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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Ohio_Danimal, Apr 24, 2018.
Yes! Probably the coolest spot I stopped on
the way south! Ride on!
Great ride today with Olaf Wedemeyer and Ian. We left El Calafate after packing our camp setups that had been up for three days (inside of my tent was a fucking mess lol) and while boiling water for get-up-and-go coffee, my stove ran out of fuel. Damn! Cute backpacker begged to borrow it last night, saying her’s had died and her food was prepared and ready to cook. She used all my fuel! THIS is why I was using a stove that runs on gasoline! I’ve got more fuel in my bike’s tank than a stove will burn in a year. I’ve got to get that thing fixed. For now I’ll get another tank of fuel.
So anyways. Concentrate Dan! (Microbrew isn’t helping lol) the ride was on mostly nice pavement but cold. A bit of gravel right at the Argentina/Chile border. I mean summer gloves with heated grips on high did NOT suffice.
Ian, who rides less aggressively than Olaf and I (on tarmac and off road) left before us to get a head start. We coordinated the destination.
Olaf tapped my helmet com: “Vat is das? It is cold!” And we planned to pull over and add a layer and switch to heavier gloves. Just then as we rounded a mountain bend, in the distance we both saw a Moto with a white helmet. Ian! We blew past him and I held up a closed left fist, the universal symbol for stop (Ian does have a helmet com device but it’s not linked to ours) and we pulled over next chance we got. As we stopped and we told him why we were stopping he laughed, as minutes before he had done the same.
He and Olaf lit ciggs while we suited up thicker. My Klim cold/wet gloves came out. The Gerbings jacket liner went in. And we set off again.
Holy mother of God, the difference heat makes! Relaxed and focused, we pushed on.
We were focused on another “detour” around a supposed bad deep gravel section of Ruta 40 (Rt 5 SE to Rt 7 west back to the Chile border at Torres del Paine) when it became apparent that the paved sections on 5 and 7 are NOW considered Ruta 40! Google maps is wrong again, and for the first time, Garmin maps was right!
The border crossing into Chile at Torres del Paine was paineless (pun intended) and we were once again in Chile!
Now on Ruta 9, it was a simple and beautiful ride 70 km to Puerto Natales where we are now, at Hostal Gloria. It’s heated. And there’s a bed (needed break from camping lol) Not that I don’t like camping. I do. But when you wake up freezing two nights in a row in 37 degree Fahrenheit temps and have to bundle up further, climb back into your bag and zip that sucker up to your neck, a break from that “fun” is needed.
If you’ll remember, Puerto Natales is where Sergio Camacho and Kurt wanted to go on the Puerto Yungay ferry but were unable to.
Tomorrow it’s on to Punta Arenas and a “rest” day where I’ll get (yet another) rear tire and do a needed oil change. Then we take a ferry from there to Povenir.
Not too far from Ushuaia now!
The long dreamed-of goal of mine is very near. I feel good. Sunny is running pretty well.
After Ushuaia I want to head North and East up the coast of SA into Brazil, Uruguay (legal weed yay!) and Paraguay and Bolivia (free visa for US citizens now yay!) and then west into Peru and north from there.
Now I need to start thinking about a lot of things. The thought of returning to my exact same past life is long gone. It’ll be fantastic to have a coming home party, see family and friends (Mike Wagner especially) and take it from there. But the idea of stopping this madness that is overland Moto travel is repulsive right now. Whether through sponsorships, writing, whatever, I need to find a way to keep going.
I have to.
And to those that think that the idea of continuing somehow is loco, you’re the same folks that said THIS grand plan was loco. It’ll all work out. A positive attitude and large dollops of peace and love are all that’s needed. (And sufficient funds lol)
Pictures soon. Maybe during the rest day in Punta Arenas!
Great attitude and outlook on a Motolife! You go for it brother!
You are probably already aware, but Paraguay has (last I heard anyway) a visa system very similar to how Bolivia’s was till recently. You’ve got plenty of time to get one, but wanted to give you a heads up if you weren’t aware.
