Finding Freedom...World Wide Ride

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by BcDano, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
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    3,758
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We have a lot of sights we want to see here and they are quite spread out, poorly signed, and involve a lot of walking around = do not want to deal with the bikes and the gear. We hired a driver for the whole day for about 45$ Canadian. Papa Dia arrived as we were having breakfast and then we set out for the day.

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    Our first stop was the Water Buffalo market in Bori and we had been told there was a traditional death ceremonial sacrifice today. We rode up the narrow winding back road thru the lush green rice paddies.

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    There was quite a crowd at the event, but we were the only foreigners. There are 20 or so buffalo here and they are going about spraying them with letters with a can of spray paint. After quite a lot of discussion most of the animals were led out, but 4 remained.

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    There was a procession of 8-10 men that splashed water from a bamboo tube on the back of the animal and then a spear was tapped on the haunch. In the centre of the ring 2 men were banging in posts that looked like they were to tie the animals to. This is what did happen and one was lashed by its forefoot to the posts.

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  2. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    WARNING GRAPHIC PHOTOS!



    Suddenly the man slashed his throat (not well enough) and the scene was quite graphic with spurting blood and the poor creature jumping and staggering. The job was poorly done as he trashed about and fell and then rose and fell and trashed about some more, which was impossible to watch. Families are all here to watch this even with children. I did not watch the next, but Dan said that the cut was much deeper and the animal looks to have died quite quickly. He did however have to watch his fellow suffer a few minutes before! It was actually pretty horrific. We had seen enough and left. Driving past later we saw that they were butchering all 4 animals right there.


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  3. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    We drove up the road to Kalimbuang where they have standing stones. Each represents a death and most of them from higher society. There are some stone stair cases from the main area and these lead to ancient graves that are carved into man made caves in the rocks.

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  4. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    From here we drove south again to the burial caves at Londa. There was quite a traffic jam and on this narrow road a tight squeeze.

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    Here you can see the cliff face from the viewpoint and then when you get close you can see the coffins and bones. There are also quite a few effigies. The caves itself have ancient and new (2 months old) burials. We had a lot of people that wanted a picture with us...seems a bit strange.

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  5. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    The next stop was at Leno where they have a lot of cliff burial and a huge number of effigy.

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  6. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Feb 19, 2011
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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    From here we drove almost back to Makale and then up the mountain to the Jesus Blessing statue. The traffic was mayhem and people were parked on both sides of the narrow road up the tight switch backs and some were double parked. There are a huge number of people here at the mountain top with the massive Jesus Christos on top. They seemed more interested in us as many came running up and asked us is they could take a photo with us. We also had a very nice school group that wanted to practice there English with us (they did very well).

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  7. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Back at the car Dan and I had to block traffic in both direction mostly for the unruly scooter kids and other drivers so that our driver could turn his car around. We headed back down the mountain and then up into the village of Kambira to see the ancient baby graves in the tree trunks.

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    It is now after 4 and we are pretty tired and so we skipped the last stop on my agenda and headed home. This still took and hour to go 18 km on the narrow back road as we were slowed by cars parked on the verge inhibiting the flow of the 2 way traffic on the 1 lane road, the scooters, and the pretty poor road condition. This did give us lots of opportunity to hop out for photos though.

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  8. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    It is Monday today and we confirmed today with Aditya that the ferry from Pula to Balikpopan on Borneo does go twice a week on Tuesday and Saturday at 2200 h and it takes 22 hours (oh Joy). Pula or the ferry dock just north is 567 km from here and at our pace of 200 km per day taking 7 hours this is 3-4 days, which puts us there Friday June 22 (6 year anniversary of our trip and 21 of our wedding).

    The plan today was to ride about 1/3 of the way to the ferry and this would be about 200 km. Based on where we can get accommodation this would be 190 km in Tomoni where there is 1 Hotel Sikumbang.

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    Setting out from our Torajan house at 830 we had about 2 km to back track down the 1 lane back road thru the rice fields and then across the bridge.

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    This dumps you on the main road, which is a steady stream of traffic in both directions. This is made worse by several buses, slow trucks, the usual people parked on the road, and washed out pavement sections. Luckily we only have about 8 km of this to get thru the town of Rante Pao and turn towards Palopo.

