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The Andes by Himalayan

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Jetlag Jon, Mar 12, 2020.

  1. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2018
    Oddometer:
    128
    Location:
    Manchester, Lancs
    Hi folks. I am actually back from this trip now, the bike should be back in a couple of days. My initial plan was to do a ride report on here during the trip. However, friends and family wanted me to keep them updated, so I did a blog on Facebook. I found it was taking me over an hour each night, so I decided to postpone this RR until I got home. I didn't take a laptop with me, and ended up going through three phones on the trip....reasons will become apparent later...

    This RR is based on my blog, though edited, with added juicy bits.


    _DSC2613-Edit.jpg

    With less than one week to go before I set off for Buenos Aires, I find I am getting nervous. It's getting real. The bike is packed and shipped, it's New Years Eve, and hopefully I've finished all the preparation. The last few months have been spent getting the bike ready. Hours of swearing as I lose spanners I have just used, or skin my knuckles on the frame, or find I have a left over bolt after assembling something. I am not a great mechanic, and I am certainly not an efficient one, but my bumbling ways have allowed me to keep three Harleys running for the last six years. No Harley this time. I have bought a second-hand Royal Enfield Himalayan, from a guy who evidently didn't ever clean the chain, and lots of stuff on the internet says it will fall to bits. I am 59 years old, unfit, overweight, and I haven't ridden on dirt for 30 years. I am about to set off to try and ride the length or Ruta Nacional 40 in Argentina, and I'm not really sure I have any idea what I am doing. What could possibly go wrong?

    So why a Himalayan? I took one for a test ride a few months ago. I liked it. It's basic. It's not fast, it's not pretty, but it will do the job. I am not too tall, and it has a lower seat height than most adventure bikes. I want a bike I can pick up, if I drop it or come off. I want a bike that's easy to work on, and, if I can't fix it myself, that a mechanic in a village can understand. I want simple. I have fitted heated grips, a USB port, pannier racks, engine guards, spotlights, tool tube, fender raisers, and a switch for the ABS, wired through the fuse box. I also installed an INNOV 2 Power Hub. The bike has been serviced, courtesy of Bolton Motorcycles (thanks guys!) new tyres, heavy duty chain and sprockets, and I've got probably far too many spares packed on the bike. Luggage is all from Lomo, a Scottish company better known for wetsuits, but now making a very reasonably priced range of motorcycle luggage. They gave me a free bag, so thanks to them too.

    As mentioned, the bike is second hand. I bought it from a Polish builder in London, for a very good price. Patryck was heading back to Poland after suffering a stroke, and wanted to sell the bike before he left. Poor guy was in tears when I picked it up. The bike was in reasonable condition, though I noticed the chain was very dirty (when I changed the chain and sprockets, I found the front sprocket cover completely rammed full of crud). A few minor dings and scratches showed the bike had been dropped at some point, but there was nothing to stop me deciding to buy it. On the way home on the bike, I got a puncture. I also found out that the bike is very comfortable, the 200 odd miles from London producing no sore arse or bad back.

    _DSC2599.jpg _DSC2602.jpg _DSC2603.jpg

    The plan is to ride Ruta 40 in Argentina, north to south, and then see how much time I have left for the Carreterra Austral in Chile. Why Ruta 40? Initially, I wanted to ride to Mongolia and Magadan this summer, but, faced with having to leave a very good job to do so, instead I took the company's offer of two months off at half pay in the winter instead. Then I needed a destination; initially, I was gong to Peru, but the idea of riding around aimlessly in the mountains for two months somehow didn't get me excited. I wanted a journey. So where else can you ride in the southern hemisphere during their summer? Africa, been there, done that (I grew up in Botswana) Oz is too hot. South America seemed to tick the right boxes, so Ruta 40 it is.

    A quick introduction for anyone who doesn't know me..... I'm an old fart of 59, not ridden dirt bikes for three decades (I had an XR500 in Botswana, where I grew up, for many years) My travels in the last few years have been mainly on a Harley Davidson Softail Slim, which I bought while working in Qatar, along with Jackie's Sportster and Heritage. Neither of us had ridden for 20 years, and buying Harleys seemed a good way to alleviate the mind-numbing reality of living in the Middle East. Apart from rides around Qatar, I toured Jordan with Jackie and members of our club (Wataweet MC), which was a really great trip, apart from Harley Qatar nearly killing Jackie by not tightening the bolts on her front brake caliper in a service just before we left). Jordan was great riding, including a mad 400km ride through a sandstorm. Since getting back to the UK, I've ridden the UK north to south on B roads, and done several week-long trips to Scotland. Jackie and me have been to many bike rallies in the last three years, and last year we had two fantastic weeks touring around and camping, the first week in the Lake District, the second one in the Peak District (a bit of a wet week, but great fun nonetheless). I've also toured Italy on a Harley Road Glide with members of our club from Qatar. I commute year round on the Slim, though lately have been using the Himalayan.

