Sambors South American Illegal Imigrants

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by bikerooter, Feb 24, 2017.

  1. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Stunning scenery. High passes amidst thunder storms. Roads erroded by water and valleys that stretch for miles flanked by huge mountains. South America seems to have it all. So why did we end up travelling through one of its largest countries as illegal imigrants. This little adventure pulled out plenty of surprises and served up bunches of challenges.

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    #1
  2. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    I have travelled with my good friend Krzysztof many times in many continents over several years but until now the lure of the South American mountains had not aligned with our stars. Krzysztof ofcourse has different stars to me as he lives in a different hemisphere, exactly on the oppsite side of the world. He asked me to travel with him to SA a few years back but there was no time so he made some trips south and discovered a few routes to be travelled and places to see.
    Many trips in Australia with Al (Homer) had him interested months ago in another overseas journey, so much so he had purchased two DRZ's for his son and himself to ship east . But ...Kryzysztof being a pro freight forwarder had a few bikes we could hire and not have to worry about dragging our own transport across the bay.
    Homer and his son Russ were in straight away I just had to round up another father and son crew to cover the bike seats. Dave and Dudley from far north Queensland thought about it for awhile...about an hour and they were organising new tents and all sorts of crap. (true Duffy style).
    Our plan was to cross paths with the Dakar in Argentina at a bivoauc to see the enormity of the event and possably camp on a stage and watch the race caravan fly past. To do this in January our local airline Qantas kindly charged us a cool $2k more than to make the same trip a few weeks later...peak holiday time and they need to cash in on it for sure.

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    The Duffys flew into Brisbane the night before to stay at our place and offload a bit of the stuff mum had sent with them to make there trip more "comfortable". There wasn't too much extra, only about 2 cubic feet and 5 kgs. The Duffys had not been overseas before so the 12 hour plane flight to Chiles capital of Santiago was a bit of an adventure flying from daylight to daylight and managing to be an hour late ofcourse. Thanks Qantas. We met two of Krzysztofs mates at the airport ( Tomek and Bishek) as they were to travel with us on bikes they had sent months earlier. The problem we had was making it to the customs office in Valparaiso on the coast just over an hour away in a tight taxi to file the associated documents for all bikes including the bikes we were to hire. As we were to discover there is a lengthy paper trail attached to each.
    Well we manged most of the customs paperwork but the bikes would be locked in the warehouse for another night so we made a little walk around or should I say up and down Valparaiso. This city should be renamed the city of steps, crikey it is propper steep with cable driven wagons that will haul you up and down the levels of the city for a small cost. Valparaiso is a major port and from one of the cities terraces you can observe the entire opperation with thousands of containers coming and going 24 hours a day on trucks and cranes and forklifts.
    Motorcycle tourism is very popular the world over with bikers rests or hostel type set ups all over the place. Krzysztof had made a great connection with one such place at the top of the city, just walking distance from the main square. (we took the cable car) Plenty of little shops dot the terraces so you never really have to go all the way down to the city, there is like levels of communities where you can find pretty much everything. Ofcourse there were a couple of kiwis at this place ( theres always kiwis) but one of them was a great cook at least at barbeques and we enjoyed a sensational meal in the evening with steak bought a few meters down the street. This hostel was just a big house with a couple of big fury dogs that owned one of the old couches in the center of the building and would charge to one of the many exits if there was a strange sound outside the 8 foot fence, fur flying and squeezing past anything in their path.

    Our crew... left to right. Dave Bishek Krzysztof Tomek Dudley Russ and Homer
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  3. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    The following morning was bike and exit day. Some bikes had to be collected from the warehouse and the two bikes Krzysztof had been using for some exploritory work to the saouth needed a service. Homer and I took on the bikes that needed the love whilst the others dissapered in a taxi across the city to collect the other bikes. One look at the bikes and there was just more than oil needed so Homer and pulled on helmets and took to the city for some supplies. Bloody steep roads but alot of fun even if you don't really know whee you are going, the DRZ's barked at everything they went past. We found all the bike shops scouring them for a front sprocket or two but could only manage one with the wrong spline configeration so we had to settle on just oil and spare tubes and a run back up the hill.

