South America, January-June 2013: Route Suggestions??

Discussion in 'Americas' started by porkandcorn, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    January-May/June 2013 is the only time I can get away from my life in the US to do this trip I've been dreaming about for years.

    I'm looking for route suggestions from people who know the area, the weather patterns, and the good motorcycling roads: Which months should I spend in which areas? What cool places should I visit that are not listed by Country below? Which Andean passes are the safest and at what times?

    Here's a starter list of areas/places I *think* I'd live to try and cover:

    *Brasil (Rio de Janeiro south to Florianopolis - visiting friends in S. Brasil)
    *Uruguay (beaches of Uruguay-Montevideo, Punta del Este-in prime beach season)
    *Buenos Aires (couple of weeks hanging out in the city)
    *Ushuaia (although I've heard it's a pretty boring ride?? and not really worth the long trip?? unless you just HAVE to do the Ushuaia thing??)
    *Argentina (route 40, 68, 9, Patagonia near Bariloche, Valle de la Luna)
    *Chile (Paso los Libertadores, Atacama desert, Paso de San Francisco?, Antofagasta)
    *Peru (Lake Titicaca, Machu Picchu, Nasca, Huacachina Desert Oasis)
    *Bolivia (La Paz, Salar Uyuni)
    *Panamerican Highway (which parts are good, which parts are not so good?)
    *Ecuador (Good beaches, National parque cajas)
    #1
  2. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    It would be huge mistake to leave Colombia off the list, pure heaven on a bike and the people are wonderful:deal
    #2
  3. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    Can you suggest any points of interest in Columbia? From Ecuador, what would be your path North, what cities would you stop in, and where would you airfreight the bike out of back to the US?
    #3
  4. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    All cities in Colombia are wonderful for me, most people just take the Pan American HW and pass through but they are missing a ton of excellent riding.

    Without a doubt Bogota to Miami is the best air freight option out of Colombia.
    #4
  5. bush pilot

    bush pilot Long timer

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    Don't leave out the Austral hwy in southern Chile. As well as Punta Arenas a Chilean Tierra del Fuego, Torres del Paine. And El Califate and Chalten in AR.
    Ushuaia is kinda boring but the side trip down road J was rewarding. As was the back way into Chile from Rio Grande.
    #5
  6. CourtRand

    CourtRand Been here awhile

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    Check out our web site for some route suggestions in Ecuador and some great places to stay. We provide a lot of detail in our tour descriptions including links on the hotels we use and trust.
    #6
  7. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    Hey porkandcorn

    Will be watching this thread with interest - am planning a Central & South America trip this winter and this sort of info is of great interest. Although it looks like we will be going different directions, will have to keep an eye out for each other and maybe have a beer or ten.

    As you probably know, there are tons of ride reports with specific opinions and trying to absorb all of them is a huge undertaking, albeit a very enjoyable undertaking. To answer a couple of your questions, this guy's blog has some info on South American GPS maps and SA Climate (in addition to some great trips) http://www.moto-treks.com/
    #7
  8. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    thanks everybody for chiming in.

    rexbuck: i just met up with a fellow oregonian who's an inmate here on ADV. "radioman" is his handle. he's riding from ecuador south starting in about a month, so you should follow his blog at "radiomanridestheworld.com". i know i will be and looking for info that i can use.
    #8
  9. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    I second that. I can't tell you how great that country is, and I have been to a lot of countries It's a paradise, and especially for motos. Plan on spending some time there, and if you don't, it will probably suck you in anyway. :rofl

    #9
  10. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    I also found Mike at Motolumbia Tours in Cali, Columbia, who can help me ship my bike back home out of Columbia (bogata). So I'm definitely going.
    #10
  11. Strave19

    Strave19 n00b savant

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    Are you riding down or flying? I'll be heading south in January too and wouldn't mind some company through northern Mex.
    #11
  12. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    strave19 -

    i'm actually doing the trip backwards from what most people seem to do - i'm flying into buenos aires, the riding north and flying back out of columbia.
    #12
  13. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Kinda crazy not going to Venezuela while your at it, cheapest gas in the World and some nice riding in the Andes and beautiful scenery in the Gran Sabana and really good side trips hiking and the beaches. Did I mention the free gas:deal
    #13
  14. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    So you found no issues being and American in Venezuela? Realistically, what are the risks?
    #14
  15. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    Yeah, Mike from Motolombia is the best. A few months back he moved his headquarters from Cali to Medellín, although he still has the Casa Blanca hostel in Cali, along with new bike rental outlets in Cartagena and Bogotá. He always has time to offer advice, even to non-customers. The guy knows every good road in Colombia.

    #15
  16. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    i'm going to link back to this thread, but i've started my official ride report for my south american trip. www.porkandcorn.com will forward you right to my advrider rr.

    and thanks for the suggestions so far everyone - they are all going down into my route planning list by country, which i'll eventually post up to my ride report page for others to see.

