Baja Divide Planning and Preparation

2017 Surly Troll the Baja Divide bike!

2017 Surly Troll

Baja Divide

Have become a bit enamored with the Baja Divide after catching a post in the Solo Male and Female Touring Cyclists FB group. After last winter’s wet and cold brutal assault on my entire being (the worst in 30 years for me) I knew I wanted to NOT be here for the next one. This route would be the complete opposite in all ways. Still have some decisions to make: logistically (getting closer); financially (selling things like mad); and bike prep (2017 Surly Troll). A few things to improve: GPS skills and body preparation. There are six of us tentatively signed on to start in Jan 2018 and all  from diverse backgrounds.


5 months to get ready and really the biggest hurdle has been overcome when my wonderful ex-wife said she’d take over my business for a couple months – thank you C!! (Yes, I pay her).

Bike: Having already sold my 650b Pereira custom and two other bikes, I had enough to get the Surly Troll – I went 26″ again as the 29ers just feel a bit too big for me, though I still fancy an Ogre at some point. No matter what bike – it must take cantilevers as this is one of many future trips in India, Romania and further and it needs that option (plus cantis are lighter and less complicated). The Troll has the lowest gears of any bike I’ve ever owned which is novel.

“Training”: Have been riding to Hurricane Ridge (5500 ft climb in 18 paved miles) from my house every week or so. I’m inherently lazy, so it may be closer to 10-12 days but it’s a good simple moderate climb that has few breaks. By August I’ll start climbing Deer Park which is far more challenging and gravel for 15 of the 25 miles from my house. Will also take in some tours of various kinds.

In my head I’m already going, but until a few more pieces come into place I won’t be fully committed until September. If I can only do a portion, I may, but am typically loathe to not complete a whole goal (plus I get distracted and may never finish it).

That’s the current state of things so will add more later!

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