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 02-08-2013, 03:24 PM   #256
GuateRider
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Antigua , Guatemala
Oddometer: 1,367
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hewby View Post
But it is exactly where I want to be.

Isn't that all that matters ???
__________________
Guatemala-Alaska-Guatemala
GuateRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 03:39 PM   #257
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuateRider View Post
Isn't that all that matters ???
Yep! Delicious meal tonight Julio. Sadly it is not one that I cooked but I toast to you. And all the lovely people that have helped me on my journey!
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 03:57 PM   #258
bESS
Gnarly Adventurer
 
bESS's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: wet coast, bc
Oddometer: 304
Hewby:

I am finally caught up so I can now keep up with you in real time

I love the gentle way you write and "words from the heart". I thought I recognized your bike as it used to belong to my riding buddy down to Oregon a couple of years ago.

I am also glad you are safe and sound after all your mishaps. Keep riding and reporting back,

and I know you will ride safe and take care of yourself

bob
__________________
http://wetcoastscootin.blogspot.com/
R1200R + DL650Ak9
click for current spot location

current RR --> click here
bESS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 04:04 PM   #259
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
Quote:
Originally Posted by bESS View Post
Hewby:

I am finally caught up so I can now keep up with you in real time

I love the gentle way you write and "words from the heart". I thought I recognized your bike as it used to belong to my riding buddy down to Oregon a couple of years ago.

I am also glad you are safe and sound after all your mishaps. Keep riding and reporting back,

and I know you will ride safe and take care of yourself

bob
Thanks Bob. I will keep it as close to 'real time' as I can within a week or two ;)
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 06:08 PM   #260
Saralou
Worldwide Rider
 
Saralou's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
Oddometer: 679
hi friend

great posts. Love the pictures. So glad Marcin came to experience some of your journey. Cheers.


Sara
__________________
www.worldwideride.ca

ADV RR Finding Freedom...World Wide Ride

Join the Adventure
Saralou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 10:46 AM   #261
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
I cross into Bolivia alone as Alison has gone back to Puno to try and get a cheaper visa, on advice from the lonely planet. (It wasn’t worth it for any Americans out there reading this, and they sent her back to the border!) .
I had heard that getting gas in Bolivia was difficult as a foreigner, especially at the border regions, so I decided to fill up close to the border. As all of the petrol stations I tried did not have 90, only a poor 84 octane gas, I kept moving onto the next one. Until in desperation close to the border I ended up buying fuel from a man with a bucket of gas outside his house!
IMG_4011

Crossing the border into Copacabana I met with my first negative. All the people at the border were great, the paperwork took just minutes, but then as I was about to leave a policeman came out and told me to come into the station. They explained that I needed insurance to enter Bolivia, and no, my Peruvian insurance that I had been lead to believe was good for Chile and Bolivia, would not cut it. ‘But’ he explained with a slight grin ‘you cannot get insurance here, you have to buy it in La Paz. But to get through the border you will have to pay me money to sign you off, or I will send you back to Peru!’ I pretended I did not understand his Spanish. I played dumb for ages. But it did not work. He slammed his fist down on the table ‘Money’ he said in English. I put down 20 Bolivianos (about 3 dollars) ‘Esta muy poco, una mas’. (This is very little, one more…) I put down another 10B and walked away feeling angry and sick. I have had such wonderful interactions with Policemen over the entirety of this trip, and this was plain wrong. Not much money, but not a nice way to enter the country.

With my music turned off I started to notice a strange sound. I looked down and my chain was flapping. I guess it was something to do with the change of the preload. The sprockets still look good. Its 8 km to go so I head onwards, before looking to tighten it overnight.