    Homer dumps the oil. Ummmmm only 1.2l. Have to keep an eye on it.
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    As this ride was going to need a lot of navigation both Homer and myself brought our GPS units to hardwire to the bikes and Dudley carried his unit only as a spare. The wirering is not that invasive with tanks and seats off just lay the cable and connect to the battery and fit the rams to the bars. When we lifted the tank on the small drz we found the tank had been making love to the tappet cover and almost f$%ked it so we scrounged an old tube to pack up the frame to support the tank. There was nothing we could do about the sprockets except flog the nut tight and see what happened, the gearing was gunna be low we just didn't know how low. Two litres of fresh oil and a clean air filter and they were ready to pack with gear just as the others arrived back with the bikes from the warehouse.

    The Bikes Krzysztof had sent were just serviced in Poland and had new tyres as well as chains that looked ok. We loaded loop bags on the rear of most of the bikes and wound the springs up a bit to suit as most of us only had a tent and mattress and shoes in there. Daves DRZ had the standard pipe so he jammed some wood between the side cover and pipe so things didn't get too hot. Dudley had a round duffell type bag that got up his bum on top of the rack so hung it off the side until it let go later on.
    Mid afternoon we were ready to depart Valparaiso....at last.

    Out onto the highway, I kept looking for top gear but I was already there. Anything over 80km/h was pretty busy between ya knees so the 3 of us on the DRZ's hung together while the group stretched out past the fly overs and high speed exit lanes, this high reving was gunna need oil.

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    About two hours up the road we stopped for some dinner in what seemed like broad daylight but it was actually about 8.30pm. I would like to say that my first taste of the empanadas was great but these were the cheese variety deep fried...holy crap they were greezy. But ya had to put something in ya belly to stop the sides sticking together.

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    Never go past a fuel station so we refueled a few times on the way up the river to finally find a great campsite just on dark...around 10pm between two high ridge lines where a now exstinct train line crosses the valley through a series of tunnels. In the morning this would be our first high pass.

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  4. kennyanc

    kennyanc Long timer

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    IN!! :clap
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  5. Gadarfy

    Gadarfy takes charge

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    Ingham, N Qld, has it all
    Brilliant ride report Bikerooter, I've heard it said that "the more things that go wrong, the more you have to laugh about later" and I haven't stopped laughing since we got back, a truly memorable experience, my heartfelt thanks to you for giving us the urge to decide to join the fray.
    #5
  6. sambor1965

    sambor1965 Been here awhile

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    I am IN ;)
    My polish mates are Tomek and Zbyshek not Bishkek. Bishkek is a capital of my favorite country. Keep writing, you are talented. You can write as good as you ride...
    #6
  7. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Ahhh my Polish is not exceptional... so I left Z off the front and made y an i. ( Tomek and Bishek). I to like Bishkek <:)
    #7
  8. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Snow lined the tops of the mountains in the morning sending a fresh chill down the valley to welcome the days adventure. All the Aussies were up early and keen to get going with the twisty roads that awaited however as I have found on trips in the past you are only ever as fast as your slowest camel. So after we had smashed a bunch of bread and tomatoes for breakfast and had all our crap squared away our three Poles rose. Starving ofcourse, so I fired up the MSR and made some pasta with tomato , ( tomato goes with anything) and coffee and so we rolled out pretty casually.

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    The disused rail bridge spanning a raging brown torrent of water. All the tracks ripped up but once the trains would have charged straight into the tunnel behind to climb their way through and over the mountain. One can only imagine the work involved in this construction work now left far behind.

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    I know these guys appreciated the food...the tomatoes with every feed got a bit old later on.

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  9. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    3D wondering why it was so slippery.
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    Our first twisty climb was a cement skating ring!!! When Russ went around me on the outside I pushed a bit harder and almost ate it propperly so backed off and stuck to the rough edges. Obviously the cement is low maintanence with the amount of heavy trucks using this route polishing its surface. I needed to get to the dirt as I knew I could run with Russ and Al in the turns there.

    There is a piece of no mans land between the Chile and Argentina boarders with each boarder control on opposite sides of a LARGE mountain. Somehow we missed the exit from Chile, and to be honest I cannot remember seeing any signage or officialdom. We ran past an old building then onto the road which was lined with cars and buses for kilometers all waiting to be processed into Chile. Who knows!

    The last of the line up to exit the boarder
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    Protected from landslides by huge concrete structures that stretch around the valley walls this road was not designed for interuptions. Once into the open we took what would have been the original pass over the mountain which to my pleasure was gravel and pretty loose. At about ten kilometers to the top there was definitely plenty of time to loose your breathe and test the air fuel ratio of your bike. There always shortcuts to be had between the switch backs up the mountain, you just have to back yourself to make it to the next loop or retreat gracefully and take the road and have a crack at the next one. The new road obviously takes a tunnel to negotiate the mountain but weren't about to investigate that option.

