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Finding Freedom...World Wide Ride

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by BcDano, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Now it is packing day for the airport. We went to BMW to pick up a metal palette for Dan’s bike (he already had a wood BMW one for the 650, but it is for a much smaller bike!) and 2 dozen tie downs. Faizal’s dad also showed up with one of their trucks for the transport. We had a lot of help from the shop guys, Faizal and Orvar to get them crated, loaded, and onto the flat bed. This meant mirrors, windscreen, and front tires off as well.

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  2. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    The next issue today is that Mohadin now says we have to pay cash unlike with MAS which takes Visa. There is no way we can get that kind of cash from an ATM in one day. We will get what we can and try to get him to sort out a Paypal account for the rest.

    We finally set out for the airport at 445 pm. We arrived to the cargo terminal, obtained day passes for us and the truck, and entered the secure zone. Mohadin the agent met us inside and he dealt with the carnet exit stamps. We had “inspection” , which was a check of the VIN and then we moved the bikes over to the loading bay for final “volume” measurement and wight 315 and 324 kg (bikes, luggage, helmets, and gear). Mohadin worked some magic on the numbers to get us the best deal. They are flying Thai Air Cargo tomorrow to Bangkok and then TAC to Auckland on Dec 31.

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    This is a very brief description, but does not really describe the huge hassle and stress that is involved in the shipping. The issues of getting a booking, getting the best rate, making the smallest volume, being told a different thing every few hours, being told you could roll on and then that you need to crate, being told you can pay with visa and then at the last minute you need to pay cash, trying to organize money international transfers for the next day when transfers will take several days…..We were finally in bed at midnight and up at 5 am for our flight. We had met the agent at the hotel set up a PayPal account for him, paid him all the cash we could get from the ATM daily limit, and sent the rest by paypal. In the morning we get a message that the payment was sent back by the agent as he clearly did something wrong on his end. The bikes did go to Bangkok, but several hours before we had a message that the agent that we needed to get the money to him ( it is sent, but as he refused the last one they are holding this one) or the bikes will not fly tonight (we have a way bill that says paid), but Faizal to the rescue again and he guaranteed the payment.

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  3. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We arrived to Auckland airport at almost 1 am. Here you have to go thru several layers of customs screening after immigration. It is important to declare any food or items that may contact soil. If they find something you did not declare (even a candy) the fine starts at 400$. We handed over our tent for fumigation and had the luggage X-rayed. They spotted something in the bag that turned out to be a Vick’s candy we had forgotten about and they let that go. After all this we used the SIM card purchased in duty free to contact the hotel shuttle and finally fell into bed at 2am. You know you are in the first world when your room is as booked, there are towels and 4 pillows, there is a bar fridge and it is already cold and has fresh cream in it for your coffee.

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    Janet and Charlie Russel who we finally met in Osh have kindly offered to host us until we get the bikes (very kind as it may be 4-5 days). They arrived to pick us up about 11 and drove us to their home in almost rural Albany.

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    Nice Garage!

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  4. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We are quite shattered today, but rested up here at the Russel’s. Well the bikes have left Bangkok and arrive to Auckland today at noon Dec 31. The cargo company Menzies says that we can come at 2 pm (Saturday) and “all the paperwork with be done”. We did drive all the way over there again only to find the paper work done, but customs is closed for the next 3 days!! AGH. We did pay our 113$ NZ (Import international terminal fees and document import fees plus GST)


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    marior97 likes this.
  5. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    It is Dec 31 and so the Russel’s have organized a BBQ for tonight and we will finally get to meet TINTOMKIWI who are Tina and Thomas that we missed by just a few hours in Brazil and by a few days in Vancouver. It is so nice to finally meet up and we all enjoyed talking to others who understand the journey.

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  6. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Well we managed a bit of sight seeing around the city by car and the weather held out for us. First we made for Muriwai beach and then we drove into town to see the view from Mount Eden and and then from Battery Point.

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  7. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    It is finally “pick up your motorbike day” January 3. We loaded up the trailer again and Charlie drove us back to the airport. We arrived to customs at 930 and they seemed a bit confused about what to do. This is a Carnet country, but very few bikes arrive here i would guess. They did manage to stamp and sign the papers, but it took them over an hour. They told us “you do not need to go to inspection”. From here you go back 200 m to the shippers Menzies with your document from customs and they then told us we did (of course) need inspection and had to drive 3.5 km to the new MPI (Ministry of Primary Industries) office to get our inspection even arranged. Because customs did not enter the info the officer here had to redo all the data and after the long wait in the cue we finally left after 11. We called to book the inspection, but they could not do it until 1. Lunch it is. We arrived back to the warehouse area and just had to wait 15 min for the inspection officer to finish with the last customer. We were of course worried the bikes would be clean enough and that we would not have any banned items. He unwrapped all the saran and opened the bag with the boots and suits, Dan’s tank bag and one of his panniers….10 minutes and both passed. Now we just had a few minutes to wait for a fork lift driver who lifted the bikes onto Charlie’s trailer. We unloaded the luggage and strapped the bikes in for the drive the 46 km back to Albany.

