1-5: Northern Sierra/La Sierra Norte

Riding along the Pacific Coast north of Ejido Erendira.

The Northern Sierra segment of the Baja Divide is 305 miles (490km) from San Diego, CA, USA to Vicente Guerrero, BC, MX.   Beginning and ending at the sea, the route climbs inland from San Diego through the city of Tecate to the highest point on the route just a day south of the border, continuing in the mountains along most of its path.  The Sierra de Juarez and Sierra San Pedro Mártir mountain ranges, similar to the mountains of Southern California, feature sparse pine forests, chaparral, and desert at lower elevations.  Returning to the moist coastal plain near Ejido Erendira and Vicente Guerrero, large-scale agriculture provides tomatoes, strawberries, brussel sprouts, and more.  A scenic section of coastal riding is a highlight between Santo Tomás and Colonet, while the two day ride from Colonet to Vicente Guerrero is graced with views of the tallest mountain range in Baja.

Airports in San Diego and Tijuana serve this section; Amtrak rail connects to San Diego; while Mexican buses are available in Tecate, Colonet, and Vicente Guerrero.  For a short tour from San Diego (7-10 day), ride south from the start of the route and take a bus back to Tijuana from Colonet, Vicente Guerrero, or San Quintín, or even Cataviña further south.  The ride from Tijuana back into San Diego is uncomplicated, while a light rail train is also available from the border to downtown San Diego.

Be sure to arrive at the border with a valid passport and about $20 USD, cash only, to pay for the tourist permit required for any trips lasting longer than 7 days.

The Northern Sierra is the least sandy part of the Baja Divide and standard width mountain bikes tires (2.2-2.3″) will suffice on most of this section.

Buses back to Tijuana are available in Colonet and Vicente Guerrero.

Warning: The route may become impassable when wet due to mud.

View the Northern Sierra on Ride With GPS.


1/San Diego to Tecate

2/Tecate to Ojos Negros

3/Ojos Negros to Santo Tomás

4/Santo Tomás to Colonet

5/Colonet to Vicente Guerrero


Resupply legend: F-Food store, f-limited food resupply, W-Water, M-Motel, C-Campground, R-Restaurant, B-Bike shop, $-Bank ATM, Bus, Airport