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Old 11-09-2016, 06:21 PM   #61
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Too pooped to pop
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Old 11-09-2016, 07:03 PM   #62
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

High tech gringos in a lo-tech cantina


A walk home in the dark



Surprised to see these guys up so early


Checking in with Mayo at the Maria Luisa Hotel in Aramberi. I told him where we were going.
But I didn't ask how the road was.



Things started out well enough (don't they always?).
One little fall. Rich found my hand brake cable binding and not fully releasing.
Once the cables were re-routed the bike rolled alot easier.

We passed some houses, which I thought I remembered, a settlement called Agua Fria. Shortly thereafter we came to the end of the line.
A flood had created a ravine across our road.
We probably could've picked our way across, but the road on the other side of the ravine was growing grass.
Apparent but unused.

One thing I've learned. Usually when you come to an obstacle such as this, and you work to get past it, things can get progressively worse the further on you go.


The end of the line.


I was pretty tired at this point and the prospect of retracing our tracks (are you serious?) turned my stomach a bit.

We had passed a couple of other vague roads since passing Aqua Fria. Bob and Scott climbed back up the hill to seek information at the houses.

Rich and I waited.
"Milton," Rich said. "Is this fun to you?"
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Old 11-09-2016, 07:10 PM   #63
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Omg, y'all sure keep us hanging!
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Old 11-09-2016, 07:25 PM   #64
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Eventually Bob and Scott summoned us via the radio to come back up the hill.
We tried another road. Down.
We came to a small but technically challenging stream. There was no way I was going to attempt it. We all had trouble but Scott seemed to be the most in control.
At one point I turned away from the little brook and the rocks and the road and looking back into the woods, to see a splendid water fall and pool.

A splendid waterfall and pool


We turned back, retracing our steps once again, and tried another road. Down.
To me, down means good, but after crossing a fallen tree stretched across the road, and much "Show me on your GPS" Richard convinced me this road would lead no where.
How can that be?
But these hills are laced with logging roads so conceivably he was right.
Me?
I was definitely lost.
There was no choice but to head back UP.
Did I fall again? I can't remember.
But when we got back to the houses at Agua Fria my bike pulled over and I instinctively dismounted.
What are you doing?
I'm staying here.
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Old 11-09-2016, 07:48 PM   #65
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Oh there was much discussion. Rich thought a little trail mix and water and I'd be fine.
My gut said "Stay here".
Scott cajoled and convinced me to come on, give it a try, you can do it.
Ok, I said, (reluctantly),
Off we go, up the switch backs, one after another. We passed a man walking on the side of the road.
Not a half a mile further on I fell again on an easy switchback.

Out of reserves, I just didn't have it in me.



I apologized to Scott, my wing-man.
"I just don't have my heart in it."


The guys got my bike started again.
Each and every fall flooded the engine.



OK. That's it, I said. I'm done. I'm staying right here on the mountain.
No problem. I've got this. You guys go on, I'll see you in Aramberi.
Much logistical discussion ensued.
Rich offered to stay with me, which I knew he would. (All that Ranger No Man Left Behind training, you know).
I didn't mind. Either way I had to ride out of here in the morning.

Well Rich. You wanted to ride with Milton.
Well this is how Milton rides.
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Wrong Way 'Round the Bend 2011
Uncle's Around the Bend, the Wrong way
Harleys 2 Mexico 2009 Tour
MexTrek 2008
Mexico March Ride (2008)
Peru, 2003

Last edited by miltonotto; 11-09-2016 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 11-09-2016, 10:18 PM   #66
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Quote:
Originally Posted by miltonotto View Post
Oh there was much discussion. Rich thought a little trail mix and water and I'd be fine.
My gut said "Stay here".
Scott cajoled and convinced me to come on, give it a try, you can do it.
Ok, I said, (reluctantly),
Off we go, up the switch backs, one after another. We passed a man walking on the side of the road.
Not a half a mile further on I fell again on an easy switchback.

Out of reserves, I just didn't have it in me.



I apologized to Scott, my wing-man.
"I just don't have my heart in it."


The guys got my bike started again.
Each and every fall flooded the engine.



OK. That's it, I said. I'm done. I'm staying right here on the mountain.
No problem. I've got this. You guys go on, I'll see you in Aramberi.
Much logistical discussion ensued.
Rich offered to stay with me, which I knew he would. (All that Ranger No Man Left Behind training, you know).
I didn't mind. Either way I had to ride out of here in the morning.

Well Rich. You wanted to ride with Milton.
Well this is how Milton rides.
GREAT STORY FELLERS. I WOULD HAVE SLEPT ON THE MOUNTAIN TOO.
KEEP IN COMING.
LATER TATERS,
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Old 11-09-2016, 11:08 PM   #67
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Great report, need more.......


