by Sara Deseran under Mexico, Uncategorized with No Comments
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
If you’ve dined at Tacolicious on Valencia, it’s likely you’ve had a margarita or three made by Jared Crabtree, one of our veteran bartenders. Last fall, Jared took four and half months off from work to ride his bicycle—a Surly Long Haul Trucker—from San Francisco to Oaxaca, Mexico, a trip he’d been dreaming of for over three years.
And yes, he started pedaling in San Francisco.
Setting out in early September, he made his way to La Paz (just that leg is 1,492 miles) where he got on a ferry to Mazatlán, and rode his way down the coast to Colima, turned north towards Guadalajara, then on to Mexico City, Puebla, and finally Oaxaca. In each place he stayed as short as a night or two or as long as a few weeks.
Traveling via bicycle provided a totally new prospective. He found he could take in every detail just that much more vividly. The locals were also drawn to this (now) hairy man on a bike. His red beard had grown thick while he’d grown skinny. They wanted to know what he was up to, encouraged him and fed him. Sometimes they gave him a place to stay, even if it was just a spot next to them on the beach. In one town, he camped on the beach next to a coconut stand where he helped out the man who owned it. After a few days, Jared was setting up shop every morning for the owner.
Being his own tour guide definitely came with its hiccups. When he set out from Mexico City to Puebla, he unwittingly set out over a mountain pass where, as the sun set, he found himself at 13,000 feet. That night he spent in frigid temperatures, tucking himself in as tightly as he could in his sleeping bag. His bike took quite a beating too. A spoke that ripped through his tire landed him at Casa Ciclista in Guadalajara—a community project set up for traveling bike tourists. There he got his frame re-welded and his back wheel rebuilt, so he could finish his journey. Read more »