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Old 03-28-2013, 04:09 PM   #916
Rockwell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightcycle View Post
Thanks for the suggestion, Rocky! I hear you guys are heading out on the road again in June? Seeing how slow we're moving, you'll probably blow right past us. Keep in touch, would be great to meet up along the way!
Paula and I are doing a different route this time. We're heading out to the eastern part of Canada and then flying over to Iceland. From there, we'll ferry to mainland Europe and head down to Morocco and northern Africa, and possibly to parts of The Middle East. If you guys make it out that way, let us know.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:39 PM   #917
iowarider123
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Laugh Guatemala/xelaju

Dear friends:
Just wanted to thank you for the excellent trip report, especially for the nice pictures/comments about Guatemala. Im proud to be a native Chapin, left Guatemala as a child... so your report has brought up excellent memories of the place. I have been to most of the places on your pictures but you have helped me appreciate it from a different point of view, with a focus on the simple things that I might have missed. Yes, the people of Guatemala are its greatest asset. The bulk of the folks there are so friendly and nice, especially the indigenous (once they get to know you). Reading your report and all the other reports has also inspired me not to loose my faith in the human spirit. This site shows the best us humans have to offer: A little kindness for one another. Over and over, right when it seems its the end of the road for someone here on their trip somewhere, a helping hand is offered. A shade tree mechanic half welds something for you, an older lady cooks up something out of what she doesn;t have, a couple decides to take you under their protection and offers a place to rest... all random and unplanned, all a result of their humanity pitching in to help someone in need. They ought to make this site a require read in any schooling endeavor... it shows we are all one and the same.. mere humans riding the cosmos in this beautiful plannet earth. Cheers to you and may God protect you and keep you. If you run into a bind, I know a few folks there that might be able to pitch in.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:06 PM   #918
SteverinoB
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Thumb Hey!

Finally stumbled across your RR and enjoying immensely. Like the meandering style , the pics and...the food pics. Great stuff.

Happy Trails...Steve
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:13 PM   #919
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Super!
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:07 PM   #920
pceire32
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Just catching up with your report after a three week ride to seeing and petting the whales in Baja.
Try and get to the weekend market in Chicicastenango if you go early in the morning like 6am there is an Farmers animal market on the outside of town. Llamas and many other strange animals for sale. The rest of the day the whole town is a market, but I enjoyed the indigenous people and the animals at the early market a lot more.
Great report.
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:15 PM   #921
Sansibar
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Question Equipment - tires & cams

Hey Neda & Gene,



first of all - thanks for sharing this great views on that part of our world - fantatstic RR!

However, Ive got two questions: When I get it right, both of you use the Metzeler Tourance tire? How do you like the tires on different road conditions (gravel, tarmac, wet, dry), especially on the 650 GS? I am planning a 4 week ride (Denmark, Sweden, Norway) on mixed gravel and asphalt with my YAMAHA Tenere and the bike is currently eqipped with the Tourance. I am a bit concerned, whether this tire can handle these conditions.

Secondly, which style & type of camera(s) and lenses do you use? Especially, the latter would be interesting.

Thank for your answer in advance, enjoy yor ride!

Cheers, Marc

Sansibar screwed with this post 04-01-2013 at 03:24 AM
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Old 03-31-2013, 03:24 PM   #922
Trane Francks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sansibar View Post
especially on the 700 GS?
Neda's on a 650, methinks.
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Old 04-01-2013, 03:24 AM   #923
Sansibar
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Originally Posted by Trane Francks View Post
Neda's on a 650, methinks.
Yupp, you are right! Fixed!
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Old 04-01-2013, 04:38 AM   #924
Sansibar
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Cool2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sansibar View Post
Hey Neda & Gene,



first of all - thanks for sharing this great views on that part of our world - fantatstic RR!

However, Ive got two questions: When I get it right, both of you use the Metzeler Tourance tire? How do you like the tires on different road conditions (gravel, tarmac, wet, dry), especially on the 650 GS? I am planning a 4 week ride (Denmark, Sweden, Norway) on mixed gravel and asphalt with my YAMAHA Tenere and the bike is currently eqipped with the Tourance. I am a bit concerned, whether this tire can handle these conditions.

Secondly, which style & type of camera(s) and lenses do you use? Especially, the latter would be interesting.

Thank for your answer in advance, enjoy yor ride!

Cheers, Marc
Okay,



figured out the camera types (post # 283):
"...Most of the on-bike shots were taken with the Coolpix AW100 - best ruggedized camera ever! And big buttons so you can use them with gloves. When we're off the bikes, we're using a D3000 primarily, sometimes a D60 and a few of the shots are done with the iPhone. Surprisingly good camera on those iPhones!..."

huhh, fast reading is no good. At least, if you are on details. Sorry!

Cheers, Marc
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:13 PM   #925
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Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/84.html



We met Craig and Chihiro at our Spanish school in Xela and got along really well. They're also two wandering souls who have travelled much of the world together and by themselves, so we had a great time comparing notes. They were going to visit Las Fuentes Georginas hot springs outside of Xela on the weekend, so they invited us to come along!


We boarded a Chicken Bus with a whole bunch of indigenous women!

