Trip Planning for a Chile/Argentina loop

Discussion in 'Latin America' started by SpecialAgentNancy, Jul 25, 2012.

  1. DKW1200

    DKW1200 Been here awhile

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    John,
    I certainly agree about Argentina. I plan on spending a lot more time there this next trip. If you want to ship your bike in a container with other riders please join us in February or March. We need 2 or 3 more bikes to make this container happen. Happy trails.
    #61
  2. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Hi DKW1200,

    My bike is in Uruguay parked at a hog farm. Uruguay gives you a year on your TVIP. My bike isn't worth shipping back and forth to the states. I just leave it down there when I run out of money. Will return in November for another 6 months of exploring. Hope to see you down the road.

    Your ADVpal,
    John Downs
    #62
  3. DKW1200

    DKW1200 Been here awhile

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    John, we'll look you up when we get there. Only wish I was leaving in November but considering I have several months to explore the area I can wait. I like the idea of storing the bike and will follow that leed when the time comes. Cheers
    #63
  4. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    Interested parties:
    -itchie-1 bike? // San Francisco
    -hawkpilot2-1 or 2 bikes // Alabama
    -DKW 1200-1 or 2 bikes? // San Diego
    -SpecialAgentNancy 1 bike // San Francisco

    So based on this....seems that shipping out of Long Beach or Oakland is an option.

    I think that we should have a skype conf call with video soon (October) to just meet and discuss just how much of a reality this is.

    -Trip Dates
    -Route
    -pet peeves :D
    -Commit date (suggest Christmas) based on shipping bikes in Jan
    #64
  5. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    First call completed.

    Rough plan. Ship a container from Long Beach end Jan/early Feb to Valparaiso.

    Need another bike to make this work financially. Possible to put 2 more bikes.

    Rough trip plan:
    Ride Mar 1-13th South from Santiago. Back to Valparaiso March 14th. Then across to Argentina or North to Peru for 3 more weeks then ship bikes back.

    Using hostels. Securing bikes inside property, no street parking. No camping.

    No iron butt. 100-200 miles a day.

    ANYONE INTERESTED IN SHIPPING THEIR BIKE, PM me
    . You don't have to ride with us, we'll just share the container.
    #65
  6. BobinBahia

    BobinBahia Lifelong M.I.A.

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    Arrived Lima yesterday from California for 6 mo ride to Patagonia.

    Lima temp low-high 60's (15-16 C. Av.)

    Would you ride North (Ecuador/Colombia) for a month or so to await warmer weather in Peru backcountry/Chile/Argentina Sur? Or start South- now?

    Please, what do you say?
    #66
  7. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    If you read the first couple of pages of my thread there are a lot of local riders that posted detailed info about this very topic. You could PM them.

    Being from SF myself I wouldn't dream recommending anything but if you want to see the penguins make sure you find out about them before you go. apparently it's a bit like the aurora borealis (tricky to see and narrow window of opportunity)
    #67
  8. BobinBahia

    BobinBahia Lifelong M.I.A.

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    Thanks for the tip on the penguins, in Patagonia. Rather different from penguins in Rio, where every summer they swim ashore as their ice flow homes drift north and melt.

    I've read your blog with interest and plans to ride toward the end of the season down south. Meanwhile, I am in Lima and it's still too cold down south. I'd planned to spend the month of October riding north through Ecuador and Colombia- and await warmer weather down south. However, I've come to the conclusion a month is much too short for Lima/Ecuador/Colombia/Ecuador- then back to Peru. It's a shame to try to ride the spectacular Northern South America routes so quickly.

    Maybe I'd better 'punt'>>> After taking over the bike at the Ecuador border this week, I may ride to Cuenca 5 hours away for a night or two. Then turn South- instead of continuing North. Another reason: Cusco/Machu Pinchu dry season ends in September, after which the rains. I think I should leave Ecuador/Colombia for another trip as they deserve quality time, not a light once over. Instead, spend the time waiting for the weather to warm up in Patagonia while riding the back country of Peru and Chile, and the Chileno Lake District- and avoid the long straight, although quick, Panamerican Highway going south as far as possible.

    Maybe this makes more sense? :huh All suggestions, welcome. :wink:
    #68
  9. BobinBahia

    BobinBahia Lifelong M.I.A.

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    Thanks for your reply. I have and I will.
    A lot of experience and knowledge on this thread.
    #69
  10. Gabeslaw

    Gabeslaw Take the Challenge Ignore the Assholes! Supporter

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    I think that I may have been one of those Harley-Adventure Bikers you saw......I was there first week of August and took me 6 days up the Slope and back to Fairbanks. I stayed in Coldfoot because of two days of hard rain and hard drinking LOL! third day in sprinkling I said f*ck it and went up and three hours later the sun came out and all I had to deal with was the mud! Way back was sunny and I was jamming 60 MPH for first 1.5 hours from Deadhorse going south!
    #70
  11. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    This ride is going to happen. Looks like the bikes will land in Chile Feb 10-14.

    Riding some of Patagonia, most of Argentina and passing through Uruguay on my way to BA where I will air freight my bike home.

    More details on the trip plan will be posted in a couple weeks and I would love suggestions and ideas around terrain, temp and so forth..
    #71
  12. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    Finally some questions about the route.

    How long is the ride from Valparaiso to Atacama Desert (Antofagasta)? Using the main coastal road.
    Is it a nice ride?
    Recommended stops/places to camp/eat?

    Seems that a visit to the following is in order:
    Salar de Atacama
    Valley de la Luna
    Quitor

    2 ghost towns: which is best?
    Oficina Humberstone
    Oficina Chacabucco

    Or is it better to visit a working mine like Chiquicamata or Calama? Is it a cool experience for someone who's never been in a mine?

