Chris' 1994  R100GS/PDChris' new bike, a 1996 F650 ULTIMATE JOURNEY Erin's 1997  F650
Living a Dream . . . 2 Live-N-Ride

April 6th, 2003.-- Mexico: Day Approaching 4 years, and nearing the end

Credit to

The city of Puebla is no tiny Pueblo

-- Story by Chris --

Friday, April 4th: Packed the bikes and got on the road by 9am for the 380km ride to Puebla, 120km from Mexico City. We avoided taking the $30/bike autopista, and stayed on the Federal road, which passes through the center of each village along the way, but it’s free! Again, we had curves galore as we rose and fell through the mountains. The route was all paved, but the countless curves and numerous speed bumps at every town/village made travelling at speed almost impossible. It took nearly 7 hours to reach Puebla.

About a year ago, we got the following email:

somos un grupo de mexicanos aficionados a la motocicleta,y quisieramos saber si en su itinerario se encuentra la ciudad de puebla, esto esta como a 120 kms al sur del Mexico D.F.

Suerte en su viaje y los seguiremos atraves de internet

At the time (we were in South America), I thought the note was from some folks from a small village (pueblo), with a paved main street, about 120km from Mexico City. The difference between an "O" and an "A" can be quite dramatic. In fact, we are in Puebla, the capital city of the province of Puebla – the city has a population of about 2 million! We did figure this out several weeks ago.

We were met on the road about 50km before Puebla by Joaquin and Jose, and brought to Joaquin’s home where he had a spare room for us.  Joaquin, Jose, and some other friends tried to meet us about a month ago -- they came down to the Yucatan, but we were still in Guatemala.  We parked the bikes in his bike garage, along with about 8 trail bikes, an old Harley Police bike, several KTMs, and his R1150GS. We went from Oh to Ahhh – again, the difference between an "O" and an "A".

A delicious dinner was waiting on the table, prepared by the cook. After stuffing ourselves, we unpacked the bikes, had a quick shower, and went into the city center to listen to live Marimba music across from the zocolo (main plaza). 

Sat, April 4th: Joaquin took us to Cholula, a neighboring town and site of an interesting pyramid. As you approach the town center, a beautiful old church built by the Spanish can be seen atop a large hill. Apparently, in the 1920s there was an earthquake, and they discovered remains of some ruins below the hill. As it happens, there were 3 pyramids below, 1 built on top of the other by conquering tribes. The top pyramid is supposed to have the widest base of all known pyramids in the world (including those in Egypt), measuring some 400 meters by 400 meters. When the Spanish came (and conquered) they covered the top pyramid with dirt (it became a large hill), and built their church above it. Today, tourists (like us) can walk through some of the many tunnels through the mountain which were dug by archeologists.

We returned to the house later in the day and spent the evening drinking wine and/or scotch, and nibbling on wonderful dried ham (like Italian presunto).  Joaquin was actually supposed to be in Tunisia for 2 weeks, participating in the famous Tunisia Ralle, but he had a last minute medical problem (all better now) and never got on the plane.   His son, Pedro de Uriarte, is participatiing (21 yrs old) and after the first day, is #32 -- and ahead of Richard Sainct!
Note April 14th:  Pedro finished his first rally, #20 overall, and #10 in his class -- pretty amazing stuff!

Sun, April 5th: We loaded up 3 bikes on the trailer, another bike was in the pickup, and 4 of us headed into the mountains for a bit of a play. The truck was parked at about 2,300 meters, and we rode up to a (dry) lake above 4,200 meters. Joaquin and his friend Carlos are excellent riders, and do this trail often. The lower section felt, to me, like riding an equestrian trial, with jumps every 30 meters or so. Some I did beautifully, others, with much less grace, barely keeping the bike under me as my appendages flew everywhere. About midway up the mountain, we got hit by a passing rain shower, which while chilly at altitude, also did a wonderful job of matting down the dust. The upper trail was rocky and very sandy, but the little (250cc) bikes we had just plowed through as easy as riding a bicycle in the park. After a few hours, we came down from the mountain and Joaquin was teaching us how to do wheelies. We returned to the house for another delicious meal prepared by the cook, then went to bed, exhausted!


Cholula, the Spanish church built atop of 3 pyramids


Scale model of the pyramids -- the bottom pyramid is the large square, outlined in green around the edges.


Joaquin, sacrificing himself for us on the alter


A toast, to our terrific host, Joaquin!


Later that night...


Gee, it's so light and easy to ride!!!


Joaquin giving a little demo


Notice the concentration


Ahh, this is much more fun!


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