Past Loreto - The Not So Long Way Down - CycleBlaze

December 11, 2018

Past Loreto

Desert camp to desert camp

Our alarm woke us in the desert at six o'clock, preparing us for our early start, as we simply had to make it the 25 kilometres to Loreto before the boys moved on, desperate as we were not to lose our new-found friends. We slipped back through the gate, being careful to leave it as we found it, and rode onwards to Loreto. On the edge of the town we spotted a little cafe advertising coconuts and we stopped to get ourselves one and use the free wifi to locate the boys. The man in the cafe cut the top off the coconut so that we could drink the water out first, then he picked up his machete again and cut the flesh of the coconut up for us to eat, flavoured with lime and nuts.

How to drink a coconut.
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Sue PriceCoco frio!
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5 months ago
How to eat a coconut.
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Thanks to the wifi we were able to get in touch with Ciaran, and ride into town to meet them at their own breakfast cafe. Unfotunately for them they had arrived in Loreto on the only day of the week when the brewery was closed, but they'd drunk enough tequila instead to ensure no early start had been made. In fact as we sat at the cafe discussing options it seemed that neither Ciaran nor Nathan were up for much cycling today, outvoting the faster-moving-and-on-a-deadline Tom. Talk was even made of all sticking together until La Paz, the town at the end of the Baja ride, swimming together with whale sharks there, and then maybe even spending Christmas together somewhere on the mainland.

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A Christmas tree and palm trees go together nicely in the centre of Loreto.
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The centre of Loreto was very nice, full of restaurants, cafes, and Americans.
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We stopped at a bike shop, mainly to get some spare spokes for Ciaran.
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The three amigos riding together out of town, Nathan, Tom, and Ciaran.
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Yikes! A tarantula we spotted at the side of the road.
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Bill ShaneyfeltHow cool! They are such interesting creatures! Mexico has the greatest diversity of tarantula species in the world.
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5 months ago

It was midday when we finally left Loreto in rather heavy traffic, but we all made fast progress for 20 kilometres where we stopped for lunch at a beach. Here Ciaran found that he had broken another spoke, vindicating our bike shop visit. I quickly helped him to replace it in between swims in the sea, and then when we were finally all ready to go again, Dea noticed that she had a flat tyre and we had to fix that too. Well, we didn't really want to do a long day anyway.

Helping Dea to fix her flat.
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One of Nathan's favourite things to do, cycle without hands.
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We made it another 20 kilometres when ahead of us loomed a big mountain pass. There was maybe an hour of daylight left and Tom was keen to get on and up the pass before dark, but in this respect Tom was very much in the minority. Everyone else preferred to stop and make camp and do the climb the following morning. The only problem was that there didn't seem to be any good locations for wild camping, what with the cliffs rising sharply away from the road by now. But we were lucky, finding a side road down a dry river bed and a way off of that leading to a most perfect desert clearing. 

Tom said he wanted a chair and disappeared off into the desert, surprising everyone by returning not with a chair, but with a bench, a metal trough of some kind turned upside down. We all then enjoyed the rest of the evening sitting on and around this, chatting like old friends, with Nathan once again giving us all a good laugh with his comically miniature cooking pan. It was a really nice evening and we really got on very well with these guys, leaving me feeling very happy about life on the road in Baja California.

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He genuinely couldn't understand why we were laughing.
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Today's ride: 65 km (40 miles)
Total: 1,148 km (713 miles)

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