Adiós Mexico!

At the Border

Yes, adios Mexico. I am in Juarez and will cross the border back into the USA in the next day or two. You may be thinking, wait a minute, you were just in Puerto Vallarta two weeks ago. How did you get all the way to Juarez so fast? Well it’s simple. I had to take the bus. Let me explain.

I did a lot of planning while I was bedridden in Vallarta with a massive cold/pnemonia. It was the sickest I have been in years. But it was good because I had a lot of time to plan my next steps and was able to develop a tentative schedule for the next year. Ready? Here goes:

Mar 2018 Mexico
Apr 2018 USA, CO
May 2018 USA, WY, ID
Jun 2018 USA, OR, WA
Jul 2018 USA, WA/JAPAN
Aug 2018 JAPAN
Jan 2019 SYDNEY, AUS
Mar 2019 DARWIN, AUS

One thing I realized is that in order to meet this plan I would not be able to ride all the way north in Mexico. In fact, I found out the that the train I was going to take does not accept bicycles so I just decided to bus it all the way to the US border from Mazatlan. This would have taken about a month on my bike. Here is my current location. Bus route is in red.

So the plan is to ride back to Denver once I leave Mexico, then make my way to Seattle and hang out there for a bit. Then fly to Tokyo and cycle north to Hokkaido, then back to Tokyo which will take about two months.

From there I will fly to Hanoi in Vietnam and cycle the length of the country south to Ho Chi Minh city, arriving in late October. Then I will fly to Darwin, Australia and ride counterclockwise through the middle of the country to the south coast, then back around to Darwin. I will then fly to Singapore and cycle up to Thailand. Longer term I will ride around Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar before heading off to India, but that’s too far to really plan at this point.

Here is my planned USA route from March to July.

So that’s the future. But first a few last shots of Mexico. I made my way to the popular resort city of Mazatlan. On the way I saw this overflowing garbage bin.

I’ve commented on the latin american attitude toward littering in the past but I thought, well at least they are trying here. The authorities just need to empty the darn bins.

One thing you will notice here and on the roads in Mexico is the HUGE number of plastic bottles by the roadside. There are millions of them. I feel guilty myself because I buy one or two every day. The world must be awash in empty plastic bottles. Can they be recycled?

One idea I had was to put a small deposit on them at the point of purchase. This was done with aluminum cans and glass bottles and was very successful. I guarantee there will be people scouring the roadside picking up plastic bottles in Mexico if they could get a peso or two from them. That would eliminate 75% of all the trash on the side of the road here. Then you could expand the idea to styrofoam cups and the plastic bags you get a grocery stores and convenience stores. Why not? Then apply a deposit to paper coffer cups and other paper containers. If all this packaging came with a deposit I am sure 99% of all the trash on the roadways would disappear, and it would create thousands of jobs for rural people who would capitalize on other people’s trashful ways. What you you all think?

Moving on, I strolled around the main plaza of one town I stayed in and there were thousands of birds squawking all over. I had flashbacks of the Alfred Hitchcock film The Birds and hurried back to my hotel room.

Crossing into Sinaloa state, infamous for the Sinaloa drug cartel.

As I made my way up to Mazatlan I camped right on the beach one night. One of my nicer camping spots.

Unfortunately I must have ate something bad because I felt queasy all day and ran a fever during the night. Not a great evening. I did not eat a thing for a day and a half. But by the time I got to Mazatlan it had passed.

So that’s pretty much it from Mexico. No photos from the bus or the few places I stayed on the way. Mexico is a great country to visit. As I’ve said, the people are extremely friendly, the food is delicious, there’s history and culture, mountains, beaches and it’s cheap. I highly recommend a visit. But I wouldn’t come back on a bike. The roads are rough with few shoulders, lots of traffic and few places to camp. So for me it was not a great place for bike touring. But still a lot of great memories.

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