Costa Rica: Trippin' with GR

Discussion in 'Day Trippin'' started by GRinCR, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    Ah hem… So… Problem resolved
    [​IMG]
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    At the shop there was someone ahead of me so at 1110 I was ready and on my way. I left Santa Elena behind me.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    The mountains now became less dramatic. They were more like heavily rolling hills. Regardless, it was no less fun to ride. One worry I did have were the heavier clouds moving through the area.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Just before noon, 155 kms into the day, I finally stop to eat brunch.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    After brunch I found myself on a very strange surface. I thought at first it was gravel. After passing the large and very DEEP potholes I saw there was much more involved. It seemed to be a thick slab of concrete that had been beaten into a neo-barbaric style of cobble stone. Only with lots of stones missing and some poor asphalt work thrown on top to try and hold it all together.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    It still wasn&#8217;t all bad.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    I knew this road was not correct and before I had time to realize my error I found myself only 7kms from Tilaran. Damn! I forgot an important point on my GPS.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    1230 - 169 Kms Tilaran
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Arriving to Tilaran I started to notice a screeching noise when stopping. It was this.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    There was no imminent threat; all paved from here back to paradise. I continue.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    The road was Be-u-t-ful! Then this happened.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    There was a 5 kilometros detour around the hazard. A fun gravel route if it weren&#8217;t for the tourist filled rental cars and vans. Dropping back down to the main route was exciting. They were filling the washed out parts with a black, heavy sand-ish material and I was trying not to use my rear break.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Once that was over it was back to bliss&#8230;
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    I had left a swath of tourist vehicles behind me at the construction zone. I was on the path to something touristy.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p>:deal</o:p>
  2. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    Yes I do. :(:

    I better get some practice at home if venturing further into nothing.
  3. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    Mine niether. My solution:
    [​IMG]
    El Cheapo Enduro Stand. I get 3 out of a single $1 palo de escoba. :evil Fits in my El Cheapo Duro Top Case.

    I need the all facilitating means of easily poping a 140/80 17 off the rim.
  4. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.

    The wife has verbally agreed to letting me do a "big" ride once every two months. That puts me into Sept. Got any bucket list routes in CR?
  5. Chiriqui Charlie

    Chiriqui Charlie Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Oddometer:
    406
    Location:
    Panama Highlands
    It might be difficult to do a "big ride" in such a small country!
  6. QCRider

    QCRider Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2012
    Oddometer:
    95
    Location:
    Costa Rica
    Maybe we can do the Rio Sereno bording crossing, have Chiriqui Charlie buy us a Balboa, and head back... that could be a "big ride"! :deal
  7. Chiriqui Charlie

    Chiriqui Charlie Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Oddometer:
    406
    Location:
    Panama Highlands
    While we're at it, we might as well continue on to the Canal or to Yaviza.
  8. QCRider

    QCRider Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2012
    Oddometer:
    95
    Location:
    Costa Rica
    CC, now you're turning this into an "iron butt" ride! :lol3
  9. Chiriqui Charlie

    Chiriqui Charlie Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Oddometer:
    406
    Location:
    Panama Highlands
    There is no worse ride than going down the Panamerican to Yaviza. Lousy scenery, lots of traffic, and either sweltering hot or pouring rain. Let's go to Antigua instead!
  10. O Team

    O Team Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2013
    Oddometer:
    84
    Location:
    Northwest Arkansas
    That's dream country to ride in. Keep the pics coming.
  11. Chiriqui Charlie

    Chiriqui Charlie Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Oddometer:
    406
    Location:
    Panama Highlands
    Where in N Idaho? My previous life was spent in Post Falls. There is no better place in the world to ride than the Idaho panhandle and Montana, I miss it.
  12. O Team

    O Team Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2013
    Oddometer:
    84
    Location:
    Northwest Arkansas
    I'm north of Sandpoint and you're right - the riding here is awesome. But Panama sounds great too.
  13. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    I have heard the ride to Vaviza is nothing special. Still might like to try it just to feel as close to SA as possible. Smell it.

