ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 11-21-2011, 10:40 AM   #46
Adv Grifter
on the road o'dreams
 
Adv Grifter's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Passing ADV Stalkers in California
Oddometer: 6,128
Enjoying your report Troy! Great pic from Todos Santos horse racing! Recalls fond memories from my visit years ago.

Lightening the load is tough. Nice work! Have you ruled out camping completely now ... or just the tent? Are you still carrying a sleeping bag or Bivi sack? Cooking gear?

I never camped in Cent. Am or S. America except in Argentina around the Perito Moreno glacier (we borrowed gear). Only Chile and parts of Argentina seems suitable for camping back then.

I'm curious how you mailed gear home. Guatemalan Post office ? DHL, FedEx or UPS? Do you recall the cost to get it to N. America? 8 kgs. is huge. I'll bet you can feel the difference now. Are you carrying tires? I've heard Guat. City is a good source for tires. I lived in La Libertad (Surfing) for a few months. Try the Cazuela de Mariscos there.

Suerte y Salud!

Quote:
Originally Posted by troyfromtexas View Post
I have decided that it was about time to lighten my load. I've been on the road for about two months and have just about figured out what I need and what is a convenience. There's probably still room for some trimming, but this is what I'm losing.

Some books, map of Mexico, iPad, camera light, frisbee, tent, backup harddrives, souvenir textiles, fishing gear, some kitchen gear, extra hat, extra long sleeve shirt, knee brace and light hiking shoes. In total it was about 8 kilos or 18 lbs. And it is weight that I was carrying up high on my bike... not good.

For the full story visit this link on Lightening the Load
Adv Grifter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2011, 09:14 PM   #47
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adv Grifter View Post
Enjoying your report Troy! Great pic from Todos Santos horse racing! Recalls fond memories from my visit years ago.

Lightening the load is tough. Nice work! Have you ruled out camping completely now ... or just the tent? Are you still carrying a sleeping bag or Bivi sack? Cooking gear?

I never camped in Cent. Am or S. America except in Argentina around the Perito Moreno glacier (we borrowed gear). Only Chile and parts of Argentina seems suitable for camping back then.

I'm curious how you mailed gear home. Guatemalan Post office ? DHL, FedEx or UPS? Do you recall the cost to get it to N. America? 8 kgs. is huge. I'll bet you can feel the difference now. Are you carrying tires? I've heard Guat. City is a good source for tires. I lived in La Libertad (Surfing) for a few months. Try the Cazuela de Mariscos there.

Suerte y Salud!
I still have some camping gear - bag, pad, tent footprint. I can rough camp. I may try to find some tyvek and make a compact bivy. I still have my camp stove and pot so I can cook.I sent my gear back in Antigua via DHL. It cost $250. I could have sent it cheaper, but I wanted to make sure my ipad and fishing gear got back safely. In hindsight I probably could have sold my tent and ipad at a decent price, but sometimes time is my most valuable item. I'm carrying tubes, but not tires. I plan to buy some new ones in costa rica or panama. It did seem that there were tires available in both Mexico and Guatemala. Thanks for the tip on the food. I'll have to look for it. So far, all the food has been great.
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 07:37 AM   #48
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Juayua Street Food Feria


I decided to chill for the morning and soak up some sun on the beach. The arena (sand) in this area is black sand due to the historical volcano activity. To me the sand gets much hotter under my feet, but it seems to have some crystal elements that make it sparkle which I like.

While hanging out I learned of a town called Juayua. Every Saturday and Sunday they have a street food feria (festival) that attracts people from all over El Salvador. They have typical food, but also some unusual items like alotes loco (crazy corn), rana (frog), culebra (snake) and iguana. The only issue was that the town is located in the western highlands which I had already passed. I made some quick assessments and figured out that it was only about 50 miles away. Nice! I could do 50 miles. I didn't realize that it would be so easy to get around this country. I packed and set off on the road. I backtracked along the coastal route.

It was Sunday morning, and like in the states, it appears that everyone with a motorcycle was out riding. I latched on to a group of four riders. It's typically safer riding in numbers. One was riding a standard, two on choppers and one on a dual sport.

