The Gap Year- Peru

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by 95Monster, Sep 2, 2018.

  1. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    The next morning, we left Popoyan and headed towards San Agustin. Hotel.JPG The road out of Popoyan turned to dirt pretty early on. It was wide, flat and hard packed so made for easy riding... for a little bit. First Dirt.jpg We were excited to play in the dirt and stretch those throttle cables a bit. SecondDirt.jpg After a bit, we went back onto a twisty asphalt road and continued to blast along having a great ride.
  2. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    The road had a bit of everything, from small villages, to packs of horses using the road, even a great waterfall. Cascades.JPG When we went onto the second dirt section the skies opened up and the fun came to an end. The road was well traveled, wide and not technical but the red clay got very slick. The big girl on street tires was a handful. Any inputs- throttle, steering, lean angle- would break traction. It was like riding on ice for a long long time. AreWeThereYet.JPG When we finally got back to asphalt, I'd never been so happy to see it...even if it was wet! Tarmac.JPG
  3. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    We headed up the mountain and into the town of San Agustin in sunshine. I know how you feel, woof. Woof.jpg Trying to fend off a very drunk local. DrunkGuy.JPG The view from the hostel was perfect for watching the sunset with a rum & coke. Sunset.jpg
  4. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    The next morning, Justin launched his Yamaha from the hostel's front door. Justin.jpg JustinStreet.jpg I had to go down the block and free mine from her cave. Cave.jpg
    yokesman, B10Dave, battdoc and 4 others like this.
  5. Bulldog Buddy

    Bulldog Buddy Adventurer

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    Great shots, keep 'em coming.
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  6. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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  7. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer Super Supporter

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    Looks like you might have met Sory and Jorge the Spaniard at the Cali bike show? Are you going to get your bike serviced at Asturias shop? They are top notch folks in Cali.
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  8. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Yes, I did! Wonderful hosts. The bike goes to Asturias tomorrow for service.
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  9. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer Super Supporter

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    Thought that might have been their son you were next to in a photo, it has been too long since I’ve been down now.
    Did you happen to meet the Frenchman Alain on the 1150 GS? He is another Calino good guy, and used to be the greatest host at Asturias, a real good character and friend.

    Tell them Oklahoma John says hello and still misses Colombia. Jorge is one of the best mechanics in all of South America.
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  10. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Yes, that was their son. Jorge and Sory are headed to Ushuaia next week. So I hope to go over some routes and POIs with them tomorrow afternoon. And after spending the last week on wet dirt, I'm probably going to mount something more 50/50 oriented tire. I'll see what they recommend.
  11. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    The hostel in San Agustin, Musica y Artes, was lively. Too much rum was enjoyed too late into the evening. I guess it was what you call a 'party' hostel. So we partied. And everyone was in on the rum drinking and other delights. SanAgustin.jpg Morning came early and painfully but we saddled up and headed towards Villavieja, a little hamlet in the desert. When we came to the city of Neiva, Justin's bike began to overheat. We thought it might just be city traffic but pulled over and hosed the engine down until it was cool enough to open the radiator cap. Bone dry! Oh Oh. We filled up the radiator and with an eye on the temp light, headed for Villavieja, 30 kilometers north.