    Thanks for being here...

    More pics comming. How about a few of I-the-hoe? Surely must have a few dreamscapes in the wild west.

    :lol3 In!:lurk
  14. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    It is 1442. 248.5 kms ridden to La Fortuna.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p> </o:p>
    How could you not?... This is how. I went, my mom makes better brownies and it is touri$ty. Oh well, the dipped cherries were nice.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    Onward. La Fortuna’s one Ferreteria open on Saturday didn’t have the bolt I needed. Entonces, zip-ties.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    I took off heading East. It was getting late and I still had some distance to cover before dark. Also I anticipate getting soaked riding over the mountain. Looking south I could see the San Ramon route was socked in with very dark, heavy clouds. I continue East, away from those clouds, on the original route. As I near Ciudad Quesada the clouds were clearing off the city. I went for it and turned South. The other route I planned was going to be too much and I didn’t like much the idea of a mountain pass, rain, fog and dark.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    1617 - Pit stop. I needed a stretch. Another good excuse to stop was to put on the rain gear.
    [​IMG]
    Things changed the higher I got. I have been chasing rain all day.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    In and out of the clouds I rode.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    I only felt a few drops passing through traffic in Zarcero. 6000 feet! The highest we get on this trip.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    Chasing the bad weather into the valley.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    I take a quick TO at 1710 - 325 Kms. Not too far outside of Sarchi.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    1805: I arrive home just before dark. 12hr .45min, 369 kms.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p> </o:p>
    Back to life…
    :asta
  15. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    Electical problems...
    [​IMG]

    Here is what we got thus far...

    YESTERDAY:
    - Leaving work I notice no lights.
    - Seat off and I find a melted, but not blown main fuse.
    - Limited recources so I stuck in a spare and drove home.
    - Bike runs fine, still no lights.
    - Get home, fuse is fine but battery is dead (5.9V).
    - The R/R is WAY TOO HOT to even touch.
    - Buy new battery and "It's Alive!". All systems GO.


    TODAY:
    - Bike starts, all system still GO.
    - In route I think the lights are dim and the horn is weak.
    - By the time it arrive (20kms), the fuse is toast (not blown) and no lights.
    - Work ends 8 hours later and everything is magically fixed?
    - Stop at trusted shop and buy more 15A fuses.
    - Also buy new fuse box and clean the contacts on the current one.
    - Test battery and it is slightly weak (11.89V off, 12+V running).
    - All lights working and strong. Horn works too.
    - In route home (last 6kms), LIGHTS OUT.
    - Test battery at home: DEADER than DEAD (0.65V).

    Frustrated does not do proper justice... :becca

    One good thing is I have run the readings off the stator and all is well. 1.2 Ohms between the Y wires and no resistance from Y to ground. Now onto the R/R...

    I know what my weekend will be consumed with if the "Mechanic Fairy" doesn't fix this sh*t while I am asleep.

    Electrical engineers? PhDs? Anyone? Feel free to hijack...
  16. riderddonald

    riderddonald Lost rider

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2007
    Oddometer:
    572
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    We hit that same stretch of road with the busted up "concrete" but it was wet. Felt like I was going to loose the bike the whole time. Even stopped to check out if something was wrong with the bike. Luckily it didn't last long. Was told later by a local it's very slippery when wet. And this is what conditions we did the ride from Monte Verde to Tiliran.

    [​IMG]

    Alot of your shots bring back memories.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Keep it comin, I got the CR fever bad.
  17. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    I share that sentiment. Not a route I will PLAN to hit, ever. The gravel on a flat rear was more enjoyable.

    You know what the only cure is... :deal.

