Reluctantly Going Home
Sunday morning was beautiful. There were just a few clouds in the sky and the temperature was pleasantly in the high 60s. The weather app on my phone was predicting a chance of afternoon rain showers, which was no surprise – that had been the weather prediction every day of this trip.
Our plan today was to ride north on the Gold Standard route and then head east for McAllen. With a little luck we would be back in Texas before the sun set today. If we ran into issues we were prepared to stay another night in Mexico.
We wanted to get a somewhat early start so we decided to ride an hour north to Rayones and grab breakfast there.
A last view looking back toward Galeana
Milton knew of a fine little restaurant in Rayones, so that’s where we went. I was surprised to see a couple on a R1200GS when we arrived. Then, during breakfast a number of other riders showed up. They were riders from Monterrey out for a Sunday ride and this restaurant was one of their normal ride-to-eat destinations.
The owner and his wife.
After breakfast we rode north toward Las Truncas and the turn-off for The Gold Standard route. As was my habit I stopped frequently to grab a picture here and there.
Cabanas are a popular lodging option in this area. These particular cabanas are owned by the guy who owns the restaurant in Rayones.
The views never fail to satisfy.
In Las Truncas we stopped to take a short break. Three young locals swimming in the river decided we were more interesting than swimming and decided to hang out with us. With a little urging we were able to get them to sing a song for us. Very cool.
Shortly after leaving Las Truncas, we began the climb up the mountains. The Gold Standard is a fantastic dirt road that goes up and over the mountains to Mesa de Oso and then on to Laguna de Sanchez.
Yes, the road really is that steep in some areas.
Once over the top we were treated to a magnificent view of the tops of the mountains above the clouds and the clouds sweeping into a valley between two peaks. A Kodak moment if there ever was one. :sun: Even the non-picture takers stopped and took a picture.
After that the road became an easy class 1 but the views were wonderful.
Once we reached Laguna de Sanchez we stopped for a short break at El Mirador restaurant. It was packed with couples and families out and about on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. In fact, from this point until we reached the toll freeway to McAllen, there were people everywhere taking advantage of a fine Sunday afternoon.
The view from the top deck of El Mirador
A short time after we arrived at El Mirador the afternoon rain showers showed up. We ended up riding in the rain for about 1/2 hour. Once we exited the mountains to the desert below we were mostly out of the rain.
The last good riding of the trip. After this it we were out of the mountains and headed east across the desert.
We made it to McAllen at dark. A short time later we were holed up in the local Motel 6, drinking a post-ride beer, calling family members to let them know we had cheated death at the hands of drug lords, and checking email and text messages.
We collected a few battle scars on this trip.
Thanks for reading – I hope you enjoyed our journey.
I’m going to do it again next year on Memorial Day weekend…