Mountain Biking in Mexico

While the majority of the guests at Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay are content with sitting by the pool all day, reading their romance novels and sipping blended cocktails, Karen and I are not. I think yesterday was the first time we laid in the sun (partly because it’s rather chilly here) and that was only for a few hours. I’ve been waking up early and doing yoga and Karen has taken a few morning spinning classes at the beautiful, fully equipped gym. Yesterday we went for a nice walk along the long, deserted beach and watched several Mexican men dive for oysters. I’ve also been able to make a few delicious concoctions in the kitchen. I miss cooking when I’m in the ship! Last night we had gnocchi with homemade pesto, roasted red peppers, broccoli, and chickpeas. It was so yummy! And since we have a blender, I’ve been making fresh smoothies every morning. We went a little overboard on the mangoes at the grocery store, so I’ve only made mango-banana smoothies.

And of course, we’ve gone shopping. Karen likes to shop, and when I’m with her, I get in the mood as well (although I prefer, mostly, to look at things rather than buy them). I did get a blue Mexican long-sleeved poncho lined with fleece, which will be nice to have on the ship in Baja since it’s a lot colder here than I expected. I took Karen to a large open market that sells everything from fruit to chicken feet to handmade clothes to keychains. She (and I) had a blast. On the way back to the hotel (in our little red speedy car), we swerved into a parking lot and entered a jewelry store filled with beautiful handmade silver adornments from the Mexican state of Taxco. We spent an embarrassingly long time there. I ended up buying a pair of turquoise earrings and was tempted to buy a Mexican fire opal ring, which was more than I have ever spent on any piece of jewelry in my entire life. After spending the night thinking about it, I ended up going back the next day and buying it. As a gift to myself. Karen also bought some beautiful things as well.

But the best thing we have done so far in Mexico, was this morning. I had read online about a bike shop in Mazatlan that organizes mountain bike tours outside of town. We stopped by the shop yesterday and met Fernando Kelly Lopez – a short, stocky, 53 year old Mexican bike fanatic with blue eyes. The shop was surprisingly well stocked with bikes, tires, jerseys, sunglasses and pretty much anything else you would need for biking. After telling Fernando we wanted to go mountain biking, we planned on meeting him back there at eight the next morning.

After coffee and a mango-banana parfait, we headed back to his shop. There, Fernando equipped us with full-suspension mountain bikes, helmets, gloves, and a water bottle. By 8:30 we were on our way. Fernando said he built three different single-track trails on his extended family’s land, so that’s where we headed. After an hour of tight twists and turns through the scraggly brush, sandy descents, and short, steeps climbs, Fernando confessed that he hadn’t believed us when we said we were good bikers in the shop yesterday. He changed his mind, though, and avidly insisted that we could do mountain bike races down here in Mexico.

We were out for about three hours, riding single-track and double-track through the Mexican landscape. Only one broken chain and a flat tire – not too bad. It was so much fun and Fernando was a such great guide. By the time we returned to the shop, both Karen and I were tired, hungry, extremely dusty, but thoroughly content. We told Fernando that anytime he wanted to come to Vermont, he would have a place to stay and we’d show him around our network of trails.

Time to lay in the sun. I think we’ve earned it!


One Response

  1. hi enjoyed reading about your bike ride. we got about 18 inches of snow wednesday. everything just about came to a halt. going out to clean off the car and try to get to the market. continue to enjoy your time in mexico take care pops

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