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Old 11-02-2012, 03:12 PM   #3811
Ruan
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Great RR. Congratulations
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Old 11-02-2012, 03:40 PM   #3812
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On a Roll....... Headed to Uyuni de Salar

Headed out of Challapata in the morning. We decided to ride the direct route, knowing it was a dirt and gravel road. We were told 3-4 hour for the 120 miles (and on big moto probably 3 )

So down the valley we go. There was a military checkpoint just outside of town.



We stopped in a small town and had breakfast on the street. people were friendly here. As in many towns, there are lots of items for sale on the street. Fresh fruit out of the back of the truck. Pineapples, watermelons etc.



Just a bit more pavement as we head south.



Then the pavement ends at the sign to Uyuni. 164 Km to go.



Hard to capture road conditions .... But it is a gravel washboard with many places of sandy covering the washboard. about 20 miles south of Challapata the sand gets worse.

One place was really deep....... Ooops front end just dove out from under me. Had to step back and get the photo.

Jill snaps a photo to capture the moment!





Yup its deep! Glad Mike and Jill were there to help me right the bike.



Off we ride through some more patches of deep sand. No more get off's as I figure out how the ride through this stuff.



The washboard gets rougher as we go. But we are committed to riding it!



Very cool flat plains....



it was 120 miles like this.







Always looking for a less rough line. Have to be careful of the berms and sand.



Great views as we head south.....





Got to be careful of the sandy corners



The rough washboards are taking a toll on my Cusco addition to the bike. He lost all his lower teeth and broke off his feet, pan flute and base. Was time to set him free! He was really banging around on the windshield.



Left him at Mile marker 140KM. He will watch over the traffic here ! Say Hello if you ride by



We continue on riding toward Uyuni. Rattling our way .....



finally we are close to Uyuni, and see a sign to the Salar.



for some reason we did not really think about this being the entrance that we needed to take so we carried on the last 20 Km to the town of Uyuni. It was some of the roughest rough for the day.......



It does not look too rough. But it certainly is.



Almost to Uyuni!!



Into town we go.



We get set up in a Hostel. I opt for the nice place. Most I have spent on a room for many months, but they were the only place in town with WIFI. It was a great place but cost me $40 USD. After getting settled, we decided to fill up with gas. Tried two gas stations in town, but they said they could not sell to us. So we went to the last one..... Big lines



As we got in the left hand fill lane (it was way shorter) and the attendant was awesome as he waved us up to the front since we would only take a little gas..... 10-12 liters versus the tour jeeps that were loading hundreds of liters of fuel each! Yea to the gas attendant. Again the contrast to being flipped off yesterday for no apparent reason.

Hello Kitty Close to her destination!!




Coming up next..... Salar de Uyuni!!
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Ride of my Lifetime...... Thread started 5/11/2011 http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...0#post15950430

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Old 11-02-2012, 04:38 PM   #3813
Idahosam
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That poor Kitty's been rode HARD; make sure she has a good view to set her free... she sure earned it.













................ Oh God, I don't know if I hate you right now or just overly envious. Way to go Mark, way to go!!!!! Have a Cold one for me Mark, I'm with you in spirit. Never mind,I'll just go get one out of the fridge ...



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Old 11-02-2012, 04:39 PM   #3814
Comrade Art
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Looking good Mark
Thanks for the update.
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Old 11-02-2012, 04:51 PM   #3815
Ron from BC
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Wow!

It never gets old Mark, just breathtaking......keep it coming and Ride Safe!
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:12 PM   #3816
jmcg
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Hi Mark,

Really enjoying your latest instalment.

Thanks.

JM.
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:39 PM   #3817
Parcero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radioman View Post
Hola Amigo. I am using an Open source Maps as Garmin maps suck for Peru and Bolivia. I can send them to you :)

Peru was 90 import and I cannot tell if it is in my passport......
Gracias, amigo! I think you have mum email, but if not PM me. Mil gracias.
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:44 PM   #3818
C-Stain
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Location: Canoodia, eh?
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Hey Mark!

Was the guy flipping you off, or giving you the ADV Rider Salute?

C.
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Old 11-02-2012, 06:31 PM   #3819
Ladybug0048
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Location: Spokane Valley, WA (the dry side of the mountains)
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It's nice to see an update from you and I'm glad you are taking time to smell the flowers along the way. They are mighty pretty too.
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Old 11-02-2012, 08:28 PM   #3820
defib
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Omg!

I know some KLR owners that would be " WTF that has better tread than the ones on my bike"!
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Old 11-03-2012, 06:52 AM   #3821
Radioman OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C-Stain View Post
Hey Mark!

Was the guy flipping you off, or giving you the ADV Rider Salute?

C.
It was certainly not a warm welcome
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Ride of my Lifetime...... Thread started 5/11/2011 http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...0#post15950430
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Old 11-03-2012, 07:46 AM   #3822
Radioman OP
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The Salar de Uyuni

One of the places that I was really looking forward to riding is the Salar. Wahoo..... 16 months down the road I am here.



Riding 20KM north of Uyuni is the main entrance to the Salar. It is a rough washboard road that you are glad to be done riding.... The anticipation builds as you ride through the town of Colchani to the salt flats.



The Salar de Uyuni is the largest Salt flats in the world. WIKI says this....

