Unfinished Business – Ancient Mariners are heading to Ushuaia – AGAIN

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by lakota, Feb 3, 2019.

  1. scrubb

    scrubb Master of Mayhem

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    I'm in. Most likely, flying and riding from Chile (or Peru) is going to be my first motorcycling trip in SA.

    Do you mind a quick comment regarding how the rental company handled the damage to the bike last year? Meaning, did they keep all of your deposit? Did they ask for extra? Were they cool, or aholes about it? Stuff like that.

    Also, how did they get the bikes back to the start location? I was under the impression that you left them at another location than where you rented them. If so, did they charge for that?

    Thanks in advance.
    #21
  2. powderzone

    powderzone Been here awhile Supporter

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    Great start! Looking forward to following along. Say hi to Ulli at RideADV - I rented from them last year for a trip into Bolivia.
    #22
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  3. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    [QUOTE="scrubb, post: 36933039, member: 156051
    Do you mind a quick comment regarding how the rental company handled the damage to the bike last year? Meaning, did they keep all of your deposit? Did they ask for extra? Were they cool, or aholes about it? Stuff like that.

    Also, how did they get the bikes back to the start location? I was under the impression that you left them at another location than where you rented them. If so, did they charge for that?

    Thanks in advance.[/QUOTE]

    THe answer is a little involved. The bikes were rented through a tour company that arranged the itinerary for us. It was a contract between us and them that was paid up front. There was no deposit involved in the contract. It was upfront money. Hotels had all been paid in advance and in high season there is no refund. We paid $5000 for the tour and it was up to us to do the tour. If we did not it was our loss. Our contract said that the bikes had to be returned to Puerto Natales Chile. When Jack crashed he could not go on so the bikes were left in Esquel Argentina.

    Because we did not complete the contract we had to pay for the company to send two people to Esquel with a trailer to pick up the bikes. That is two days round trip which we had to cover. One person cannot trailer two bikes across the borders so two folks were required.

    The insurance we had was $1500 deductible. Damage to the bike was more than that so that had to be paid too.

    We had no complaints with the company. They were totally professional in dealing with us and adhered to the contract we both had signed.

    We liked dealing with Ride Adventures and are using them for this trip. We probably will use them in the future for other rides on other continents.
    #23
  4. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    Day D-1

    A lazy day at the hotel. We had breakfast

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    and then went for a walk (twice). The hotel is too far from town to walk and Uber is a non-factor. We are too Type A to wait for the ubiquitous mini-vans that serve as buses.

    The hotel is on a lake. However, most of the lake’s beaches are private property. Public access to the beach is down a few walkways like this one but there are not many of them.

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    There are lots of rules

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    I particularly like the last one. The beaches themselves are all gravel

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    and make for difficult walking. Don’t wear Tevas on the beach. Don’t ask how I know.

    We spent a lot of time web surfing and wondering if we would hear from the tour company and be able to pick up the bikes today instead of tomorrow morning. Finally, at 1500 we got the call we were hoping for. The local operator came and picked us up and we were off to his place (home, garage, and office are all in one spot). We fill out the paperwork, pay the additional fees for the border crossing head start, and install GPS mount and pigtail for the heated gear. Then we get the bikes. Honda CB500X. 2017 models. Mine has only 9000Km on the clock.

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    It is a short but sweet ride back to the hotel.

    Food Porn

    Breakfast is your basic buffet meats, cheeses, fruit, pastry, and the bins for scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, and potatoes.

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    Dinner

    Steak

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    Lasagna

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    Both were good choices. The menu is limited but tasty.

    Tomorrow we ride!!!


    Why do we do this. Gotta get it done before the parade passes by.
    #24
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  5. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Love the pics and ride report. Keep them coming. Don't forget to give us name of the hotels/lodges and location. Just in case I am in same neighborhood someday.
    #25
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  6. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    Day 1 - Pucon to Bariloche Part 1

    On the road again

    We were up at the crack of 0630 and down to breakfast before it opened officially at 0700. Some bread and cold cuts for me and coffee for Jack. Then it’s back to the room to finish packing and get on the road. We are moving at 0806.