    Last question for Northern Chile, what is the road like from San Pedro de Atacama to Salta Argentina?
    Is it over a high pass (concerns around high winds/snow)?
    Is it paved?
    What is the typical riding time?

    Is is best to just come back towards Valparaiso and cross over into Argentina through Mendoza? If it's half as beautiful as the wine country here then I think it's worth back tracking especially if the road from San Pedro to Salta is long and desolate.
    #72
  13. clintnz

    clintnz Trans-Global Chook Chaser

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    Hi Nancy, might see you on the road!

    My girlfriend & I have booked a couple of NX400 hire bikes in Santiago from 2 Feb for 5 weeks. We are planning to explore Chile & Argentina from around Santiago latitudes & to the South. Will start a thread & post a few location updates on here once we get going, it's always good to meet up with other riders, be they local or touring.

    Cheers
    Clint
    #73
  14. oobus

    oobus Been here awhile

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    Nancy,

    If you end up going over the range to Mendoza it will not be a disappointment (except the border crossing which can take 4 hours at the wrong time of day or season). Absolutely incredible views, and, Mendoza is very, very nice - much like a Sonoma vineyards but with the backdrop of the Andes. Great place to spend a few days, especially if it is during he wine festival https://www.fest300.com/festivals/national-grape-harvest-festival I was at this this year and it was fantastic!

    I'll most likely be down there in February for work and will at a minimum rent a bike if I don't ship mine down.

    Matt
    #74
  15. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    Thanks for the helpful info on Mendoza.

    I'm thinking now that doing a round trip across the pass from Salta Argentina to San Pedro de Atacama could be fun if time permits.

    I've been told it's paved.....So that means, south first to the lakes region, back to Santiago, cross over to Mendoza, then head North on the Argentina side rather than the coastal road of Chile.

    Sounds like we don't want to miss Mendoza.
    #75
  16. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    What is a recommended time to cross the border? 2 am :ear

    4 hours at ANY border is a waste of time.
    #76
  17. oobus

    oobus Been here awhile

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    I don't think I'd ride a bike across the pass at night, there could be ice either on the road or in the tunnel connecting the two countries, that was dark and quite long! I'll see if I can find a few pics for you.

    We went thru on a weekday and got to the border at about 2p.m. and it took us 45minutes. Folks going the other direction (east to west) were backed up for 3 hours. This was after a holiday weekend, but sometimes the pass will close in the summer due to weather. I'm not sure who/how you would find out the wait times but if it was a Friday-Sunday it would take extra time.

    This is also the main route for all the semi traffic so there were a lot of truck traffic, and I'm sure there is some seasonality to that. *disclaimer - I've only been thru there once and am passing on the info. my friend from San Juan passed on.
    #77
  18. SpecialAgentNancy

    SpecialAgentNancy & your little dog 2!

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    I didn't get any answers to my prior post so just reposting here

    Finally some questions about the route.

    How long is the ride from Valparaiso to Atacama Desert (Antofagasta)? Using the main coastal road? Is it a nice ride? Or should we power up there in a rental car and come right back. Also wondering around the pass between Salta Argentina and San Pedro De Atacama.
    Is it paved?

    2 ghost towns: which is best?
    Oficina Humberstone
    Oficina Chacabucco

    Or is it better to visit a working mine like Chiquicamata or Calama? Is it a cool experience for someone who's never been in a mine? We could also do Sewell south of Santiago.

    Ruta 40.

    Is it paved between Bariloche and Mendoza? What is the border crossing from Puerto Montt to Bariloche? Some of us have elevation aversion.

    Or is is best to just come back towards Valparaiso and cross over into Argentina through Mendoza?
    #78
  19. BobinBahia

    BobinBahia Lifelong M.I.A.

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    Heard a beautiful route Santiago-Mendoza. Heavy traffic. I skipped it, seen plenty of beautiful vineyards for a lifetime.
    Instead, took the Carretera Austral South from Puerto Montt, leaving La Junta to beat the Carretera closure 1-5 ahead.
    I wouldn't miss this. Looks like Alaska, BC, stunning.

    Will hit the Argentine side down the track, first to the end of the Carretera Austral, Bernardo O'Higgens and the first pass North over the Andes.
    #79
  20. mrtuc

    mrtuc Adventurer

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    How long is the ride from Valparaiso to Atacama Desert (Antofagasta)? Using the main coastal road? Is it a nice ride? Or should we power up there in a rental car and come right back.

    Between Valpariso and San Pedro de Atacama there are 1.575 km. Its a long trip but the coastal road is fantastic. You will have the ocean in one side and the mountains in the other.
    If you intent to do that trip, I recommend to make it in two days, and make a stop in La Serena (a very nice city)


    Also wondering around the pass between Salta Argentina and San Pedro De Atacama.
    Is it paved?

    The pass between San Pedro de Atacama and Salta is Known as Paso de Jama. Is also a very very nice road, all paved (you will climb to 4173 mts).
    The pass ends in the Quebrada de Humauaca (World Heritage), where you can visit the salt flats (Salinas Grandes de Jujuy), Purmamarca, Tilcara and Humauaca.
    Even in summer the temperatures in the night might descend to -10C or less. That is why I recommend to start the pass at 10 a.m (where you will have a nice temperature). Although there are 450 km, it will take not less than 8 hours.
    In the north of argentina starts the ruta 40, but there are many places where there is no paved, that is the original "ruta 40".
    You have alternatives of roads that are all paved, and visit Salta, Cachi, Los Valles Calchaquies, Cafayate, Tafi del Valle and a lot of other places.

    If you like dirt roads, there are two magnificent pass: Paso de San Francisco and Paso de Aguas Negras.
    #80