Trails of South America (PtI)... a photo journal

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by JediMaster, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

    Joined:
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    This thread follows on from my previous one Trails of North America...a photo journal.

    In real time it preceeds the North America thread as I was in the south of south America and heading north back in 2009. When my F650's Ohlins suspension broke (again) I shipped it back to Europe, flew to the USA, bought my DR and continued my journey.
    For the full story see Chapter 20 of my website.

    I'm now heading south to "fill in the gap" between here and La Paz, Bolivia and will post those in a ToSA PtII that I'll get to work on soon.
    In the meantime here's a collection of photo's from the 1st leg of my SA trip...

    UPDATE - PartII (2011) starts with post #36


    Argentina...

    New Year 2009 in Buenos Aires was followed by a 4am start to watch the Dakar Rally get under way. Together with Axel and Eduardo from Santiago, Chile, we followed the race for the first 4 days...

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    It was bloody dusty on the road to the start of day 4...

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    When the race turned north I said goodbye to Axel and Eduardo and rode south to Parque Nacional Lanin...

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    Before taking a little dirt road past Lago Epulafquen and into Chile via a little border post...

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    #1
  2. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

    Joined:
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    The Carretera Austral was something I'd read and dreamed about for years. It was great to finally ride it even if the weather didn't want me to see it at it's best...

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    South of Coyhaique it brightened up. Lago General Caraterra...

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    I re-entered Argentina at Los Antigos and turned south onto a little dirt road that runs parallel with the border...

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    Before setting off down Ruta 40...

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    The western route south means several border crossings and I was soon back in Chile for a visit to Torres del Paine NP...

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    #2
  3. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

    Joined:
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    After Ushuaia I followed Ruta 40 north to Mendoza then rode east to Uruguay, Brazil (as far as Rio) then Paraguay and back into Argentina for a look around the NE.

    I found a lot of Cacti whilst looking for the old village of Quilmes...

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    Before finding myself back on Ruta 40 for the ride from Cafayate to Cachi...

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    The ride out of Cachi through the Valle de Enchantado...

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    North of Salta, off of Ruta 9, a 49km dirt road leads to the village of Iruya...

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    #3
  4. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

    Joined:
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    Leaving San Antonio de Los Cobres behind me I set off across Paso Sico, detouring for a look at the impressive Viaduct La Polvorilla used by the Tren a las Nubes ...

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    Paso Sico. Argentina side...

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    Paso Sico. Argentina side...

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    Paso Sico. Argentina side...

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    This is on the summit at approx 4500m (14,700ft)...

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    #4
  5. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Good stuff dude keep up the good work:clap
    #5
  6. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    As if the Argentine side wasn't beautiful enough, the Chilean side blew me away...

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    By the time I reached Chilean Immigration my ears were red raw from taking my helmet on/off to take photos. Spending so long taking photos's also meant I could't make it to San Pedro de Atacama in daylight and so I pitched my tent at Lago Misquanti. After pitching my tent at the park entrance and settling down to drink tea, cook dinner and watch the sunset, the park rangers arrived to tell me I couldn't camp where I was (even though I was outside the park). Eventually, after much negotiating, they let me camp inside the park. It was -10 C that night and my 5ltr water bottle froze SOLID inside my tent!

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    #6
  7. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    I returned to Argentina via Paso San Francisco...

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    Another beautiful route that once again had my ears screaming for mercy!

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    #7
  8. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    Once again stopping for photo's had taken it's toll on my day...

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    ...and I ended up spending the night in a roadside Refugio. But not before a splendid sunset...

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    Cooking dinner in the Refugio...

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    Cosy in my bag...

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    The Refugio in daylight...

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    #8
  9. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

    Joined:
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    Bolivia was the first time I'd encountered paying a toll to use a dirt road!

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    Waiting for these guys to move I heard a noise behind me...

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    ...and looked round to see this...

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    Sucre - Samaipata was a pleasant ride...

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    Above Vallegrande on the 'Ruta del Che'...

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    Before dropping into La Higuera to see Che's memorial...

