2 Months in Chile and Argentina

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by jrzyguy, Oct 31, 2014.

  1. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    I've come close twice to putting a trip together, but each time conflicts arose and I had to postpone. To the greatest extent possible, I wanted my first trip to South America to be without distractions and/or regrets. I hoped to travel in the moment, with as little compromise as possible.

    When I first considered a motorcycle adventure in S.A., it was a no-brainer to ride from where I called home at the time... either Colorado or California. Other than shipping or air freighting around the Darien Gap, I'd ride the entire way to Ushuaia and then ship my moto back from Buenos Aires and fly home. But as I've traveled in recent years, I've come to realize that I enjoyed and appreciated my wanderings more when I was on the road for about a month or two, at the most. After that length of time, I began to think more about home and less about what was down the road and around the corner. I learned that the key to enjoying my travels was contrast. So after a few months on the road, my daily experiences became the norm, and less impressive & exciting. I also found myself daydreaming more frequently about home, and especially Julie. Please don't get me wrong, I love to travel, it's in my blood. But when I hear about riders on multi-year, round-the-world adventures, I know that at this point in my life, similar dreams will only be lived vicariously. And that's just fine with me! I don't think there's a right or wrong position here... it's personal. So my decision to ship my bike to Valparaiso and to begin my travels in Chile, made complete sense to me.

    Fast forward to the present... events are coming down to the wire. I delivered my '09 DR650 to Total Transportation Concepts (TTC) in L.A. on Sept. 18th. Initally, they planned to ship it on Oct 1st, but due to some needed blocking and bracing of goods in the container, it left L.A. on Oct. 15th instead. It's due to arrive on Nov. 4th. And I'm scheduled to fly to Santiago on the 4th, arrriving on the 5th. My friend Walter, a retired Delta pilot, treated me to a Buddy Pass that saved me mucho pesos!. Thanks again Walter! Once I arrive, I'll take a 70 mile bus trip from Santiago to Valpariso, where I'll claim my bike and begin my travels.

    So what's my plan? It's a loose framework, yet to be filled in. After my bike clears Customs, I'll spend a few days in Valparaiso and Santiago. Then I'll begin my ride south... I'll check out Aconcagua (highest mountain in the Western & Southern Hemispheres, at 22,837'), visit the Wine County, the Lake Region, and ride the Carretera Austral to Patagonia. In Patagonia I expect to spend a few weeks hiking and exploring. Then I'll continue down to Ushuaia before heading up the east coast of Argentina, to Buenos Aires. And finally, my last traverse of the Andes while riding back to Santiago. I have two months during which I want to take it as it comes... travel slowly, and be open to new people, places, and experiences.

    I'll post again when I begin my travels...
    #1
  2. Johnnydarock

    Johnnydarock Been here awhile

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    Sounds like a cool adventure. If you like dirt...don't forget to spend some time in Bolivia. Have fun and ride safe.
    #2
  3. JettPilot

    JettPilot ADV Rider

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    Nothing wrong with wanting to go home after a couple months. Find a safe place to store your bike in South America, and go back down after a few months rest at home. You don't have to just do it once and quit :)

    Mike
    #3
  4. DKW1200

    DKW1200 Been here awhile

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    I have the same plan for February. Late I know but that's the retirement date. I will go south as weather allows before storing the bike somewhere? and returning home in May. Going back to finish the ride back to SoCal in the fall. I am currently organizing a container to Valpo in January with TTC. I spoke to your agent today. He mentioned that he just sent a bike. We have 4-5 bikes to fill the container so eliminate the hassle of crating. Im a bit concerned about the delay in your shipping date. Was this a screw up of TTC? We would also be very interested in how the import in Chile went and any lessons learned. Who is processing your bike in Valpo? The ride over the Andes at Aconcagua pass to Mendoza is one that you will not forget. There's also a money exchange going up the mountain to get some Arg pesos if you need. Thanks for any information on TTC and import information that you can provide.
    #4
  5. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Thanks... Bolivia and parts north will hopefully be visited on future trips!
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  6. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Hey Mike, I've considered leaving the DR in the Santiago area, for future wanderings . If the bike remains in Chile beyond its allowed time, I believe it needs to be stored in a "legal" facility of some sort... need to research more. I like your suggestion not to limit S.A. to a one visit deal!
    #6
  7. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    I don't think Feb. is too late. The fall season in Patagonia is considered by many to be the best... it's when many photo tours go. But fall weather is another issue. I can't say whether TTC screwed up or not. But with your bikes properly secured, the roll on/roll off method should be a breeze. International Transport is my Santiago connection. PM me, if you'd like more detail... be nice to connect with another San Diegan. Enjoy your planning... and your adventure!
    #7
  8. pne

    pne Long timer

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    sounds like it's going to be a really fun trip. I get the same way myself, homesick after a couple months and wanting some contrast. Once I get home and sleep in my own bed for a couple days, I want to be back on the road again. :lol3