I headed west then north. The route north is called the Ruta de Las Flores (Route of Flowers). The road wound through some small towns and the fuana along the road was lush. I noticed some flowers, but perhaps not as many as I expected. Maybe I just needed to go further along.

I found the town and checked into Hotel Anuhuac. It was about 1pm. It was the perfect time to go get me some street food.




For the full story with additional photos check out this link Juayua
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 07:47 AM   #49
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Las Siete Cascadas


While staying in Juayua I heard about this area called Las Siete Cascadas (The Seven Waterfalls).

I met some other travelers and we decided to check it out. The Hotel Anahuac connected us with a guide named Douglas... he was great.

Here's one of the waterfalls.

This is Lauren from Tasmania and another waterfall. Her self proclaimed nicknames was Osita (little bear).

At the end we arrived at this waterfall which had a nice pool in which to swim.

For the full story with more photos check out this link Las Siete Cascadas
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 07:57 AM   #50
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... A Ride Around The Hills

I woke up this morning and had absolutely nothing planned. I had a simple breakfast of an apple, pear and banana. It was nice having something light. I sat in the hammock for a while. Then I decided that I felt like taking a little day trip. I went on a hike the day before so something different was in order. There is a stretch of towns linked together by a road called 8W or La Ruta de Las Flores. I thought that I'd take Emi out for a ride along this route.

I removed my bags from Emi and headed out.

The first town was Apaneca. The town is noted for having painted murals on many of the houses. I rode street by street and snapped a few photos.

I suppose one could look at these simple murals as amateur drawings. But as a collection I think they make interesting folk art. They definitely capture the sentiments of the towns' people about their surroundings.

I'll post the entire collection of photos in another post.

Just outside of Apaneca I saw a sign for La Luguna Verde (The Green Lagun). I decide to check it out. 4 km is not too far. It started as a asphalt road, then turned to cobblestone, then to gravel, then to dirt and finally to rocks. It was a little unexpected, but it was a fun ride with Emi.

When I arrived at the laguna I found out why it might be called the Green Lagun. Although it is more of a lake covered with green, than a green lake. Sometimes it is not the destination, but the journey... that is the fun part.

I continued on...

It was about 1pm and I was getting a little hungry. I saw a sign for a restaurant for El Jardin de Celestre (The Celestial Garden). Pretty lofty name... so I decided to check it out. There was an intricate manicured garden on the inside. The dining area was very tastefully decorated. Bread with butter, herbs and olive oil and Salvadoran Enchiladas. Tiramisu and Chamomile Tea. And all the food was delicious. I could have taken a nap right there in the restaurant. But, I decided I should ride on.

The next town that I came across was called Ataco. It is noted for it's artesania and wall murals.

The first thing I noticed when I entered the town was this unique looking church. I'm not sure what style of architecture this might be, any guesses? They also had a nice park.

It was getting late so I needed to start heading back. It was a nice day of exploring without really having an agenda.

For the full story with more photos check out this link A Ride Around The Hills
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 08:04 AM   #51
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Tire Repair

I did a little dual sport riding the other day.

When I returned to the hotel I noticed this... a nail in my rear tire. You'll notice that the tire is still fully inflated. I didn't know if the nail had not penetrated all the way to the tube or if the Slime that I put inside my tube had protected and sealed the leak. It was late in the day, so I decided to wait until the next day to attempt the repair.

The next day the tire was still holding pressure. I've repaired a flat tire on my motorcycle before, so I felt comfortable repairing it. But I wanted to see if there was a llanta taller (tire shop) nearby that might be able to help. I asked the owner of the hotel and he indicated that there was not a taller in Alegria, but there were a few tallers in the town of Berlin about 5 km away. I headed down the road.

When I arrived in Berlin the first shop that I found was closed. I rode around a little bit looking for another. I saw a young guy on a little Suzuki 50cc motorbike. It was what one might call a pit bike in the states. I asked him where I might find a taller. He gave me directions... una cuadra alla y dos cuadra alla, alli por el banco. I told him that I was not familiar with the town. He said that he'd show me they way.