    Mega contrete
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    Russ and Homer playing catch up
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    #9
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  10. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Plenty of turns.
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    The view from the top of the pass was pretty nice but the oil coming from Dudleys bike drew more attention. The oil filter cover had oil coming from the bottom, possably a fouled o-ring so I flicked 3D the t-bar to inspect. He laid the bike on its side and loaded up with the t-bar. Too tight need a spanner. The little bolts let go with a frightful CRACK! Once the cover was removed the seriousness of the issue revealed itself in five ways. The 0-ring was in five pieces, hence requiring an extreme amount of torque on the tiny bolts to hold back the oil. After 3D punched up the mountain the pressure was unbearable and the tears of oil began to roll out......out side the engine. We wraped some string anound the o-ring groove and trundled to the base of the mountain to what looked like a small village but we only found scraps and nothing of real use. I stripped some elctrical cable and fitted the plastic sheilding in the groove and off we went with a small dribble of oil down the engine. Something to deal with later on.

    Another ten kilometers found us in the multi lined queue to enter Argentina. We each had documents for our perspective bikes as well as Agentina visas bought online before leaving home. About an hour and we made it to the shed and one of 10 processing booths. I wouldn't say it was smooth sailing but things were rolling along ok with our guy givng us a few timeout signals before dissapearing off to his supervisor. This happened twice and then on the third time I imagine his superviser (cranky lady) got the shits and hauled us all over to her glass fish bowl for interigation. Well I know Krzysztof speaks many languages and his spanish is ok but he may as well have been speaking martian as she was having no of it.

    Apparently there have been some rule changes or definition changes in their system requiering Krzysztof to have orginal copies of documents explaining that he has the right to hire bikes to us and that is HIS business. And my bike owned by Krzysztofs partener Ola was missing one small piece of paper that showed her permission for me to ride it. ( God only knows if she knew I was to ride her little DRZ she would have flattly refused) After a lengthy discussion that travelled in circles for the best part of an hour Krzysztof sarcastically offered her his last piece of paper.....a Benjamin. Well the talks were over and we were told to GO!

    We gathered our passports and bunches of paper and rolled out the door. There was only one exit from the big shed and that dumped us over the fence into Argentina. After a short disscussion(about 3 seconds) we decided to just do exactly what the cranky woman said. GO! We would sort it out later. So off into Argentina as Illegal imigrants it would seem. A few kilometers down the road there was the usual check point with a boom gate, we formed a line across the gate while Krzysztof spoke his best with the guy. I think Kryzysztof told him we came over the mountain, or that we came from the mountain. What ever it was the gate opened and we took off.

    The road was sealed all the way to Uspallata, a small town forming a cross road for many intersecting routes. The first thing on the agender was the repair of Dudleys bike which by now had plenty of slippery stuff on the outside of the engine. The Spanish siesta can be a pain when ya need a service from somebody and have to wait until 6pm for the shops to reopen. Krzysztof and I went over our options from travelling by bus to the next city to having a BMW guy try and organise a repair, non of which would happen real fast. I walked the dirt streets for awhile and came across a chubby guy on a small motorcycle. After showing him what I was wanting he shuffled his carcuss forward on his tiny bike and I climbed on to tear through the back streets, trying to remember the turns to find my way back. He let me off out side a house with a small shed to the side and to my delight I found two nice guys that could actually understand miming . I left with a second hand O-ring and some gasket gue that would surely do the job, just a 30 minute walk back into the town centre. Some cleaning with petrol and a big flat washer on one of the bolts and the engine was all good to go. Add a bit of oil to and don't undo that....EVA!!
    #10
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  11. cristiano

    cristiano Been here awhile

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  12. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Seeing double in the Seven Colours gorge
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    The day was lost to moving on further up the road after the repairs to Dudleys bike so we decided to camp in Uspallata and make a short ride out to the Seven Colours gorge. We found some nice single tracks criss crossing the plies of soft granite type mounds and ridges which made short fun loops. Apparently a dakar staged finished through here some time back following the gorge all the way out.
    Our camp for the evening was like a caravan park without the caravans but there where plenty of people there and they all knew us after a few laps around to find a flat spot to lay out eight tents. The showers we a bit rugged but there was warm running water which akways makes for a comfortable sleep. The boys ordered some pork rolls for dinner from the management and ofcourse there was two each that showed up at 10.30pm. The rolls were good chewing and a good challenge to stow both of them away for dinner with some opting to save a large portion for breakfast as well.

