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Old 18 Dec 2006
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Mexico ironbutt style/ take 2

New plan ,Ride in more areas on the V-Strom 1000 and at a later date spend more time in some of those areas on my KLR like I have done in the USA .
I can't see all of Mexico as I still work for a living but my goal is still to see the copper canyons, BUT I will skip the baja for more mainland .
What do you think of this route in either direction> Eagle pass or Laredo , Tx. to Saltillo (witch is a better ride rt.57 out of eagle pass or 85 thru Monterey ) onto Zacatecas and then Guadalajara via rt 54 onto Barra de Navidad then up rt. 200/ 15 to Mazatlan to durango,Parral, Batopilas , Creel,Chihuahua to Presidio, Tx.
I have the loop in Mexico to be around 2300 miles ???? But would appreciate time frames and miles between these cities and road condition and weather in these parts in mid to late March and April also. I'm thinking of going south first to let the cc warm up ???????????
Also How accurate is AAA's driving distances map ( the map in the corner that gives distance and driving times ) , I see for instance Mazatian to Durango is 318 km with a driving time of 5:35 and then I see Durango to Parral 412 km with a driving time of 5:45 , so it seems to make time for types of roads . BUT do you with south of the border experience find the AAA times and distances to be accurate ??????????????????
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Old 19 Dec 2006
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Mexico-Take 2

Good route and timeframe plan Gary, Mexico by late March is getting mild in the north again and should be spring in the CC area when you get there in April. Both Mex 85 and Mex 57 are good routes , nothing to worry about. From Laredo to Monterrey is on the chaparral plains and ridges easrt of the mountain chain and may be prone to a rainy period sometimes if a low pressure system is sucking moisture into the midwest off the Gulf. Mex 57 Eagle Pass to Saltillo is west of the same mountain ridge and on high desert country,long flattish and straight runs, often a lot drier route.
Suggest you use the Mex 57 entry as it is a lot simpler , after getting insured you can just ride south out of Cd.Acuna and after 53km ,at Allend e you will get to the Garitakm53 customs office where all the tourist card and vehicle import processing takes place. If you go through Lared o you will have to do a bit of hunting to get into the customs facility after the bridge, and Monterrey is another huge city, maybe not your cuppa tea for a first day ever in Mexico.
Saltillo to Zacatecas is another long level, fast desert run .
Zac. to Guadalajara is more varied among mountains, plateaus and high plains, more curves, slower.
Your choic e of Mex 80 Guadalajara-Barra de Navidad is a good, scenic highway in warm country. May I suggest taking Mex 54 the free road, via Cd.Guzman and Colima? It is eaqually good and scenic with the bonus of passing along the base of the active Volcan de Colima >You have a good chance of seeing it erupt with a plume of ash and steam. From Colima,COL it is a fast free freeway down to the coast at Tecoman , then northwest on Mex 200 to Manzanillo, Barra deN., Pto.Vallarta and Tepic , then Mex 15 to Mazatlan( it is 26km past the turnoff of Mex 40 to Durango)
The AAA map driving distance inset says "average driving time (EXCLUDING STOPS)" You are going to be brutally devoted to riding fast and non-stop if you intend to do the Mex 40 leg from the coast to Durango in the 5:35 hours they suggest- I've never managed it, just have to stop here and there and..... to take in the scenery. I always spread this leg over two riding days with anovernight in El Salto. Also the weather her can vary - rain is possible as moist sea air runs into the mountain barrier, in hot weather afternoon thunderstorms are regular- slow down in rain or fog.
From Durango to Hidalgo de Parral is another faster highplains run. If you have the time consider taking the fork of Mex 23 to NW , to Tepehuanes , then the good paved road east at Cienegas de Escobar through the mountains to SantMaria del Oro and back onto Mex 45 to Parral -curves and scenery!From Parral mex 24 to Guadalupe y Calvo is great.
Back to junction and north to Balleza , Guachochic and Creel .
Check out the 19km dirt road from Guachochic toCumbres de Sinforosa, spectacular canyons view. Of course down to Batopilas.
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Old 19 Dec 2006
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Hi Sjoerd, Thanks for the great reply and the PM . I can't reply to your PM directly because I haven't had 5 post, forum rules ??
I do have a ? about the insurance you buy when entering Mexico. What type do you buy?? I was thinking of just getting liability and was thinking of that ins. that fly's you home if your hurt?? I priced the liability thru AAA for 50,000 was about $90 but they don't offer full coverage. Don't know how much the fly home ins. cost . Does the company you mentioned see all of the above and how much and what would you suggest????
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Old 20 Dec 2006
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Take 2

The insurance sold by any and all of the companies for MOTORCYCLES is limited to only LIABILITY for damage to third persons and their property. The company that Sanborns writes for is , of all things , GE Seguros( yes same GE as electrics and jet engines) which is registered in Mexico as a Mexican company.The policy does include cover for roadside assistance of some sort, bailbond and emergency evacuation back to t he US .Doing this during coffee break at work I don't have my records with me so I'll check them later and let you know a bit on the limits, but that is pretty well fixed and doesn't vary much between companies.
For insurance I am also a member of CAA/AAA. An annual membership gives a discount on out of country travel medical insurance and that includes up to 30 days of medical insurance with evacuation assistance and more goodies. If I am going out of the country longer than 30 days it is a simple question of buying a bit of additional top-up coverage from CAA. That 30 day limit applies to single trips .It means that you can take multiple shorter trips throughout the year without needing to buy top-up.A good deal all around, well worth the money, and saves the hassel of buyng such insurance for each trip.
You refer to your AAA map which is adequate for main roads and a first visit. Plan on getting a road atlas once you hit Mexico, cheaper than ordering online or from one of the exclusive bookstores which probably have them near you.
Stop in Monclova or Saltillo at one of the huge department stores of Soriana, Gigante, Comercial Mexicana et al, or the VIPS restaurants or Sanborns Restaurant/bookstore chain( totally no connection to the insurance folks, and in business much longer) or smaller magazine stores . Check their magazine and book racks and you will find the GUIA ROJI or the QUIMERA road atlas tankbag size for about$10 to $14.
I have both of them and favour the QUIMERA ROAD GUIDE, second edition. Past winter I saw their latest 7th ed. ,I think, and it is even neater showing a lot of tints for topography, I intend to get one within a month or so. Another advantage with the QUIMERA is that it shows small gasoline pump symbols along the highways to indicate Pemex availability, an aid if you head out onto long unknown - to - you stretches of desert. Gas may be sold privately in unmarked locations .
Back again.Here are some numbers for Feb.'06 motorcycle trip from my GE Seguros policy :Maximum limit of liability $100000 PER ACCIDENT, Legal aid & Bailbond = Covered .Insurance cost $5.40 per day, Policy fee $15 . I can't really recall if there was an option for bigger bucks cover ( I doubt it ) but in any case I would not have chosen to take it and bump up my cost. It is like buying a lottery ticket with the point in this case being to never win , and to that end it is another incentive to ride cautiously at all times.

Last edited by Sjoerd Bakker; 21 Dec 2006 at 18:42.
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