    The Andes are epic, I've never been to Patagonia but I want to go back and see it. Didn't like Chile as much as Argentina but Valparasio was a really cool place. I really liked Cordoba and Mendoza if you get a chance to check them out.
    #8
  9. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    I wasn't able to load my pictures from Smugmug. Can't copy the photo url to paste it in the report. I'm using the same iPad that I've used for prior ride reports. Took a quick trip to the Apple Store... the tech also had no success. He suggested I contact Smugmug... and I will. But I can't help but wonder whether the latest update is at fault.

    I'll post the pics below.
    #9
  10. DKW1200

    DKW1200 Been here awhile

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    Jrzyguy,
    Thanks for the info. Looking forward to following your tracks and catching up to at some point. You may want to contact Hostel villa Kunterbunt for storage. They are a moto only hostel and help riders with shipping in Valpo. Villakunterbuntvalpo@yahoo.de. All good reviews on Adv and HU. Im thinking of storage in Uruguay since you can get a one year visa. Just a thought. I'll send you a PM and look forward to following you.

    David
    #10
  11. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    I fully understand your desire to get back on the road again! Thanks for the recommendations... can't wait to see the Andes!
    #11
  12. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Here are a few pics of my DR's evolution. I bought it slightly used, with 400 miles on it in 2010. Since I rode it home, it's never been so clean!
    [​IMG]

    Now modified for traveling. Pic was taken down on the Baja.
    [​IMG]

    With a camo paint job. I heard from several concerned Adv'ers on my MX and GT ride report who though the camo might attract trouble... it didn't. My setup is unmistakably gringo!
    [​IMG]

    This pic was taken at the shipper as I prepped it. And those are Pelican hard bags. Since I plan to hike and explore off the bike, I want greater security while the bike is parked. BTW, the shipper's requirements were simple: leave only a little fuel in the tank, disconnect the battery, and remove the wind screen & mirrors. The folks at TTC were easy to work with and made the entire process simple.
    [​IMG]

    The shipper crated the bike and sent me these pics. Nice neat job!
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #12
  13. south_rider

    south_rider south_rider

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    You should really consider a northern bound trip, the Atacama desert and bolivian heights are incredible... Also think about the dakar that is to be held on january (1-15) might be able to catch them up north
    I'm from Chile so if i can be of any help please let me know
    #13
  14. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Thank you south_rider, for the offer to help... I may need to reach out. I've read about parts north and will be heading that way on my next adventure. But for now, this trip will take me south. Thanks again.
    #14
  15. MikeS

    MikeS Fur shur! Vamos! Supporter

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    This is so kool! I'm planning to start exploring SA in a year, with the same 4 to 8 week travel strategy, stretched out over several seasons. My thoughts are to purchase a SA moto and store it when I depart back north. I'm hoping to locate a used 250cc Falcon or maybe a Chinese moto for around $2500.

    What kind of shipping cost did you experience? My other option is to ship my KL250 and leave that in SA for a few seasons.
    #15
  16. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Hey David, Thank you for the referrals on the Hostel. If I decide to leave my bike, they seem like a good possibility. I'll watch for your PM.

    Jim
    #16
  17. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Hey MikeS,
    Glad to hear about your plans! During my info gathering process, I considered buying, renting, as well as shipping my bike. I found each path to be viable, depending upon one's plan... trip length in time & miles, where you'll travel, etc., etc. That said, if you're in it for the long run and multiple trips, buying in S.A. makes good sense. BTW, my shipping (one way) cost $1,478. Best of luck with your plans!
    #17
  18. munchmeister

    munchmeister Grow'd Up Mini Trail

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    Safe travels buddy! I'm subscribed and will be hanging on for dear life. :D And will be thinking of you on "our" birthday !! Great adventure man ! I'm green with envy.
    --Doug
    #18
  19. jrzyguy

    jrzyguy Restless

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    Hey Doug, good to hear from you and glad you'll be along. Hope your retirement is going well!
    #19
  20. RedHawk47

    RedHawk47 Adventurer Supporter

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    Subscribed
    jealous
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