawless and fast Honda Turbo.  Chris starts his ride briefings the way any briefing should be started.  First by orienting riders to the area by actually using a boating chart of the area we intend to ride.  Chris then randomly shares local knowledge while underway to anyone willing to listen like for example, the town of Locke, California is just two blocks from where we are now enjoying our waffle cones.  This town was built at a time when Chinese people were not allowed to own land in America.

This town is a perfect example of a historic Chinese American rural community.  Only one person (Tony) chose to walk the two blocks to actually see the two block long town.  The rest of us stayed in an air-conditioned ice cream parlor munching down home-made waffle cones loaded with locally grown fruits like bing cherry.


If you think that waters back home (SoCal and Catalina) are great then you should ride the California delta and Golden Gate bridge to see what real river and bay riding is all about.  Possibly because of all the offshore riding some of us have done, we love the rough stuff.  The nastier the better.  We got that!  Some in our group did not but, after this ride you could see it in their proud smiling faces.  They came, they endured, they conquered.  Most are now better riders for it.

Also in our group of eighteen today are personal watercraft riders with not even a dozen hours; a father and son; boyfriend/girlfriend; amateur riders.  Our group can easily compare in range from a recreational runner to an Olympic marathoner.  Once again, everyone in the group got to ride their own ride.  No ones watercraft was sunk, blown up and no one was lost or hurt.

Well, let me quantify.  One person that shall remain nameless did strike a bridge with the bridge not sustaining any permanent damage.  No damage done to the bridge and yes, his brand new watercraft may now qualify for a salvage title.  Another rider somehow managed to snag a fishing line at 60+ mph and lure that nearly ripped off his spandex top starting from his left bicep.  And yet another was feeling so overcome with the adventure of riding the California delta that he simply rode out into the sunset almost never to return.  Thanks to google maps and a smart phone he was able to return to civilization.

So, once again to recap:  Why drive so far to ride those waters when we’ve got great water just down the street?  1)  To join our like-minded friends.  2)  Because NorCal does have possibly some of the best PWC riding waters in the world.  3)  No other place in the world can possibly compare to the California Delta.

Also, the waters inside and outside the Golden Gate Bridge offer up the best possible chance of possibly getting killed in a good sort of way; similar to climbing Mt. Everest.  Only more people have climbed Everest than done what we’ve just done in the past two days!!

You want to risk the chance of icy crevasses, or killer moguls, or risks of avalanches coming down on you, in a water world sort of way?  For some of our riders, this is now half the fun.  Sort of like riding off into the sunset and not knowing where the next fuel stop is.  We really don’t get that feeling back home unless we’re on say, the 405 freeway during rush hour.

Yes, there really is something magical about riding out the Golden Gate bridge and coming back on ay an ebbing tide and running on fumes; and conquering the ride.  Yeah, we done that.  So, what is all the fuss about going out as a club?

To non personal watercraft owners or just plain boaters the idea of hauling butt across some wild and crazy windy wavy waters at warp speed may not be what some people have coursing through their veins.  For some of us riding today, it’s sort of why we ride.  If someone today placed a buoy out on the water with a black diamond gnarly looking sign on it, you can bet your television remote control that Tam, Tony, Darrell or Fadi will fight to be the first to round it.  You want locally scary?  How about the backside of Catalina on a not too pleasant of a day.

How about getting a late run back from San Diego bay to your launch ramp at either Los Angeles or Long Beach.  Yes, all in one riding day, of course.  More scary?  How about waiting for your jet ski buddies just outside the Oceanside breakwater while they finish fueling up and having a big old whale come up and take a good hard look at you.  Been there, done that!  Or how about flying off your ski just past Dana Point, in the area known for it’s great white sharks.  Wait!  You haven’t yet experienced any of these PWC riding adventures?  Then maybe you really are better suited to staying within eye sight of that television remote or tablet.

That personal watercraft of yours is more than capable of taking you places that you didn’t think possible?  Once again, this is why we ride.  These little boats can go the distance and now we’re also finding out that so can we.

No, we don’t have avalanches to worry about. And unlike other sports that take their crafts to other countries to race, we don’t really do that sort of thing.  I’m now thinking more like the Iron Dog, Baja 1000 or Dakar Rally done on specialty machines like snowmobiles, trucks or motorcycles.  Besides us getting lost or maybe running out of fuel before our next fuel stop it’s really not that bad for some of us weekend warriors.  Also, no avalanche gear or any of the other required equipment needed.  Just don’t forget to put a whistle on it.

