SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., April 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Over 475 years ago, Spanish conquistador Hernandez Cortez sailed into the Bay of La Paz, kicking off the beginning of exploration for thousands of adventure seekers, which continues now into modern day history. Cortez discovered trade routes connecting the Pacific Ocean with what is now called the Sea of Cortez. Horses and mules transported lobster and fish from the oceans to the mountains and deserts, which were beaming with a plethora of wildlife.
Fast-forward more than four hundred years and the adventure is still the same — only the horse has become a motorcycle.
Nowadays, the 70-horsepower, two-wheel steel horse navigates the same routes forged centuries ago and those who ride have created a vibrant culture thriving for the wild, untamed land known to many as "the Baja."
Nestled against the southern border of the United States is a vast 800-mile shard of land considered by many to be one of the last natural wonders of the world. It's painted deserts, remote white sand beaches and dramatic marvels of geology all combine together in protecting the land from the reaches of civilized mankind.
Venturing into Baja's abyss is not for the weak at heart. Adventure seekers have long bombed south to Land's End, skirting the most difficult terrain and oftentimes trekking through the path of least resistance.
The 2011 Monster Energy Rip to the Tip presented by General Tire is a trek of man and machine over 1,488-miles, where seasoned moto riders will battle every type of terrain and element the Baja can throw at them.
This year's 8-day journey through the Baja Peninsula will test both the physical endurance and the mental fortitude of each and every rider. For the third consecutive year, riders will commence in Tecate, Mexico, and will crisscross southbound down the Peninsula through some of the most amazing and difficult terrain the Baja has to offer, finishing at the tip of the Baja Peninsula where the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez meet in Cabo San Lucas. Each rider will be seeking the coveted "Full Pull," where every mile of the ride is achieved.
In 2006, the idea of an adventure Baja ride took shape with 13 riders taking off from Ensenada headed for Land's End in Cabo, on what would be the first ever Rip to the Tip.
Now, five years in existence, the adventure has grown to a new level for year six.
The 2011 edition has the riders dropping down the breathtaking Rumarosa grade, one of Baja's largest descents. This route is not for the faint of heart, but is one of the most stunning views of Baja.
Riders will descend 4,200 feet in just a couple of miles to the Laguna Salada dry lake bed at sea level and then traverse the dry lake bed for 75-miles before climbing back into the Sierra De Juarez mountain range as they battle the legendary "Summit," near the top of Cerro Grande.
Challenging themselves by riding "up" the Cerro Grande Summit merely marks the halfway point of the first day. Only seven-and-a-half more days before riders can say they conquered the Baja Peninsula.
The ride is scheduled through the towns of San Felipe, Bahia de Los Angeles, San Ignacio and includes all new locations never before visited on the Rip.
An eclectic group of riders will take on their own individual battle of mental and physical challenges in a group setting where the riders become known as a band of brothers.
Seven-time SUPERCROSS champion Jeremy McGrath will make his first attempt at the Baja, while 11-time Baja 1000 champion Johnny Campbell will ride with the group in an unfamiliar setting where he's just another rider challenged by the adventure. There's no racing on the Rip, it's a journey of obstacles and mental tenacity.
Jeremy recently made his first ever trip to Baja with Rip trail leader Cameron Steele and Baja Bound Moto honcho, Tim Morton. McGrath has been seduced by the beauty and adventure of Baja's wilderness. "It's been a long time since I've had an all-new experience around every corner," said McGrath, also known as "Showtime." He continued, "Baja is so amazingly spectacular."
X-Games freestyle motocross medalist and recent Baja Overall Champion, Jeff "OX" Kargola makes his third trip on the Monster Energy Rip to the Tip presented by General Tire, and is one of the riders who really lives and breathes for the challenge. A smiling Ox commented, "Baja has so much to offer and the trails can be so remote and difficult, I love the battle."
Off -road champion Casey Currie earned his 'Full Pull' status in 2010 and returns for the 2011 Rip to the Tip, excited about the 1,488-mile ride. Casey said, "I really loved everything about the trip last year. Baja is so fresh and wild, so new and you just never know what's around the next turn or over the next mountain."
For the third consecutive year, FUEL TV will air the Rip to the Tip adventure, but for the first time in its history, the Rip will expand beyond its normal half hour format to a FUEL TV Mini Series.
"I am stoked to have the support of FUEL TV, Monster Energy and General Tire. They are giving us the ability to share the beauty of Baja with people who may never have had a chance to see what she has to offer," said Rip TV producer and ride co-founder Cameron Steele. Steele is an accomplished off road racer and a 13-year TV broadcaster for such events as the X-Games.
Cameron reflected, "The vastness of the Baja wilderness and its beauty draws me to the places you cannot even imagine exist. Some of my best memories are watching the faces of my friends who travel with me to the most inhospitable regions in Baja. We immerse ourselves in the local traditions and people. Watching and experiencing a small part of their lives is what makes me smile day in and day out."
Once again he smiled and said, "Sharing our love for Baja with other adventurers is beyond an explanation. You have to be there to understand it."
Establishing the bar high has always been in the forefront for ride founders Cameron Steele and Larry Badgwell. The 2011 Rip will be no different as Cameron has gathered a stellar team of media workhorses all joining forces to provide live web programming throughout the 8-day journey. New for 2011 will be live audio interviews, editorial and on trail video coverage along with the highly successful inclusion of photography and video segments of the 2010 season.
The Rip launches an all-new web page that will track the antics as they happen day or night. You can catch it all online, anytime 24/7, at www.riptothetip.com. The adventure launches at 7 a.m. on April 28.
SOURCE General Tire