I travelled on into the little town of Copacabana and found camping at a hotel where had arranged to met Alison. Just as I had pulled in my bike and dealt with it falling over in the soft ground with the help of three of the grounds men, she arrived.
IMG_4035

We had landed in the town on the start of a dancing festival and went into town to see the sights. It was a crazy conglomeration of marching bands, and marching dancers, going round and round the town.
DSC01703

DSC01717
DSC01761
DSC01780

DSC01772
DSC01802

After hours we asked what time the dancing would stop. It lasts three days was the reply. We went to bed to the sounds of the bands fighting, with a song on repeat. Only the heavy rain in the depth of the night could silence them, but not for long.
DSC01819

DSC01821

We woke in the morning to a little sunshine and of course the sounds of the marching bands. Packing up we headed out of town to another police block. We went inside and they were trying to get us to pay to pass. The writing on the ticket said it was a receipt for sanitariums or something like that, I claimed we didn’t need it, and after a little wrangling we got back on the bikes without it. We headed off on some beautiful roads and then down to the ferry.
DSC01834

DSC01835

DSC01830

It was pretty daunting getting our bikes on in a way that we did not have to turn around on the wooden boards.

GOPR3812


DSC01838

DSC01843


Yet again Police stopped us on the road. I was starting to get worried about Bolivia. This time they said it was for speeding. ‘Its 80km maximum in Bolivia ‘ they informed us pointing that their speed cameras and our clocked speed of 96km. We argued that we had not seen any signs informing us of such, apologized profusely, and they finally let us go.

We headed past some beautiful mountains


DSC01851

We finally made it La Paz after dealing with some awful traffic. Trying some recommended hostels that were all booked up, in the midst of 3 lanes of traffic madness, Alison spotted a hostel with a drive in courtyard. We pulled across the lanes and found a cheap dorm bed for the night at Pirwa hostel.

GOPR3815

GOPR3816
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com

Hewby screwed with this post 10-01-2013 at 11:35 AM
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 10:53 AM   #262
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saralou View Post
great posts. Love the pictures. So glad Marcin came to experience some of your journey. Cheers.


Sara
Thanks Sara, and yeah, it was great to show him a little of where I am.
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 01:55 PM   #263
DigDig
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Western Massachusetts
Oddometer: 104
Great trip, too bad Bolivian law enforcement are so corrupt, seems just part of the police culture there. They never realize how self defeating it can be in the long run by harassing away tourists (and potential tourists who read stuff like this). Was it that your chain just needed tightening up? New chain?
Thanks for taking us along.
__________________
'10 G650GS

“It was a woman who drove me to drink, but I never wrote to thank her.” W.C. Fields
DigDig is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 04:28 PM   #264
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
The next morning we walk down to the market for breakfast, and wandering down through the witches market where one could buy dried up baby llamas and such. For what purpose I did not ask!
IMG_4042

IMG_4043

DSC01860

DSC01867

It had been a while since we both had been in shopping mode, but it was a fun change.
We then headed off on the road north to Coroico hoping to ride the death road. Alison’s bike started to over heat in the traffic, and then in an effort to escape the crazy line ups of cars we headed into the hilly back streets. Bad plan. Packs of dogs ran at us. And the streets narrowed out to unpaved dead ends or walkways. We turned round back into the traffic.

_1050118

_1050128
On the way we tried stopping for gas, and the first two stations looked at our plates and refused to sell us any, as we were foreigners. We were starting to get worried and frustrated. We had heard getting gas in Bolivia required foreign plates to pay up to 3 times more for gas but to be totally refused. That was tough. We were starting to wander how long we would actually be able to stay in Bolivia.

We head over the freezing pass in fog mist and rain and wonder what we are doing. We queried whether to head back to La Paz but neither of us could face the traffic again. So we plowed on, agreeing that attempting the death road in these conditions so late in the day is madness.

DSC01877

DSC01878

Thankfully the freezing mist stops and we stop at a gas station just before we hit the entrance to the death road and the lady didn’t look twice and fills us up with fuel at the local price. Our moods start to lift. We plan to stop here again on the way back.

We pull up to the turn off for the death road and the clouds have lifted.

DSC01883

DSC01885

DSC01888

Just as we decide 'yes we will ride it', air down our tires and I take off my last fragile BMW mirror, the clouds roll in over the mountains and totally envelope the mountain and the valley. We decide to give the route a miss and see how it looks in the morning on our way back.

DSC01892

So we head over the ‘good’ road to Coroico down into the Amazon.