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Old 11-10-2016, 07:32 AM   #68
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Spiders. More spiders. And even more spiders. I have never seen so many spiders. They were everywhere. A Mexican version of the Daddy Long Legs, crawling all over the ground. No matter where you stopped, they were there. Like the spider scene from that Harry Potter movie, but smaller. Thankfully smaller. Not harmful. They didn't want to eat us but I sure didn't relish the idea of sleeping on the hard ground while spiders crawled over me all night long.

But that's what I was prepared to do.

Milton was too tired to go on. So, we were staying right here. On the side of the mountain. Sleeping on the ground (none of us brought camping gear 'cause we don't camp). It was going to be uncomfortable but there was no other option. Milton needed to rest enough to regain his strength.

We had a group discussion about how to best handle the situation. I told Bob and Scott to ride back to Aramberri and get a room in the local hotel. There was no need for all of us to suffer. I would stay on the mountain with Milton and we would ride out in the morning.

During our impromptu group meeting, a man walked by. Astute readers of this story may have noticed laundry hanging on a clothes line in one of the previous pictures. That was his home and it was about a mile back. His name was Cirilo and he was walking to a field up ahead to retrieve his goats. We visited with him for a few minutes and then he continued on his way.

Finally, Bob and Scott agreed to ride back to Aramberri. I told them Milton and I would be along about 10 am the next morning. If we didn't arrive by noon it meant that either one of our bikes had broken or that one of us had gotten injured. Mount a rescue and come get us.

Off they went.

Milton and I settled down, sitting on the rocks as I watched the spiders coming in for a closer look. Ugh, I really don't care for spiders.

A bit later Cirilo came back down the road, driving his goats back to his place. "Come to my house", he says to us. After a short discussion, Milton and I agree. Anything is better than sleeping on rocks. Or with spiders.

Milton and I mount up and head back toward Cirilo's house. Milton drops the bike again, he is exhausted.

Finally, we arrive at Cirilo's place and his father, Frederico, greets us by opening the gate in the wire fence and escorting us to their home.


The adventure needle just pegged "Epic Milton".
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Old 11-10-2016, 07:55 AM   #69
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Wow
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Old 11-10-2016, 08:11 AM   #70
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trail Boss View Post
Astute readers of this story may have noticed laundry hanging on a clothes line in one of the previous pictures.

The adventure needle just pegged "Epic Milton".
I had noticed the laundry and at the first mention of spending the night I had a feeling that Milton would not be camping on the side of the road. The hospitality of the Mexican culture is second to none.
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Old 11-10-2016, 10:36 AM   #71
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Awesome adventure. I look forward to reading the rest.
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Old 11-10-2016, 10:47 AM   #72
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Re: And so the adventure continues...



Keep it coming.

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Old 11-10-2016, 01:57 PM   #73
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Excellent.....
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Old 11-10-2016, 05:03 PM   #74
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Fantastic story!
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Old 11-11-2016, 01:10 AM   #75
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Yep. This was Agua Fria alright. Where my bike instinctively wanted to stay for the night.


Scott cajoled and convinced me to come on, give it a try, you can do it.
Ok, I said, (reluctantly),



Not a half a mile further on I fell again on an easy switchback.

Out of reserves, I just didn't have it in me.
OK. That's it, I said. I'm done. I'm staying right here on the mountain.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Trail Boss View Post
Sleeping on the ground (none of us brought camping gear 'cause we don't camp).
?? Say again, sir. Speak for yourself. I always carry a bivy bag, tarp, parachute cord, and matches. I am always at least a little prepared to pass a night in the boonies.

Cirilo, the guy I'd passed before my last fall, came walking up. He had a splendid mustache, Salvadore Dali style with the ends leading to his sideburns.
"Do you live here?" I foolishly asked.
He lived back at Agua Fria he said. I told him my situation, and my desire to spend the night on the mountain.
He was just going to fetch his goats, he'd be back en un rato. I told him Rich and I would stay right here until his return.
It wasn't long before we heard the tinkling of bells and a herd of goats came straight down the hill, cross country thru the woods crossing the road, followed by the attendant dog.
Cirilo wasn't far behind, huffing it down the road.
He'd had time to review our situation and invited us to Agua Fria.