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    With the traffic in Uspallata firering up at 6am the folllowing morning there was not too much sleeping in to be had in the caravan park. Krzysztof had developed a route for the following day with plenty of places to see and plenty af places to lose ya way if you weren't careful with the navigation. Pretty easy to to get lost in a strange place.
    Bishek and Krzysztof took the tar to the north to rendezvous with the rest of us 130kms further up the road. Our track was fast flowing twisty gravel at the start with long straights charging across a flood plain littered with washouts near the end shadowed in the distance by snow capped mountains.
    Homer was out infront testing his new GPS skills slicing through the corners while I hung at the rear with Dave enjoying the senery. I pulled Dave up to find out why he was riding like an old lady and his sharp reply was that the front was washing out making him nervous. I few turns with the screwdriver and his DRZ was apparently behaving itself as he took off across the flats.

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    #12
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  13. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Stunning backdrop to a fast smooth road
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    Cruising
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    Homer took us through a few back streets finding our way into Barreal but we didn't kick up any dust as they had just watered down all the streets for some sort of Saturday procession. We stocked up on water and bought some great crunchy apples and tried to change some money at the local store without luck. Krzysztof took a ride in a small car across the village and came with some fresh cash.

    Dave needed to use the toilet so took my bike up town and filled it with fuel although we were to cross a fuel station in 20km it never hurts to have a bit up your sleeve. We were ready to leave town so Krzysztof took of in the direction, saying we had to cross a big bridge we followed a minute or so behind. Homer had Dudley challenging him for the chase and missed taking the left fork in the road just out of town. Little did we know but Krzysztof was waiting a little way down that fork. The posse wheeled around about three kilometers up the road and took a track completing a triangle and placing us back on the correct road to cross the bridge.

    Krzysztof was parked up on the little red strip joining the triangle
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    Pretty straight and I would like to say fast but holding 90km/h feels like you are crawling on roads like this. However the
    fuel had to make the distance and pinning that right hand would not acheive that goal for us
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    The small town of Calingasta is where we should have found some petrol and now as I look at in on the big map the street that heads out to the main road would have had the service station however we kept following the route not exactually sure what happened to Krzysztof somehwere behind or infront of us. In any case he knew where he was going and had given us instruction where to go so theoretically we should all end up in the same place.

    Twisty tar roads gave way to a nice gravel section although pretty straight in places. Dave ran out of fuel first at about the 230km mark and by the time we reached the small village of Bella Vista Dudley to was running on fumes. The 600ml water bottle was getting plenty of use draining fuel from my more economical bike. A couple from Italy pulled up along side us to give us the news there was fuel a few kilometers further up the road so only a couple of bottles were transfered. Full of fuel we needed to fill our bellies with something like food so we settled on pizza at Las Flores about 15km from the service station. This meal was to confirm that our Polish food connoisseurs had just a little bit of trouble with quantitiies.
    #13
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  14. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    We sat tucked in under a small cluster of trees outside a small cafe in Las Flores as the temperature hit the low thirties in the middle of the day. Our mega order of pizza for 20 adults was well on its way just as Krzysztof came rolling into town dirty little XT. We knew he was somewhere just weren't exactly sure he was behind us and fearing a flat tyre nervously trying to catch up without any tools or spares at his disposal. I am sure he was glad to set eyes on us; like a dog would be greating his master after being left at home all day by himself. Chairs shuffled about and the pizza order went from seven to eight.......crikey what were we thinking!

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    The first pizza hit the table just as our crew was reunited and imediately we realised what a challenge it would be to eat one entire pizza of this size each. The slices dissapeared but the pizzas (all the same flavor) continued to pour from the cafe door onto our tiny table. When five had dissapeared we pulled the waiter up and cancelled the last two and gracefully stuffed the sixth one in Daves saddle bags for later on.

    An afternoon of tar ensued following the Jachal river gorge on a great section of twisties with steep drops and amaisng views. Homer was really testing my already way skinny brake rotors but one couldn't just let him run away with the race so no surprise that everything was pretty warm and toasty at the fuel stop at San Jose de Jacha. Plenty of others were stopped there coooling off with someopting for the airconditioning inside the servo and a bunch of fizzy drinks.

