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Day 23 – Police, Military Checkpoints, Road Blocks, and Non-Ending Speed Bumps (Puerto Escondido, Mexico)

26 Oct

We left Acapulco around 9 am.  At 9:30 am, as we exited the city two policemen stopped us and told us that we were going above the speed limit of 50 km/h (33 mph).  We were going in the first lane along with all the traffic.  We were getting fed up with being stopped all the time and Vadim bluntly refused to pay them anything and we both requested to be taken to the police station.  We told them that we cannot pay bribes to the cops every day as we still have a long way to Argentina and there will be many more police encounters for us.  The police immediately returned our driver’s licenses and wished us a safe trip.

The road to Puerto Escondido was not easy.  It was windy and full of “topes” (speed bumps).  Without over-exaggerating, we probably went over 300 “topes”.  Most of them were unmarked and unexpected.  One can lose a wheel if you don’t slow down on some of these “topes”.  We spent almost nine hours (including short breaks) on the road today.

We went through four military check points where we were greeted by armed military men, some of them wearing masks.  At one military check point, our luggage was searched.  Overall, our encounters with the military have been friendly, as they are after drug traffickers, not tourists.

As we progressed down the never ending windy road through the jungle, our ride ended when the road was blocked by a crowd with a political agenda near Pinotepa Nacional.  They laid the trees on the road preventing any cars to go through the only road leading to Puerto Escondido.  We both bypassed all the stopped traffic and went right to the blockage.  Vadim removed his helmet and found out who the movement leader was.  It was a middle-age men wearing a red polo shirt.  He was surrounded by his supporters.  Vadim asked him if we can get through the cordon.  The movement leader asked Vadim why we were going to Puerto Escondido.  Vadim replied that he is from Russia and is going to the southern tip of Argentina and Puerto Escondido is just a stop to get some rest.  After some negotiating, the crowd gave us OK to go through.  They removed a few trees and asked us to move our bikes without starting the engines.  It was very hot and we were very tired.  Moving 700 pound bikes was not easy especially over one tree that the crowd did not remove intentionally.  Everyone was cheering as we were pushing our bikes; a coupe of people from the crowd helped us.  Luckily, we were the only ones who were allowed to go through.

About 20 km later, believe it or not, the only road to Puerto Escondido was blocked by another crowd with the same political agenda as the first one.  This time the road was blocked with stones.  A person that looked like a policeman came to us and told us that we cannot go through the blockage.  Vadim removed his helmet and showed a Russian flag on his motorcycle jacket.  Another guy from the crowd ran to us and said that we can pass on a narrow unpaved edge of the road that was not blocked.  We both through squeezed our heavy wide bikes through the narrow path and off we were on our way to Puerto Escondido.

After hitting another 100 or so topes, we arrived to Puerto Escondido around 5:30 pm.  We finally found a sign to our hotel.  It was an unpaved road that turned into sand.  Vadim almost fell twice before he reached the hotel lobby because the bike was sinking into the sand.  In the hotel, we were greeted by an American owner and were taken to our two-bedroom room overseeing the ocean bay from the cliff.  There were some surfers out in the ocean and the view from our villa was absolutely stunning.  After another rough day, the effort paid off.  We are in another beautiful place in Mexico.  Puerto Escondido is the #2 surfing place in the world with waves reaching 16 meters (50 feet).  We decided to stay an extra day in Puerto Escondido and work on the many videos we took during the past 3 weeks that we did not have the opportunity to review and upload for our followers.

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Playa Carrizalillo in Puerto Escondido

Routes taken: Mexico 200

Miles ridden: 261 mile (420 km)

 
1 Comment

Posted by ginsad in Mexico

 

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  1. Juan Pablo

    October 27, 2010 at 11:26

    Sorry about that, México can be difficult sometimes… enjoy Puerto Escondido!!