He push started his bike and we were off. We got a few looks as we roads through town because my bike dwarfed his... a rider in full moto gear on a Suzuki DR650 following a kid on a Suzuki 50cc wearing shorts. We arrived at the shop in just a few minutes.

Issrak was the jefe (boss) of the shop but he had a bunch of kids hanging around, learning the trade and working. Issrak was a big strong guy... the type of guy I like working on my bike.

First he removed the rim and tire from the bike. He propped up the bike on an old tree stump.

Then he removed the tire from the rim. Notice his little apprentice attentively watching.

Then he removed the tube from the rim and checked it for leaks in a tub of soapy water. Good news... no leak.

This was the culprit. Issrak removed the nail from the tire. Apparently the nail just went in sideways and penetrated a knobby.

He then reset the tube, tire, rim and sprocket. Then he put the tire back on the bike. The whole process from the time that I rode up to the shop to the time that I rode away probably only took 15 minutes. Great service. When I asked him how much he would charge me he said US$2. I was shocked. I just shook my head and gave him US$5.

In the states to repair a tire would probably have cost $50 and I would have had to leave it in the shop for half a day. This little trip to Issrak's shop saved me quite a bit of time and worry. It probably would have taken me a hour and few few bruised knuckles to change the tire myself. T

I'm simply amazed at the quality, speed of work and honesty of the mechanics and fabricators that I've come across in Latin America. Buena Gente (Good Folks).

For the full story with more photos check out this link Tire Repair
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 08:10 AM   #52
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Three Countries In One Day

After my wonderful beach experience in Playa El Espino I decided that it was time for a change of scenery.

Sometimes it's just necessary to cover some distance. From Southern El Salvador I took the coastal road East and then North to the border to the town of El Amatillo.

I bypassed the long line of trailer trucks that were waiting at the border checkpoint.

The exit procedure from El Salvador was smooth and I was through in about 15 minutes.

The entry procedure into Honduras was a bit more problematic and it probably took about an hour. The Honduras immigration and customs department required multiple copies of all my documents. They also charged me for a visa, vehicle permit and municipal road toll. I had most of my documents in order, but it still took some time.

Once I finished with the entry procedures I rode through the Southern part of Honduras for about 2 hours.

There wasn't much remarkable about the ride. The road was covered with potholes. I took them on as a bit of a challenge, weaving around them as if they were barriers on a obstacle coarse. The Honduran roads were for the most part long and straight. There were mountain ranges in the distance. Lots of cattle fincas (ranches). A few volcanos.

I arrived in the border town of El Espino.

The exit procedure for leaving Honduras took longer than expected... about three hours.

The agents hinted at "lubricating money", but I decided to wait in line with everyone else. It was close to 6pm by the time I got through.

For the Nicaraguan side since it was already dark I decided to hire an ayudante (fixer) for $10. He got me though immigration, customs and the local police inspection in about 15 minutes.

I generally don't like to ride in the dark. It's harder to see the pot holes, farm animals, other automobiles and bandidos (bandits). About the same time that I was leaving the check point another car was passing through the border, so I decided that it would be smart to follow it. I was able to leverage their lights and their path. Also, strength in numbers. It worked.

I followed the car for about 20 km to the town of Somoto, Nicaragua. There we parted ways and I found the Hotel Pan Americano to spend the night.

For the full story with more photos check out this link Three Countries
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 08:18 AM   #53
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Roads In El Salvador

Here are some short videos that I made about the roads in El Salvador.

This is a short 2 minute video which documents the journey along the Coastal Road of El Salvador from the border town of La Hachadura to the town of (San Blas) La Libertad. Check out this link to watch the video.

This is a short 45 second video about moving against traffic in El Salvador. Check out this link to watch the video.
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 08:24 AM   #54
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Sometimes I'm Lucky

Sometimes I can't control what goes on around me... like taking 3 hours to be processed through the Honduran border checkpoint. By the time that I left the border it was already dark. I pulled into the first town I could find along the highway to spend the night and stayed at the first hotel I could find with an open room. The town was Somoto.