"Salar de Uyuni (or Salar de Tunupa) is the world's largest salt flat at 10,582 square kilometers (4,086 sq mi) and is at an elevation of 3,656 meters (11,995 ft) above mean sea level"

As we enter the Salar they are taking salt out. Maybe it ends up on your table?





It is am amazing feeling as you ride out onto the white expanse of the Salt flats. We followed the "road" out to the Salt hostel, then it is wide open to ride in any direction...... We ended up riding 180 miles just on the salt flats.!

First stop.



Radioman sticker added to the building!



Inside the Salt hotel....



Then out across the salt for about 50 miles to the first island. But on the way we had to stop and take the crazy perspective photos!!



The surface is hard with crystal structures....









Once you get miles out..... it s fun to stop and enjoy the crazy environment.



Trying to get just the right perspective.....



Looks funny .....



But the end result.....



or



And as we messed around..... More funny photos







and a few classics.........


Had to get a Radioman Jump in as well! Jill was a great photographer on my jump!




Jill thought we were nuts.... But here is one for the ADV community from the SALAR! You might have to squint a bit ..... for affect! Cheers to the ADV'r round the world! Thanks for joining my ride! Thanks Mike for making this happen.




There are islands out in the middle. It is surreal. Catus.



At the island is a map of the place



We continued out to another island about 20 miles further.... and set up camp!







With all the white Salt it was really warm. We set up camp on the edge of the island, then did some exploring.









Even a few flowers in this harsh environment!




Off course Hello Kitty was happy to finally reach the Salar!






We set up cooking dinner in the protection of the island. Warm food camping tastes really great!






Sun finally setting! The wind picked to a real blow. but few hours later slowed down. Glad we had warm cloths!





Beautiful Sunset



Another Jump to celebrate being on the Salar



Nightime. No extra lights and no sounds..... far from anything else!



Awesome stars overhead, and a full moon.





Then a nice sunrise...... Cold morning but what a place.





we rode back to the island and had coffee in the restaurant before riding off the Salar.



You can see how easy it is to get turned around. You start riding and there are tracks going each way..... thankfully we had GPS for the start and the island.

Salar Entrance

S20 18.977 W66 58.892

Island S20 14.400 W67 37.469

As we rode back into Uyuni, the road was still rough But had a bunch of Llama cross the road.



Once back in town we found a place to have the bikes washed for 30 Bolivianos.





Had a snack in town and then headed out for Potosi



Stopped again for Gas, and there were still big lines as you can see.




Mike asked if we could get in line since we only needed 10-12 liters of fuel vs the hundreds the jeeps are loading. The gas attendant was different than last time at the same spot. He said he did not have to fill us up but finally let us cut in line and fill up. Crazy.

Out of Uyuni we went! Happy to be out of town with full tanks.

It is a beautifully paved road to Potosi, although they did charge us a toll of 5 Bolivianos each at the toll booth a first for us in Bolivia.





Loved this photos. Llama in the Llama crossing



We arrive in Potosi in the afternoon, and Mikes bike was running rough. Air fllter is a problem. So mike set to work fixing it for there ride to Cochabamba. It is very plugged up.



Mike did surgery on the filter as I looked on





Potosi is a mining city at 4,000 meters (around 14,000 feet) claiming one of the highest cities in the world. The life of the miners is a hard and dangerous one. Many mine tours but they are said to be very rough and possibly dangerous. I watched a film the other night about a young miner which give a little picture into their world. If you can find it watch it.

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Chapter 3 of my life...... with Faith, Hope and Courage!

Ride of my Lifetime...... Thread started 5/11/2011 http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...0#post15950430

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Old 11-03-2012, 08:13 AM   #3823
SS in Vzla.
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That first picture of your jump with the flags on the salar is worth framing!

How much time did you have to rest afterwards ?
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:36 AM   #3824
longwaytim
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Best ride report EVER!!
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:55 AM   #3825
csustewy
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Hey Mark -

It was fantastic touring Bolivia with you! We look forward to following your progress further south, as we´ll be just a few weeks behind you. And shoot, maybe we´ll run into you again down the road somwhere...

All our best,
Mike & Jill

Quote:
Originally Posted by Radioman View Post

I think in Chullimani, Mike and Jill Loaded up on some Coca leaves, and an older couple come up to talk. The have a daughter in LA that they will be visiting soon.



That´s Yolanda in Coripata. Coripata claims to have the sweetest coca around. What makes it even more believable is that neighboring towns also admit that Coripata has the sweetest coca around.



Through the paved part of town. Mikes Mapset and GPS were better at getting as onto the right roads.

The Open Street Maps works great in many places, especially this part of Boliva (aside from a couple of random gaps in the road). Best part is its free:
http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/



Was really great to be riding with Mike and Jill. Mike speaks good spanish. which helps in finding directions and figuring out options. Plus it really has made this part fo my journey great sharing it with these two adventurous travelers!! Thanks you two!!

It was a blast for us, too! Thanks for letting us tag along with you, and maybe we´ll see you down the road again...



After a long days ride, I headed to the local store for some water, Beer and snacks.

This is just part of the reason why we enjoyed riding with you so much hehehe



Another great day riding in the Yungas.

That it was, my friend. That it was.
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