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Old 02-26-2013, 10:44 AM   #1816
Clem Kevin
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Your reports are a bit more intermittent than before. I assume this means you're having a super awesome radical time. That is sweet. Enjoy it man.
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:58 AM   #1817
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Originally Posted by Clem Kevin View Post
Your reports are a bit more intermittent than before. I assume this means you're having a super awesome radical time. That is sweet. Enjoy it man.
Hi Clem Kevin,

There isn't a lot of decent wifi up here in the sticks. I'll get back to pics and stories when the the bandwidth improves.

But yes, I like Northern Colombia. It turns out this country has many facets. It's like many countries in one.

Saludos,
Juan Costa de Colombia
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:20 PM   #1818
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDowns View Post
.... I really like this place. Don't ask me why. ...
Yeah, I can hardly imagine, myself.

Cabo de la Vela should be interesting...

Que disfrute La Guajira!
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Old 02-26-2013, 01:28 PM   #1819
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Holy Moly Juan:

I don't know where all these places are so I checked google maps for
Cabo de la Vela. What a nice place that must be away from most of the tourist crowds.

Relax and enjoy your sauna

bob
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Old 02-27-2013, 05:29 PM   #1820
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... I know where you can pick up a nice one for under 5000 bucks, aint that right Sam? Yet (try to explain that word in Spanish ) I think your super sherpa is the tool for the job. Just sayin'.
...
Had me thinking there for a second, crashmaster Vin. In this case I would use "sin embargo" for that use of "yet". Like so many other instances, there isn't a word for word equivalency; instead, it depends on the usage how to translate the idea.
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Let's ride!!! - No offense, but there've been a lot of people over time who were just as sure, yet got it wrong. - Una necedad, aunque la repitan millones de bocas, no deja de ser una necedad. - "you know that I could have me a million more friends and all I'd have to lose is my point of view" (Prine)
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Old 02-27-2013, 06:26 PM   #1821
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Quote:
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Yet (try to explain that word in Spanish ) I think your super sherpa is the tool for the job. Just sayin'.
I was asked to explain that word once in Mexico City only to realize I couldn't. Aunque comes closest, I guess.

Picking up a 2009 WRR this Sunday then off to dirt school.

Apologies for the thread-jack John.
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Old 02-27-2013, 06:43 PM   #1822
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Yet =

Quote:
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Aunque comes closest, I guess.
I'm with you on this one.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:15 PM   #1823
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Have been off the grid for a while camping out at Cabo de la Vela. It is a hauntingly beautiful and stark place. My thanks to Estabansos for suggesting this little detour to the upper reaches of the Eastern Colombian coastline. I had no idea what to expect other than the fact that it looked like it was out in the middle of nowhere in a fairly remote region with no apparent towns around.

I seem to enjoy traveling through desolate country. Places like back country Death Valley, remote beaches of Baja, remote areas of Utah, or the middle of the Nebraska Sandhills in August. Places where it's just you and the wind sweeping across the sun parched land. For me it's therapeutic, for others probably not so much.

I have a great deal of respect for the creatures and people who can survive in such harsh environments. I find it fascinating. I think you gain a respect for the people who have traveled through these areas before you. Only they know what you now know.

But more to the point, here are some pictures from the last couple days.

Tried to leave Riohacha but they were having some kind of workers demonstration that stretched for miles and blocked my exit:



Not much traffic on the long lonely highway east of Riohacha:



Cut off at the road heading to Cabo de la Vela. Here is the only picture I got of the local women of the Wayuu tribe:



Lots of goats and goatherders out here. Not much else for the next 80 miles of gravel:



The Wayuu build their homes out of poles stuck in the ground with bamboo sticks nailed horizontally and vertically and then stuffed with mud to create walls. It works surprisingly well with tin or thatched roofing:



40 miles down the road it is still straight line gravel road. You can really rip on this road:



More Wayuu houses:



At about 140 kilometers you see this one sign. Better not miss it:



It doubles back and heads over towards the coast on a rougher gravel and sand road:



for maybe 40 miles or so. I don't have an odometer. You come around a bend and there is a big wind farm with giant windmills out in the middle of nowhere:



and go through some sand washes and dry riverbeds as you make your way to the coast. Eventually come to a small settlement:



Single story thatched roof places. I imagine this place will have condos and hotels in the future. It kind of feels like Baja from the 1970's.

Looking down the coast both ways:





and the palapas for setting up a tent to stay out of the wind:



Waypoint:

N 12º 11.831'
W 72º 08.845'

10,000 pesos to camp (5.75).

Lots of great dirt bike roads roaming off into the hills:







And some free form riding out to the point on gravel roads. Looking out to the sea at over one of the knolls:



Not sure if you can see the kiteboarders. They were catching some serious air:



Here's where I camped out in the middle of nowhere:



Tried to help this fellow get his airbox apart. It was well and truly frozen:



Downtown Cabo de la Vela:



Headed back out today. Here is what the vegetation looks like. Mostly cactus and thorny mesquite like scrub:



Stopped at Uribe and had these nice policia sign the tank:



They insisted. Here is their government issue Xt250:



I could have hung out at Cabo de la Vela for a few days if they had internet access. Alas, I owe it you, dear readers, to keep you up to date.