Sometimes... I'm Lucky.

It turns out that Somoto had quite a bit going on. It was the weekend and the town was celebrating their feria. In Latin American just about every town has a feria, a patron saint and once a year the town holds a huge street party to celebrate. I just happened to land in Somoto during their biggest celebration of the year. It was like walking into a surreal world.

In the evening there was a carnival...with a band and dancing.

During the next day there were marching bands, street vendors, food stalls and horses.

Somoto is in the middle of an area of Nicaragua with lots of ranching. It's cowboy country... a bit like my home state of Texas. I felt right at home.

There was a parade of horses...

...which included a few mules.

The young...and the old put on a show.

Sometimes... I'm just lucky!

For the full story with more photos check out this link Sometimes I'm Lucky
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 08:31 AM   #55
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... Sometimes I'm Lucky Twice

Sometimes... I'm just lucky... and sometimes... I'm lucky twice.

While walking around Somoto I dropped in at a little ice cream store on the town plaza. The girl behind the counter was quite friendly and started asking me about where I was from, what I was doing there, etc.. After a while she suggested that I might like to check out El Can de Somoto (The Canyon of Somoto). Supposedly it was a canyon that locals knew about for many years, but it was only opened up as a national park and an adventure destination about 5 years ago.

When I returned to my hotel I inquired if they knew about arranging a tour to the canyon. I was told that a guide to the canyon would pass by the hotel in the morning and I could inquire if there was still space with his tour for the day.

I awoke at about 7am and met the guide Raynel. He said that I was welcome to join his group.

The trip began with a short ride in a 4x4 to the national park. We took a short break for breakfast. We were provided life preservers. Then we began hiking.

We hiked through some small communities then came across this nice overlook of the canyon and the river that runs through it. Then we started to descend into the canyon.

There were 7 Spaniards that were on the tour and I made the group an even 8. Funny how things like that work out sometimes.

We hiked along the banks of the canyon and when we couldn't hike... we floated the river.

There were a few opportunities to jump from the cliffs. But for the most part it was hiking and floating the river.

After about 4 hours of hiking and floating we met up with these lanchas (boats) and the guys paddled us down the river for a while.

Then we hiked out of the canyon back to our 4x4 truck.

It was an amazing day of hiking and floating and just taking in the natural beauty of the canyon.

Check out this video.

For the full story with more photos check out this link Sometimes I'm Lucky Twice
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-18-2011, 07:33 AM   #56
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begings... Leon and Volcano Boarding


Leon is a town known for it's colonial architecture. There are some interesting examples around the central plaza.

Honestly, I didn't do much in Leon other than walk around the town, eat some local food and people watch.

I did meet another adventure motorcycle rider named Joel. He's a Kiwi (New Zealander) on his way down to Bolivia. He's riding a Suzuki DR650, a similar bike as me. It was fun comparing notes. Nice Guy.

Here are some local kids playing football (soccer) in the park.

Here are some other kids playing games in an arcade.

And here are some big big kids playing on the Cerro Negro Volcano. What? Check out the video.
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-18-2011, 07:38 AM   #57
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begings... Baseball The Great Nicaraguan Past Time

Baseball is huge in Nicaragua. It is more popular than football...and for many people it is considered the national pastime. I had to check it out.

Probably the best known Nicaraguan baseball player is Dennis Martinez who spent many years playing MLB with the Baltimore Orioles and Montreal Expos. In the capital city of Managua they actually named the stadium Dennis Martinez National Stadium.

I was visiting Granada where the local professional team is called Los Orientales. Granada is in the Oriente (Eastern) part of the country... thus the name.

I asked a few fellow travelers from the hostal if they'd be interested in joining me. We had a pretty good group.

The stadium was about the size of a minor league stadium. There were general admission tickets for C$15 (US$0.65) or prime seats for C$40 (US$1.75). Being the big spending big baller that I am we opted for the prime seats behind home plate.