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  8. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    The weather held out all day and there was just a sprinkle starting as we arrived home. Charlie has all the bits and pieces that we can use to set up a good ramp. We all worked together to lift each bike on the center stand and get the front wheel back on. We managed to get them both unloaded before the predicted storm hit.

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    SmilinJoe, marior97 and SavannahCapt like this.
  9. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We had planned to try to leave today, but it got too late and then the next day the 4 th it was gale force winds and pouring. There is a severe storm warning and they have evacuated the beaches and camping on both the central coasts. It is Sara’s birthday so we went out for a birthday dinner!

    By 11 am on the 5th there was a window where the storm looked less severe and we set out the 147 km to Tikipunga where Tina and Thomas live.

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    It was pretty windy, but not raining that hard until our lunch break in Wellsford. After that is was Patagonia windy and pouring. The traffic our way was not too bad , but there was a continuous line of vehicles coming towards us.
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    We arrived to Tina and Thomas’s to fresh baked rhubarb cake.

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  10. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Well the weather has improved quite a bit today as it is cloudy, but not raining. We set out from Tikipunga on the small windy roads. It is ideal riding weather at 23 degree and even on a Saturday there is almost no traffic.


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    We made for the coast road and rode thru Matapouri before turning inland again.

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    There is a loop road back to the highway 1. You only go a short distance on this main road and then exit again on the narrow country lanes to Helena Bay where you can stop at an art cafe for a coffee.


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    SmilinJoe, marior97 and SavannahCapt like this.
  11. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    The coast road continues around the point to Russel and we stopped in here for some amazing Red Snapper fish and chips. It is a short and 5$ ride on the ferry across the inlet to Paihia.

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  12. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We made a brief stop in Kawakawa to get a photo of the "famous" Hundertwasser toilets here! There are public toilets in almost every NZ town. This may be why there are sort of unfriendly signs on the door of all the shops and restaurants warning " toilets are for guests only”!


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    From here we rode on some small roads thru the woods and then on some gravel cross country to arrive south west of Whangarei again.

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    Tina and Thomas have been very kind to host us for 2 days here. They also looked over our map and gave their suggestions on our route.
    SmilinJoe, marior97, thwak and 3 others like this.
  13. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Our plan over the next few days is to make it to the north tip of the island at Cape Reinga. Today we set off on our own and rode south west to Dargaville.

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    This is Sunday and there are almost no cars on the road. The town looks deserted and all the shops are closed.

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  14. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    From here we rode north on the 12, which takes you thru the Waipoua Forrest. We did a few gravel side trip, with a visit to the Trauson Kauri park, the Waipoua Forrest lookout (not much to see but trees), and to the visitors center where we had lunch at 3 pm.

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    Got to watch for KIWI! Probably not actually since they are nocturnal.


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  15. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We decided to cut the day short and stop in Rawene before the ferry and camp for the night. There is a small shop at the dock to get for provisions and we had a cozy first night in our tent.

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  16. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Getting up today it was less cloudy and warmer and we arrived to the dock just as the boat was loading.

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    The scenery in NZ is right out of Hobbiton from Lord of the rings (we wont be visiting the set as it is 70$pp), with rolling hill and small winding roads past farms and villages.

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  17. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We gassed up in Kaitaia and found a hardware store to get a tarp (we did not want to deal with bringing our old one thru quarantine to NZ). And we grabbed some sandwich fixings and rode back 10 km to the 90 mile beach access point at Ahipara. The tide is still rising and we arrived at 130 with the high at 230. That said we did get some riding up and down the beach.


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  18. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    From here it was a short trip to Waiharara and the nearby home of fellow riders Roscoe and Raewyn. They have a lovely farm and we will tent in their back paddock ( full shower and flush facilities to boot). They were kind enough to feed us a lovely dinner and we slept well in the peace and quiet.

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    This was a huge Emu/Ostrich farm, but they now only have a few mating pairs and their pet Emu Carol!


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  19. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Today’s plan is to make it to the north tip of the island at Cape Reinga and then ride some of the gravel roads to the coasts and ultimately to get back on the 90 mile beach.

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    The ride up to the cape is lovely and the parking is perched on the cliff side.

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    There is supposed to be 90 mile beach and dunes access by driving down a gravel (or as they are called here metal road) and then riding down the "stream" at Te Paki. We arrived down the 5 km road to the base of the big dunes.

    Here the energetic climb up and sand board down the slopes. There are off road buses heading at full speed down the "stream" to the beach. Dan decided to scout the water before we ride down with low low Lulu after the heavy rains this week. It started out well with water at most a foot deep, but it got very deep in some spots and Dan turned back when he had water almost to his seat

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  20. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,932
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We rode out again to the main road and then out on another “white” road 10 km to Te Hapua to see the locals fishing. You can see the white Silica dunes in the distance.

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    After another 20 or so Km on the highway we took the gravel 8 km down to Henderson Bay. This is again a beautiful beach with cliff access only and we decided in the heat we were not keen on the hike back up.

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    The last road was 10 km of at times deeper gravel to Hukatere. Here there is easy beach access with firm wet sand that leaves off from the gravel and you can ride all along the beach. The tide is receding now as it is after 4 pm.

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