    If so look me up: :dutch and :ricky. Likely in reverse order though.
  18. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    RE: My last post… The electrical issue turned out to be my R/R. I can’t say enough about having a proper bike manual. It walks dip shits like me through the process of finding the Zen in motorcycle maintenance. I found a brand spanking new R/R for $10 that is intended for a chino bike. All the resistance readings matched, the 3 Y wire connection matched and the Pos/Neg leads were easily swapped compatibly with the original Suzuki connector. It mounted to the original bolt holes as if it were made for the bike. Fingers crossed, and a new OEM is in route just in case.
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    So… the ride. I have recently changed jobs and when taking a particular route home I am tempted.
    [​IMG]
    That has got to lead somewhere, right?
    <o:p></o:p>
    Costa Rica, like many civilizations worldwide, abandoned and buried its mass transit/rail system. Years later they realized the error and are now reviving it. So this afternoon the rains held off long enough to let me wander. This was my 20 km ADVcommute.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Departing the office.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Hit the highway.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Now at this point I am approaching the toll booth which creates traffic. When this happens I start improvising. A quick right, through the bus stop and I am free of that nonsense. Although as I got off the bike today to take this pic, they must have opened the flood gates and eliminated the toll as the highway’s throughput drastically improved. Lucky me, because I will not try to make the one foot wide ramp over the two foot deep concrete gutter when the highway is moving at full tilt.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    The “offroad” is only a few hundred meters, but fun none the less. Much more fun when all the cars on the highway are parked.
    <o:p></o:p>
    About a kilometer from my highway exit I reach the crossroads that has been provoking me that past few weeks.
    [​IMG]
    Duplicate pic, I know, but the blue and white building there is the Fuerza Publica station. I got a wave, a smile and a thumbs up from one of the officers as I hopped the curb, drove over the sidewalk and took off down the ADV trail.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Just around the bend from the cop shop, what I thought was the road less traveled was quite traveled. This was slightly disappointing.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Soon enough, that all changed.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    The “road” eventually dissipated to me just riding the railroad tracks.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Until finally I could go no further.
    [​IMG]
    The hillside had taken over the tracks. I would have had to ride on the one visible rail with the hillside to my right and a steep drop to my left in order to push on. I had had enough fun for today.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Turning the bike around was quite the chore and not far back was an exit onto the pavement.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    The ADV was now behind me, but it was not long before I was reunited with the rail line.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Not far ahead the golden arches were welcoming me to civilization and I could see the red dome of Alajuela’s Central Park Cathedral.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    As I head out of town the weather wasn’t looking so inviting in the direction of home.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    I was cutting it close… rain gear or not to rain gear?
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    I push on. The rain gear will be nice and dry for tomorrow and I was close enough to la choza. I escaped getting wet, and made it home.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    See you on the ADV trail and thanks for riding along.
    <o:p></o:p>
    :asta
  19. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    327
    Location:
    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    :norton

    I have studied more in the past two months than I did in all of HS and Uni. combined. Might have been easier to do when I didn&#8217;t have kids or a wife&#8230; ? It is done now and I am going AWOL from institutional education for at least a little while.

    The Route:
    [​IMG]

    The gravel is optional because I may be riding with someone who has only 500 kms of seat time under his belt. All this is weather permitting. We have been getting a little rain in the past month. Here is the story of the missing bridge which might have us seeking plan B.
    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/AaQilngYOCA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    So if no rain drops are pinging off the tin roof at 0600 tomorrow morning, we RIDE :clap. I say it is 50/50&#8230; this too is the 3rd Sunday we have planned to make this trip.

    Cheers.
  20. Chiriqui Charlie

    Chiriqui Charlie Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Oddometer:
    406
    Location:
    Panama Highlands
    I can't imagine anyone else having an adventure in just 12 miles!

    Here in western Panama I don't have to wonder whether or not it is going to rain, I can count on it raining, sometimes very hard, every afternoon. If I am less than a half hour from home I generally don't bother putting on the rain gear, the rain is warm and I have a hot shower and dry clothes at home.

    I am about 7 hours away from you, one of these days I might just drop in for a visit, there are more riding opportunities in CR than here.