    The last few years, I have been thinking of a bigger trip. When I left Botswana, my plan was to ride the XR 500 to the UK, but events conspired to scupper that, but it's remained an itch , getting more annoying with time, to the point that I now need to scratch while I can still reach it.

    A few people have asked me why I'm shipping a bike there and back for two months of riding. Well, rental worked out about the same, and this way, I get to ride the bike I want, set it up how I want, and keep it afterwards. Buying wasn't a practical solution, as the paperwork would have eaten into my available time.
    The plan is to camp a much as possible, stopping at a hostel or hotel when I need a shower, clean clothes, and beer. I'll update the ride report as and when I can; I'm not taking a computer, so everything will be done on my phone.

    Gonna miss Jackie like crazy, but glad she understands why I'm going. .

    A few people have asked whether Itchy Boots was an inspiration for the trip. I hadn't actually heard of her before I started planning this trip, and only came across her after buying a Himalayan. Her videos are very good, and I have been watching her trip from Patagonia to Alaska. Not much of her trip is on Ruta 40, however, though I am hoping to follow a very similar route back to San Carlos de Bariloche through Chile. In fact, if anyone was an inspiration for this trip, it was Oisin Hughes, whose book Not Dead Yet includes his trip down Ruta 40. For anyone who hasn't read it, I thoroughly recommend it.

    A slight change of plan: Jackie has now been persuaded to join me in Bariloche for 12 days. I am really glad that she will be joining me, and it's going to great to see her after 6 weeks on my own. Although this makes the schedule a bit tighter, it also means that I will just blast through the Lakes area and the hippie town of El Bolson rather than spending several days there on the way down. I will explore this area with Jackie on my way back, then ride straight back to Buenos Aires from Bariloche at the end of the trip.

    I am flying out tomorrow: next update should be from Buenos Aires.

    Attached Files:

    #1
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  2. fredgreen

    fredgreen let's take it apart....

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    ride on!
    #2
  3. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2018
    Oddometer:
    128
    Location:
    Manchester, Lancs
    The flight to Buenos Aires was actually very good; after nearly missing the connection in LHR due to a delay out of Manchester. When I got on the B777 (still my favourite aircraft ever) I had 3 seats to myself and slept about 8 hours. So I was actually feeling ok for the 4 hours trudging around offices and signing bits of paper in front of bored looking people with computers before picking up the bike. I definitely wouldn't like to try that without local help. I also really lucked out on my choice of B and B in Buenos Aires last night. Federico is a really good host.

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    First day on the road today....and not much to report, ride wise. 369 miles of motorway, with the temperature up to 33 degrees by the time I reached Rosario. I dropped in at the Royal Enfield Dealer there, to get spare oil and chain lube if they had it. It was siesta time when I arrived, so the only guy there was asleep; but he heard the bike, and opened up the shop. He was really happy to meet me, and, even though his English was as bad as my Spanish, we had some sort of conversation. Then he went me to their workshop, where a cool young dude called Nihuel showed me round the workshop, and offered me a free service, which I didn't need as the bike had only done 200 miles since the last one (courtesy of Bolton Motorcycles). Miguel then gave me a litre of oil and a can of chain lube. It's fantastic, and perhaps unique nowadays, that Royal Enfield dealers everywhere seem very proud of their product.
    After leaving Rosario, I decided to get as many motorway miles behind me before it was time to camp. I had three options from iOverlander, but the first choice was a good one. So I am now I am in a campsite in Villa Maria, about 160 km down the motorway from Cordoba, where, I believe, the roads get much more interesting.