The primary mode of public transportation in Guatemala is a Chicken Bus. Not Pollo Autobus, they actually call it a Chicken Bus. It's usually a retired American school bus that's failed safety and emissions tests. We play a game of Rate The Chicken Bus as we pass them. We boo and hiss at the ones that still have the yellow paint showing and very little decorations and cheer the buses that are multi-coloured and are blinged out with chrome and additional foglights.


This is actually a poor example of a Chicken Bus. Not decorated enough...

We're on our way to the town of Zunil, at the base of the hills where the hot springs are located. Along the way we pass many farms and workers in the field.


Patchwork of farmland outside the town of Zunil


Workers harvesting green onions

From Zunil, we negotiated a truck ride up to the hillside spa. It's a narrow, twisty road and we regretted not bringing the bikes, but we wanted to be social and spend the day with Craig and Chihiro. What started out as a simple trip to a hot springs actually turned out to be an agricultural tour.


Thoroughly enjoying riding in the back of a truck!


Taken from the back of the moving truck!


As we climbed higher, the farmland started to resemble a colourful quilt


Surprised to see how far up the tracts of farmland extend up the sides of the hill


Some of the tracts must have been almost vertical!


We weren't the only ones enjoying the view

I think we got a very skewed view of agriculture in Guatemala, because when I did some research later on, I was surprised to learn that the country cannot grow enough crops to feed their own population, having to import grains and other foods. Although we were travelling through fertile lands, there is a large swath of the country to the north called the Dry Corridor, which receives very little rainfall and is prone to chronic drought.


Arriving at Las Fuentes Georginas

The air up here is misty as we pay the foreigner prices (double what the locals pay) to enter what looks to be a very exclusive spa. Well-fed locals hang out at the pools that are fed by thermal springs from the Zunil volcano. They're joined by a busload of college kids from the US. Although it's a very picturesque site with relaxing hot waters, it's not probably something regular Guatemalans are able to visit. In Zunil, there are dirty bath houses with small concrete basins that are fed thermal hot water from hoses. These are types of luxuries that that the regular townsfolk treat themselves to.


Nice lookouts at the Fuentes Georginas spa


The main pool, temperature must be about 40C


Neda confirms it: 40C!


After a while you get used to the heat


Neda doesn't want to leave


Last look at Las Fuentes Georginas


Having a good time back in Xela. Having dinner in our new favorite restaurant owned by a Singaporean woman, specializing in all Asian cuisine!
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:27 PM   #926
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Hi folks, Neda and I just wanted to thank you for all your encouragement! We really appreciate you taking the time to cheer us on while we're on the road!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockwell View Post
Paula and I are doing a different route this time. We're heading out to the eastern part of Canada and then flying over to Iceland.
You are going to love Iceland! It's a photographer's feast!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sansibar View Post
both of you use the Metzeler Tourance tire? How do you like the tires on different road conditions (gravel, tarmac, wet, dry), especially on the 650 GS? I am planning a 4 week ride (Denmark, Sweden, Norway) on mixed gravel and asphalt with my YAMAHA Tenere and the bike is currently eqipped with the Tourance. I am a bit concerned, whether this tire can handle these conditions.
The Tourance is a 90/10 tire, and the kind of riding that we're doing is 90/10, so I think its well suited... until we hit the 10% dirt. Then the Tourances suck eggs. Big time. In hard packed gravel, it's fine, but in sand or mud, they are terrible and inspire no confidence. We are thinking of switching to Heidenau K60s when our rears wear out (which is going to be a while because the Tourances get really good mileage). I've heard the Heidis are more 50/50 tires so we could get a bit more adventurous in the future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sansibar View Post
which style & type of camera(s) and lenses do you use? Especially, the latter would be interesting.
I see you found the camera post. On the D3000 we're using a Nikkor 18-200 VRII, which is excellent. Very versatile and if we only could pack one lens, this would be it. On the D60, we're using a cheap Sigma 10-20 for wide angle shots, but it's yielding some good results.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:51 PM   #927
SloMo228
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Been following this thread for a while and just wanted to say thanks for sharing your adventures with us. You two are truly living the dream! I hope one day to be able to make a similar decision to drop the daily grind and truly live life. Keep up the great ride report, and I wish you both safe travels and a great journey!
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:23 PM   #928
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"Hi folks, Neda and I just wanted to thank you for all your encouragement! We really appreciate you taking the time to cheer us on while we're on the road!"

THANK YOU!
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:32 PM   #929
buggsy458
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Awesome RR!

You two have earned my envy. Have a blast!
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Old 04-02-2013, 06:35 PM   #930
eakins
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sweetness on the hot springs!!!
need to add that to my list of places to visit.

i hear ya on the chicken bus.
this one was in Chichicastenango.
It was a winner in my book.


i was riding in this bad boy for a few days. it was a private tourist bus and not anything like the old beat up US school buses. The owner had the biggest engine in it plus a beefed up suspension. He also had a full size boat horn added the warned people for the next 5 miles he was coming through. He of course drove like crazy and passed up hill on blind corners...it was a the wildest experience I've ever had in a bus by a long shot.


i was sitting in the front passenger seat watching the whole thing were I had many a oh shit moment or just flat out closed my eyes. those bus drivers have some serious driving skills & balls!


...i've been loving your pics this whole adventure and i wanted to show you this awesome shot that came from that trip
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