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    The ride to the border is uneventful. It is a different ride than last year because we can see things. Last year was haze and fog. This year is sun.

    Road hazards

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    The volcano

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    We get to the border and there is no line. Passport stamped at window 1. Vehicle exported at window 2. Get back on the bike and ride through no man’s land toward the Argentine Aduana. At the actual border the road becomes a gravel sand mix. Just before the actual paperwork drill there is a kiosk where a guard gives you a piece of paper that says you are entering Argentina, in my case by myself. Then you take the paper, go park, and head to Window 1. Passport stamped. Window 2. Bike imported. The piece of paper gets an entrance okay. And it’s out the door to head into Argentina proper. But first stop at the exit kiosk to turn in the piece of paper. Now all is right with the world.

    The view from Argentina customs.

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    The sand and gravel mix last about 10KM. I have flashbacks to my 3 days in an ICU in El Paso after crashing out on the Continental Divide trail in 2012. I get comfortable just about the time we reach pavement.

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    Strange as it seems, the riding reminds us of riding in Wyoming, Although greener, it is still a high desert feel. We race along heading south and feeling good about the ride. We find the turn we missed last year and work our way to San Martin de los Andes.

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    This is an interesting stop. We need to buy gas. We need a drink. We need Argentine money. There are 3 ATMs in town. They don’t like our cards. We go in a restaurant and they say the will take a credit card so we get lunch, a ham and cheese omelet for Jack and 2 ham and cheese empanadas for me. Then we must pay. Card processing wants an ID number. What is that? Pin doesn’t work. Passport number fails. Try another card. Passport number works. We are free without having to wash dishes. We find a combio to exchange money. Now we can move on. The town has 3 gas stations. We backtrack to the nearest one and wait in line for gas. Line waiting at stations is away of life. Always by gas early because you never know if there will be any at the next one.
    #26
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  7. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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  8. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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  9. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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  10. blaster11

    blaster11 Still having fun!

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    Looking good Marty!
    #30
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  11. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    Day 2 Bariloche to Trevilin Part 1

    Up early as usual and down to breakfast. Even hot sauce could not save the omelet. We are loaded up and on the road at 0830. There is a guided tour running at the same time as our self-guided and we will see them almost everyday along the way. 2 Africa twins, 2 GSs, and 4 F800GSs.

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    First stop is to fill up on gas. No lines this early in the morning. There are no problems getting out of town and back on Ruta 40. Just out of town is this lake.

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    It is great riding today. Lots of ups and downs. Curves are mostly long sweepers and there were no switchbacks today. It is just great riding. There was obviously some sort of fire here.


    We stop for gas even though we are only down 4 liters because we don’t know when we will see another station. Scenery is worth stopping for. We take a turn off of Ruta 40 to look for a ranch that allegedly belonged to Butch Cassidy. When he and Sundance left the states they first settled in Argentina. In a letter to a friend he said

    “… I liked this part of the world so much I think I’ve settled down for good. I own 300 heads of cattle, 1500 heads of sheep and 28 riding horses. I have 2 helpers, a nice four room house, barns, a stable and a henhouse… the only thing I need is a cook, since I am still unpleasantly single and many times feel lonely…”

    We have general directions on where to look. We come to this place that calls itself a bar and museum.

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    And get a key for a fenced off road.

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    At the end of the road we find a small group of buildings (restored in 2007) that are the Butch Casssidy legacy.

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    There is no tourist infrastructure. This is Caroline, who is trying to work with the local government and the de facto property owner (actual title is uncertain) to make this into a destination.

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    Shots from the museum

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    #31
  12. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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  13. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    There is a short part 3 but I can't get the pictures to load so wait is in order. Sorry.
    #33
  14. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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  15. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    Day 3 Trevelin to Puyuhuapi, Chile “Off The Grid”

    To continue being redundant, we are up early.0550 to be exact. We want to be on the road well ahead of the tour group that is also staying here. Not that we don’t like them, but we just want to beat them to the next hotel so we don’t have to stand in line. As a result of our desires we skip breakfast.

