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Archive for the ‘Chile’ Category

Day 126 – GOAL REACHED!!! (Ushuaia, Argentina)

06 Feb

We reached our trip’s destination today! At 18:45 local time, Vadim arrived to Ushuaia in Tierra Del Fuego (Land of Fire) – the most southern part of Argentina that is considered “The End of the World”. Gintaras came in an hour later due to rain that started during the last hour of our trip.  This is a significant day for both of us. 

 

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We started our adventure on October 4, 2010 and rode our motorcycles from Washington DC for 4 months and 2 days.  We crossed 13 countries on two continents covering 25,328 km (15,830 miles).  Our trip covered United States, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Columbia, Ecuador (including Galapogos Islands), Peru, Chile (5 times), Argentina (5 times) and Antarctica. 

Many thoughts go through our minds and it is nearly impossible to put it all in one day’s blog.  We are happy and sad at the same time as our adventure ends today (we still have about 4-5 days of riding to Buenos Aires in order to ship our bikes back home).  There is an overwhelming feeling of disbelief of how many places we were able to visit during the 4-month period and all the friendships we acquired.  This was an adventure of a life-time as we were emerged in many different cultures, met many amazing people, and dealt with many life situations while constantly being on the road in foreign environments.  This trip toughened us as we rode in extreme heat and cold conditions, fog, heavy rains, flood zones, on gravel roads, on muddy roads, in sand, high in the mountains, deep in the canyons, in deserts, in large cities, small villages, and unpopulated areas.   

Vadim’s Thoughts About This Trip:

This trip was one of the best things I have done in my life.  I am very happy I did it!  Being on the road, in an open environment via traveling on motorcycle, for 4 months was a true physical and emotional test.  Gintaras and I had to endure many things and rely on each other.  I met many interesting travelers from different parts of the world and have become friends with them.  I learned many things from them and my life have become more interesting and richer as a result of all these experiences.  I advise everyone to try something like this in your life as you will discover new things for yourself that cannot be found via conventional travel to known destinations.  Before I went on this trip, one world traveler told me that this trip will change my life.  It certainly changed my life in a better direction!!!

Routes taken: 9, 255, 257, Y-79, Y-71, RN3

Miles ridden:  393 miles (629 km)

 
 

Day 125 – Attempt to Sell the Bikes (Punta Arenas, Chile)

05 Feb

We rode from Puerto Natales in order to meet a few potential customers we were able to find through personal contacts.  The reason we chose Punta Arenas is because it is a tax-free zone (Zona Franca) meaning the buyer does not have to pay approximately 20% of bike value during the importation process. 

We met with Alberto, an oil executive, and had a great time at the restaurant discussing different life experience.  He brought a friend with him who wanted to get into motorcycling.  In recap, after meeting with 3 buyers, we decided not to sell our bikes as it does not make sense to add a few thousand dollars to get the same “two wheels.” During our trip, we got used to our bikes and want to keep them as a reminder about the trip even though we got an offer that was almost hard to resist.

Routes taken: 9

Miles ridden:  153 miles (245 km)

 
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Day 124 – Disappointing but Right Decision (Puerto Natales, Chile)

04 Feb

It rained all night since we went to bed.  Around 9am it started to drizzle so we decided to have a quick breakfast and head to Torres Del Paine national park.  We really wanted to see it as all people we talked to said that it was the most beautiful park they have seen in South America. 

We filled out tanks with gas as we had to ride 250 km around the park. As we got on the unpaved road in the park and rode for about 5 km, we realized that it would be very difficult to ride another 245 km in the rain and mud.  The road was slippery, muddy, and had lot of puddles.  Our bikes were covered in mud in minutes and so were we.  At this moment, we decided to stop and return back to our hotel where we washed our bikes at a local Car Wash.  We requested that the car wash guy wash us as well with high-pressure water stream as our boots, pants, and jacket were completed covered with mud and dirt from our 5 km ride.  It was quite a hilarious experience as both of us stood in our gear in the car wash being washed like a car.  That was a highlight of the day.

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Routes taken: None

Miles ridden:  None

 
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Day 123 – Going Toward Torres Del Paine National Park (Puerto Natales, Chiles)

03 Feb

In the morning, we talked to Alberto, one of our contacts in Punta Arenas who may be interested in purchasing our bikes upon completion of our trip.  We agree to return to Punta Arenas in two days to show our bikes.

We left Punta Arenas to Puerto Natales around 10 am and were in our hotel in Puenta Natales around 12:30.  The winds were very strong as usual and we had to fight our way through.  We enjoyed the rest of the day and planned what we are going to do tomorrow at Torres Del Paine.

Routes taken: 9

Miles ridden:  153 miles (245 km)

 
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Day 122 – Rest Day (Punta Arenas, Chile)

02 Feb

We slept until 9am as we were exhausted from our long day in Antarctica yesterday.  We had a nice breakfast at the hotel and went to wash our motorcycles from all the dirt from Ruta 40 gravel road.  It was nice to have our bikes clean again.  We went to a local newspaper in the town centre where we placed an ad to sell our bike so we don’t have to ship them back to the United States.  Our ad will run for 6 days.  We had lunch after that and returned to the hotel to download our photos and videos and update the blog.  Tomorrow, we plan to leave north to see Torres Del Paine national park after which we will head to our final trip destination in Ushuaia, Argentina.

 

Routes taken: None

Miles ridden:  None

 
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Posted in Chile