The Baja Divide will be a rugged 1,700km bike-packing ride, using a combination of paved and unpaved roads and tracks, down the Baja California peninsula, from San Diego, California, USA to La Paz, Mexico.
The route connects the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez, historic Spanish mission sites rich with shade and water, remote ranchos and fishing villages, bustling highway towns, and crosses several of the major mountain ranges in Baja California on seemingly endless beautiful backcountry desert tracks.
Kate chose this self-supported journey to be the first of six expeditions – one on each continent – to prepare physically and mentally for her Antarctic crossing, due to begin in late November 2018. A mix of sand, rugged mountains climbs, riding challenging distances day after day, this adventure should be perfect to form an expedition fitness base for the year ahead.
Kate and fellow expedition cyclist, Chris Pennington will be using mountain bikes with 27.5″ wheels and 2.8″ wide tyres in order to deal with the sandy and rugged conditions. It is necessary for them to use tubeless tyres (with a generous amount of sealant) to minimise issues with punctures from giant cactus thorns. The route is not signposted, so they will need to navigate via GPS.
Chris and Kate will be travelling as light as possible, as there will be occasions where they will need to carry enough water and food for 2 or 3 days. Being at the end of winter, they expect temperatures to range between about 6C at night in the mountains to mid-20s (Celsius) during the days, warming up as they head south.
Kate will be carrying a BGAN satellite device so they can have reliable, regular communications. As a professional-level photographer and aspiring adventure filmmaker, Chris will be carrying quality camera equipment to record what promises to be a challenging and exciting adventure.