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Old 11-18-2012, 05:41 PM   #211
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Left this morning, for a trip down the center of the country on the panamerican. The road is actually a lot of fun. And Costa Rica is by far the cleanest and most organized of the countries. This is the first country that had cops in speed traps at the side of the road.

The road eventually heads up a bit after Puntarenas with some nice views. About 12:00 I saw a couple of bikes pulled over at a neat looking restaurant, so I swung around and went back. They were local Costa Ricans out for a Sunday ride. One was on Harley. The other was a ex-pat couple from Switzerland on a 650gs. It was fun to talk to them for about 30 minutes when our only common language was Spanish. They have been here for 15 years.

Looking toward Puntarenas


The restaurant.




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Old 11-18-2012, 06:49 PM   #212
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The pan american goes right through San Jose. Unfortunately, the freeway is difficult to follow through the town after it dead ends, but it eventually climbs back up into the mountains. It is a fun road on the bike and climbs to the highest point of the trip so far. 10,600 feet. Even higher than the passes I crossed in Colorado.

I actually was also the coldest of the trip. Of course it is foggy and only about 40 degrees.



It was a bit slow with the fog and the cold and of course my face shield was fogged up too. With all of that I pulled into San Isidro just at sunset. But I found a decent place for 20,000 colones .

The view toward my room. My door is in the bottom right.

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Old 11-18-2012, 09:08 PM   #213
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hows your spanish coming after school in Antigua?
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:36 PM   #214
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sevengrey View Post
hows your spanish coming after school in Antigua?
Very good. I no longer sound like a retarded 5 year-old.


Now I sound like a retarded 10 year-old.

But seriously thanks for the referral to Sevilla . it is a great school. The office gal told me to tell you hi BTW.
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:57 PM   #215
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Well I made it to PANAMA!!!

8,439 km from my house in Denver to David, Panama.

Unfortunately, it looks like this is where I turn around. I figured out a little while ago that I was not going to have the time to do Colombia right. I am going to leave that for another dedicated trip.

To start the day in San Isidro, the weather was not to bad. The bike looked comfy.

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Old 11-19-2012, 05:04 PM   #216
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It is about 3 hours to the border, but it is a fun road through more rain forest.

I even saw an iguana crossing the road. With its tail it was about three feet long.

Pretty along the river.







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Old 11-19-2012, 05:11 PM   #217
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I made it to the border around 1:00 in Costa Rica or 2:00 in Panama. It is another one on the panamerican, so it is a bit of a mess. It took about 1:45 minutes to get through. It was the first one that actually fumigated the bike. The other thing I was not prepared for was that they wanted to see a credit card. No charges, just wanted to see it or see $500 in cash. Otherwise the process was similar.

The fact that it was raining did put a damper on the process. Pun intended.
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:28 PM   #218
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If you were in San Isidro, a much more direct, scenic, and faster crossing would have been Riio Sereno! And I could have offered you a sofa in Volcan! Please let me know if you will be in the area for a while.
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:24 AM   #219
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If you were in San Isidro, a much more direct, scenic, and faster crossing would have been Riio Sereno! And I could have offered you a sofa in Volcan! Please let me know if you will be in the area for a while.
I had heard about that crossing, but I had heard it was a bit tough to find. With the time of day, I did not want to hunt for it.

And unfortunately, I am moving on tomorrow. Bummer that even with a long trip there is never enough time. By my clock is starting to tick.
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:31 PM   #220
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You'll have to make a note if you can detect the accent changes as you move through Mexico to Guatemala.

S
To update this, the accent changes have been there but subtle, IMHO. But there seems to be a much bigger change in Panama. They have a strange pace of speaking.
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:48 PM   #221
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Today was a day off the bike. I did some errands and walked around David a bit. I actually like David. I am not entirely sure why. It is not very touristy, just seems more like a regular town. Of course after enough touristy stuff that is appealing in its own right.



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Old 11-21-2012, 03:51 PM   #222
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Well after a day of in Panama, it was time to make my first ride in the direction of home. I had a coffee in a nice little shop and then packed up and headed for the border. Luckily, going this direction I gain an hour. I also only" suspended" my aduana from Costa Rica, so I did not have to start over. I also made sure to keep the insurance. That meant the crossing was reasonably quick and was the first border that did not cost me a cent, as they do not charge an exit fee from Panama.

Coming back, I decided I would do the coastal road up Costa Rica. Another fun road.




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Old 11-21-2012, 03:59 PM   #223
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I made it up to Quepos for the day. I was quick enough that it was only 2:00pm. I found a hotel that was my cheapest in Costa Rica. With a two night stay it is 11,000/night. With a spot to past park the bike. Unfortunately, although it is a private room it is a shared bathroom.



My room is behind that door and I am sitting in this courtyard as I type this.


There is not too much to the town and it is overcast today, but nice enough to spend Thanksgiving day in tomorrow.





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WilderRider screwed with this post 11-21-2012 at 06:55 PM
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Old 11-21-2012, 05:43 PM   #224
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The other interesting thing I will mention is the encounter with the costa rican traffic cop. He waived me overwhelming wanted to know where my "reflectivas" were. Apparently the law here is that you must were reflective material on a motorcycle. I am guessing there is also a helmet law.

Anyway, at first I thought it might be another shakedown, because I had my full aerostich suit on. But as soon as I pointed at the reflective material on the back, he was satisfied. No problem. He just wanted to make sure. Another nice cop. I even get waives from them here sometimes.
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Old 11-22-2012, 03:31 PM   #225
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Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Of course down here it does not feel like Thanksgiving and I am really, really, really missing my wife's cooking. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.

It was a fun day anyway, even if a little nontraditional for me. I saw monkeys instead. Lots and lots of monkeys.

I went to Mario Antonio national park. Definitely worth it if you are in the neighborhood. In about 2 hours, I saw the following:

Squirrel monkeys
Howler monkeys
Two-toed sloths
Three-toed sloths
Capuchin monkeys
A cayman
Iguanas
Gecko
Various insects
Crabs
Raccoons
And lots of plants.

I was smart enough to do it this morning before the afternoon rain started. More I can type while it rains.


I paid the extra money for a guide. Worth it if you want to see the extras including the stuff up high. Almost no other way to see the sloths. he brings a telescope for that.

Our guide peering into the forest.


See the cayman in the middle?



How about with the picture cropped? Same picture.


The two-toed sloth, but through the telescope.


The three-toed


A squirrel monkey jumping between trees.


The howler monkey




One of the iguanas
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