12-14-2013, 08:08 PM
Joined: Apr 2011
Location: Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
For some strange reason I was not hung over. We were up around relatively early for breakfast on the beach at Olga’s. Prices have been consistent throughout the entire trip about $20 for the both of us and I double up on drinks, order a lot of food and will generally choose beer if available. This morning I opted out on beer though. Just me being a pussy.
As we left Olga’s and I was pulling the DR out of the parking spot it felt as if this old bike had gained some weight while we were eating. I quickly discarded that hypothesis when I saw the flat, rear tire. F*ck. Ana now jumped on Gary’s quad and headed for the service station. They didn’t have anyone working the tire repair stand on Sunday so it was a kilometer further to the local Llanteria.
They patched the tube but it didn’t hold air when filled so we tossed in the spare tube I had with me. Once that little side adventure was over we stopped quickly to fill up and then back to Gary’s to load up the bike.
When everything was finally ready it was nearing 1300. A later departure than I would have like but there was plenty of time daylight left to explore some new routes. Unfortunately because of our late start I had to alter the route. It still included dirt but due to the lack of daylight we had to cut the distance. We were not actually on the road until after 1300
The maps showed only one dirt road out of the area, up into the mountains, that would dump us out on the main route just before Nicoya. We drove around, cut u-turn after u-turn looking for it. We asked locals who had no clue. They would give us directions that would lead to dead ends. We did find a road that I cheated and used my phone’s GPS to verify but it was guarded by a grand entrance gate to a residential community (I have since confirmed on GoogMaps it was the road). I figured the map was wrong and we carried on with our search.
This story repeated itself:
-Turn off the main road.
-Drive a short distance and the road turns to this.
Some were super steep and others had not even risen yet. I guesstimated we had 70 kms of this before we hit pavement. If the road had turned to this within the first five hundred meters, we were going to die.
We finally found a promising road that seemed maintained. We followed it a ways and then …
The locals sitting in the bed of their pick-up on the riverbank said it was too deep and we couldn’t cross. I started asking about this road we were searching for and they said it was just on the other side. I decided we have wasted so much time looking for this road it would be real lame to puss out now that we found it. We drove down the river bank looking for any sings that we could cross. There was eventually a section where the river widened and there was the slight hint of a line across the river where the water roughened up a bit. This was the spot. We walked it first and it never got much higher than my knees. I returned to the other side for the DR.
We followed the directions of the people in the pick-up; follow the road to a “T”, go right to a “Y” where you go left and viola! The road was well maintained. We had finally found it!
There is a monkey hanging in the tree just above the road. I swear if I had reached up I could have touched him.
The road continued to climb into the mountains. It was fantastic.
“The Road” we had finally found was a dead end at the top of a mountain were only two houses existed. One was the caretaker’s and the other was an amazing home with an even better view. I didn’t take a pic because the first thing the caretaker said to me was “estan perdidos.” I already knew that. The second thing he informed me of, I did not know; my rear tire was again flat. The caretaker brought me up to the main house where he put his ass on the line filling me up with the boss’ air compressor. I doubt the owner would have minded though and wished he had been around to drool on his bike in front of him. There was a nice, new KTM 690 in the garage and go figure, the guy is from Austria.
The tire was holding air and we continued on. The caretaker said we were close to our destination and it is not long to Nicoya on this dirt road we were looking for. He told us at the “T” intersection we should have gone left. So Ana and I went back down the mountain, continued straight through that intersection and we were back on track.
Great road. I was so glad we had finally found it. Then only moments later we would find ourselves passing by the Llanteria from this morning, right back in the same god dammed place we started from. 24 kms in three hours, call me when you do that YBCAGED.
Since we were here, I replaced another tube.
I continued inquiring about this route and the llanta changer guy said he knew where it was and spit another set of complicated directions at me. I thanked him but informed we were no longer attempting that route, at least on this trip.
It was nearing 1600 and we needed to bomb run back to the valley. There was no way possible it would be done before dark and I hate riding in the dark.
At 1634 we had arrived to Nicoya.
By 1700 we were crossing the bridge back to the mainland, ever closer to reality of life and a job.
We did the 270+ kms in one sitting, no stops and it took less than 4 hours. I was still a bit hungry after all the bugs I had eaten in route so we stopped for burritos and arrived home at 1940.
El Fin. Hasta la proxima aventureros.
Costa Rica: Trippin' with GR
, The Bike Teardown
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
"My father taught me to work; he did not teach me to love it." -Abraham Lincoln