|01-03-2012, 11:39 AM||#1876|
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Happy New Year!
Hi Radioman. Another lurker coming out to thank you for your RR. I've been subscribed from the beginning but didn't want to clutter your report. Wishing you all the best for your ongoing journey. Stay safe and have fun!
|01-03-2012, 01:50 PM||#1877|
Joined: Dec 2005
Location: GDay from Australia
December 31th Panama City and bring in the New Year!
It was fun to connect with some other motorcycle riders.... all heading for the Stahlratte Boat and passage for Columbia.
James I had met in Granada and we kept up by email since we both had reservations for our bikes but no room for us on Stahlratte.
Getting ready to ride with James and Mark.
Check out the "Action Packer Luggage" on the KLR Mark is really proud of this.
James rolling down the Pan American Hwy.
It was a straight and boring ride. We were all happy to be riding in the last Country in Central America.
There was a section of the hwy that had these stuffed "people" .... Like Superman along the road.... Not sure why but reminded me of the Cabot Trail in Canada.
We saw lots of Moto police bikes with radar along the 150 miles we rode. We just kept it to the speed limit and waved to them
Most have these 650GS knock offs....
Rolling into Panama City at 10AM.... amazing after riding out in the small towns of Central America.
Stopping in the middle of town to try and figure out where were were going. Mark needed a new tire and he had found a moto shop MPH. I also needed to do an oil change.
We rolled in and they had his tire, and told him we could do oil changes and they would mount his tire for $12.00 USD.
We parked around back.
I jumped in and did my oil change.
Then we rolled into town and found our cheap hotel as all the Hostel were full for the new years. They had a full secure garage.
Jame and I had a reservation and when we pulled into the garage, the was an 1150 GS with German plates.... Was we checked in we met Frank and Petra !!! They had just come off the Stahlratte and riding in Cuba. It was great talking with them, and we decided to spend the New years evening in the Old city of Panama!!
We had a great evening talking about travel, life and the new year!! They handed out some party hats and noise makers...
Happy New Year 2012 from Panama City!! Thanks for all the comments, encouragement a along this journey
|01-03-2012, 02:26 PM||#1879|
Joined: Oct 2006
Location: Burien, WA
Happy New Year to you Mark.
Should be some of these ahead.
Tim in Burien, WA
'05 R1200GS (Sleeping in Germany)
|01-03-2012, 04:11 PM||#1880|
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Chicago physically, Colombia en mi mente.
This is great! It's a convergence of The Famous Ride Reporters in Panama City.
Hope to catch up with you in Colombia in a week or so.
Chicago to Panamá y Más Allá
Light Dual Sport Fun in Michigan
R1200GS / KLR650 / XR400 / XR250 / 1950 Panhead
Parcero screwed with this post 01-04-2012 at 07:44 AM
|01-03-2012, 11:57 PM||#1881|
Face fears - live life
Joined: Sep 2006
Location: West Oakland, CA
Happy New Year Mark!
Coffee first, then all your other mundane bullshit. Benjava
That tofu will kill you, stay away from it. Soy is the devils bean! moe.ron
SmugMug coupon: cwbkgu7KGL2D2/save $5
|01-04-2012, 04:56 AM||#1883|
Joined: Dec 2004
Happy New Year! Hope your travels are safe and full of new experiences and adventure... I will enjoy vicariously through winter.
Thought the pics of the police bikes were funny. Out of curiousity, what bikes are they riding? What seem to be the most popular bikes in the countries you have visited?
|01-04-2012, 06:29 AM||#1884|
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: JAX, FL
hey RADIOMAN, i had some catching up to do here as i've been down in key west for a week with no internet. i've got my fingers crossed for you on the Stahlrite. riding that boat would be an experience for you too. i'm an old navy guy, so of course i would rather ride a boat than a plane. yep, i'm enjoyeing your ride for sure.
2012 VSTROM ADV 650
|01-04-2012, 11:03 AM||#1886|
Joined: Dec 2005
Location: GDay from Australia
January 1st, 2012
Happy New year to my ADV friends!! Thanks for joining me on this adventure.
Been having troubles with my knee and it has gotten worse. Just real painful to walk much, which is a real bummer as I want to explore around the places that I am stopping and enjoy the sights.
Frank and Petra were great and helpful about giving information about a doctor in Cartagena that I could go see. Have decided that I do not want to keep walking and cause more injury, so I will go when I get to Columbia. Will just have to see what they say. Difficult as I travel to get medical attention with the language barrier and not knowing how to find a good doctor orthopedic specialty. We will see.
Panama City on New Years Day was really empty and everything was closed down. But we found out that the Panama Canal Miraflores locks tourist center was open. The 4 of us grabbed a cab to check it out.
The visitor center is 4 stories, and they have observation levels to see the ships, a Movie on the history and building of this really important transit Canal for the world of shipping and cargo.
lots of people watching the ships pass through.
