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2023-06-14 19:34:24

4x4 Van and Motorcycle Trip - Riding Solo in AZ

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As you can see in the intro today , we're doing something a little bit different , throwing the motorcycle on the back of the van and I'm heading down to the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge in Southern Arizona .

It's a few hours away from where I live in Bisbee and I decided to do a little bit of motorcycling down in this area , but also make it a van trip .

And I'm really glad you're along for this video .

It's going to be something a little bit different .

And now I'm at this old ranch property .

I can't tell for sure if they use it or not anymore .

I suspect that they do because all of the gates are still working .

So it's just one of those things that you find out here in the desert in southern Arizona .

This is hot , dry country .

I'm surrounded by rolling mountains off in the distance .

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Mesquite trees , Saar cactuses on the hillside .

In fact , I saw a sign over here showing that you could call 911 for emergency help .

If you need it in case you get stranded out here , you're out of water or something like that .

And it's worth mentioning too that we're pretty close to the southern border with Mexico .

And so you do get some migrant traffic coming through here , people that cross the border looking to make a new way of life in the United States and they run out of water in places like this and it can be , it can be deadly .

That is something to bear in mind traveling in this part of the country .

I'm going to keep on the road heading to the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge .

We'll learn about that in this video and I'll spend a couple days riding and van camping .

Stick around .

Yeah .

Mm .

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So , as I'm traveling down this road in the van , driving into the National Wildlife Refuge , I'm definitely paying attention to these roads because these are the kind of roads that I'm going to be riding my motorcycle on .

That just gives me an idea of what to expect up ahead .

Once I get on the motorcycle , you know , they're basic desert roads .

I guess you'd say they're dirt , they're not too hard to drive .

I don't think they'll be too hard to ride , but some of the things to bear in mind would be that it can be rocky .

There's definitely some lifts and edges , uneven surface , maybe some embedded rocks at times , some loose rocks and of course some sand , you never know how much sand you'll get on these kind of roads .

But anyways , that's just something I'm thinking about as I'm going through this landscape and it's really beautiful .

I mean , just look at this .

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So , driving down these empty desert roads surrounded by mountains in the distance and cactus , it just feels like I'm out in the middle of nowhere and yet I know that this is really somebody's home .

In fact , you'd be surprised there's a lot more people living out here than you would necessarily imagine .

Anyways , we've made it to our destination , the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge and I just crossed the border into the refuge .

So looking at the map here , you can see that the National Wildlife Refuge goes from the border of Mexico north .

So it generally runs kind of north and south and we just entered on the pavement up here .

That's where we're at right now .

There's over 200 miles of dirt roads in this wildlife refuge .

And most of them are the kind of roads I've been driving this morning .

They are desert roads .

They're dirt .

They might be a little rocky , a little bit sandy and they definitely are remote .

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All of these red triangles here are campsites , they are established campsites that you can camp in for free .

And so we're going to pick one of those .

I'm thinking somewhere in the middle of the refuge here and spend the night there and then this afternoon and tomorrow for sure , I'll ride around on some of these back roads and show you what it looks like around here .

You can drive any of the 250 miles of designated dirt roads on the refuge .

Most dirt roads require high clearance and some may be impassable after rains , designated roads are shown on refuge maps as you can see from the sign here .

It says that you can camp at designated sites , you're allowed to burn dead and down wod and use the fire rings at the campsite .

You can collect firewood for campfires in the refuge .

That's pretty cool .

This is a list of all the birds that you can see down in this refuge and it is , as you can see , it's a huge list .

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This is one of the birding hot spots in North America .

It's a major migration corridor for so many birds .

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So I'm going to head out for a little afternoon sunset ride and I definitely don't want to leave without bringing my tool kit , a tire patch , puncture repair kit and an air compressor probably won't need any of those things .

But you never know .

I just don't want to get out there and have a flat tire and have to walk back to the van .

Also a good idea to bring some water .

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I'd say we're doing pretty good tonight .

The sun just went down and I managed to get in a quick little ride out here in the wildlife refuge before dinner .

I got a fire going .

I even have my favorite meal to cook , as you've seen in plenty of videos , a rib eye steak tonight , we're going to cook that over some coals on the fire .

Have a nice drink .

Just relax and then spend tomorrow riding around this place .

You know , it , it's going to be a fun day .

I've got all day to ride and then I can come back to my camp again tomorrow night And I tell you the thing I like about it .

Number one obviously is the comfort factor .

It's just a lot more comfortable and a lot easier to camp out of a van than a motorcycle .

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And when it works out , when you can do that , when I can do that , it's great like on a trip like this , when I'm close to home , other trips where I might ride a long ways away .

Obviously , I'm not necessarily going to do that , but on a trip like this , it's kind of fun .

It just breaks it up .

Give me a little chance to camp out of my van , have a little more comfort .

And then the other thing that I like is when I go riding all day tomorrow , I don't have to have panniers and luggage with camping equipment and all that stuff on my motorcycle because all that stuff is in the van .

So I can be a lot more lightweight and that means I can ride on harder roads .

I can ride more aggressive .

It can just be a different change of pace and a different style of riding .

So I'm looking forward to doing that tomorrow and looking forward to bringing you guys along on this trip .

So , welcome aboard .

Once again , let's cook some steak .

Have a good camp out and then go riding tomorrow .

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Little grilled rib eye steak , some potato salad , some cucumbers and tomatoes camping out here in the desert down in southern Arizona .

It's a beautiful night .

I got here just before sundown .

Found a great free place to camp , built a campfire , cooked up a steak .

Now I'm gonna have a beer and just relax and enjoy this peaceful oasis of solitude .

And then tomorrow I'm going to get up and ride my motorcycle around this area .

We're going to explore the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge from what I understand , there's over 200 miles of dirt roads in this area .

So I'm going to do my best to see as much of it as I can .

And then we'll find another place to camp out in the desert tomorrow night .

What a good time .

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I'm glad you're here with me and I hope you stick around for the ride tomorrow .

I'm going to sign off right now for this evening .

Finish my dinner here , have a beer and then go to sleep out here in the peaceful quiet of the desert .


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