Costa Rica - January 2008

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by A.solgaard, Jan 19, 2008.

  1. A.solgaard

    A.solgaard Norwegian Monster

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Vancouver, Canada
    My Dad and I had been talking about doing a trip for over a year, we originally planned on trailering our bikes to Southern California and riding down the baja. The long drive(from Vancouver, Canada) was putting us off a bit, so I was checking cheap flight deals every once in a while. I ended up finding flights for $198 before taxes to costa rica...checked my work schedule, and booked them. They were leaving in week. So we searched around on the internet and found a motorcycle rental place. www.Wild-Rider.com Some bikes were available, and after booking 2 honda falcons. (xr400 with extra plastic and street oriented gearbox) Off we were. At the airport in vancouver, a guy walked up to me and asked where we were going and what we were doing(I was wearing a motorcycle jacket - ATGATT!) And it turned out that he rides as well. after chatting a bit I invited him to join us. fast forward 10 hours or whatever, we were going through customs in Liberia, Costa Rica, and I asked him again if he wanted to join us and he said, "Yeah, I think I will." So we caught a cab and got onto the 4 or 5 hour busride(cost 4 dollars - on a pretty decent mercedes bus) and checked into our hotel in san jose later that night.
    [​IMG]
    View from breakfast.

    In the morning we went to the rental place, picked up our bikes - they had a spare KLR for Tony to use.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We Rode north on our way to arenal - the long way as suggested by the guys at wild rider. beautiful roads.
    [​IMG]
    Stopped for lunch at a soda on the side of the road.
    Here is Fernando.
    [​IMG]
    How's this for a park job?
    [​IMG]
    that town had carved trees in the main park that looked pretty cool.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    The Grass is always greener on the other side...
    [​IMG]
    We kept climbing and climbing and eventually hit the clouds where visibility was down to 15 or 20 feet.
    [​IMG]
    After making our way through some two track steep downhill rainforest road we hit rain and stopped to put on some slightly more waterproof gear.
    [​IMG]
    When riding through Costa rica since it has so many different altitudes and ecological zones weather patterns change fast.
    Gas stop.
    [​IMG]
    Then we made it to La Fortuna. It's near Arenal Volcano and has a great view of the volcano if it's clear. Unfortunatly that night when we went to go see the volcano erupting(because it constanly is) we got caught in a torrential downpour and got absolutley soaked coming back to our place.(I think there's pics on the other camera that I'll add later)
    The next day we went on a canopy tour. I had heard about this place before. About is cables - there is one that is 735 metres long. You go up to 80 km/hr. and the drop at places is as much as 200 Metres! So to say the least. It rocks. There were about ten cables of different lenghts. The weather turned out great, and we had an awesome view of the volcano and the lake.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Leaving the volcano north was the best roads we had ever been on. Recently paved, great views everwhere, and non stop twists. Anyone going to costa rica on motorcycle has to ride around lake arenal.
    [​IMG]
    We saw some anteaters(?) on the side of the road.
    [​IMG]
    After a fair days ride we made it to Tamarindo.
    [​IMG]
    Turns out that Tony had a friend who owns a timeshare in Tamarindo happend to have his turn while we were there, and he wasn't able to make it down. So we got to stay in this Awesome place for free!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Construction wasn't finished on all of the units. So There was nobody else there. Pretty awesome...anyways...the next day we checked out a bunch of beaches in the area. Playa Negra was really cool.
    I'll be adding more pictures in the days to come when I get ahold of my dad's camera cause he took more pictures than I did.

    We met a girl in Tamarindo who had come down on the same flight as us and she ended up joining us for the next day. This meant more luggage, and more weight. which turned out to be a negative thing. It resulted in - a flat tire. dropped bike - broken brake lever. and that day I also ran out of gas. That was our worst day.
    Here is a lesson if you're ever in tamarindo, if you're looking for a gas station...there isn't one except for guys that charge 6 bucks a gallon for pop bottle gas - which is crap.
    the other guys were ahead and not paying attention to me honking my horn and waving my arms while my bike sputtered to the side of the road. so I had some time to kill while I waited for them.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Then my pops came back and gave me a tow. (criticisms on method not necessary) lesson learnt.
    [​IMG]
    After about 2 kilometres there was a dip in the road and all of a sudden there was way too much slack in the rope. I couldn't really do much about it at that point except for watch it go under the wheel and get caught up in the brake disc and then...I was down. it turned out alright cause right where I fell the locals came out of their house to see what the hubbub was all about and they had enough gas to let me lump along to the gas station 3kms or so down the road.

    Flat tire pics coming soon...

    Water break.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Stopped at a beach for a little spin.
    [​IMG]

    As you can see - this camera doesn't have a very good sequence feature.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    After a slow slow day - we made it to playa samara. Ended off nicely.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I didn't really take any more pictures after this point. So I'll fill in the blanks and add more pictures in the days to come.
    From Samara we went south and overnighted in Jaco beach.
    The next morning we left for Quepos and went over the mountains on some two track with lots of river crossings(lots of pics) and rode through the clouds again and made it to san jose. Riding in San Jose was hillarious because you can just weave in and out of traffic everywhere and it's legal. Splitting lanes, just general hooliganism and tomfoolery.