    It’s a 37KM ride to the Argentine border. It doesn’t open till 8 so we have plenty of time. We fill up with gas 2 blocks from the hotel and are finally on our way. It’s 0710. We have been told by the hotel proprietor it is asphalt all the way. It is. Till the edge of town. It is a miserable ride in gravel, dirt, sand and various mixtures of them. My New Mexico flashbacks were in full swing as I tried to maintain 60-70 kph. We muddle along. Next to the road hidden by the vegetation are lakes and streams. Guess if you live near lakes and streams it is not a big deal if you can’t see them from the road. Eventually we get to a bridge over the river

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    I hadn’t checked the odometer as we started out so I did not know how far we had to go. Looking at the GPS and the distance to the next turn, which is a road in Chile, I say to Jack “Guess it can’t be more than 11KM.”

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    We go around the turn and we find

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    The Argentine Aduana

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    It is 0758 so they are not open and a soldier standing there is adamant about that. He tells us to stay where we are. Here’s what they see every day.

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    The door finally open, we go in as Number 1 and 2 in line. It takes longer to walk to the building and back to the bikes than it does to get checked out of Argentina. The soldier opens the gate and in 100 meters we are in Chile and the road is paved. Another 100 meters and we are at Chilean customs. A bus has just off loaded to clear customs outbound

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    so it is a long wait. We get to the head of the line and Jack cannot find his bike registration. He is allowed into Chile and the bikes clear the agricultural inspection, but he can’t take the bike back into Chile (legally). He goes back to the Argentine station to see if he left it there. He did but 3 soldiers want to yell at him. Fine even though he doesn’t understand a word. But he gets the registration, heads back to Chile customs, and gets the bike imported back into Chile. I went through without incident and stand around waiting for all this to take place. After 1h 12m we are back on the road. It is paved for 20 or 30KM and then it is back to sand and gravel. Yuck. We are going slowly. We want to make the 1300 boat to the next hotel and we are watching our ETA slip away. Did I mention it is now raining?

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    But we do find Santa Lucia,

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    partially destroyed by earthquake a few years ago, and the intersection with Ruta 7, the Carretera Austral, a bucket list item of mine. It is paved in this section and we crank it up to over 100kph to make up time. I recognize that this is a little insensitive (and I know what the sign actually means) but every time I see this I wonder what restrictions there are on fins.

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    This is a beautiful road, recently paved so we are flying. There is great scenery

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    #35
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  16. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    Day 3 Trevelin to Puyuhuapi, Chile “Off The Grid” Part 2

    We get to the town of Puyuhuapi

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    and think we are going to buy gas. I look at the road book and find we were supposed to do that 45KM earlier. I refuse to believe there is no gas here (it is a decent sized village) so Jack askes if we can buy gas here. One set of directions gets us close and when we ask again the lady asks Jack if he speaks English. Clear directions is a language we know and it is off the station.

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    Then it’s back on the road and immediately into a hailstorm. It hurts. But it lasts only 4KM. The road goes to dirt and then back to asphalt. We roll into the parking area at 1302. The boat is still there.

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    The lodge.

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    Our room

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    The view

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    Food porn

    Breakfast – we didn’t eat

    Lunch Jack

    Salad

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    Beef stew

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    Crème Brule

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    Me

    Seafood chowder

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    Hake

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    Chilean cake (for my 73rd birthday)

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    Supper

    Churrasco Sandwich

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    Shrimp

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    The story here is we each thought the other made a better choice so we swapped


    There is no internet or cell phone service here.

    This place ain’t cheap. We are planning on the 0930 boat back to the bikes in the morning.
    #36
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  17. blaster11

    blaster11 Still having fun!

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    Happy Birthday Marty!

    So what have the temperatures been running?
    #37
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  18. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Sounds like the adventure is ramping up. By the way who gave you the GPS routes? The bike rental / outfitter? Did they also setup lodging and reservations?
    #38
  19. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    So what's the name of this lodge and location where you have to get a boat shuttle? Looks nice.
    #39
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  20. blaster11

    blaster11 Still having fun!

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    Same one I am using next year.
    #40
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