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Baja!

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by longbedder, Nov 22, 2005.

  1. longbedder

    longbedder 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Just got back from a trip down to watch the Baja 1000. There were 4 of us in a '77 Blazer, a Diesel Jimmy and my longbed '76 (with a Honda XR650 riding along).
    We crossed the border on Thursday morning last week after driving all night, then made it down to Ensenada for the last few hours of tech inspection (read: big huge party). Met alot of cool folks, had some great food, and took in all the machinery there. We left Ensenada and headed to the sticks to find a spot along the race route, and ended up camping in the high country at race mile 83. We were awakened by a helicopter blasting over at about 100 feet above ground level - that's when the bikes started coming thru. They lasted for a few hours, mixed in with quads a bit later. After an hour gap or so the trophy trucks arrived, and that was too cool. We had an ideal spot on the course and they were hauling arse around a corner right in front of us.
    After things died down a bit we headed east into the parched desert at a checkpoint with some big jumps around it. Then we went back west and camped in Valle de la Trinidad (somewhere around mile 530) for some night action. The racers had spread way out by then and kept coming thru in a steady stream all night. I was sleeping in the bed of my truck and would poke my head up and watch every once in awhile as they roared thru. In the morning there was a '77 Chevy short stepside from Class 8 that had stopped at the bottom of the hill we camped on with a broken rear spring. We went down and offered any assistance we could and chatted with the team members who were too exhausted or frozen to do much. We ended up giving them a C-clamp to hold stuff together on the truck. After about an hour they roared off with an engine that sounded like it had no top end left - turns out they won class 8 though. Then, as we were cooking breakfast over our fire, we looked up and noticed Chip Foose wake up from the camp next to ours and start putting on driving gear. We'd been next to him all night and never realized it. We walked over and said howdy and shot the bull for a few minutes - really nice guy, that one. When his Baja Challenge class car came along he swapped with the other driver (Troy Trepanier) and took off.
    After that we departed the race and headed way up on an all-day trip to Mike's Sky Ranch in the middle of nowhere. It's a killer place that caters to motorheads, and I highly recommend it. Beds are $50 US and that includes breakfast and dinner. Lotsa good trails around there. We left there the next day for the beach and ended up cooling our heels in Ensedira on a cliff overlooking the ocean. Stayed there for the night and headed back home the next day.

    Lots of good food, but if you don't bring your own you'd better like Mexican, cuz there ain't anything else.

    Great, friendly people down there - forget about Tijuana and go see the rest of Baja.

    Be prepared to break down and plan accordingly. Bring at least 2 spare tires. The '77 Blazer threw an alternator bearing and I had luckily brought along a spare alternator.

    Remember it's a whole different world down there than we're used to...but's it's really pretty neat.

    The race kicks all tail. A must see. Also, rent Dust to Glory from Blockbuster.

    I'll try and post some more pics later.

    Roofs_sm.jpg

    Trinidad_Camp_sm.jpg

    Corner_fence_sm.jpg
     
  2. BAJA_BLAZER

    BAJA_BLAZER 1/2 ton status Author

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    Glad to hear that you had a great time at the Baja 1000. There is nothing like racing in Baja. Our race didn’t go as well as planned and took us just over 30 hours to get to the finish. Our first mishap was just a few miles down course from where you spent the night. Just before the “Summit” the steering box cracked open and we lost several hours getting a new one to the truck and installed. Then around race mile 160 the truck got rolled a few times and spent 6 hours on its side. The rest of the race was uneventful as far as problems go. That old straight axle leaf sprung truck is a perfect example of the tortoise and the hare, all the fast trucks had problems. It was cool to see them get the win. We had just re-bodied the truck for this race, but it’s all wasted now. Such is racing…
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
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  3. WhiteBurb

    WhiteBurb 1/2 ton status

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    The baja is something everybody has got to see at least once in their life. I went to the '91 Baja 500, and we camped out at Mike's Sky Ranch. I was actually working a pit with my uncle. I was the fire extinguisher guy, and we must have 10 vehicles to support. It was awesome.
     
  4. drofdar

    drofdar 1/2 ton status

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    Baja Racing

    Don't forget the San Felipe 250 March 10,11,12 2006. A shorter race but you can watch the start in town, find a spot along the course, and be back in town for the finish and PARTY!!!! I'll be there this year, I have a little beach cabin along the race course. Not as much glamour, but lots of fun!
     
  5. longbedder

    longbedder 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Here's a couple more decent ones. The guy on the corner with the stupid pose in front of Robby Gordon's truck is me...

    Helo_Terribles_sm.jpg

    Keith_Robby_sm.jpg

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    Keith_Brian.jpg
     
  6. steve_kibbe

    steve_kibbe 1/2 ton status

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    looks like fun :D

    I love those trucks :bow:
     

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