    Attached Files:

    #3
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  4. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

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    Day 2

    I only left Villa Maria about 11:30, after going into town to buy a Sim card. Plus it's still taking me ages packing.....my sleeping bag and tent are nearly the volume of a pannier.
    First 160 km was motorway. Then the motorway was finally done with, and it looked promising, for a while. Green hills, trees, winding road. Then it all flattened out and I saw about 4 corners in 200 miles. And it got hot. The thermometer on my USB port said 43 degrees. The bike said 50, but the Himalayan is known to over -read. On the flatlands, with no shade, it was just too hot to stop. I went through 5 Camelbacks of water, and still polished off 2 litres when I got to the campsite. The bike ran really well though: it seems to like 67 mph, which surprised me. Takes a while to get there, but then holds it's speed on hills better than at 55. Though it does guzzle more fuel. I can cope with boredom, and I got used to heat on rides around Qatar with Jackie and Wataweet. But boredom and heat together? Not recommended. I soaked the Hypetkewl vest today, and it sort of worked. I have been having to drink a litre an hour, and another at stops. Last night I drank two litres in a couple of minutes while eating chips frosted with salt.

    pump.jpg
    Wrong fuel

    In Rayo Cortado, I pulled into a station with 2 identical pumps. A young girl working there happily filled my bike with diesel, after I had said "Gasolina". Luckily I was just topping it off. Her dad then turned up, syphoned the tank, and filled it up with petrol. Strange thing is, it seemed to run better afterwards.
    Next stop, I filled one of the cans, which was just as well. With 65 miles to go to the next gas station, it was on reserve.
    I am now in Santiago del Estero. Temperature is forecast to hit 40 degrees tomorrow. I need to get north quickly: it's only 12 degrees in La Quica.
    Total miles today, 355. I think another 2 days to get to La Quica. So I am off to my tent, pitched in a campsite that turns out to be party central.


    Day 3

    The campsite in Santiago del Estoro was a disaster. As soon as I got back to the tent, I knew it just wasn't going to work. 31 degrees, 90% humidity, and a campsite that is the locals favourite place to party. So I went on Booking dot thingy and booked a hotel, the highly recommended Coventry Hotel. I got there at 3 in the morning. It was adequate.

    Only 108 miles today, and a detour, due to a squeaky back wheel I heard intermittently yesterday, at lower speeds. I got a bit paranoid about wheel bearings, so finding out there was a Royal Enfield Dealer in Yerba Buena, and the thought of a shorter day, not to mention the interesting sounding name of the place (Yerba is the herb used to make mate tea) made up my mind. Of course, the noise could have been the heat, and the hypnotic effect of 200 miles of straight road, distorting my senses.. At one point, going through some scrubby salt flats, I saw a guy waving a huge snake at me.

    R0003210.jpg
    1000km done


    When I turned off route 9 (straight, very very hot) everything instantly changed. Hills. Green stuff that wasn't spiky. Trees. I haven't seen a tree for ages. So I parked under what I guess was some type of eucalyptus, took off my jacket, took a pic, then rode off. 10 minutes, later, I realised I had left my Camelback under a tree. When I got back there, identifying the exact spot from the photo I took there, it was gone. But, the hostel told me of a shop in Tucuman that sold camping equipment, They also sell guns. Lots of guns. I bought a very capable looking pack made by an Argentinian company called Waterdog. It looks the dogs bollocks, and is an improvement both design and functionality than the item it replaced.

    R0003217.jpg

    The Enfield Dealer was new and hadn't got the workshop going, but after a conversation with two of the employees at Enfield, and a play with the wheel, we all decided it was ok.
    I have just eaten empenadas for the first time (3 helpings, plus a beer, which here is served in litre bottles). It's just started raining, smells lovely. I am going to go and stand in it for a while, and then go to sleep.
    #4
  5. JoeBiker25

    JoeBiker25 Been here awhile

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    Excellent!!!
    #5
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  6. ishmac

    ishmac Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
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    706
    Location:
    Central Scotland
    Loving your ride report so far - excellent..!

    I recently attended the Scottish Motorcycle Show nean Edinburgh and there was a Royal Enfield stand at the show, a lot of interest in the R.E. bikes on display for sure. They'd two Himalayan's on display, one with rear hard luggage etc.....chunky looking, quality for sure!

    What range can you get to a full tank of petrol JJ ??

    Safe travels - enjoy!