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  9. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Once we were away from the city there was less and less traffic all day.

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    The first section rises up over the mountains and we were not impeded on the way up as we had passed several slow moving lines and a particularly slow truck and this gave us smooth sailing ahead.

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    This lasted until about 15 km from Palopo when we ran into a few difficult to pass vehicles on the down side. One especially unfriendly bus driver purposefully would block the lane when there was a place we could pass. Dan eventually got by and then basically stopped on the road so the bus would have to let me by on the corner! Once we arrived to Palopo we made the left turn and the road was wide sweeping turns or basically straight. The traffic began to really thin especially the number of scooters. We had taken 90 minutes to go the first 65 km to Palopo, but once passed here we got up some speed and even spent time over 80! I have not been in 6 th gear since I arrived to Indonesia.

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    We made great time and arrived to our destination at Tomoni at 1330. It a pretty hot humid day and we decided to push on the 2 hours and 77 km to Pindolo on the lake.

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    This means another mountain to cross, but also some cooler temperatures. The road up is steep and switchbacks with a lot of disrupted and heaved up pavement on some of the hair pins, which were a challenge at times. We managed to pass a number of trucks and cars and then one final long line of vehicles following a very big slow truck and then we basically had a free run the rest of the way. It started to rain about half way and at the 1 hour mark and this did slow us down a bit especially on the dirty corners. The sun was out on the far side and there is about 20 km of new road to the town of Pindolo. Here there is one hotel on the lake and we are the only guests. It is still the holiday week and most Muslims will be home with family and the hotels are empty. There are 2 small beds with foam mats, cold shower only and a bucket flush toilet. No sink oddly enough! They did however make us some sate for dinner. We were exhausted and asleep by just after 9. Dan was awake at 2 am reading and I was awoken by the torrential rain.

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  10. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Not sure how far we can make it today. The weather forecast is not that good and Pula is a 7 hour trip on google! There are a few hotel in Tolai in 213 km.

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    We woke up after a 10 hour sleep to cloudy skies. Our breakfast was “crepes” which were ok but not that filling. We headed out of town north again and there is almost no traffic. The initial terrain is flat along the lake and then it climbs over the first of the ranges. We had few vehicles to deal with passing on the curvy road. We had a brief 15 min of heavy rain, but welcomes the soaking as then we had some air cooling. In the rain shadow on the down side it was sunny and we stopped in Ratodena at the far end of the lake for gas and to check the oil. The bikes have been burning oil lately and we are having to top them up. Dan however had found a trick to deal with his valve issue. If he rocks the bike before he starts it it fires right up. Yeah its not the starter! This 106 KM took us 2 hours.

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    Leaving town you have to head back towards the black rain cloud an this time we donned the rain jackets as it was very heavy for about 20 minutes.

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    The road turns north again along the big northern Sulawesi peninsula. Here we again had almost no traffic, but we did have some vehicles to pass on the next mountain section, but at least it was dry.

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    We made for Poso at the coast and found a Warung to have some lunch of spicy chicken, vegetable soup, curried fish and rice (4.50$). Lunch what a novel concept, but after the crepes we would need a real meal breakfast bars and Pocky like yesterday would not do. We had 130 km to go at 1230 after lunch and was a hot, but easy ride as there was still few other vehicles except scooters. The road is windy, but wider and more high speed.

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    Arriving to Tolai we checked out the hotel we had seen on Google and it was simple, but comfortable.
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  11. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Today we finally make for Palu in 114 km , the town where the ferry will leave in 2 days time.

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    The forecast was for it to be pouring by 10. When we set out it was sunny, but it was actually still raining on us from some cloud near by.

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    The road goes up the coast for 46 km until Toboli and is 4 lane divided for a while. It then turns west over the mountains. We were very lucky as we passed 6-7 very slow (12 km/hr) moving big trucks near then beginning, which were not too difficult to pass and then we had just a few cars the rest of the 43 km.


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    At the cross road we turned north to where the port was listed on Google. We “chatted” to the guys there and then one drove up on a scooter who spoke some English. He said we needed to go “towards the city 9 km and turn left before the bridge”. Well at least we got the 9 km back part.