    The bike made it and Justin sourced some coolant and went to work. JustinWrenches.jpg The problem was a hole in the radiator and it was definitely losing coolant. Not much to be done but head for Ibague the next morning and source a repair shop through Motolombia. So we headed towards Ibague on 45 A, through the 'desert.' Gravel.jpg
  12. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    For a desert, it was pretty green. Cacti.jpg But the vados were dry. Vado.jpg ish... Vado2.jpg
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  13. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    45 A was a fantastic ride, from desert to pines, to mountains, following the Magdalena River. Trees.jpg MagdalenaRvr.jpg Then this happened... the darkest tunnel I've been in short of a West VA coal mine. TunnelExit.jpg
  14. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    And the fun part of the tunnel was it exited onto a rickety bridge leading to another tunnel. We looked at each other and the comment was made that this was some Wile E. Coyote shit! Bridge.jpg Now the bridge should have been ridden on the tire tracks. Those lanes most likely would be secure. The middle plates were loose. But me, being scared of heights, was too chicken shit to ride on the side so went down the middle causing the plates to jump up and down. Stupid but got her done. Once we got over Wile E. Coyote jokes, I was on to Marathon Man quotes "Is it safe?" IsThisSafe.jpg But we made it safely, just like scores of locals make it all day long three up on 150cc bikes. Made our destination of Ibague and checked into Hotel Dulima, a business hotel in the city centro with an underground parking garage. From there, Justin got to Motolombia on the leaking radiator and they arranged for a local mechanic to come to the hotel. When the mechanic arrived, he told us he would remove the radiator, take it home and weld it. Then bring it back and install it so we would be ready to go by 8:00am the next morning. We didn't really believe him. And, we didn't really think the fix would work. But by 11pm that night, the mechanic was back and the bike buttoned up for a morning departure. Well done!
  15. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Heading West from Ibague, hwy 40 is packed with trucks. You go from passing multiple trucks just to find a hole behind the next group of bumper to bumper trucks on a two lane, twisty mountain road. It is an exhausting ride and the penalty for getting passes wrong is, most likely, death. This guy got something wrong and ended up on his side. Tanker.jpg It is beautiful country though! Mountain.jpg Thankfully, we didn't have to go too far for the turnoff to Toche. We stopped at a tienda and asked about the road. Locals confirmed it was just ahead but hard to spot as it looked like a gravel drive heading down into a school parking lot. They relayed to us that the road conditions were good and it would probably take about 2 hours to get to Toche. From Toche, they thought it might be another couple hours to Salento. Inmate Salentomoto had suggested a 'backroad' route from Salento to Toche so I assumed this had to be the same route.

    Heading towards Toche. Toche.jpg The route was a climb up into the coffee mountains. Road conditions were dry and dusty and the scenery was amazing! Happy to get away from the death race with the trucks.
  16. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    What a ride! switchback.JPG riverX.jpg And after a couple hours of pleasant riding we came to the bridge into downtown Toche. bridgetown.jpg
  17. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Toche was 'muy tranquilo.' left.jpg Is there a better place to relax and have some refreshments? middle.jpg After our little break, we headed back into the mountains towards Salento. right.jpg
  18. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Heading out of town, the skies were darkening. And of course, the rain came. Heavy rain. And the nice mountain ride turned into a test of endurance. Up out of Toche, it's a pretty rocky climb and wet rocks don't go with street biased tires. Not a lot of pictures as we were working pretty hard. Cloudy.jpg After it rained for a while we got to the mud. Pretty deep ruts and mud holes. Sometimes the going was slow but we were going. Mud.jpg And then, some parts were just perfect and you could really fly. Nice.jpg Coming down into Salento, it got wet again but it was a fantastic day of riding. And aside from the mud bogs, traction was pretty decent, even in the wet.
    battdoc, Velvetdogmom and toowoomba like this.
  19. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    We made it down to Salento, exhausted, and checked into the Los Guaduales Hostel. Let sleeping dogs lie or lay? I can't keep it straight. SleepingD.jpg The lady at the hostel is a fanatic about sweeping and mopping. When I was there before, it felt like she followed me around with a broom and dustpan. She was none too pleased to see me roll Traveller into her lobby. Dirty.jpg After a night in Salento, we blasted back to Cali so that Justin could return his bike to Motolombia and catch a plane back to the States. I took a rest day and had the bike detailed. I guess I was napping when they armour all'd the tires, grip and seat! Good thing I was practiced at riding on wet clay! Clean.jpg
  20. 95Monster

    95Monster Been here awhile

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    Now the RR is caught up. I'm in Cali catching up on grown up stuff. Beetlejuice.jpg getting the bike serviced Asturias.jpg and planning my days... or months ahead. Definitely going to a 50/50 biased tire for the next leg.
    jowul, Saso, Bulldog Buddy and 6 others like this.