Headed to the Venezuelan border and arrived at sunset. It turns out that they instituted a new requirement for American, Canadian, English and Spanish tourists that requires that you get a letter of introduction to the country. Who knew? Some new policy from 10 days ago. Hmmmmm. So I changed 100 bucks for 1800 Bolivianos. At first he wanted to give me 1200 and I started laughing so hard even his money changer friends joined in. I think it embarrassed him and he agreed to 1800. No way they could forge a letter of introduction for me though, although it sounded promising at first. There were some killer big block chevys and mopars heading through the border. When gas is so cheap why not have a 454 impala or hemi cuda. Sweet! Venezuela is muscle car heaven!

Anyway, it became apparent that I needed to regroup and forge some documents, so I deadheaded back 100 miles to Riohacha and arrived at 9PM to my favorite hotel in town with the sweet dueña. I'm heading to Cucuta tomorrow I think. Try some different border crossing. I am going to Venezuela come hell or high water. I have 1800 Bolivianos burning a hole in my pocket. I will do whatever it takes to get into that effing country.

Just try to keep me away from cheap gas and friendly Venezuelans. It ain't gonna happen.

I spent 54,000 pesos on gas, food and lodging yesterday.

Buenos noches mis amigos de aventura,
Juan Frontera
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JDowns screwed with this post 02-27-2013 at 07:41 PM
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:37 PM   #1824
Throttlemeister
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDowns View Post


Headed to the Venezuelan border and arrived at sunset. It turns out that they instituted a new requirement for American, Canadian, English and Spanish tourists that requires that you get a letter of introduction to the country. Who knew? Some new policy from 10 days ago.
Sounds a little fishy to me after a very quick search on the internet. I think a couple of quick emails to good friends in VZ should sort this out, sounds like this might be a little jabbing for bribes to me. Send Silviu one and see what he has heard. I remember when I crossed this border crossing going West last year that I encountered more blatant asking for money by officials, mainly at the military stops than anywhere else in VZ coming up on the other side to the xring.

Heard the good black rates are 20 and up if you shop around, I know of a good place at the Cucuta crossing if you need it.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:55 PM   #1825
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Originally Posted by Throttlemeister View Post
Sounds a little fishy to me after a very quick search on the internet. I think a couple of quick emails to good friends in VZ should sort this out, sounds like this might be a little jabbing for bribes to me. Send Silviu one and see what he has heard. I remember when I crossed this border crossing going West last year that I encountered more blatant asking for money by officials, mainly at the military stops than anywhere else in VZ coming up on the other side to the xring.

Heard the good black rates are 20 and up if you shop around, I know of a good place at the Cucuta crossing if you need it.
Hi TM,

Yeah, I would have thought it was BS as well, but the Colombian Migracion dude wouldn't stamp me out until I rode down and got squared away with the new carte de introduction requirements. It is a new BS policy.

Believe me. I'm like you. I thought it was some sort of scam. But when I went down to Venezuela, there were some English and Canadian dudes that had been pulled off the bus and were stuck in a compound until they came up with the required letters of introduction. Poor sods. That's when I whipped a Uey and headed back to Colombia.

I will keep you updated. I am the guinea pig.

I'm heading to Cucuta mañana. I need more mountain riding. I've been baking at the beach long enough. And yes, could use a connection for good money exchange in Cucuta.

Su Hemano de Aventura,
Juan Guinea
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JDowns screwed with this post 02-28-2013 at 09:28 AM
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:05 PM   #1826
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Fascinating, simply fascinating!
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Let's ride!!! - No offense, but there've been a lot of people over time who were just as sure, yet got it wrong. - Una necedad, aunque la repitan millones de bocas, no deja de ser una necedad. - "you know that I could have me a million more friends and all I'd have to lose is my point of view" (Prine)
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:13 PM   #1827
wanderlost
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hammock?

Hey John: Still loving your report. About time a sent another donation to keep you going so I can live vicariously through you. Seeing all the palapas reminded me of my last trip to mexico where I carried a hammock and could hang it in palapas and lots of empty hotel rooms for a great night sleep. Have you tried bringing one along or is it too bulky?

Paul
(In rainy Tacoma)
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:24 PM   #1828
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Great stuff Juanito! Hey man, if you get good enough wifi for some netflix I've 2 recs. "The Wind Journeys," and "Colors of the Mountain." Good for practicing your Colombian as well. Dont worry, there are subtitles. You might find them interesting after where you have been the last few weeks.

Buen viaje!
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:30 PM   #1829
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Originally Posted by wanderlost View Post
Hey John: Still loving your report. About time a sent another donation to keep you going so I can live vicariously through you. Seeing all the palapas reminded me of my last trip to mexico where I carried a hammock and could hang it in palapas and lots of empty hotel rooms for a great night sleep. Have you tried bringing one along or is it too bulky?

Paul
(In rainy Tacoma)
Hi Rainy Paul,

Alas, I am a minimalist, and able to sleep on cement slabs. I envy your hammock luxuries. I don't have room for a hammock on my little girl's bike. Thanks for thinking of me amigo.

Saludos,
Juan Slabovia
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:33 PM   #1830
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Sounds good, let's go!
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashmaster View Post
Great stuff Juanito! Hey man, if you get good enough wifi for some netflix I've 2 recs. "The Wind Journeys," and "Colors of the Mountain." Good for practicing your Colombian as well. Dont worry, there are subtitles. You might find them interesting after where you have been the last few weeks.

Buen viaje!
Hi Vin,

I'm on it. Netflix streaming works at this hacienda. Thanks for providing my evening entertainment amigo.

Muchas gracias,
Juan Peligula
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