Seattle to TDF and back on an airhead

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Airhead Wrangler, Dec 3, 2009.

  1. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    Same shit, different toilet: northern Nevada, about 80 miles north of Gerlach.

    Wise decision. Prepare to have too much fun. Good to hear from you. Tell all the ¨boys in blue¨ that I say hey.
    #21
  2. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    The redheaded guy was riding with one glove so he could take photos :huh while riding. He was taking photos and not paying quite enough attention to the road and hit a rock in the middle of the road about the size of a brick doing 60mph. That was enough to make his front tire go flat pretty instantly, the bead came unseated, he instinctively pulled his front brake to slow down and bad turn into really bad pretty quickly. He went down, slid about 50 feet on asphalt, enough to wear completely through the seat of his rallye 2 pants, take most of the skin off his bare hand and break his wrist on the other side. He was able to limp himself and his bike with the help of someone else far enough to get to a hospital where he got patched up well enough to get back on the road again. He caught up with me around Acapulco, and rode with me and a couple other guys until Tuxtla Gutierrez where he and and our British member split off and headed for Belize when I went for Guatemala with ze german. He´s been going slower than the rest of us and I haven´t seen him or the Brit since. As for firing a rifle in a riding jacket, do I really need a reason to behave in such a way? Anyway that´s not me, that´s our frenchman.

    That´s Sumidero Canyon just south of Tuxtla Gutierrez in Chiapas. The owner of the event hall where we crashed for free for a couple of days, pictured above, also owned a boat tour company and gave us all a ride up the canyon in one of his boats. Really cool scenery, yeah, a little touristy, but hell - why not? The river crossing was a different river between mexico and Guatemala at Fronterra Corozal (sp?) straight west of Tikal.
    #22
  3. Jedi5150

    Jedi5150 Road Warrior

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    :evil :D Wow! :eek1 :clap

    Absolutely awesome ride report so far! Your photography skills are outstanding. Thanks!
    #23
  4. bgoodsoil

    bgoodsoil Dare to be Stupid

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    I've come so close to wrecking while taking pictures it's not funny. I'll try not to do that from now on.

    thanks for the info. I'll check those spots out next summer. oooh I can't wait to see my bike in a canoe! I'll feel like a real advrider!

    How'd 6 guys from across the world happen to be doing this at the same time anyways? Was this planned or dumb luck?
    #24
  5. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    I planned to do this trip with a couple of my friends for about 2 years now. I did a trip up to Alaska a year and a half ago where I met the frenchman and travelled with him for a while as he was on an airhead too. I told him about my plans for South America and coincidentally he already had similar plans. Add one more to the group. Months later he swung by my house on his way down the west coast and we went to the local beemer dealership to buy some parts for his bike. We got to talking with the parts manager there and he said he wanted to hear more about it over some beers. One thing led to another and we gained another member. Now we were up to 5. A month before the trip Austin Vince, of Mondo Enduro fame, was staying with the latest member to join the group as he was giving a presentation in town. At that presentation was a brit on his way around the world who had taken a city bus about an hour out of Seattle to see the presentation because his bike still hadn't cleared customs. By the end of the show the buses had stopped running and he asked Austin if he knew how he could get back to town. Austin said his host could give him a ride which turned into him crashing at my house for a couple weeks fixing his bike. He hit the road heading South about two weeks before us and we caught up with him in San Blas, Mexico. To make matters worse, we've recently gained a South African. Anyway, enough talk. Here's the meat:

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    #25
  6. bgoodsoil

    bgoodsoil Dare to be Stupid

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    so damn cool

    that blue DR looks like it's about to lose its boxes.
    #26
  7. DisTech

    DisTech Been here awhile

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    Fantastic, keep it coming! I alert the cube farm every time you have an update.
    #27
  8. yamalama

    yamalama wet coaster

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    Any chance of seeing the Yamaha XT set-ups? :shog :shog
    Great report. :lurk
    #28
  9. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    That's actually an XT belonging to the german. Those tweaked cases are due to a couple of unplanned get-offs in Mongolia. He's 7 months into a RTW trip. They look pretty rickety, but surprisingly they're rock solid.
    #29
  10. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Maybe I missed it but what boat did you use to cross the gap? Looked like a decent one with lots of deck space. Would you recommend it?
    #30
  11. Thorne

