After crossing the creek at Mike's, the course turns south and starts a climb. It is 6 miles of whoops and rocks created by many previous races. Good workout after that freeway you just left going up to Mike's. After that 6 miles, the course turns right (west). If you go left, this road goes to Rancho Concepcion and the paved Observatory road. After the right turn, it is about 10 miles to Rancho El Coyote and downhill. There is a silt section in here that can be real nasty.
Once at El Coyote, the course does a great 9 miles through Baja back-country, with varying types of terrain. Note the “Racers and Ranchers” sign, asking to close the gate – El Coyote owner Esteban Meling has installed a new cattle guard there and the gate no longer used. Coming out of the loop you will climb 2 rocky miles, then turn left down to Simpson's. If you go straight, you’ll be at Mike’s Sky Ranch in 3 miles.
4 very rocky and steep miles to the Simpson's creek crossing. It is actually called San Rafael and is the same creek you crossed at Mike's. The crossing is well hidden under trees and constant prerunning by 4 wheel vehicles will create two wheel ruts in the sand. To make it more fun, locals will dam the creek to force a nice deep pond to form. That 4 inches of water you crossed pre-running may be 2-3 feet deep on race day. And it will be at night.
Posted 27. September 2009