Ride on Brother!
A brilliant ride today into Punta Arenas Chile, where we’ll stay a few days, staying at the Barefoot Backpackers Hostal.
Right away stopped at La Guardia, a recommended Moto shop where I’ll work on Sunny tomorrow. He didn’t have a tire I liked and an hour later at another shop I had a 130/80-17 tubeless Heinendau K60 Scout strapped to the back. Tomorrow Olaf will help me mount it at La Guardia. The Hostal is around the corner so we’ll leave the bikes safe at the shop.
Tonight at 9pm Olaf and I are joining a group ride out of La Guardia with a bunch of locals. Should be fun!
Notice something new? Sunny sporting a warm and comfy sheepskin pelt in fashionable blanco!
A Cycle South tag on the same window as a Long Way Up tag!
Dan I have just recently started reading your trip report and have finally caught up with where you are today. You are an inspiration to many of us wanna be world travelers. Keep the rubber side down I can’t wait to read more.
Thank you for taking the time to read all of that! And I’m glad I could (can) inspire others.
This blog is cathartic in many ways. One of which is relieving the feeling of guilt from so many years of reading so many other’s similar journeys. It’s always been take take take. Now I’ve got a chance to give a little. Comments like yours make the efforts worthwhile.
The Hostal were at has smoking wifi, so tomorrow there’ll be a massive picture upload from the Nikon!
You are welcome to a hot meal a warm bed (Our dogs don’t mind sleeping with strangers) hot water and a workspace if ever needed in NW New Mexico.
I think that Ushuaia tastes salty.
I’m getting so close to Ushuaia I can taste it! And we’re here on the ocean at Rio Grande Argentina after crossing yet another in the long list of Chile/Argentina border. Rossi has riding to Ushuaia entails.
We are staying at the excellent Fin del Mundo (end of the world) motorcycle Hostal right on the ocean! Nice rooms, hot showers and pizza and Quilmes cerveza!
Today at the Argentina side of the border crossing we were briefly reunited with Sergio Camacho and Kurt as they were headed North after reaching Ushuaia last week. It was great to see them again albeit briefly.
It was like an ADV parking lot at the border. BMW GS’s everywhere. KTMs all around. More than a dozen assorted KLRs.
But Sunny was the only DR650 in the lot and a LOT of riders oogled at her and asked what she was. I was proud!
Even more proud on the bad gravel section into Argentina (saw one rider down in a group) when Olaf and I blew past large numbers of big bikes floundering in the deep gravel. It helped at the Aduana que at the Argentina side.
Tomorrow is the day.
The one I’ve dreamed of. Arriving in Ushuaia.
I think we will stay maybe 5-7 days and chill.
Sam and Mystery should arrive here at this Hostal tonight
Olaf and I are still with Ian, who is only staying in Ushuaia two nights.
Then it’s north and east! Into Brazil! Paraguay! Uruguay! Bolivia! All unexplored by Sunny and myself. Lots of run left but it’ll feel incredible to reach Tiera del Fuego after so much effort and plenty of obstacles.
Incredible to be so close, you must be pinching yourself after all this time.
I'm excited to read your RR thru the eastern part of South America. I don't think I've ready any RR's from that side. So it will be a first for this armchair adventurer. I'm quite excited for you after all you've been through. You're a true hero for doing this!
look who came to visit tonight!
It’s @JimsBeemer and his Wife Sharon!
It was great finally getting to meet you two and chat a bit. Safe travels North in the morning friends!
Congratulations Dan! Mission accomplished!
Thanks Q! Lots more to come but what a relief!
Woooo HOOOO Congratulations Dan!!
Congratulation Dan. Well done. It has been inspirational following your quest. Party on with the nice crew you’ve found along the way. Thanks for the video.
Way to go Dan!
Really stoked for you, Dano!
Major accomplishment, Level unlocked!