Riding our personal watercraft also ranks up there with family time.  Besides the cost of the fuel, lodging, food and other unforeseen events like say a blown engine; it’s actually cheaper than going to Disneyland or taking a cruise.  And you also get way more exercise and lose weight at the same time.  Just ask some of those on this ride.  Your back may not enjoy it as much on the ocean as on the delta but, if that is what is being served up then, just take it and ride.  Tomorrow is another PWC day and there are plenty of pain pills around the group to keep you going.


Delta PWC Adventure Day 2 – The sign said, “Eat at Joe’s” and so we did!  But first we had to ride there.  Hector on a 310 Kawasaki Ultra and his 11-year-old son became our Day 2 ride leaders.  With local knowledge available and most of our group from SoCal; we had no clue as to what direction Sacramento lay but, like they say, it is always easier to follow than lead.

And so Hector takes off like a rocket.  Pretty soon the group keeps spreading further and further out for miles and miles and miles.  One, two, or three riders soon caught up to Hector and quickly told him to slow it down!  I on the other hand witnessed the small admonishment; rode over to Hector and further informed him that we were behind schedule and to speed it up.  We both laughed it up a bit and continued counting up the rest of the miles to downtown Sacramento.  The rest of the miles were pleasant and enjoyable as we snaked our way up the California river delta for miles and miles; until finally reaching the rather large open part of the delta where the wind whips up the water consistently to a froth, developing four to five foot waves that totally drench everyone.  Some of our watercraft now became near submersibles.  Bet you didn’t know this hidden feature?


Our start point for day 2 was also the Orwood Resort.  A mere 134 river miles down from downtown Sacramento, California.  Along the way we experienced periods of calm flat water intermixed with grand canyon type rapids, tidal inflow, outflow, ocean type five footers, fast and slow flowing river water and some amazing scenery.  Off in the distance we could see beautiful golden brown wheat fields, groups of happy cows and white picket fenced windmills atop hilltops.

If you are reading this story and  do not yet fully comprehend what riding 100 miles on a watercraft is then I can’t help you.  For the rest of us our arms probably still ache.  The good, the bad and the ugly of the group are all better riders for the experience.  No whiners!  Not much in the way of time separated the racers in the group to the recreational newbie riders.  I would say about the time it takes to eat an ice cream scoop or possibly two.

Once fueled up after eating at Joe’s Crab Shack the faster of the two riding groups parted ways.  We headed downstream for about 25 miles for dessert.  Of course it was for some home-made ice cream.  The way it’s done on the river is you tie up to the floating dock, walk up several floors of steps, cross the country road just up from Locke, California and enter historic Mel’s Ice Cream parlor.  Original and old-fashioned.  Hurry before it all changes.


“I’m into the law of attraction and quantum physics.  Like cosmic ordering.  It’s all about thinking lovely things that you would like in life, and feeling good about them before they manifest, so that by the time they do, you don’t want them because by then, you’re onto your next desire.”

– Julia Sawalha

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Baja Road Trip Pictures

2004 Toyota 4Runner, looking good with a brand new paint job, new carpet, custom front push bar and led light bar.  Looks and runs better than new.

The early bird catches the worm.  For those like me that miss details like (time change) an early start is justifiable.  The desert in the early hours can be awe-inspiring.

Once cannot say all of Baja is this way or that way.  The condition of the road is constantly changing as is the various forms of desert ecosystem.

Trees!  The further north on Baja one goes the less topes.  Topes are speed bumps that can dramatically alter your vehicles suspension system if they catch you by surprise.  On this particular day, all of the towns passed must’ve coordinated a fund-raising for the local fire department.  Fire fighters and their supporters were standing by for any loose coins.

109 degrees outside and it is not yet noon.  The truck in the picture broke down on the way up the hill.  The area, usually on the outskirts of many town seem to be the chosen spot for wrecking yards.  Llanteras (tire repairs) are usually designated by one tire balanced atop another tire.  Mexicans do not seem to easily discard a tire that has achieved its manufacturers life expectancy.  A good portion of Mexican drivers seem to not carry a spare, jack or repair kits.  But, get in trouble on the road and a road angel will almost magically appear to help.


View towards Ensenada, vicinity or Marina Coral.  Roundabouts are common as are four-way stops, known as Altos. Mexican city drivers do appear to be more vigilant than US drivers.


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