Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 6

Day 6 Rancho de San Ignacio to Baranca
We bid our benefactor adios and continue our way west, crossing the arroyo one more time (dry here) before riding on through 20 miles of rocky road on land where even the cactus refuse to survive. There are a series of low hills which we climb in hopes of a glimpse of the ocean, but each time we are denied, feeling only the wind from the west against us. There are long stretches of deep fine sand where we are forced to dismount and drag our bikes. Three and a half hours (and one cold coke given to us by a farmer) later, we find ourselves food and drink in Santo Domingo (and pavement!). We enjoy a long lunch, I introduce Shahe to a liquid yogurt drink similar to Keifer and we are entertained by Sindy and Monica, sisters ages 6 and 4. We ask the store owner if we can get water and he directs us to a hose bib in his yard. With full water bottles, some cheese and tortillas, we start north on the highway.
The wind has stiffened, we try drafting but it is difficult because the are many large holes in the pavement. Then we encounter a seemingly endless series of ripped up road sections. Sometimes, if we are lucky, a parallel dirt road appears. Overall the. road is about 50/50 paved and ripped up in alternate sections. We are not going to make it to La Purissima to sleep behind the Mission as Shahe had done on his December solo trip 5 years ago. After several hours of this it is almost 6 and we decide to try and hitch hike at Francisco Villa, a dusty, unpaved town along our way. No one is on the highway leading north from here. We see only a handful of cars in 45 minutes, and none with room for our bikes and us. Shahe says we should give up and find a place in the village to camp. I said ok, but let's try this last car I see two miles in the distance. It takes about 5 minutes for him to reach us, but he does stop his old red Izuzu pickup and we manage to fit the bikes and us in around a huge truck tire in the bed of the truck. Flying along the highway, we smile at our good fortune (unable to talk over the wind) and get a ride for maybe 18 miles to the road to Baranca, a small fishing village. The driver invites us to come into town to camp there, but we decline as it is out of our way and we are prepared to spend the night in the desert. For a quarter mile, we follow a dusty farm road that winds through the cactus before settling on a flat spot to camp. Spreading out our sleeping bags, inflating out mats, eating so me cheese and tortillas, Shahe is soon ready to sleep. I attempt a failed sponge bath and write these words in my journal before once again drifting off to sleep under the stars. I think I hear the ocean waves in the distance....

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