    Caught a 6 am bus for liberia(another 4 bucks...ouch!) and flew out on thursday.

    Stay tuned for more pics.
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    65,757
    It sure looks nice and warm... thanks for the great report and pics :thumb

    Lookin' forward to the rest of your report :lurk
    #2
  3. RockyRoads

    RockyRoads RockyRoads

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    Oddometer:
    250
    Location:
    Aptos, California
    Nice photos and report! I loved the zipline shot with the volcano in the background! What a wonderful way to spend time with your dad. Do you ride together a lot? I'm looking forward to seeing more photos!
    #3
  4. BlackBeast

    BlackBeast Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    988
    Location:
    Ontario, CANADA
    Wow, that must have been amazing and how funny meeting another biker at the airport that joins along. That says so much about riders and the comraderie that is shared.
    Another ride for the to do list.
    #4
  5. LaOutbackTrail

    LaOutbackTrail Certified Smartass

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,060
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Very nice! Glad you enjoyed the trip. Good pics and good read. :thumb

    Costa Rica is one of my favorite places...... i dont know why....
    #5
  6. xdbx

    xdbx Motorcycle Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,503
    Location:
    NorCal
    Do tell us more about your trip but also about your experience with the whole choice to go to costa rica and the rental bike experience. You've REALLY peaked my interested in emulating such a trip! :deal
    #6
  7. sheldoggy

    sheldoggy n00b

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1
    Mr. Solgaard. I love it. Good ride report and lovely pictures. You know who this is, eh?
    #7
  8. windburn

    windburn Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,195
    Location:
    The Willamette Valley, Oregon
    Where the gas stops planned? It seems that they should have been carring a liter of gas for the problems like this. very good report.
    #8
  9. bananaman

    bananaman transcontimental

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    7,843
    With all due respect, I would like to suggest next time having to tow, go foot-peg to foot-peg. Right foot-peg on the lead bike, so that shifting isn't interfered with, to the left-footpeg on the towed bike. The towed bike can be ridden at an angle to the towing bike so that you can see what's coming up.

    Nice report!
    #9
  10. Duscherck

    Duscherck Vufera Era

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    Oddometer:
    175
    Location:
    Bologna,Italy
    sun,beach,motorbike...I miss the summer :cry

    ...thanks for this report and pics :D
    #10
  11. Idahosam

    Idahosam Set Adrift

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4,180
    Location:
    Back in the Saddle
    Very nice, sitting here here looking out at the snow and cold truly makes me want to head south; thanks for taking my mind off the weather.
    #11
  12. coug66

    coug66 Coug66

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    72
    Location:
    WA State
    Awesome, I am planning a trip to CR with my brother and a few friends in August. Since we would be departing from Seattle I am curious about which Airline you flew on?

    $200 plus taxes is a great price.

    Did Wild-Rider treat you fairly on the damage to the rental bikes?

    Any places you would have stayed longer or recommendations on accomidations?

    I look forward to see the additional pictures:clap

    What was the price of gasoline at the regular pumps?

    If you were going to bring extra fuel along how much would you recommend?



    Ian
    #12
  13. pdedse

    pdedse paraelamigosincero

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,775
    [​IMG]

    Beautiful fotos. Nice report. But anteaters these ain't:evil They're coatimundis, or "pizotes" in Costa Rican Spanish. Kind of racoon like, very friendly. Overly, if they think you have food!
    #13
  14. Finger Mullet

    Finger Mullet Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    80
    Thorston let you three hooligans ride his bikes without supervision :D

    Ha, I luv it, more please,.......hey Thorston. :lol3

    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. EvilClown

    EvilClown Reality show stunt double Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    17,875
    Location:
    In the shadow of the Uncanoonucs...
    Looks like a great trip!:clap
    #15
  16. slideways

    slideways permanent ex-pat

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2003
    Oddometer:
    9,037
    Location:
    El Mar
    Lots of people have them for pets down here , they are a laugh a minute.

    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. DADODIRT

    DADODIRT Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4,656
    Location:
    Durango,CO(not quite Purgatory)
    I will be around Lake Arenal next week.
    Can't wait. Family trip this time.
    Motorcycle next trip, for sure.
    #17
  18. starsvw

    starsvw dreaming the dream.....

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2005
    Oddometer:
    64
    Location:
    Idaho? No You the ho.
    Arenal and Tamirendo are awsome, loved the zip lines at Arenal. Would love to make that trip on a bike!
    #18
  19. wingnut racer

    wingnut racer Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2007
    Oddometer:
    144
    Location:
    brookyln ny
    We're grabbing our bike from wild riders too. Any roads you think should be avoided or taken riding 2 up. We'll be on KLR. I have alot of off road experience but my wife would appreciate 'the road MORE travelled'
    We're planning on going from S.J. to Arenal volcano, to cloud forest, to Nosara down to playa Santa Teresa then to the ferry at either Naranjo or Paquera back to S.J.
    Any thoughts?
    Thanx, Van
    #19
  20. E-man

    E-man 4-4-09, 12-6-09, 1-13-10

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2006
    Oddometer:
    9,463
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Awesome pics:clap :clap
    #20