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Map Baja California, Mexico Trip 2020

19 days
5852 km / 3706 miles

Map Baja California, Mexico Trip 2020

Jayne and I  decided to ship our bikes from the Portland, Oregon area to friends in Los Angeles to avoid possible snow and ice on the passes to California. It also would save us riding 1000 miles of interstate, which is not fun. We flew to L.A. and headed for the border the next day. We took the Tecate border crossing and headed to Ensenada. Soth from there to San Quintin, and on to Bahia de los Angeles. Then we headed further south to San Ignacio and on to Loreto (which was our favorite town, even though we had bike issues there). And further south to Todos Santos (WAY overpriced and overrated). We rode through Cabo san Lucas (much too touristy) and north again to La Paz. On the way back north we stopped again in Loreto and San Ignacio. Instead of staying again at Bahia de los Angeles we pushed on to Gonzaga Bay, which was absolutely the right decision. We then rode further north on Ruta 5 to San Felipe and took Ruta 3 back to Ensenade. We pushed on to Tecate for our last night in Mexico.
On the way back home we stayed with our friends in Los Angeles again before heading to Oregon. 1000 miles on Interstate 5, which took us 3 days.

In terms of weather we had about everything on this tip. A lot more rain than we had hoped for, a few very warm days, and even snow going back from California to Oregon.

Images on the left show our entire route (upper image) and our route in Baja California (lower image).
 
Recommended Map: Baja (National Geographic Adventure Map)



The best time for such a trip is probably February. Before that it can get quite cold and in March/April is the rainy season. After April it will be HOT.

The road conditions are generally good. Some of the small side roads are unpaved, but it wasn't too bad. Ruta 5 is completely paved as of March 2020. By far the worst section of road was coming into San Felipe from the south.
We were surprised that there wasn't much traffic, not even trucks. Only in towns did we find heavy traffic, but as soon as you leave town the traffic dies down to near nothing.

In terms of safety we decided not to camp but rather hotel it all the way. Nearly all hotels in Baja offer safe motorcycle parking, and if you come to one without you just move on to the next. We always had our stuff locked in aluminum panniers when sight seeing and locked the bikes with chain locks, together if possible. We felt quite safe during our trip, but there are people that had other experiences. There are lots of police and/or military checkpoints, most of them just waved us through. Some asked where we came from and where we were going, thats all. No reason to panic.
Shipping our bikes
We shipped our bikes from the Portland, Oregon area to friends in Los Angeles, California to avoid 1000 miles of interstate riding, saving 3 days of vacation, and avoiding possible snow and ice on the passes to California.
We used Uship to get quotes. The guy we picked turned out to push the pickup date several times, until it was last minute, but he drove all night and delivered on time.
Shipping our bikes
Flying to LA
We flew fromPortland PDX to Los Angeles LAX where our friends picked us up. We stayed with them and took off on our motorcycles the next morning. Our friends in LA
California highway 94
The interstate ride from LA to San Diego was quite bad with grooved pavement nearly all the way. Soon after we got on California highway 94 the city ended and we found ourselves on a nice road with great scenery. California highway 94
Tecate, Mexico border
Crossing the border to Mexico at Tecate was a breeze, took all of two minutes. It actually was too quick. We were through before we even noticed it and had to walk back to get our tourist cards stamped.
Pro Tip: If you buy the tourist card (FMM) online, make sure you bring the receipt, or you'll have to buy another one. If you buy the card at the border it's a litte cheaper. You may also get offered to buy home made hot sauce from the border officer. Welcome to Mexico.
Tecate, Mexico

Motorcycle aluminum panniers and top cases

Made by an experienced motorcycle traveller.

Motorcycle Aluminium Pannier

Motorcycle Aluminium Top case

Motorcycle Aluminum Top box

Panniers available in 47l, 40l and 33l
Top boxs available in 20l and 36l
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Motorcycle Aluminium Top box

Motorcycle Aluminum Trunk

Motorcycle Aluminum Top case

Quality is essential, not only on a RTW tour.