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Baja 1000 - Road Trip

Race Trucks, Mexican Diesel, Helicopter Crashes-Good Thing We Brought Our Jeep

Photography by , Jeff Nasi

If The Wild West Has, In Fact, Been Won, Nobody's Bothered To tell baja Mexico. The famous peninsula south of San Diego has got to be the last untamed stretch of land in America, and as close to the Old West as you can still get. It's the perfect place for adventure, the only place that could contain the famous baja 1000 off-road race, and the ideal terrain for us to shake down our newly built diesel-powered Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Crossing into baja Mexico for the baja 1000 race is a lot like launching a sneak attack on another country. We wanted to be completely self-sufficient on our trip, so we brought our own food, water, tires, tools, and even some fuel. Sampling the local flavor is always nice, but we didn't want to be in need of anything we didn't bring with us.

The food and water supplies were easy enough to track down, but bringing extra fuel was a little trickier. We're not proud of it, but we ended up filling a 5-gallon fuel container with ultra-low-sulfur American diesel and stashing it on the floor in the back seat. We don't recommend this to anyone, and it's probably illegal to do it in the U.S., but as you'll read later we're sure glad we took the risk.

As we headed south toward tijuana, we could tell that we were getting closer to baja when we saw the enormous Mexican flag waving from the other side of the border. Actually driving into Mexico required no fanfare or vehicle inspection. We didn't even have to speak to the federales that man the Mexican side of the fence with machine guns and Dodge Ram pickups.

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