DSC01902

Its amazing to see rivers and green, green valleys. At the base of the decent the road drops out, and the road turns to dirt, and my favorite cobblestones. We are getting tired. We wind our way up the hill to the town. Traffic and our slow speeds start to take their toll on Alison’s bike. She stops as she is over heating. We get directions to the hostel where we have been told we can find camping and it’s further up the hill and far out of town. We stock up on food while the bike is cooling and tackle the steep, slippery cobblestone slopes. I go first, struggling, my back slipping, but manage to hold her. Some locals stand by in amusement watching our struggle. I make it up the hill and find the path out of town. I stop at the turn off and look behind me. No sign of Alison. Not having mirrors on I didn’t see what happened. I wait a few minutes knowing me returning down the slope would lead to further problems at this point, reasoning if she was having problems there were plenty of people around to help her. She arrives not long later, having gone down on the wet stones. We push on over the wet muddy track to the hostel. Each sign for the hostel leading us to think 'Is this it? Please let it be it!' I am so glad we didn’t choose to ride the death road today. Finally we pull into the hostel at 7pm and the camping is closed for the season. We get the cheapest room, and decide to eat at the restaurant and have a glass of wine instead of cooking in the rain as we are surprisingly exhausted.
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com

Hewby screwed with this post 10-01-2013 at 11:24 AM
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 06:08 PM   #265
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
In the morning Alison needs to sort out her bike. She had been having trouble with her front end since Peru Motors changed her front tire. She pulls it apart to find they had left a bolt on the inside of the tube, and then added another bolt to the outside. No wonder she was having a hard time.
IMG_4046

She starts to research her overheating issues but decides against pulling the bike apart in such a remote place. We decide to get back to La Paz where we can at least get parts if needed.

We decide the bike will not make the slow speeds of the death road uphill and return on the same path back to La Paz.

DSC01903

As we hit the city traffic her bike starts struggling. We try to stop in to get SOAT insurance, as we were told they were all closed when we were here the other day. The street SOAT lady tells us she cannot sell us international insurance but we might get it at the head office. She points to it on the map and we head there. The traffic is mad but at least it is all downhill. Alison starts rolling the bike. Starting it only when necessary. We pass the place where we were told to go, the one way streets splitting off and taking us way out of the way. There is nothing that we can do but go with the flow of traffic. Finally we get to turn around and start going up a hill. Its then Alison hits trouble. Her bike decided not to start again, the poor KLR battery depleted with all her stop starting. I leave her there for her bike to cool down and walk up to find the insurance. I see nothing. I ask around and no one seems to know. They give me many directions, in far off locations. I walk back to Alison and tell her the bad news. Its almost 6pm and I want to head to the motorcycle shops to get a new mirror, and find her some coolant. She starts she could jump start her bike and try and head back to the hotel. I arge she would be better witing for the traffic to cool off and me to return from the shops so I can jump start her when she needs to stop along the way. I leave her saying I will return in an hour.

The traffic is terrible. I crawl around to get to the motorbike shops, get my goods then as I finally return Alison is not there. The traffic seems to have not changed, and I head down the hill that I believe Alison jump-started trying to find her. The road then splits off and I find myself in the maze of the one-way backstreets of La Paz. It’s horrid. In the slow moving traffic I hear the click of my chain again. Crap. Finally I make my way back to the main road near the hostel after an hour of negotiating the joys of La Paz traffic and streets. I pull into the hostel at 8pm and Alison opens the gates for me. I am thrilled to see her, and not have to return to the streets looking for her broken bike.

DSC01905

Dinner on the streets

We decide to spend the next day on bike repairs. We wake up and Alison is sick. Lucky I have a packed medical cabinet thanks to mother who is an RN, set Alison up with an antibiotic regime. I head down to BMW taking Alison battery with me. Alison decides she is not going to let another mechanic touch her bike and starts to pull hers apart. Amazing girl.