    Best regards;
    mac
    Scotland
    #6
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  7. neppi

    neppi Been here awhile

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    Subscribed!
    #7
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  8. td63

    td63 Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2016
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    Location:
    Moscow, Idaho
    All in! ...I remember when you bought that bike (was thinking of getting one myself) so it's cool to now read about you living the plan.

    fwiw, in the second to last pic I think I see your glove on the ground, and I thought "he's gonna lose his gloves" and then I read about the Camelbak. Maybe get in the habit of leaving everything on the bike! ;)
    #8
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  9. Gedrog

    Gedrog 1000 mile stare a 1000 stories to tell

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    I would like to see them expand the RE a bit the 500 air cooled EFI powerplant they have on the Bullet seems a good choice
    #9
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  10. lipsee

    lipsee Been here awhile

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    Lincolnshire
    Gods streuth !! is every man and his dog going down to South America? I thought of it first, Ms Boots read my mind and went ,,now JJon goes,,,well all I can say is I,m going when I retire (3yrs) I have my Him ... My plan is to folllow in Itchy,s footsteps ..Yeah I know ,not very original,,but do I care...oh yeah I,v subbed ,,I too like the idea of camping ,,good luck my friend
    #10
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  11. Gedrog

    Gedrog 1000 mile stare a 1000 stories to tell

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    EUrope is too expensive North America restrictive Visa's Asia and Africa is unpredictable South America on the other hand is still cheap relatively easy to cross borders which seems to attract the attention of the adventure community
    #11
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  12. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2018
    Oddometer:
    128
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    Manchester, Lancs
    Day 5

    On the road again, after a day off yesterday to do laundry, buy camping gas and look over the bike. People here are super friendly. May be meeting up tomorrow or the next day with a guy from Tucuman who rode 420 000 km on a round the world trip!
    The roads seem to be getting more interesting, temperature was 27 degrees, and after a few hours I stopped for a break. .3 empenadas and a coffee. 170 miles done so far today, 220 to go. At the same stop, I meet a Brazilian who has had a big off in mud, and his radiator was leaking. I offered him some laundry soap, I bought a bar yesterday, but he seemed reluctant to try it. It's worked for me on a car before.
    My odometer/speedo has stopped working, so I am now relying on Google Maps for my speed. With the Argentinian sim card in my phone, everything has switched to kilometres, which is just as well.

    R0003220.jpg

    I got to La Quica at about 6pm, after 10 hours on the road. I decided to get to La Quica in one go, 625km (390 miles), partly because of the weather, and partly because it's where the interesting stuff starts. Probably a stupid idea, as I have now ridden from 1328 (420m) feet altitude to 11,293 ft (3442mt) in one day. I hope I don't get altitude sickness. Temperature today ranged from 34 degrees to 8 degrees. Scenery varied from flat straight stuff, to twisty green rolling hills, to river valleys that look like images I have seen of Afghanistan. My odometer and speedo packed up, so I am now using the rev counter and/or my phone to monitor speed. Lots of police checkpoints, but I have been waved through every single one.

    At one point I stopped and took a pic with my phone. About ten minutes later something hit my leg and my phone was gone. I hadn't secured it in the phone mount. Duh. I rode back and a guy walking along the road had just saved it from being run over by a truck. It didn't appear to be working, so he wasn't too disappointed I came back for it I guess. I stuck it in my pocket, and the next time I stopped for gas had a look at. Screen is scratched really badly, a bit is missing from one corner, but to my surprise, it's working!

    Next up was gaining altitude, meaning hours of wetness and cold. It got down to 8 degrees, and rained for two hours solid, including a torrential downpour with lightning flashes on all sides. I took shelter under an awning next to a building that turned out to be an MC's clubhouse, in the middle of nowhere. No-one was home.

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    Inca Riders clubhouse

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    My winter gloves were buried in a bag somewhere, so I had the heated grips on for the rest of the ride. I came out of the rain into a sunny patch for a while, and then raced a storm front for the last 40km. The sky was black in the mirrors. But, I found an amazing hostel on iOverlander, less than a tenner a night, and it's immaculate.

    R0003222.jpg
    All south from here....

    A very different feel to the country here, the locals are all descendants of the Incas, and it feels like an olde worlde type of place, in spite of the modern breeze block buildings.

