Saturday, December 5, 2009

So back on the road for the last 2 days travel into Buenos Aires. Still not without some potential drama due to the busy roads,but also the fact that "Mana" was starting to run a little rough (maybe just bad fuel) but both tyres are now looking like a pair of racing slicks.....not sure if they would make the last 500 k's...
One last night with the camp set up, we've camped alot due to the price of accommodation and while most of the camps have been horrible due to noisy outsides, it has saved us the precious $$ that are fast running out.
Into town we arrived and amazed at our own ability not to get too lost in a place of 14 million folks.
Got to our accommodation with out incident and under a warm blue sky. had made a booking for the time left here on the Internet and eager to see what we had booked. Cath leaves in about 5 days but I don't fly out until the 12th as I have to try and organize the shipping of the bike yet.
So with that, we will sign off the blog.
I've been on the road now for almost 3 months and covered 24000 k's. Been through 14 countries, 28 boarder crossings, sailed with bike on board and just about all the weather that's available. The last 8000ks of course have been 2 up with Cath "it's different from Behind" which has added to this amazing experience.
With all the worlds events leading up to this happening, it would have been easier to put it off for a period of time and let things settle, which is what a few people felt I should have done. But what happens then, it's just replaced with some other event, and before you know it you've missed out again on experiencing something that you just can't describe yet alone watch on the discovery channel.
I would not have changed a thing on this whole experience and I'm sure will find it hard to settle back into doing what I must and get back to work, but sure am going to miss life on the road...... although I do hear that Brazil is great this time of the year........
Kiwi on wheels......
The Peninsular boasts one of the largest breeding colonies of Magellanic Penguins, this is just one of hundreds.
My little camera does not do the Southern Right Whale any justice at all and Mark,thankfully, got some great footage on the video. But it gives you an idea how close they were.

Whales ahoy!!!!! Sooo exciting, we werent to know it yet,but we would be right beside a mother and calf, and it was overwhelming
Cape Valdez Peninsular National Park, Pt Piramides, and we saw two whales just off this ancient sea bed, unfortunately, we had been sitting on the beach at dusk having a beer, and didnt have the you will just have to believe me.
The photos are in the wrong order here, but when we stopped on the road for a tea break, we couldnt believe our choice of beach and who we were to share it with
They were just doing what sea-lions do
This pup, had a dead fish stuck to its chin, too cute. The whole group smelt more than a bit fishy tho!

on the move,images from the back seat

Mark sticks to the centre line, which makes for close call action!

These red flags are everywhere along the roadside, often, they can be accompanied by intricate shrines, with figures,crosses and offerings.Notice how they are stretched out in the ever present side wind.
The roads can be quite narrow and passing trucks dont have much space, combined with an unstable shoulder.... this truck driver with his two big trailers,was not meeting his deadline today.
Love this look, horses and dogs doing the muster.

Head'n North....

Back out of Ushuaia and over the pass again ready for the wet and cold that seemed to be awaiting for us. However it went very smoothly and was on the other side before we knew it. How did we know.... cause the wind had kicked in with vengeance and to a point of ridiculous..
Not only can you fill up with fuel at the gas stops but this one station had some great little pies on offer all for about $1 9 later.....
back on the road again and only 3000k's to go
with alot of trucks on the road to add to challenge

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Due to falling upon a good deal to go out on a sail boat to a few of the islands within the bay we decided to do just that.
Like every other day, dealing with the weather as we approached the South, it was back into the down jackets and see what was on offer.....
I wont go to far into as I"ll let Cath fill all that in.
Then the next day it was back to the mighty twin to get us back over the Summit in between the sleet showers in town. In full gear ( in other words, all the clothes we have in our bag) I must say it felt good to be back on the road, I mean we've had a full day off so what else do we do......

Since Cath is on the back what else can she do but take photos....(all though she has just mentioned that she might even be able to read a book) This was taken once out of the mountains but due to some of the strongest winds I've ever had the misfortune to experience, I pulled the pin on the day only 200 k's into it...... better to arrive in one piece than on time, right.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Just for the photo...

a mad rush through the forest but I'll let Caths "Its different from the behind" fill you in on that...

Then it had to be followed but the compulsory scotch...

Caths words.....
Oh, i failed to mention that we went through two border crossings today. The bottom tip of the country is shared by Chile and Argentina, and as a consequence, passports have to be duly stamped, fruit handed over to the large lady with the gloves and Chilean money bought.As you know all ready, we didnt do that one.
Out of the hotel after greeting some bikers riding v-stroms and a bmw who had been travelling from Brazil,and looked very slick on their new bikes...they even had pump action visa cleaner, it was off for the last leg of the journey southwards.
Fill the empty tank with fuel, the hotel and the gas station here take Argentine pesos, less than five minutes of tarmac and its 100kms of dirt road. Offroading with trucks took us to the border crossing back into Argentina and back onto tar seal .As the road started to climb into the mountains, we were greeted with plummeting temperatures,strong winds and freezing sleet. All ready wearing just about everything in the wardrobe, there was nothing for it but to hunker down behind my hero driver and sit it out.
Dropping into Ushuaia was a relief if only because the weather cleared and a milky sun hung limply out to dry(no rainbow for our pot of gold tho).
Just because we had reached our goal town, did not mean we were privileged enough to find a great place to stay, there were no t.v crew welcoming us in with 5 star accommodation or a champagne reception, so it was into a one star upstairs hotel in the main street and the bike didnt even get an inside courtyard as a reward! It was going to have to sit in the gutter and maintain its own dignity.
We didnt unload the bike, but went out to the sign in the National Park. We couldnt go this far and not do the photo on the same day, how would it feel, if someone nicked the bike overnight, knowing our form of luck this is not so random......Going into the Park, we got behind about 6 large coaches and any amount of cars. There was a cruise ship in port, and wouldnt you know it, they were all going out to the sign for a photo too!
This called for some fun, off road riding, and dodging the traffic on the narrow, dirt road became a blast, i felt like Dick Dastardly from the Wacky Races, making a race of getting to the sign before the crowds arrived, any which way.
The last coach was overtaken in the carpark, and as Mark squeezed the bike through the wood posts, i felt that the whole journey was represented in that last mad dash, and that it was very fitting.

Once there, well, you got the picture.....