BMW politely tell me in English that they cannot help me today as they have 4 bikes from Venezuela pull in and they only have one mechanic on. I ask about chains and sprockets and they have none in stock. They point me down to the Honda store, where they also tell me (in English!) they don’t have any but they take a look at my bike and tell me not to worry. The mechanic tightens the chain, with my luggage and me on the bike (I had been following the manual that said tighten it unloaded), and states I will easily make it another 3-4000km. I get Alison’s battery charged and finally have my front tire installed that I had been carrying since Bogotá. I feel good. My bike feels good and my worrying is lessened. The problem with not knowing much about bike mechanics is if anything goes wrong I worry, when most people would just fix it. I am getting better and better with managing the bike myself, but I look at Alison and am impressed by her mechanical ability. I ‘spose its just not something I am really interested in. But on a trip like this it would sure help!

IMG_4047

A lovely part of La Paz where the Posh people hang out ;)

I go out for a nice lunch with great wifi. Pick some healthy looking Yarrow in the street to make a tonic for Alison, and return via the SOAT (where they state it is not possible to buy international insurance). Poor Alison had been in bed most of the day feeling awful. But has slowly started to work on her bike. I make her some Yarrow tea, great for healing the blood, and cook up some dinner. She needs some time to get better and get her bike better, but I am chewing at the bit to get out of traffic-choked La Paz. We talk it through and I decide to leave in the morning and head to Potosi where I plan to meet her in a few days.


Hewby screwed with this post 10-01-2013 at 11:16 AM
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2013, 07:43 PM   #266
huzar
Pastor of Muppets
 
huzar's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Bellevue, WA
Oddometer: 2,059
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hewby View Post
The next morning we walk down to the market for breakfast, and wandering down through the witches market where one could buy dried up baby llamas and such. For what purpose I did not ask!
IMG_4042
IMG_4043
Here's some info about the witches market. from Kedgi's RR:
Quote:
Originally Posted by slide View Post
Hi Dwight,

I may be able to shed some light on the witches' market. In Latin America there are two types of witches. The curandero/a's who are not really witches in our sense but more like shamans or traditional healers. In all probability, the things for sale were herbs and other materials which would be called 'herbal' or 'alternative' remedies north of Mexico.

The evil witches are brujas who cast spells like to sour milk or do other mischief.

Where I am, curanderas are well respected mostly in the rural areas. Think of it not as witchcraft but traditional or natural healers.
huzar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 08:39 AM   #267
eSTes1300
Adventurer
 
Joined: Jul 2011
Oddometer: 71
Witches

Quote:
Originally Posted by huzar View Post
Here's some info about the witches market. from Kedgi's RR:
Use witchcraft to your advantage: have a talisman made up to put a curse on anyone who touches the bike. This is done in Africa for a variety of things people don't want stolen, and it works. Hang some powerful symbology around where it can be seen and watch the reaction.
eSTes1300 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 08:48 AM   #268
operaflute
Starving Artist
 
operaflute's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2012
Location: Tucson, AZ
Oddometer: 134
When I started riding almost NO ONE supported me. I had one colleague, who I didn't know very well, and who I didn't work with all that often, take the time to mail me an encouraging and supportive card. To this day, I keep it under my seat as my own "talisman."

Quote:
Originally Posted by eSTes1300 View Post
Use witchcraft to your advantage: have a talisman made up to put a curse on anyone who touches the bike. This is done in Africa for a variety of things people don't want stolen, and it works. Hang some powerful symbology around where it can be seen and watch the reaction.
__________________
Clicky for Ride Reports (and other things): Eating On Two Wheels
operaflute is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 10:26 AM   #269
Hewby OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Hewby's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: currently on the road, but I call Tassie home
Oddometer: 314
I think I already have some sort of protection around the bike. People have been amazing everywhere I go. Except for the fact they don't like the stickers on. My panniers and they keep disappearing!
__________________
Alaska to Patagonia ..... http://www.letterstocurlyflat.blogspot.com
Hewby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 10:54 AM   #270
jguerin77
I ride my own
 
jguerin77's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Texas Hill Country
Oddometer: 410
Fantastic

Love reading your posts and the pictures are wonderful. Amazing journey!

Stay safe.....
__________________
Like a good lover, a good rider has balance, judgment, and good timing. ...

Member of Southern Cruisers Riding Club and Chrome Divas
jguerin77 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 11:04 AM.


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