    In the hostel, I met two Argentinian bikers, Ricardo and Samuel. They are on a week long trip from their home in Misiones. Tomorrow they are heading for Cafayate, but not via Ruta 40. They tried to persuade me to join them. They seem to think I am nuts going on Ruta 40 tomorrow, on my own. "Ripio, ripio!" they tell me. Ripio seems a particularly nasty sounding word for dirt roads, imo. Later in the trip, I start wondering if the sound of the word itself discourages some Spanish speaking riders to venture onto dirt. We went to a local restaurant and had a mixed grill, which included black pudding, steak, kidneys, chicken and tripe (yuk). As for myself, I'm still hoping that riding on dirt is like riding a bicycle, and you don't forget.....

    Ricardo.jpg
    "Ripio, ripio...." Dinner with Ricardo and Samuel. Pic courtesy of Ricardo Werle.

    So Ruta 40 starts here. But no more rushing, I am going to slow it right down, take more pictures, see more stuff. The weather might be dodgy tomorrow, and next 725 km is dirt, so I have no plan beyond getting to Santa Catalina tomorrow, which is only 39 miles away. Plus I can definitely feel the effects of the 3442 metres of altitude. Walking is done at half pace, and I can feel a headache coming on...though 2 litres of beer could have contributed to that.
    #12
  13. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

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    Oct 27, 2018
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    128
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    Manchester, Lancs
    A tank gives around 200 miles, the two 3 litre cans add around another 90. I never used both cans, but used a single can 4 times, twice when I wasn't really expecting to.
    #13
  14. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2018
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    Manchester, Lancs
    I never lost gloves, but lost a fleece, a Hyperkewl vest a bottle of water.
    #14
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  15. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2018
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    128
    Location:
    Manchester, Lancs
    Apologies for disappearing, real life got in the way....The journey continues....

    I woke up in La Quiaca with a really bad headache. I knew it was a bit stupid gaining altitude so quickly. I wandered into town and found a pharmacy. The pharmacist sold me some wild garlic tablets, and told me to go to the market and buy coca leaves. I bough quiye a large packet, and was surprised that they tasted ok. They also worked; by the time I left town, my headache was abating. Time now to find out if I could still ride on dirt, after a thirty year absence. To my relief, I felt OK almost immediately- whether that is because it's like riding a bicycle, and you don't forget it, or because of the coca leaves, I couldn't tell.

    _DSC2650vid.jpg

    Well, I started Ruta 40 by taking a wrong turning some where on the road to Santa Catalina. The road I ended up on was pretty interesting, and the Himalayan turns out to be great on gravel and in sand. Before leaving La Quica I had reduced the rear tyre pressure to 25psi, the front to 22. The accidental road I went on had some very steep and twisty bits. Problem is I couldn't mount my damaged phone on the bike. I think when I added a hostel to the route, it worked out the quickest way. I only noticed I had gone wrong when I joined what was actually a better road, which turned out to be Ruta 40, 19km south of Santa Catalina. I toyed with the idea of retracing my route for about 2 seconds. A huge thunderstorm urged me onwards. I also still had the altitude headache I had picked up by riding to La Quica too quick. I ate some more coca leaves and carried on. I ran into a Brazilian cyclist on a hill, he seemed pleased to see me, even though we couldn't actually communicate beyond start points and destinations. Later on, I came across a very excitable guy with two companions, whi had driven from Ushuia, all the way up Ruta 40. They were in a small van and a little Fiat. They informed me the road was very difficult, and gave me pointers on crossing a river a little further on. Excitable guy suggested I carry my luggage across first. Seeing as they had got both of their two wheel drive vehicles across, I didn't bother. The river crossing was fine.



    A bit further on, the road follows a river bed in a ravine that obviously gets flooded in storms. Here stupidity caught up with me. A loud graunching noise followed by a sudden lack of forward motion had me thinking the worst. In fact it was a fleece I had strapped to the back of the bike that had made its way into the chain. It had also pulled the chain guard into the chain. I had just finished fixing it and readjusting the chain which seemed to have gone out of whack, when two bikers from Tucuman (which so far this trip seems to produce many crazy bikers) turned up on street bikes. One was on a CB250 the other on a Chinese 250. They hung around to make sure I got going again. I crossed a total of 6 rivers, only one of them deep enough to get me worried. But figuring that two guys on street bikes had just crossed them, I decided I didn't need to walk them first.
    A thunderstorm hit me just as I was passing Paicone, a tiny little village. I took refuge under a metal awning. When the rain stopped the area where I had parked had turned into a pool of red mud. Immediately I set off, the tyre treads got clogged and I came off for the first time on this trip. The bike was on its side in a morass of pink clay. I took the bag off, pulled off the upstairs pannier, but I couldn't get enough purchase in the mud to lift the bike, it and me just slid in opposite directions. I saw a woman across a field and walked over to ask her if there were any men about, and luckily there were.

