Friday, February 8, 2013

Back in Baja!

I'd ridden barely a quarter of a mile since gingerly getting back in the saddle.  Somewhere over the mountains was the village of San Jose De Commondu.  Beyond that about 40 km was Loreto.  Directly in my path was a wide but steep hill, with 200' of loose flat shale all the way to the top.

It was hot, no shade at all.  My leg was in varying degrees of pain, seeping through me in waves.  I couldn't place any weight on it at all.  Standing on the pegs to climb the hill was out of the question, in fact walking was nearly impossible.  What to do...

Home sweet home!

I'm only 60 km from my nights destination.  Its still early and at these latitudes, on the mountain tops, I'd have sun for several hours... but I didn't know the way, I did know I had damaged my ankle, perhaps badly.  I was beginning to think this was more than a simple sprain.

On the other hand, it was 40 km or so back to highway 1 and of course I knew the route.  There was a few sections where I would have to be extremely careful, mostly washed out ravines on mountain paths and rocky dry riverbeds.  I can't ride "trials" like standing on the pegs for a lower center of gravity, nor could I ride on the saddle spreading my body weight equally onto the cleated foot-pegs.  There was little time to think and no helpful trees to block the sun.  Food was no problem, nor was fuel.  The little engine that could, was extremely fuel efficient and I always carried a spare liter good for a) about 40-50km or b)  lighting my bike on fire to attract a rescue helicopter!

Didn't take long to make up my mind.  Adventurous as I am, discretion in this case made a lot more sense.  I had to turn around and re trace my tracks.

The beach.

Needless to say, the ride to the pavement took a long time at low speeds, wobbling as I was on a single leg for support.  By the time I reached the Trans Peninsular, I was drenched in sweat and plumb near worn out.  The few times I inadvertently put my foot down, I thought I was going to pass out!  At least on the pavement I could relax somewhat.  I rode the 60km back to Las Cocos late in the afternoon, arriving as it was in the early evening.  My ankle mushroomed after my boot came off.  I sought out the help and advice of one of my Cdn compatriots that had been an emergency room nurse for many years.  She iced and wrapped me up and suggested I get a drive into Santa Rosalia, where I may be able to get medical attention.  Being the "tough guy" (read foolish) that I am, I declined, after all, there was no guarantee I could get a cast locally and then what?  Barb was going to be arriving at the Loreto aeropuerto in mere days! Besides I told myself, its only a bad strain... even though Patty assured me it was most likely broken.  In fact, when I arrived home in Calgary a month later and did visit the Docs/Xray clinic, I found out it was a vertical fracture!

Feeding the gulls, wrapped up!

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