One of the little discoveries we made while at the Horizons Unlimited meeting had to do with our Temporary Vehicle Import Permit (TVIP) paperwork. Our initial plan was to send our moto trailer back to Minnesota with Ehren’s father and then head through Mexico as planned and cancel our TVIPs at the Guatemala border. What we learned, however, is that since the trailer is listed on the TVIP for Brittany’s bike, it would need to be present at the border in order to cancel the paperwork successfully and have our deposits returned to us.
Ehren’s dad was on a tight schedule to get back to work and wouldn’t be able to wait for us to bring it to Tecate to cancel the paperwork, so we quickly cycled through our options. We thought of Allen, the guy who shipped our KTM motorbike from Minnesota to Nevada after we sold it to one of Ehren’s old coworkers last year. We reached out to him knowing he lived somewhere in southern California; lucky for us, this turned out to be San Diego. Even better, he was already planning a trip to Minnesota in mid-October. Perfect, things were falling into place. We made arrangements to drop the moto trailer off at his house.
We made our way south to the border and arrived in Tecate. Successfully canceling our TVIPs for both bikes and trailer, we crossed back into the States and made our way over to San Diego. After we dropped off our trailer with Allen, we decided to camp out at the Laguna Mountain Rec Area area east of the city to prepare ourselves for more paperwork at the border the next day (and to beat the heat—the overnight low was in the 30s). During the night a feisty raccoon attempted a robbery of some snacks and was foiled by Ehren chasing him around at 1 a.m. With all snacks recovered and the raccoon in retreat, dawn was upon us too soon.
A late start saw us racing the clock to reach the border in time to catch the tourist visa office, which was only open until 1 p.m. We got in with 30 minutes to spare and successfully renewed our tourist visas for another six months from October 11. Then we went next door to work on getting our new TVIPs for just the two bikes. As we were leaving the copy shop (where we had to get copies of documents for the office to put on file), we hear, “Hey, Elefants!” from behind us. We turn to look and find it is Gary (a.k.a. ‘Shrekin’), a fellow motorcycle adventurer we had just met at the travelers meeting two weeks previous. The three of us decided to ride into Ensenada together.
After settling in to our hotel, we took care of some business and met up later with Gary and another traveler at a taco joint for some fish and shrimp tacos. As the discussion wandered, Gary and Johnston (the new traveler) decided they would head east and ride south through San Felipe. The two of us were set on heading south along the west coast to El Rosario.
As morning dawned we saw our friends off and then hit the road again, heading out of Ensenada and into what seemed like never-ending towns and traffic. We eventually got to ride through some beautiful cool desert terrain all the way in to El Rosario where we stayed the night. We filled our bikes up with fuel, our bellies up with food, ran to the mercado around the corner for tomorrow’s essentials and turned in for the night. The next day would find us heading east to our first beach camping site on the Sea of Cortez.