BOLA Hurricane


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I'm a little surprised that there isn't a thread about this event. I've been to BOLA many times and dealt with wind there. I thought last year was a little bit nuts with the wind but this year was pretty unbelievable. I don't think I've ever seen wind like that before in my life.

We never get a room in BOLA because I never get us entered on the first day. So we always camp on the beach, usually away from the main pit campsite so we can get a little quiet and get some sleep. Fat chance this year. The wind started a little after sundown and by about 1 in the morning I swear it was gusting close to 100mph. Pretty incredible. Most of our guys were in sleeping bags sheltered as best they could behind a two foot tall seawall. I had pitched a tent and my buddy Frank was in there with me. I had some faint hope during the first couple hours of wind that we'd be ok and it would die down but that was wishful thinking. Eventually it got so bad all the tent poles collapse and we were basically in a big flopping noisy bag on the beach. I'm not going to lie, for a while I was slightly concerned we were going to get blown out into the bay and drown like unwanted kittens.

Around 2am when the super strong gusts started coming through, it was enough to bow up the flip-top cover on my pickup bed and hurl it up over the roof of the truck. It shattered my rear window and the flopping cover dented the hell out of my roof. Baja Rudy had taken shelter inside the cab and all the broken glass and sand blew all over him. He opened the door and the door folded all the way forward due to the wind blast and put a big crease in the side and dented the fender. He came running to the tent and yelled at us what have to understand that it was blowing so hard that you had to yell at a person 3 feet away so they could hear you.

I told Frank to stay in the tent at all cost because there were wallets and passports and cellphones etc in there and we would lose them if the tent blew away. I got out and spent the next 10 minutes getting absolutely sandblasted. Not figuratively, but literally. Point a sandblaster at your skin and pull the trigger, that is what it was like being outside at this time. We were able to eventually drag the cover back down to the bed and strap it down with ratchet straps. Rudy is a real trooper because he didn't let go of that damn topper even under the strongest gusts and it had to have been killing him to get blasted like that. Once we got the cover secured I ran back to the tent and Rudy turn the truck around so the wind wasn't blowing straight into the shattered back window and drove it near a building to shield some of the gusts away. He literally sat in the truck with his seatbelt on because it was rocking so violently that he was worried it might roll over.

Nearby, two of my guys were sleeping next to another building when a door blew open. It turned out to be a little crypt or shrine for some dead people. There was just enough room inside for them to crawl in and lay down.

One of the rooms in the closest cabana to us had a window get blown in. When the occupants left in the morning we went in there to take a shower and fold up the tent, etc. There was glass everywhere, especially on the bed under that broken window. That must have been hell for whoever was sleeping in there.

Needless to say, nobody on our team except the guys in the crypt got even a wink of sleep that night. We managed to race pretty well all the way to the highway north of Loreto but broke an I-beam just a couple miles from the road. By the time our tired asses got the recovery done and limped back to town, we had been up for almost 2 days straight. This was a big part of my decision to stop our race in Loreto, have the truck fixed in the fab shop by the airport, and just spend the next few days relaxing. Crazy stuff....which is pretty much the point of racing in Baja so in that regard, mission accomplished.


Crayola Killer
Zambo, we had 5 guys in a room at the Las Hamacas hotel so myself and Ron Banks decided we would sleep outside under the awning in front of the room. There was approx 5 other people doing the same. Fortunately for us the hotel itself was blocking the wind but it was pretty warm out for the first couple hours and I was ate up my mosquito's. When the category 5 winds showed up sleeping was not an option, I got maybe 3 hours that night and it took the rest of the rally to get caught up. We didn't have it as bad as you but we felt your pain.


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We learned our lesson the previous year and upgraded from a flat bed to an enclosed trailer. 8 guys in an enclosed required us to keep the back gate down. The wind filled the enclosed with a 1/4" of sand by the morning. It was a better experience than last year, but still not fun.

I was hoping that NORRA would have kept the hospitality tent up for people to sleep under. Although I am not sure if it would have held up to the gale force winds.

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Oh that tent would have gone for a ride without a doubt.


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Heheh. Yeah, it was a heckuva time. Stuffed my guys in the enclosed trailer and the suburban, then I crawled under the buggy with a sleeping bag wrapped in a tarp. Not optimal and made for a hard morning prep.

