THE BAJA TASTER TOUR RETURNS FOR 2018!
24 to 28 March, 2018
Tired of looking at that computer screen? Baja curious? Want to see some whales up close – very close? This one’s for you! Join us for our annual five day, 1,000 mile Baja Taster Tour – a paved-road trip for licensed street bikes.
24 to 28 March, 2018
Back by popular demand! This five day paved-road tour is your perfect introduction to the many wonders of Baja California.
From the San Diego/Tiquana border crossing we head 500 miles south to Guerrero Negro, site of the world’s largest salt mine and the epicenter of the Eastern Pacific’s largest gray whale winter migration.
Strapped for time? This tour might the one you’re looking for. Much of the itinerary is similar to our massively popular 10 day tour (see above). Think of it as one of the best motorbike adventures you can have over a very do-able ‘long weekend’.
The average day’s mileage is under 200 and filled with great experiences including a half-day of whale-watching.
What are waiting for? March? It’s not that far away; make your reservation today!
The first leg of our tour – 200 miles – begins at the Mexico/US border just south of San Diego. Prior to entering Mexico we gather for last-minute money changing and a pre-tour ride briefing. After crossing the border the first order of business is to take a few minutes to obtain our Mexican tourist permits.
Our route south, via the scenic coastal highway Mex 1D, will take us into energetic Ensenda, Baja California’s administrative capital. Following lunch at a classic Mexican family restaurant we’ll clear the urban bustle and weave our way through green mountain passes, hug the Pacific coast and bisect a major fruit-growing region.
Our sea-side hotel near San Quntin has a well-deserved reputation for superior margaritas. We are on a room-only basis. A very good on-site restaurant means you won’t go hungry and can choose what you want for dinner and breakfast.
Today we bisect the Valle de los Cirios, a nearly 9800 square mile wildlife protection area. It’s a unique and startlingly beautiful eco-region of giant boulders, huge cardón & cirios cacti, and vast views. We’ll cover 250 miles on our way to Guerrero Negro, home to the world’s biggest salt mine and the jumping off point for our whale-watching excursion. Room only; restaurant on-site and others nearby.
This morning is our whale-watching excursion, with an early 08:00 start. On an entertaining and informative drive we’ll be bussed from our hotel, past the salt works, and on to the whale-watching launch site. Here we will board a panga (24 foot open boat) which will take us safely to the protected marine area.
From January until early April thousands of grey whales make an annual migration to protected waters on Baja’s Pacific coast where they mate and females give birth to calves. If you’re new to this you will find it an incredible experience. The grey whales and calves are not shy, in fact they often as curious about us as we are of them. It’s not unusual to have them within touching distance from the side of your boat.
Following lunch – included with the whale-watching – we’ll return to our hotel, don our riding gear and begin the return journey. Our destination, 145 miles to the north, is the Misíon Hotel in Cataviña, a sort of eco-town in the boulder field of the same name. Room only; restaurant on-site.
At 188 miles this is an easy-going day. This is good because we’ll be stopping to view some ancient cave-art and take photos among cacti and boulders. As we make our way north we’ll once again negotiate the many curves on the fabulous ridge road south-east of El Rosario.
On our 2017 trip we discovered a pleasant sea-side lunch stop which we’ll be visiting once again. The day’s final destination is a 10,000 acre working cattle ranch high in the central Sierra. Before turning in to your a cosy room – heated by a pot-bellied wood stove – you’ll marvel at a crystal-clear star-studded sky. Home-style dinner and hearty breakfast included.
The final day as the ‘horses head for the barn’ although there is still some very good riding and surprising things to see. The 192 mile route from the ranch to the border crossing at Tecate will take us once again into Ensenada. There is no bypass around the city but we’ve discovered a uniquely interesting viewpoint and a fabulous café to make the passage worth our while.
Between Ensenada and Tecate we’ll cross the Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California’s where award winning wines are produced. At Tecate our tour officially ends. The traffic-avoiding ride towards San Diego is via the pleasant and uncrowded Hwy 94.
The 2018 Baja Taster Tour includes:
- Five days of easy-going paved-road riding
- Four nights in comfortable middle class Mexican hotels
- One breakfast and one evening meal
- Whale watching, including transportation to/from our hotel
- GPS waypoints, tour information sheet and Peak Rider escort
- One person, single room – $699 USD
- Two persons, sharing room – $499 USD per person
- $150 USD deposit – per person, non-refundable
- Balance due 30 days prior to departure
- Mexican vehicle liability insurance for your bike (an absolute requirement, call regarding purchase options)
- Medical and repatriation insurance
- Museum admissions and items of a personal nature
- Meals, drinks and any items not in the included list above
- Motorcycle rental, if required
Required (no exceptions):
- Mexican vehicle liability insurance
- Personal medical insurance for travel in Mexico
Repatriation coverage with your personal medical insurance
Puncture repair kit, or spare inner tubes, as appropriate
Basic tool kit which will permit wheel and tire removal, if necessary
A spare fuel container is handy if your bike has a limited fuel range
Your bike should be recently serviced and fitted with new tires.
Notes: Mexican Insurance for your vehicle is necessary for driving in Mexico. In the event of an accident Mexican liability insurance (AKA get out of jail policy) shows the ability to pay. Vehicle accidents in Mexico fall under the criminal system in Mexico, not under the civil system as in the US and other countries. As they are not under the obligations of the Mexican government vehicle insurance policies issued by US carriers are not accepted for proof of ability to pay in Mexico.
This tour, like all Peak Rider excursions, does not use a chase van or back-up vehicle. We believe biking is about biking. Also, as you will have noted, it does say adventure on the tin. Today’s motorcycles are every bit as reliable as automobiles so, in addition to the philosophical aspect, we see little need, and have even less desire, to add to your expense.
In terms of riding we class this tour as Easy to Moderate. Although the main roads are generally in decent shape there will be times when hard-packed dirt is encountered upon leaving the main tarmac. There may be occasional sections of highway under repair or construction with dirt detours. Some sections of road are notable for potholes.
As always, in order to have a safe and enjoyable experience there is no substitute for making sure both you and your machine are fully prepared. That means being physically and mentally fit, possessing a reasonably high degree of riding competence, insuring your motorcycle and its tires are in good shape and having the necessary paperwork in order.
The best way to enjoy Mexico is with an open mind and a big smile. At times it may appear a little rough around the edges but its people have warm hearts and a vibrant culture they wish to share with you.
You’ll have a whale of a time! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYJ4o3dulpA