    Thorne Sherpa-ing around

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    :lurk
    #31
  12. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    Yep it´s a 75 footer. We had 6 bikes on board and that was just about the maximum possible as the captain has his own bike out on deck too. The name of the boat is Meta Comet. The french captain and his american wife, Herve and Dag, took good care of us and I´d recommend them strongly. You can reach them at metacometpassages@yahoo.com. All the boats are done for the season now as the winds get too strong this time of year. We got lucky as the Meta Comet was the last boat to make the passage this year.
    #32
  13. damasovi

    damasovi Long timer

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    super cool!!! I will be watching!! and reading? pics don't need that !

    damasovi
    #33
  14. Flyingavanti

    Flyingavanti With the Redhead on Back!

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    What happened? I have an old airhead.... and I MUST have lost my invitation to tag alog!

    Have a great time without me! I am sure you will.......

    Wish you guys the best... and be safe.... :clap :clap
    #34
  15. Donmanolo

    Donmanolo Been here awhile

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    Can't believe I only just came across this...! Buen viaje Sp.. I'll certainly be following closely...

    By the way, remember that hospitality and if necessary, assistance, can be arranged if needed, once you get to Chile.

    Hasta pronto amigo.

    Antonio.
    #35
  16. DR-Bee

    DR-Bee WTF?

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    :1drink This will make Christmas with the family go much smoother :>
    #36
  17. bgoodsoil

    bgoodsoil Dare to be Stupid

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    Dern, the next post is likely to be 6 months from now and have Antarctica in the background.

    Did ya'll make any stops on the San Blas while on the boat ride?
    #37
  18. SteverinoB

    SteverinoB EstebanarinoB

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    :lurk
    #38
  19. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer

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    Alright, sorry for the delay between posts, but we encountered quite an internet gap. That was a good thing as the riding has been the best so far. We're currently in southern Peru heading for Bolivia soon. These photos range from entering Colombia up until the present. Enjoy:





    Changing my rear main seal in an underground garage in Bogota with nothing, but the factory tool kit, a torque wrench and 2 sockets. For those of you that don't know, that involves removing the swingarm, transmission and clutch. I ended up having to do it twice.

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    Christmas in Colombia:


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    Steve and I actually made it into the local newspaper, El Pais:

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    Our campsite in Cali in a former restaurant:

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    Staying at a friend's apartment in Barrio San Merced in Quito:

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    Steve undoing a Panamanian mistake:

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    Onward to Peru where it got very sandy very quickly:

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    Two Colombians, Alejandro and Alejandro, riding two up on a 200. They didn't have any maps so they took photos of ours.

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    Then it was my turn to get stuck:

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    On the way to Canon del Pato:

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    Yet another flat tire for me:

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    Loving it:

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    This was REALLY good:

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    4 star Andean accommodations:

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    And back to the desert again:

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    Marko in "fuel economy mode"

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    Steve had to fix his tank which required putting on his thinking cap:

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    The Nazca lines were a bit underwhelming:

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    Abundant natural resources in Peru: sand, rock

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    When we were this high up the bikes were really wheezing, but still running smoothly. Running low on power though. Sleeping in tents is a little chilly too:

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    #39
  20. bpeckm

    bpeckm Grin!

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    :wings

    Hot damn! This is my first insight into whatcha doin' since reading about your transformer-bike in Old Skool....

    very awesome, impressive, cool, outstanding, wish I were there...:knary some of those Peruvian mountains look a little "vertiginous"....gasp....

    :D
    #40