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    We actually crossed the bridge and at the next light we stopped on the side of the road. A minute later a man who was actually a port customs agent pulled up and asked what we were looking for. When we said the Balikpapan ferry he said to go back and then lead us there! He also went into the ticket office to help Dan get information. We confirmed the ferry leaves in 2 day on June 23 and they say at 1900. We have to be there at 1400! I think it loads at 1900 and leaves at 2200.

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  12. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Then we made for the city and they only decent hotel we could find to spend out anniversary The Best Western. Well it is nice to have a western standard hotel.

    It is super hot here and we did not venture too far from the hotel. We dropped the laundry just up the street.

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    On the way there was a small kiosk with a line up and several GRAB moto taxi guys waiting to delivery from the Banana Bim. These are deep fried banana fritters covered in various sauces! We chose chocolate and peanuts. WOW amazing.

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    Also near by was this restaurant with good food some very friendly staff.

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    We also found a Yamaha shop near by to but some oil for the bikes. Both have been burning some recently, but the 650 is a real issue especially when it it really hot out.
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  13. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv

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    you guys are really doing a great job interacting with the locals. not just seeing places, but meeting the people and eating the food are part of the adventure.

    the island of borneo is somewhere i would like to venture, so i can't wait to see more updates. thanks.
    Saralou and BigEasy like this.
  14. TOTim

    TOTim Been here awhile

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    Toronto On
    Amazing report as usual. Thanks.
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  15. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Feb 19, 2011
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    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Meeting people is the "focus" of our journey...So is eating xo. I will admit we went to an Italian place last night just to not have Asian food again! Borneo is cool for nature and culture, but not so much for riding itself. Fly here and go exploring sans moto. Sara
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  16. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Maybe buy you a beer in TO?? Looks like the bikes fly KK to KL JUly 17 and then KL to Frankfurt July 20. WE are still waiting for a flight from Frankfurt to Montreal. We will be in TO, but first we will loop into NH and east coast USA, PEI then back thru TO. Sara
  17. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Today we are leaving Sulawesi and headed to Borneo better known as Kalimantan. The ferry dock is 18 km north and takes about 30 minutes.

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    We arrived to the ASDP dock at 2. You have to stop at the port authority booth and pay 40,000R per person for the port fee. Then you pull forward to the ferry office to buy your ticket. The tickets were 1/2 what we expected at 400,000 R per bike. This is for a 24 hour ferry ride and meals (rice and a boiled egg or rice and a chicken finger or rice and sautéed cabbage)!

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    Parking we drew quite a crowd and everyone wanted a photo! Lots of people had questions and luckily here was also another rider from Palu who spoke English well and we chatted about Indonesia and our trip thru him.
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  18. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    There was a very tragic ferry sinking on a deep volcanic lake on Sumatra this week on a passenger ferry with at least 200 people and dozens of motorcycles on a boat that is supposed to have 50 passengers only. This is probably why they are being some careful to see your ID and your vehicle registration today.

    We made friends with one of the terminal agents who spoke English well. He suggested we eat at the sketchy looking kiosk inside and actually the food was pretty good. So we got some packets of rice and noodle to go for dinner. (we did not yet know that the ticket included “meals”. He also says the ferry will leave at about 7 ish.

    About 3 Dan went on board to see if he could get one of the crew to rent us their cabin….no luck, but they did let us have first dibs on the nonsmoking bunk room. They also let us board the ship at 4 while they were still unloading all the banana trucks. This meant we could tuck in beside the front loader at the rear. We could tie down to it and to the hold on the deck.

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    The bananas are being unloaded from the trucks and stacked on both sides of the deck (filling the 2 emergency exits at the rear). There was also stacks of boxes of mangos and cabbages. Then they loaded on 4 big trucks and lashed them to the ceiling.

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    There were also about 6 cars and 2 smaller trucks one filled with goat and one with cows.


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    The last to load were about 20 scooters.


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  19. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

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    Well if the boat gets lost a sea at least you'll have food!
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  20. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

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    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    And Banana bunches float so we have life rafts as well!!!
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