    Down the river
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    I thought Homers workout on the tar was making the brakes work....noise was coming from the opposite side.
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    Our route made a huge 80km loop to the east skirting flood plains and farmlands to find a river crossing and a bunch of locals picnicing on the far bank as we arrived to share the small stream of water for a cool off. The camp area under the trees had a few thorns laying about. Ok they were huge thorns and they were everywhere as the trees were mainly just THORNS ! Some careful tent placing was required, high ground /low ground/ no thorns. As some big rugged clouds began rolling in a cool off in the creek was well deserved after a very warm day behind the bars. Just on dark the thunder and lightening put us into our tents like meerkats heading under ground from a predator. The wind was extreme to say the least and once enough of the mega rain drops had pounded the brown earth a couple of my tent flung out pinging against the side of the tent.
    Peering through the top of the zippers and clutching the internal frame of the tent went on for some time into the dark as the rain poured down churning our once dusty campground into a river of chocolate sauce. I unzipped my southern tent entrance just in time to see Dudleys side stand sink into the mud and his 150kg XR roll over onto his tent. Luckily the bars missed him and didn't damage the tent! Special note to all never sleep next to the side stand. His tent had four inches of water flowing past it and our once quiet stream had turned into a raging chocolate river making Bishek pretty nervous as he was set up in close proximity to the rising mess.
    #14
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  15. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    The tide was pretty high carting any rubbish around with it
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    Homer tucked into yesterdays pizza. It was definitely better when it was fresh
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    Krzysztof covered his piece with ketchup....not sure if that helped get it down
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    There was a bit of a clean up in the morning before things got rolled up
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    #15
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  16. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Out of the thorns and onto the tar for almost 90km in a straight line before climbing a range on a new section of beautifully constructed twisty road which Krzysztof said only a year before was a rough gravel track taking hours to traverse. Climbing 400 meters or more onto a plateu we were to visit the Moon Valley Ischigualasto. Opening time wasn't for a few hours so we cooled our heels in the shade of a big shed that housed dinasour fossils this park was famous for. Little did we know it was a follow the leader guided tour which meant for the next few hours no matter how fast ya wanted to end things it was not going to happen. Fair enough there were a bunch of lizards in cars that wanted to see the stuff but our cross eyed tour leader insisted we ride in his dust at 40km/h for the entire 35km loop. There were some formations to see and pictures to take but it really dragged on in the hot sun.

    Dudley had flat front at the first point of interest. Pretty warm and not much shade. This was our first flat.
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    One of the little knob things at the top had broken off last year. A line of pebbles on the ground stop the tourists from
    walking over the rock structures. Pablo the guide gave us a serve here about kicking up dust.
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    Years of erosion
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    Red stuff looks like rock but is soft dirt.
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    At US$ 23 to enter this park it was a little over rated and I for one was pretty glad to escape ol' Pablos command. Heading east for an hour or so looking for a track on the GPS that wasn't there any more found us fronting another service station and lunch in the airconditioning. Roast beef rolls and some fizzy juice and an iceblock hit the spot in the heat. We come from Australia the hottest driest continent on earth yet felt like pussies in the Argentinian sun and hot wind rising off the tar in the mid afternoon.
    With the ear plugs pushed in tight the little DRZ vibrated along at 100km/h or a touch more to follow Krzysztof north passing huge plantations of olives and grapes with non of the later growing close enough to the road for a snack. Hanging left at Nanogasta had us heading toward the hills with a really strong wind blowing down the road. A bird took flight from a road side tree only to plough straight into my shoulder.....crunched him propper. At last some gravel under the tyres passing stands of avocardo trees on narrow tracks through small village type gatherings of buildings leading into the hills.
    Fast straight gravel is fine so long as you are up for the bends at the end of the fast straight gravel. Bishek found his cornering limit on the first corner mounting a large grader windrow and shooting off into a buch of large rocks. I thought for sure he would be injured as the crash tore the fuel tank from his DRZ and flung stuff all over the place. Bishek lands well though ! He had a graze on his wrist and that was about it so he was pretty lucky after after such a big impact.
    Russ and Tomek were there to stand the bike and straighten things out. A few zips held the tank on as his bike was an SM model so the safari tank didn't have any front fixings only a rubber strap at the rear that dissapeared somewhere into the rocks. The only damage was the fuel line torn in half so we used a piece of camelbak hose to bridge the gap later finding that Dave had a genuine DRZ fuel line in kit.
    #16
  17. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

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    Russ was enjoying the twisty deco
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    Ready to head down the valley and out of the hills
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    Heading down the valley was a fast little gravel road which apparently had a few thorns on it one of which I picked up in the front just before crossing a muddy stream. Dudley and I were begining the repair before the others arrived off the mountain when a glamour mountain biker rode up the gravel and through the muddy stream and straight past us. Dudley got out a delighted to see you "hello" but she had headphones in so there was no reply. Dam. The rest of the crew told of near crashes as they past her head on further up the hill. I changed the tube fast only to have a hole in the new tube which Dudley being a pro racer called straight up as a pinch. Two close together holes had me beaten but it was not until we used the mate to this Chile tube later on that it to had holes in the same spot. Packed from factory with no valve cap cut two neat holes in the tubes.