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    There's a great little guest house in La Higuera...

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    The following morning I awoke to rain/mist/low cloud and so didn't get many photo's. This one though gives a sense of scale to the countryside...

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    #9
  10. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    Potosi to Uyuni road...

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    The train museum/graveyard at Pulacayo is home to the train robbed by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid...

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    Pulacayo...

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    #10
  11. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    I had originally hoped to enter Bolivia from the SW corner at Hito Cajon but decided against it given all the cold/altitude starting problems I was having. I made a second attempt to see the SW from Uyuni but turned back with a blown fork seal. I'll try agin this year on the DR. The scenery out there is...unusual...

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    And some great camping...

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    #11
  12. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    A fabulous place to pitch your tent and watch the colours change through sunset...

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    I spent my birthday there... Happy Birthday to me...Happy Birthday to me... Happy Birthday NOBBY NO MATES...Happy Birthday to me!

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    Back in Samaipata I found this in the book exchange...

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    #12
  13. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    I left the Salar to the north through Tahuna...

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    Then headed NE towards Lago Poopo...

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    I was glad it wasn't raining...

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    ''Mmmm...sand...my favourite!'' - Salinas de Garci-Mendoza - Huari road

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    Further along this road (Salinas de Garci-Mendoza - Huari road) I broke my rear shock...again.

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    #13
  14. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    East of the Oruro - La Paz road are the Thermas de Urmir, accessed by a 50km dirt road affording spectacular views of IIIimani...

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    Having spent the previous three nights at between -6 and -10 C the hot springs were superb. Instead of backtracking to the main road I headed down into the valley and the Sapahuaqui - Calamarca road...

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    In La Paz I discovered my rear shock had failed. Once again one side of the U-bracket had snapped off. I'd also snapped the top mounting bolt which had allowed the shock to impact with the frame, damage the shocks cylinder head oil line banjo.
    Eventually (looooong story) I had this bodge made just to get me to Lima, Peru.

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    With my BMW shipped home I flew to the USA, bought a DR650 and continued my journey -
    Trails of North America... a photo journal
    #14
  15. elias

    elias Been here awhile

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    :thumb Perfect pictures!!!! Perfect trip!!!!!!!!!! keep it coming.

    Question. Why do you have an other bike in north america? What seasonwere you doun there?



    (can anyone tell me how to post a replay in a new page, i feel stupid)
    #15
  16. Seattle Jimmy

    Seattle Jimmy happy dipshit.

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    seattle,wa
    You sir are a talented potgrapher!
    #16
  17. b3nji

    b3nji n00b

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    +1! May I ask what camera you're using kind sir?
    #17
  18. JediMaster

    JediMaster Adam Lewis

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    Seattle Jimmy - Thanks for your kind words.

    I haven't. See post #1

    I was there December - September.


    At the time I was using a Nikon D80 with a Nikkor 18-200mm. A couple of the photos were taken with a Sigma 10-20mm but not only did I use the lens infrequently, for the first time I started having problems with dust on the sensor (from changing between lenses). As a result I sold the 10-20mm.

    I spent a week with a photographer friend in LA back in October at the end of which he offered me his D300s for a price I couldn't refuse and so my Mexico, Central America and what will be the PtII of this thread were/are all taken with the D300s.

    Two weeks ago I manged to drop it, smashing the filter. I don't think the lens is scratched but the autofocus is now sluggish and it won't autofocus atall at full zoom. Can't begin to tell you how pissed off I am about that.

    Adam
    #18
  19. SmilinJoe

    SmilinJoe Been here awhile

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    Hey Jedi! Amazing story and amazing Photos!:clap Glad you got to meet Throttlemeaister! John is an amazing character for sure! :lol3 Your journey is most certainly one of the most Epic! Be safe on your journey!
    #19
  20. AirborneAndy

    AirborneAndy Vagabond

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    Incredible! I have seen some truly amazing scenery. But, I rarely come close to capturing the beauty before me.

    :bow:bow:bow
    #20