He told me when we came to the houses to go "mas adentro". It was a lot further back to the houses than I remembered, (and I did not fall, Richard!).
What was weird was when we came to the houses an old man held the gate open for us.
There was no way Cirilo could have beat us back but this man held the gate open for us motioning to come on in.
What was this? The bamboo telegraph? How did this guy know?
Because our motorcycles had been here earlier.
And anyone approaching his house on a motorcycle at this time of day was going to stay the night?
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Old 11-11-2016, 07:36 AM   #76
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

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Old 11-12-2016, 09:20 AM   #77
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

My camera (actually it was Rich's camera on loan) had lost all it's settings in today's series of get-offs,
But here is Federico, (who turned out to be Cirilo's dad), standing with Rich in front of the building where we were to sleep for the night.



Agua Fria consisted of some houses scattered about and maybe 20-30 inhabitants. Incredibly Federico, 73yrs old, told us he had been born here.


Cirilo arrived, proper introductions made, we were shown the outhouse and we where to wash up. It was the time of day for the chickens to gather in their tree for the night,
Safely off the ground.
A plastic tube stretching some 6km up the mountain delivered fresh spring water to the settlement.
There was limited electricity. The kitchen had a couple of solar panels, and our sleeping quarters had a series of car batteries rigged to operate the light.
The beds were high and welcoming.

One of the houses was the kitchen. We were invited to sit down and have some tortillas and beans. Lots of fresh water.
We ate alone, watched over by everyone. On display?
In these rural areas the women don't eat with the men anyway.

I was asked if I wanted coffee, and when it came it was a cup of hot water.
A bottle of Instant Nescafe was handed to me.
When I opened the lid it still had the seal on it. It had never been opened!
Embarrassed I protested, but they would hear none of that.

"They" were Federico, his wife, a couple of younger teenage girls, and Cirilo's son, Heriberto, who was extremely shy at first.
Rich did a couple of magic tricks to break the ice.
I wish I knew some magic tricks.


The kitchen, in the morning


Cirlilo and Herberto, hangin' with Richard in the kitchen


After eating in the kitchen, which I guess was Federico and his wife's kitchen, Cirilo came up and asked if we wanted to eat and his house now.
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"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one."
~C. S. Lewis

Why My Friends Won't Ride With Me

He's a tour guide, John, what the bleep does he know?"

Wrong Way 'Round the Bend 2011
Uncle's Around the Bend, the Wrong way
Harleys 2 Mexico 2009 Tour
MexTrek 2008
Mexico March Ride (2008)
Peru, 2003

Last edited by miltonotto; 11-12-2016 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 11-14-2016, 08:01 AM   #78
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

The kindness of these people was humbling.

Cirilo and his wife live here with their eight children and his parents, Frederico and Grandma. (As seems to be traditional in the Mexican culture, the women were not introduced to us and basically did not speak to us, so we didn't get names. They weren't rude or anything, they just basically stayed out of sight.)

They had a small cluster of buildings, each with a different purpose. One building was Grandma's kitchen, one was where Cirilo and his family lived, Frederico and his wife lived in another, Milton and I were in a guest/storage building, and so on. The buildings were all of similar design, primitive, built from earth and wood, with metal roofs and dirt floors. The little bit of electricity they had was used to light a bulb or two in the buildings and was provided by car batteries, recharged with a few solar panels.




This ranch is at least a three hour drive from town or a six hour walk. With no other people living in the area, there are no stores, churches, or schools so Cirilo and family have to be mostly self-sufficient. A field of corn was growing near the buildings and they had chickens, pigs, goats and cows, which, presumably, provided meat and milk. They also had dogs (ranch security) and a couple of horses.

Wood was used for heat and cooking. The little solar panels don't produce much electricity but wood was abundant and free. But, of course, it had to be chopped up to be used, which I presume is a near daily chore.


As Milton mentioned, water was sourced from a natural spring four kilometers up the mountain.

An outhouse was located beyond the cluster of buildings.



Frederico had us park our bikes in the middle of their cluster of buildings and then he and Cirilo did what they could to make us feel at home. They fetched a couple of old wooden chairs for us to sit on and then covered our bikes with some plastic tarp to keep them from getting wet from the overnight dew. Meanwhile, Cirilo's children peaked out of doors and windows to get a look at the two old gringos on their dirty motorcycles.
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Old 11-14-2016, 08:52 AM   #79
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

Talk about an experience that'll be remembered and cherished for life. Always seems these experiences happen when the plan goes off path.

Thanks to you both sharing so much.
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Old 11-14-2016, 10:44 AM   #80
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Re: And so the adventure continues...

By the way, it was an extremely chilly night. We would've been very uncomfortable without a roof over our head.

Federico, the older man, was 73 and when I asked where he was born, he answered Here! Incredible.

Last edited by miltonotto; 11-14-2016 at 10:47 AM.
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