    Dudley just before the MTB strike at the next crossing
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    Down the valley in the dark and through the streets of Chilecito with Krzysztof having a place for us to stay behind the bus terminal almost in the centre of town. Our bike lights were best described as limited so the trip into town was a bit vauge and you could not take on the cars as they could not see you. Dave almost found out how hard cars really are.
    Dumped our gear in the hotel, grabbed a quick shower and up town to the main square for a huge feed of steak and eggs and chips at 10pm. The people seem to go out late and eat late here for sure so there was plenty to see and no shortage of action.
    #17
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  18. young1

    young1 Long timer

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    1,268
    Location:
    Taranaki New Zealand
    Thank you talking the time to post this

    Mike
    #18
  19. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2006
    Oddometer:
    383
    Location:
    by the C !
    Chilecito is a pretty busy little place especially at mid morning near the main square. Sorting out money from crowded banks while parking on the footpaths with cranky parking boys running around with their ticket books waving looking for targets. Dave took the opportunity to bleed the rear brakes on his bike in amongst the crowd while the parking police looked on not sure what to book him for. Finally out town with full fuel tanks and a few bottles of spare engine oil stuffed in various bag.

    Good gravel north of Chilecito, waiting in the shade as it was pretty warm
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    Travelling on fast roads all the way to Tinogasta we made reasonable time in the cracking sun. it was probably a good thing none of us had a thermometer as we probably would have discovered it was actually hotter than being at home, it was propper warm. Needless to say our lunch in a small resturant just off the main square was an airconditioned affair and included chips and a chance to cool down and upload some gps routes for the afternoon. We were to run over an old coach road that had been used by the dakar some time in the past and were not sure of its current condition.

    My spanish is not great but I could sorta make out the words. This would be good.
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    The begining was lined with cactus and embankments made of stacked stones
    SAM_6880.JPG

    Homer picking his way through the rocks. Hard to picture a dakar truck hauling through here
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    Over the mountain the rock gave way to a sandy granite with a some huge washed out corners and plenty of places to crash if your attention strayed. The Poles not really being ofroad riders were doing well and controlling their speed to match the rocks and not kiss the ground. The track opened up near the bottom of the gorge and brought Tomek unstuck landing heavily on his backside and damaging his front brake line in the process.
    #19
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  20. bikerooter

    bikerooter the hard way

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2006
    Oddometer:
    383
    Location:
    by the C !
    Tomek was smiling only because he was on the mend. Nothing broken just a big bruise that we remedied with a bag of ice that he continually filled the pockets of his riding pants with for awhile in Belen. We searched the bike shop for a new brake line for his bike they had nothing, they also didn't have any DRZ sprockets but they did have some oil for us.

    Ice in just the right spot
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    Russ packing his stuff with the rain coming in from behind in Belen
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    We stocked up on food for the night making ready for a run into the rain. Our plan was the ride about 100km and camp where as Krzysztof had to ride all the way to Cafayate to meet his partener Ola. Heading toward what looked like a certain drowning we crept away from Belen on rolling sealed roads skirting the river valleys and ploughing into the wind. Scanning out on the GPS I was on the look out for a camp spot amongst the ever darkening clouds all the while mindful of being flooded out during the night.
    A structure next to an airstrip was looking promising but the large surrounding fence could be seen before the throttle was lifted so we rolled on to find the perfect gravel pit. Out of the wind to a degree and gravel if the heavens opend up during the night. Dave had held off his exhausts invaision on his gear up till this point. His thermarest rolled out of the canvas with two tennis ball sized holes burnt straight through the head end of his no very "self inflating" mattress.

    Straight through. Dave would have to sleep on the ground for the rest of our journey
    SAM_6888.JPG

    Pasta, fish and tomatoes for seven blokes out of one MSR stove. The pots were pretty full as were our stomachs
    SAM_6889.JPG
    #20
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