Reasonable plan or not...

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Ian.H, Jun 10, 2019.

  1. Ian.H

    Ian.H Adventurer

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    I read quite a few ride reports from US guys riding south to Ushuia but I never seem to see anything from European people riding from Ushuia north.
    I'm thinking to fly the bike and myself to Argentina around the middle of January. The plan would be ride down to Ushuia and then head north into the US and Canada.
    On a time scale I'm thinking about 3.5 months for south and central America and Mexico and I should cross from Mexico into the US beginning of May. Beginning of June to cross into Canada and then decide what to do from there.
    As I've never been to any of the America's before so I'm asking you experienced guys if this all sounds reasonable or am I'm making some mistake going in this direction. My start dates are flexible if you think my timing is a bit optimistic.
    #1
  2. Gustavo

    Gustavo Motociclista Errante

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    I don't think you are making a mistake going in the "opposite" direction. I suspect a lot of the north to south trips are just due to the fact that most people whose reports you read live in the northern part of the Americas and obviously find it easier to make this their starting point. Since you have to fly your bike anyway, you can just as well start in Argentina.

    Three and a half months should be adequate, but as usual, not enough to see "everything". Like on any trip, you'll have to pick and choose what attractions speak to you more and you want to spend more time exploring those areas and what to skip. Heck, I know people who did the entire trip in a month (not what I would want to do) and some that took 4 months just to get to Panama from the US and still complained about not seeing everything they wanted to.... Personally, I would start earlier than middle of January. Mostly because you are likely to spend the first week in Bs. As. dealing with the bureaucracy of importing your bike, releasing it from customs, and there is a lot to see in the city itself too.

    Gustavo
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  3. holckster

    holckster dougholck Supporter

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Lodi, Ca
    Have you considered purchasing a used moto in South America or in Punta Arenas (free trade zone) ?
    Look here on ADVrider classifieds or on Horizions Unlimited.
    My riding buddy bought a USA registered moto in Montevideo and because it was USA plated paperwork was easy.

    In 2015 I shipped my DR650 to Valparaiso, Chile from LA, Calif by container ship.
    Rode central Chile and across to Montevideo and parked.
    2016 buddy purchased moto and joined me on ride to Ushuaia and north to Santiago where we parked.
    2017 we moved moto's to Lima, Peru
    2018 we moved moto's to Impales, Colombia
    2019 we have yet to return but next leg is to Honduras where we will park again for a less than the 90 days allowed and then ride back to Calif.

    The storage between trips has been a challenge, much easier if you just keep moving.

    I was in Ushuaia Feb 28, 2016 and weather was fine.
    We usually have returned between late January to April.

    Time spent traveling varies by rider.
    Twomotokiwis spent 3.5 years going form Alaska to Santiago, Chile.
    Another couple went from San Diego to Ushuaia in 77 days.
    Your mileage will vary, enjoy the trip.
    Stop by as you pass thru Northern Calif, I'm on the Tent Space List.
    https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1Q0E6b5HrOVBOhOY2IwJkErfWqQU&ll=42.911990013980535,-113.35789886522985&z=6

    Safe Travels
    #3
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  4. Ian.H

    Ian.H Adventurer

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    My bike is ready for the trip so I will air freight her.
    The guys at Dakar Motors reckon they will get her customs cleared in 24 hours as opposed to a week if I send her by sea.
    I will be travelling until I've had enough basically then air freight home again so need for storage.
    I'm retired so I've got a lot of flexibility with the travel plans if needed.
    Thanks for the tent space offer....I plan do camp when I do get the US.
    #4
  5. Ian.H

    Ian.H Adventurer

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    I've got plenty of time so maybe worth starting in middle of December....
    #5
  6. holckster

    holckster dougholck Supporter

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    Always nice to have your own moto under you.
    Dakar Motors in BA is the best, my friends used them in 2015 to ship back to San Francisco.
    I'll never use sea cargo container again.

    If you are traveling on a Visa you can get 180 days for you to be in the USA but your moto can stay 1 year.
    This is MY understanding but please verify.
    Point being you could "take a break" and store your moto in USA returning home and come back refreshed to tour North America, Canada and Alaska.

    I stored a moto for an Irishman for 3 years.
    He bought it in New York, rode to Calif and registered it in Calif so it could stay forever.
    When done he sold it and got most of his money back in essence riding for free.

    Camping is available in SA but we mostly use booking.com for reasonable hotels or look for private Cabanas advertised along the way.
    I like to book when stopped for lunch.
    I look for "free cancelation" policy in case of delay.
    Booking at lunch insures no matter how late I arrive I have a room.
    My last couple years I did not even take camping gear making packing light and easy.
    Figure if things got desperate I'd just curl up in my riding gear under a rock or bridge wrapped in my moto cover.

    BTW take moto cover and cable/lock and use them.
    I've had NO issues with theft or feeling threatened.

    I also carry consumable and known weak link spare parts specific to your moto, especially electrical components.
    Every moto has "known" issues so research your ride.
    Have on hand parts that if they fail prevent you from moving forward to your destination.
    Main reason I'm riding a DR650 is no electronics, no fuel injection/fuel pump, no radiator/water pump, chain drive.

    Safe Travels
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  7. miguelR

    miguelR biker

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    I think that to enjoy a trip from Ushuaia to Alaska you will need about six months. It can be done in less time but you will miss seeing many things. Prepare the bike to travel hard roads.
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  8. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    One major factor that may determine your time line is the unavoidable none rideable crossing from South America (Colombia?) to Central America (Panama?)
    You will want to schedule that crossing and be able to meet that deadline. Choosing your mode of transport. On our trip this was a MAJOR factor when completing our calendar of events and had much impact on our trip north to south. Due to various circumstances surrounding our life we chose no option but to leave on a certain date and cross on a certain date....thereby dictating the days available in the first leg south. Consequently we had a dash from Los Angeles to Panama.....then able to slow down a little for the rest of the journey south. A lot is dependent upon your calendar and money...both major factors for us.
    #8
  9. Ian.H

    Ian.H Adventurer

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    ^^^^^^^
    Fortunately time is something I have.
    Did you cross the gap by air or did you go by sea? How far in advance did you have to book your crossing.
    #9
  10. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    Sea, the Stahlratte. 2 months
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  11. Stahlratte

    Stahlratte Been here awhile

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    Sorry, but Stahlratte will probably not be in the area during the time when you plan to reach the Darien Gap.
    The options to get a bike across are a little limited if you go from south to north as far as I know. I don't know of any other sailboat doing that direction with motos right now. But there seem to be small local cargo boats too that take motorcycles once in a while from Turbo via Capurgana to San Blas or Colon (might be a little complicated to organize though...)
    There are much less people traveling in that direction, so it might be harder to find enough people to share a container. I guess the most flexible (and most expensive) option would be to fly your bike from Bogota to Panama.
    However, have a great trip:)
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  12. Ian.H

    Ian.H Adventurer

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    ^^^^^^
    Thanks for the reply Stahlratte.
    I kind of expected that to be the case so I'm already mentally geared up to air freight.
    #12