There's nothing quite like a winter riding trip with your buddies to a new warm spot. Recently Ace Hayden, Geoff Gulevich, photographer Steve Riffel and videographer Matt Brooks from Lone Wolf Productions flew to the Mexican Baja, on a “chasing summer” trip. They were later joined by Darren Berrecloth who was already in the area and joined forces part way through the trip.
Come with us while we experience all the trails, people, and crevasses Mexico had to offer.
We chose to base our adventure in San Jose Del Cabo at the tip of the Baja nearly bordering the Pacific Ocean and the sea of Cortez. The plan was to build jumps at the local BMX spot, the “Machin Dirt”, and ride trails in the surrounding cities of Cabo San Lucas and Los Barrilies.
We were lucky enough to have made some contacts before we traveled south and had gotten in touch with Machin Solis from the “Machin Dirt” in San Jose Del Cabo, Dr. Alejandro Grimaldo (Dr. Grim) in Cabo San Lucas and Alejandro Cota Nieves in Los Barrilies. Machin and his crew of young BMXers were a huge asset to the trip and essentially dropped everything to help us build new jumps for mountain bikes. On the day of the shoot Machin and his crew unexpectedly showed up with a tent, fresh ceviche and drinks for us all which made us feel even more welcome.
We had an amazing session that went into the twilight hours and even on into the night a little. One thing we learned about the Mexican people is that they are extremely hospitable and super eager to help out wherever they can. There was always at least a few riders willing to come help dig no matter the time of day. Even despite a language barrier our mutual love of bikes spoke quite clearly to each other.
Dr. Grim was kind enough to guide us around his trails in Cabo San Lucas and take us to his favourite taco spot. The views of the famous Cabo arch rock formation were amazing from the trail in many different spots. Ace began his trip long love affair with a cactus species called the choyo getting several stuck in his arm.
Beside the cactus, the trails were awesome. They had a desert feel to them and were quite rugged. After our day on the trails Dr. Grim took us for a meal at one of his local hang outs. We enjoyed some great food and may have had the best stuffed potato on the face of the earth. Alejandro Cota Nieves is a young rider, trail builder and guide in Los Barrilies. He got us into some otherwise locked up areas of the trail networks he helped create. If you ever need a guide look him up as he knows every pebble of the trail networks in this area.
Their trails all lead back towards the sea of Cortez and were visually stunning at sun set. All sorts of pastel colours would stack on top of each other over top the ocean making a surreal looking landscape. Getting to see Geoff, Ace and Darren flowing through this vast landscape as the light shimmered off their goggles was nothing short of stunning. Besides riding we also were fortunate enough to have Darren take us spear fishing. Geoff and Darren spent a morning and afternoon out on San Jose del Cabo’s empty miles of beaches fishing, much to dismay of one puffer fish.
We also partook in the food and surfing that the area had to offer. We traveled up the Pacific Ocean side of the Baja to Cerritos beach where we surfed and enjoyed the ocean until the sun set. From there we continued up to the small town of Todos Santos and ate at the infamous Hotel California.
Our general consensus seemed to be that anyone who is looking for a warm place to ride, surf, fish or do anything active while enjoying amazing people and food should give the southern Baja a whirl, but bring tubeless tires.
We had the time of our lives Chasing Summer in the Baja…
Words: Matt Brooks
Photos: Steve Riffel