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    Suddenly I was the afternoon entertainment. A young dude called Rafael took charge, using Google Translate on my phone to ask questions about my trip. An older guy said I wouldn't make it to Cusi Cusi that night, due to 3 rivers I needed to cross. After asking about the possibility of a bed in the village a car arrived from Cusi Cusi and the driver said the rivers were ok. I set off again, crossing the first river which was ok. The other two were really low. As I got closer to Cusi Cusi, I could see I was riding straight towards a storm. Would I get there in time? With a lot of red clay still on the roads the only other option was pitching my tent. Luck was with me and I arrived at Cusi Cusi just as the storm hit. The hostel is not worth reporting on though I had a decent dinner of steak, rice and salad there. Then I slept for 11 hours.

    route day 1.png
    #15
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  16. BMW-K

    BMW-K F800GS FTW!

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    absolutely loving this ride report!
    #16
  17. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

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    Well today was just mind-boggling. I left Cusi Cusi around 10am, the first 20 km or so was really slow as the roads were still wet. After that the road surface switched between "ripio" as Argentinans call corrugate gravel roads, sand, a mixture of both, very fine gravel, and some amazingly smooth bits where I topped out at 4000 rpm (no speedo, so I guess around 45mph?). The whole day was above 10,000 feet above sea level. My altitude headache had pretty much gone, possibly due to the coca leaves recommended by the pharmacist in La Quica. Not much traffic, though two guys on bikes passed me going north.

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    Scenery is epic. Rock towers, ravines, vast plains, different coloured rocks, mountains that look like they have been made of modelling clay. Often hours of riding without seeing anyone else, though at one point there were a lot of trucks carrying rocks and gravel, this coinciding with a section of road that is obviously being improved.


    Signposts seem quite rare in these parts, so I was relying on Google Maps, which does not seem to be up to date. At one point Google sent me up a tiny steep rock and cactus laden track. I hadn't gone far before I realised this couldn't be Ruta 40 - I had heard bits were bad but this was getting ridiculous. While turning the bike round, I dropped it when the front wheel hit a rock. Doh. Picking up a bike at 12000 feet isn't much fun. Finally got back on Ruta 40 and for about 5km followed an "unknown road" until Google and reality agreed again, the road continued through some of the most amazing scenery I have ever seen. In fact, I will go as far as saying its the best days riding I have ever had.

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    A long day, the 179km (112 miles) covered taking me all day, with a stop to fly the drone, buy dodgy fuel, and stop for many pics, and just to drink in the landscape. I saw Llamas, antelope, including a lone one shaped like a whippet, a fox, and alpacas.

    Fitting an ABS switch to enable me to turn the ABS off was definitely a good idea, it saved me twice today; once on a fast bit where a deep rock-strewn culvert suddenly appeared unexpectedly, and I locked the back brake, slid the bike sideways, and manged to lose most of my speed before hitting it. Cue decision to not take for granted that a long smooth bit won't have craftily hidden obstacles. The second time was on a very steep, winding downward slope on gravel, a huge drop-off to one side where I kept having to lock up the back wheel. I think the ABS would have been a severe hindrance on that hill.

    Now I am in Susques Department, in a very nice hostel called El Cactus. It looks like its been raining further south so I am going to visit the police station tomorrow armed with Google Translate and see if they can tell me of the road conditions.

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    El Cactus

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    Church in Susques

    susques8.jpg
    #17
    twowings, Honda-50, td63 and 6 others like this.
  18. Red liner

    Red liner Been here awhile

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    May 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    220
    Am in...lovely log, do keep going!
    #18
    Jetlag Jon likes this.
  19. vicmitch

    vicmitch Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2007
    Oddometer:
    981
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Enjoying your trip so far, keep it up
    #19
    Jetlag Jon likes this.
  20. Bovino

    Bovino Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    Oddometer:
    786
    Location:
    Spain
    Ha! OK eatery that! L-Q is a bit of a pain restaurant wise. We had a fun night there, cyclist dude I met was an accountant - after a few bottles of Tinto there was a little argument about the bill. I love when Argies get all worked up :D

    ARG.jpg
    #20
    Jetlag Jon likes this.