I did get a chuckle out of the three-legged dog trying to stay upright in the wind. He did appreciate the lunch meat I gave him out of guilt. Why are there so many tripods in MX anyway?l


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We were camped right on the beach, because my chase guy wanted a view of the water. Well that didn't work out well. At one point in the middle of the night I felt the air mattress lift and I thought I was going for a ride. Our tent was filled with sand and the wind broke some of the legs. We packed the tent back up (with the sand) in its box and my wife is taking it back to Sams Club and returning it, saying the legs don't hold up.

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We were in the minor hurricane last year in a tent in Pit City and barely got a bit of sleep ourselves. We almost packed it in after the prior day's adventures because we were so utterly exhausted but decided to keep going. Ended up having a good year and were happy with our finish.

This year I thought we were in better shape because we lucked out and shared a house with Rapido Randy Ludwig's team. I slept on the 2nd floor porch and awoke about 11 pm with high winds whipping everything and sand swirling around my face. Dragged my bag inside and slept on the bedroom floor, and still was covered with sand when I woke up in the morning - a few of the windows were open all night and tons of sand blew in. The guys sleeping outside were pelted with roofing materials blowing off the roof in the middle of the night - "shingles hurt"!!

I was standing over the sink the next morning brushing my teeth when another gust blew through and blew the slider window out of the window frame. It flew about 5-6 feet and landed on the floor directly behind me. Miraculously it didn't break. The same gust slammed the bathroom door closed so hard that it ripped some of the door trim off the door jam.

I'm pretty sure the best way to clean out the house we stayed in was to get out a gas leaf blower and get busy.

Todd Z.

scary fast hummer

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My son and I stayed in our 24' enclosed carrier trailer. It has a toilet and fridge but nothing else and zero insulation. That means it rattles on the inside as the aluminum sides flap back and forth. It was like trying to sleep in a tumble dryer. I am a retired Navy chief and can sleep through anything. Nothing better than sleeping in a ship in big seas (IMHO!). Sleep like a baby. That being said, I always leave the back ramp door unlocked so there there is always two ways out of the space for safety sake. As the trailer rocked and rolled, the wind would constantly make the back door open a couple of inches and then it would slam closed. It also let a lot of light into the trailer. About 3 I decided that I had had enough of that so got up to go outside to lock the door. I walked up to the front of the trailer (bed is right by the ramp door). As soon as I opened the hatch it created an overpressure inside the trailer and the ramp door slammed all the way to the ground! I ran out the hatch to the back door where my son, who had been dead asleep, was sprawled across the ramp on top of all my bedding. The slamming ramp woke him and he saw my kit starting to blow out the door and threw himself across it all to keep it from blowing into the bay. He is a good kid! I managed to get the ramp door back up with son and all bedding inside and then locked the back door. After shaking the sand out, climbed back in and fell right back to sleep, hurricane be damned!


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We had seven people in a 24 ft RV. I don't know what was worse the snoring or the fact that
everybody ate beans for dinner.


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I will add to ToddZ's accounting of our accommodations....I told the guys that as terrible as it was it was at least I was somewhere I could plug my cpap in....filter blew out and I should have taken a morning photo of the cone shaped area by the inlet where it was clear of sand since it had "blasted" me during the night....didn't have to brush my teeth in the morning, heck they were nice and polished!

Lord Green

Well-Known Member
My son was sleeping on the beach next to you with out benefit of a tent. The wind blew one of his shoes away. I was inside a room at Casa Diaz and chunks of roof were blowing off, tree limbs breaking, etc. We couldn't even sleep through the noise.


Well-Known Member
It was my talk with Eliseo to route the bikes to G.Negro to free-up some rooms for car guys at BofLA and also to have fewer people having a crappy night camping in the common BofLA wind.

So question... Does anyone have an idea what has more beds available, BofLA or G.Negro/Vizciano?
I'm thinking GN/Vizciano has more.

So maybe '18 the bikes should go to BofLA and cars GN with overflow at Vizciano.

Just a thought...

baja rudy

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I was literally getting tortured by sandblasting, the same as waterboarding (I can only imagine). It was just insane and crazy. Much worse than 2016 for sure.

Stuck Sucks

Well-Known Member
A fun read. We had similar experiences to everyone else. We attempted sleep in our solidly-built palapa which rattled violently all night:



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I was with ToddZ and enesset but had the benefit of sleeping in my old burb, and while she did some rocking at least I was tail to the wind and managed to sleep really well. But I really felt for everyone in Pit City when I saw the chaos in the morning as I headed over to check starting times.