Pretty Amazing watching the ships align to the two waterways heading from the Pacific Ocean to the Caribbean .... it takes 8 -10 hours to complete a full pass of the canals. They operate 24/7....
Once the ships pull into the Canal they are hooked up to these special "tugs" that hold the boat in place as it moves through the locks.
The ships are huge up close.... fully loaded with goods.
Locks are the way they change the water height by 25 Meters.
As they continue on there way.
They pass miraflores, then into the lake and on to one of the next set of locks.....
Had to have a little snack and Petra was telling me to stay off my leg :) Voice of reason was helpful :)
The Panama Canal has some serious additions being added to accommodate the Much larger ships that are now in existence that cannot pass through. The new canals (2) will be completed in 2014 100 years anniversary of the panama canal first opening.
Cargo and Passenger ships pass through. Mornings going east, afternoons going west.
Very cool to see the Panama Canal in action! almost 10,000 people work at the canal keeping it operating round the clock.
The city was very empty as we got back, and had to find a hotel restaurant as everything else was closed. Frank had some noises on his 1150GS and decided with some help to pull the final drive, grease the spines and se if that helped.
Had to improvise as we did not have the exact tools for the job. Needed some leverage to remove the side mounting bolts for the final drive. But after a couple fo trips to try to find "tools" we got it done!!
Found another place to get dinner, but the streets were empty as it was a holiday..... was sort of strange. James and I were all packed up with the bikes as we were riding out to Carti to meet the Stahlratte to get our bikes onboard. Will be interesting process......
|01-04-2012, 12:15 PM||#1887|
Joined: Dec 2005
Location: Rainville, Orygun, where moss is a road hazard.
Here's hoping for a good outcome.
I miss round headlights.
"When I was a young man, I liked to race my horse...." - G.H.W.S. 1878-1962
|01-04-2012, 03:42 PM||#1889|
Joined: Dec 2005
Location: GDay from Australia
January 2nd 2012 last day in Panama!
We had to meet the other riders near the airport for the ride out to Carti to load the bikes. Both James and I had reservations from our bikes but we could not take the boat, but booked a flight to Cartagena to meet the bikes.
We met up with 5 other bikers. Two from Germany. tony the father, Pablo his son. Then Duncan from Seattle, Mark from Olympia both on KLR's and then Jay from SF on his 650GS.
Rolled to out the road toward Carti. Was a winding road with tons of very steep hills.
Had to pay $9.00 to ride through the Kuni area to get to Carti.
But of course you always have to be aware of the road hazard, like this wash out that was barely marked.
Rode down into Carti which is just a little concrete pier that people catch small boats out to the island on. But we spoted the Stahlratte just off the pier.
Then we rode out through all the people to the end of the pier. Took our bags and gear off and loaded it into the Zodiac for transport out to the Stahlratte.
Mark started up a conversation with some Panamians who were out to Party in the islands....
Ludwig the German Captain then moved the boat bow into the shore for loading.....
It is by far the biggest boat to make the passage to Columbia with Bikes for Columbia.
ready for the next step.
We were all sort of finding out the system of how they load the bikes.... all a bit nervous to have our bikes hoisted aboard.
James's R1200GS was first as we all watched.....
Then my 800GS.
Others onboard also watched.....
The young German guy was really funny....
His dad just could not watch
All loaded up and we took the Zodiac out to board the ship. we needed to get paperwork done, paid before we headed back to Panama City.
Ludwig the captain of the boat.
All our gear on the boat.
Bikes on Deck waiting to be lashed down.
All sorted out and tied down. They will cover them before they head out.
Met with the captain and got all paid up. $450 for the shipping of the bikes.
We headed out to the San Blas islands.... Had a great lunch on board.
Locals coming aboard to talk to Ludwig...... and Ronnie
This big boat was moored right next to us.......
Locals coming aboard to sell stuff to people onboard, and charge there cel phone
Leaving in the carved out wooden canoe.
Finally we headed out in a small boat back to shore to get a jeep back to Panama City. Was a bit of a long wait as Ludwig had "arranged" the transport.
We take the boat up a river to a "pier" which was just a dirt clearing and off the boat we got. There were some jeeps loaded, but no one seemed to know if more Jeeps were coming or ? it was about 4:30. The bugs were biting and we did not want to be stuck here.....
These guys were all talking away. We ended up in a jeep that should hold 6 but we had 7 .... it was cramped but we did not want to get out.... with no alternative transport for the 2-3 hour drive back to Panama City.
It was a long drive back.... You can see James is not real happy :)
The steep roads also had some washout areas....
You can see I am hanging on as we made our way back out to the main road.
Some great views but a much better road while riding my bike
Was dark when we got back to Panama City. We had dinner again with Frank and Petra! it was great meeting both of you. Hope we see you again!!
|01-04-2012, 05:18 PM||#1890|
Joined: Apr 2004
Location: Spokane County, Wa.
Everybody's on the run
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