There were fans that brought their own instruments to make a band, a dancing bat boy, concessions with local food like gallo pinto, yucca and chicarrones, the local beer called Toa, kids collecting and recycling beer cans and dogs wandering around the stadium.

It was the Orientales (Easterners) de Granada contra (vs) Los Tigres (Tigers) de Chinandega.

The Tigers jumped out to an early 2 run lead. The Orientals later scored 1 run to draw the game closer. The Tigers had a huge 5th inning and added 5 runs. In the last inning the Orientals made a small rally and scored 2 more runs. With the final score being 7 to 3, and the Tigers, the visiting team, winning.

Check out the video

- Troy
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-18-2011, 07:41 AM   #58
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begings...Yamaha XTZ1200 Super Tenere

Not that I'd ever think about trading in my Suzuki DR650 for a Yamaha XTZ1200 Super Tenere, but here is an interesting review of the behemoth bike.

Check out the video
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-18-2011, 07:46 AM   #59
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begings... San Juan Del Sur

From Granada I headed southwest to the coastal town of San Juan del Sur. I found lodging at a hostel called Casa del Oro. No real gold in this place, but the hostel was convenient and the staff friendly.

This was only the second place that I have stayed which did not have parking for Emi. Although she took it alright. She spent the night outside locked up to a bike rack. There was also a security guard looking out for her.

San Juan del Sur is a former fishing village that now caters primarily to the tourist crowd. There are a number of cheap hotels, restaurants and tour agencies. I mostly hung around the central area and took in the scene. Lots of surfers walking around. Lots of Nicos hosting them, feeding them and taking them on tours. I checked out the strip, the market and the beach. It seems that people visit San Juan del Sur to either surf or fish.

I wanted to do a little fishing so I signed up for an excursion that promised fishing, a complimentary beer and a sunset. It only cost $16. I thought it was a pretty good deal for a fishing excursion. When I joined the tour there were in addition to me, 2 Canadian girls, 2 Aussie girls and 1 Brittish guy. They were an fun group.

We caught a glance of this rainbow.

We caught this sunset.

And that was all we caught... absolutely no fish.

Oh well... that's why they call it fishing and not catching.

For the full story check out this link
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-18-2011, 07:52 AM   #60
troyfromtexas OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
troyfromtexas's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 279
The Adventure Begins... San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua to Samara, Costa Rica

From San Juan del Sur it was only a short trip to the border of Costa Rica.

On the road leading out of Nicaragua I came across this windmill farm.

Crossing the border from Nicaragua to Costa Rica was pretty easy. On the Nicaragua side they did require some paperwork and photocopies. It took probably 30 minutes to get through.

On the Costa Rican side there was a long line of probably 200 people in line. Thankfully Costa Rica is organized. For the amount of people waiting to cross the border the immigration department processed them rather quickly. I think that I got through the line in maybe 30 or 40 minutes. There was no cutting in line and no bribery going on. Once it was my turn, my paperwork was processed within 10 minutes. There was no need for an ayudante. The process was clear. And, they only required one set of photocopies. Amazing how a little law and order makes things easier.

Once I got through the border I had a bit of riding to do. I was targeting a coastal town called Samara that was about 190 km away.

Costa Rica has clearly marked highway signage with towns and distances clearly presented. They also have clearly posted speed limits that are enforced by radar wielding police officers. I regulated my riding according. I didn't mind because the roads were in good condition, the traffic seemed to obey the rules of the road and I was riding through beautiful Costa Rican countryside.

I arrived in Sumara after sunset. I rode around in the dark looking for a hotel. I eventually came across a place called Las Mariposas Hostel.

This is what La Mariposa Hostel looked like during the day.

It was a small and friendly place that suited me fine.

The managers offered to let me park my bike in their bodega (shed).

And this little guy kept guard over the grounds. My kind of place.

I spent my first two days in Costa Rica and at Las Mariposas just catching up on blog posts, lounging around the beach and socializing with the other travelers.

And making plans for passage into South America.

For the full story see this link
__________________
Troy

www.theadventurebegins.tv
2011 Suzuki DR650
troyfromtexas is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 11:31 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014