October 24, 2005 GMT
Barranca del Cobre (Copper Canyon)

We cross the Gulf of California on the Ferry from Pichelingue (La Paz - Baja California) to the mainland Topolobombo (Los Mochis) on the fast 5 hour ferry. Jules did well organising the tickets in her bad broken Spanish and even asked what time the ferry would arrive!

Whilst travelling on the ferry we saw quite a few pods of dolphins swimming along side the boat, were given lunch as part of our ferry ticket and watched some crappy movies.

We met Claas and Patrick, from Germany, riding to Tierra del Fuego on Honda Africa Twins.

The four of us tried to find a camp-ground once we disembarked from the ferry, however after riding around until about 9:00pm we gave up and went to a little hotel/motel on the outskirts of Los Mochis.

Jules spoke to the Manger about how much rooms cost for one bed, for two beds (as we had the intention of sharing the room between the four of us). Once it was settled and we had organised the one room with two beds the man was very concerned that Patrick and Claas did not have a room each.... he was surprised and somewhat confused about two men sharing one bed between them! At first he thought Grant and Jules wanted separate beds and that was even more confusing.....

We said goodbye to our new friends and headed north on a two day ride to Creel. The gate way to the Copper Canyon.

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Frank & Brenda

We arrived in Creel and found a hostel right on the main plaza for $US25/night (private room with bathroom) including breakfast and dinner. We met a lot of really great people there including Terry and Mike from the US who were riding thier Harleys around Mexico, Pete from England but lives in France and is building a house out of an old barn, Kelly from Australia but lives in Scotland and is a fantastic artist, Sergio and Maria Jose from Mexico City, Frank (from Aus but lives in Mexico &US) and Brenda (from US lives in Mexico & US), and finally Dieter from Germany but lives in Canda. We had such a good time with everyone, day trips to Divisidero and the Hot Springs, hanging out drinking vino tinto and wandering around town.

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For Mexican Independance Day we took a ride down to Batopilas in the bottom of the Copper Canyon.

We travelled an hour along a very winding lovely paved road for 75 km, turning off at the town of Samachic we started our decent into the famous Copper Canyon. We have to say that negotiating this decent gave us new found respect for the Suzuki.

The gravel and rocky road was was very demanding on a semi-loaded two up motorcycle. The constant switch back corners at very steep angles, deep graveled corners (recently graded), potholes, donkeys and goats made for an interesting ride.

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The scenery was breathtaking! Jules hardly looked due to the dizzing heights and sheer drop offs, with no guard rails or safety turn outs! NADA!

On the decent (at about 2000m in altitude), we caught up with the Tarahumara shephards who had been chasing their goat heard down the hill and stopped for a breif chat. They were not even out of breath, unlike us even though we were on the bike.

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Once in the bottom of the canyon Grant had to negotiate two timber bridges with very interesting (to say the least) timber arrangements.

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We survived the trip and reached Batopilas at around 3:00pm and found two push bike riders Rayner and Brad, who took us to a ladies house for lunch. She runs a small restaurant out of her kitchen and cooked us some lovely burritos, spaghetti and salad for lunch. As it was so hot at the bottom of the canyon (our jackets were soaked and had to be rung out) she made us sit out in her garden instead of her dining room!

We found some accommodation and spent the evening enjoying the festivites of the Fiesta.

In the morning we headed off early, to avoid the heat. About half way up a donkey decided that he would just wander all over the road in a blind panic and Grant, whilst avoiding him, ran into a ditch. The ditch was deeper than Julesī foot pegs, but the bike remained upright.

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Grant negotiated his way out and it was back on to the road to Creel, almost running out of petrol. We arrived at Creel on the smell of an oily rag at about 11:00am, just in time for lunch!

After a few more days swanning about Creel we headed off to the Colonial Heartlands.

Posted by Julie Rose at October 24, 2005 06:33 PM GMT
 
 

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