Many of my ride posts attest to the fact that I ride year round. You know rain, snow, dark of night, like the postal service only I do it for recreation. I’ve pushed my bike up the last snowy bit on Galbraith many a time and even carried my bike over parts of Wickersham in the snow. This year though I am trying a little different take on winter riding; winter riding in Baja. My wife and I packed up three dogs and everything we’d need for three months into and onto our CRV; we then pointed said CRV towards Mexico and drove away from the snow, ice, and sub freezing temperatures of Ferndale, WA.
This is our first attempt at snow-birding, so we have many things to learn, but after 60 years of dreary NW winters I was ready; 30 years after leaving Southern California I think my wife was also more than ready and we have family in San Felipe who found us a place to rent. And then to make it all work out, my employer is willing let me try working remotely.
I haven’t given winter riding much deep thought, but lately I’m thinking and coming to the conclusion that winter riding really is dependent upon your perspective. One person’s winter riding is another person’s summer riding and vice versa. Until now, winter riding always meant 30 – 40 degrees, dark, raining with occasional snow and maybe a peek of sun here and there. Here in Baja their winter riding is dry, in the 60’s, and mostly sunny; Baja winter riding is Bellingham summer riding.
After packing the CRV with all our stuff, dogs and dog stuff, we had room for just one bike. For that bike I chose my Scott Boulder “gravel bike.” I didn’t know what to expect really in the way of road, dirt roads, trails, etc. so I picked one bike that I thought I could have fun with no matter where I found to ride. Also a big factor was something that was low value and kind of ugly so as not to attract thief types during our travels, mostly thinking of hotels and such along the way. My plan worked; put it up in our driveway at home then 5 days later took it down in our driveway in San Felipe. It did manage to take out a Taco Time drive thru awning as well as knocking some signage around at a Wendy’s while only tearing a little handle bar wrap.
Here’s my winter riding tip; ride in Mexico. Mexico is beautiful at this time of year, no rain, no snow, lots of sun, not too hot, not too cold, and just enough clouds to really touch off some great sunrises and sunsets.