    -porkandcorn
    #16
  17. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    thanks bush pilot... this is exactly the kind of detail i'm needing.
    #17
  18. porkandcorn

    porkandcorn FortesFortunaAdiuvat

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    this list will change wildly in the next couple of months. trying to collect info from as many riders as i can, then document who told me what so i can PM them later or on my trip for more detail. a bit disorganized... will clean up as i go. i also have this list on iCloud on my apple devices so i can edit it from anywhere when i have an idea or heard some advice. great way to keep on top of your planning.

    ---------------------------------------
    Brazil:
    Floripa
    Porto Alegre

    Brazil To Do:


    ---------------------------------------
    Uruguay:
    Punta del este, beach town (a local told me)
    Montevideo

    Uruguay To Do:


    ---------------------------------------
    Argentina:
    See Gotan Project concert!
    Buenos Aires
    Ushuaia???
    Road J to Ushuaia (bush pilot - adv)
    Back Route into Chile (bush pilot - adv)
    Ruta 40, 68, 9
    Salta
    Cafayate
    Chalten (bush pilot - adv)
    Patagonia W. of Bariloche
    Valle de la Luna
    Paso los Libertadores (Chile)
    Puerto Bertrand - Jonathan Leidich/Patagonia Adventure Expeditions
    (56-67-411 330), contact@adventurepatagonia.com
    ------------
    Rotten Cops: 25-50 miles N of Buenos Aires (jeff smith) *ask Javier/DakarMotos
    Dakar motos, Buenos Aires are good people (clemens)
    Ruta 9 north of salta is great road (clemens)
    Ruta 68 south of Belen, like sw USA canyons (clemens)
    Rio Gallegos, sw moto, nice people (clemens)
    Patagonia hotel, rio grande (clemens)
    Paso san francisco, ok to chile mid to late february (hubb-duval)
    boat trip through sounds (radioman)

    Argentina To Do:


    ---------------------------------------
    Chile:
    Mano del Desierto, Near Antofagasta off pan-american (hubb-duval)
    Paso los Libertadores (Argentina)
    Atacama desert
    Paso de San Francisco
    Carretera Austral - 770 miles (Routa 7 Chile)
    El Calafate (glacier perito moreno)
    Lago Buenos Aires
    Porta del Paine national park (bush pilot - adv)
    Punta Arenas (bush pilot - adv)

    Chile To Do:


    ---------------------------------------
    Peru:
    Atico to Camana, Peru, 150 miles of beautiful coast road like NorCal (clemens)
    Lake Titicaca
    Machu Picchu, little town before to stay, a day for machu picchu
    Nasca lines
    Huacachina desert oasis
    Sillustani, watch towers moat (Miriam)
    Puno to Pucara to Cuzco: piquillacta (house of gold), templo de viracocha, ollantiltambo, moray (miriam)
    Pisco to Trujillo, + Chiclaya! (beautiful beaches) (miriam)
    Cape north of chiclayo boring (miriam)


    Peru To Do:
    Get fixers from Miriam, Rosie

    ---------------------------------------
    Bolivia:
    http://www.theadventurebrewhostel.com/, la Paz (clemens)
    La Paz to Potosi, beautiful paved roads (clemens)
    Salar Uyuni
    Sucre
    Santa Cruz (Sylvia)
    Do not enter Bolivia via San Pedro de Aticama to Uyuni!, very difficult sand riding (brian dublin/HUBB)


    Bolivia To Do:


    ---------------------------------------
    Ecuador:
    Puerto Lopez, hostel, gladis, http://www.hostalvillacolombia.com (clemens)
    Ecuator-Peru border crossing easy, no fees, exchange $ for Soles at the border (clemens)
    Cuenca, US expat town, nice (clemens)
    National parque cajas, 14,000 ft nice roads (clemens)
    http://freedombikerental.com - ecuador, advhandle: (CourtRand - adv)

    Ecuador To Do:
    Galapagos costs - http://www.angelitogalapagos.com
    insurance required at border (dan clemens)

    ---------------------------------------
    Columbia:
    Carlos, fixer?
    Girag cargo?(clemens)
    ship out of bogata (radioman)
    Mike, motolumbia adv tours in cali, nice guy (clemens) (radioman)

    Columbia To Do:
    insurance required at border
    #18
  19. rtwpaul

    rtwpaul out riding...

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    columbia - route 25 heading north out of Pasto, crazy drivers, mountain roads, sunshine, fog, rain, switchbacks, hookers, animals, kids, cows, potholes, donkeys, perfect pavement, bad pavement, landslides, accidents, fruit stalls - this road has everything the rest of south america has in just 80 miles...its a wild ride

    a good one for the helmet camera!!!
    #19
  20. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    Just completed E35 from Quito to Cuenca, Ecuador through Riobamba. Don't let the fact that it's a major highway fool you. The route, especially from Riobamba south, is chock full of fantastic scenery, is mostly above 9,000 feet ASL, twisty, and takes you through some very sparsely populated areas, and hardly any traffic if you get an early start out of Riobamba.

    Also, in Colombia the road from Ibague south to Cali and then down to Ipiales is pretty darn nice. High mountain passes, twists, jungles, everything you could want.
    #20