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Old 04-27-2008, 09:18 PM   #91
ElCaMinault
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Cool2

Thanks for the insight on my upcoming trip. I'm travelling from Edmonton AB on may 1st to........well i'll find out just how far i'll get in 6 weeks, but i am aiming for Panama. I'm about as green as it gets to this sorta thing and I need as much info as i can get in such short notice. Thx again.
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Old 04-28-2008, 06:27 AM   #92
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What are gas prices in Mexico right now?
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Old 06-01-2008, 09:04 AM   #93
Dboisclair01
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Phoenix to the Panama Canal - Jan 08

I completed the 7,000klm trip to the Canal in Jan of this year. If anyone wants fairly recent first-hand experience I'll pass on whatever info I can. Just bear in mind that at the time (and still) I was a VERY inexperienced rider. I only obtained my license in Aug 07, and the bike I was riding was my first bike in almost 27 years. And as much as I love my new DL650, there's still a soft spot in my heart for the 26 year old Honda I made the trip with. I guess ignorance really is bliss. In many ways the trip effected me profoundly. I'm going to re-arrange things to retire much earlier than originally planned - even if it means scaling back on expectations and working P/T - just so I can travel more and live more. I've just put in for a leave of absence next Jan so I can go back for a much more liesurely six-week trip through Mexico with my wife this time.
Cheers
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Old 06-01-2008, 10:06 AM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dboisclair01
I completed the 7,000klm trip to the Canal in Jan of this year. If anyone wants fairly recent first-hand experience I'll pass on whatever info I can. Just bear in mind that at the time (and still) I was a VERY inexperienced rider. I only obtained my license in Aug 07, and the bike I was riding was my first bike in almost 27 years. And as much as I love my new DL650, there's still a soft spot in my heart for the 26 year old Honda I made the trip with. I guess ignorance really is bliss. In many ways the trip effected me profoundly. I'm going to re-arrange things to retire much earlier than originally planned - even if it means scaling back on expectations and working P/T - just so I can travel more and live more. I've just put in for a leave of absence next Jan so I can go back for a much more liesurely six-week trip through Mexico with my wife this time.
Cheers
How about a ride report? Pics and all?
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Old 06-01-2008, 11:23 AM   #95
ontheborder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dboisclair01
I completed the 7,000klm trip to the Canal in Jan of this year. If anyone wants fairly recent first-hand experience I'll pass on whatever info I can. Just bear in mind that at the time (and still) I was a VERY inexperienced rider. I only obtained my license in Aug 07, and the bike I was riding was my first bike in almost 27 years. And as much as I love my new DL650, there's still a soft spot in my heart for the 26 year old Honda I made the trip with. I guess ignorance really is bliss. In many ways the trip effected me profoundly. I'm going to re-arrange things to retire much earlier than originally planned - even if it means scaling back on expectations and working P/T - just so I can travel more and live more. I've just put in for a leave of absence next Jan so I can go back for a much more liesurely six-week trip through Mexico with my wife this time.
Cheers
So I guess you are saying you are ready for the free part of freedom.
Travel, it changes you life....
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Old 06-01-2008, 09:36 PM   #96
Dboisclair01
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Ride Report

The easiest way to read about the trip is to look at my blog...but I'll warn you in advance, it's a long read
www.dboisclair.blogspot.com
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Old 06-16-2008, 08:32 AM   #97
Da_Baum
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Through South America

There might be something of value here.

www.motorcycleforcharities.com

Have fun.
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Old 06-20-2008, 09:15 AM   #98
Sjoerd Bakker
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Mexico STOP signs.

After repeatedly reading posts from riders who claim to have many close encounters and nearly getting run into by city traffic in Mexico I must surmise that they are doing something wrong or do not know the rules there. I never have that problem and can't remember the last time I even experienced that type of close call after I clued in on the practice many years ago.
Usually these near misses ( or hits ) happen at intersections in cities but are NOT ,in most cases, caused by a bunch of ignorant Mexicans flaunting STOP signs . True enough there are red-light runners and STOP-sign ignorers in Mexico but this, sadly ,is an epidemic which also afflicts the USA, Canada .. anywhere. The red STOP sign is seen more as a YIELD sign, to stop only if there is traffic coming or a cop watching.
The problem as I see it is traceable to tourists in Mexico not being aware of the Mexican rules which are really quite simple once you catch on to the routine.
Question : What do Mexican STOP signs look like ? If you answer:
" Red octagon with white letters saying ALTO ".... then you are only partly correct.
The red octagon ALTO sign does indeed signify that you must STOP but this is not the only sign to do so. At highway construction sites you may see the assigned traffic control person holding up the
typical octogonal red sign but it says PARE which is another word for STOP. In the less affluent areas such a
traffic control person may only have a red flag or be waving a flag or cloth of any colour, so pay attention , slow down and follow their directions .
In Mexican towns and cities there are other signs which convey the same important message.They have evolved a system of colour coding ONE WAY ARROW SIGNS and STREET NAME SIGNS.
The ONE WAY arrow signs describing the direction of travel on one-way city streets can be in three colours with white printing : BLACK - same as in US and Canada
RED
GREEN
These signs may be metal plates attached to a free standing post but they may also be fastened to or painted directly on a building wall at the corner.
Their positioning relative to your direction of aproach on the crossing street is the critical factor. If you aproach a cross street and you face the sign on that street and it is RED you are responsible to STOP and allow the cross traffic the right of way. There need be NO OCTAGON ALTO sign there , no duplicating information. Sail through such signs and your chance of collision is good or you will hear screaching brakes and Spanish cursing thrown at you. YOU were the guilty party.
If you come to such and intersection and you are facing a GREEN one-way sign it means that you are travelling on the street with the right of way and you may proceed without stopping , but do look both ways ...for Gringos .Green one-way signs are becoming rare, however.
If you come to an intersection facing the " normal" BLACK AND WHITE one-way arrow this also
means that YOU are on the street with the right of way. Look for oncoming traffic anyway and proceed .
.



STREET NAME SIGNS can also be colour coded in the same way .
The exact design varies slightly from city to city and depending how old the sign is.The older ones have either a red or green border above and below the name .Further , that border may have stylized points indicating the ONE -WAY or two - way direction of traffic . The newer ones may have the colour backing the full width of the sign. Again, if a street name plaque, free standing or wall mounted, is RED , and you are coming at it on the crossing street it is for you a STOP sign. If it is GREEN you may proceed without stopping.

In recent years there has been a rapid spread of marking one-ways at inner city intersections with signs saying
"UNO POR UNO" or the equivalently pronounced mathematical "1 X 1" printed on a variety of sign shapes on or in combination with the octogonal STOP or triangular CEDA ( yield) sign. They are telling drivers to give the
right of way to slow moving traffic in a regular alternating manner one by one from either direction.This should keep traffic moving. If you come to such an intersection slow down and with care drive across behind the back bumper of the last vehicle you saw crossing WITHOUT STOPPING even if there is a STOP sign.
If there is no approaching traffic you are free to carry on through WITHOUT STOPPING .
If there is a space but you do see another vehicle approaching on the other street USE YOUR JUDGEMENT , proceed if the other vehicle will not be impeded by your crossing or stop and yield.Do not stop if you have to wait for the other traffic to move a half block . Use common sense.



Learn these rules, ignore them at your peril.

Sjoerd Bakker screwed with this post 03-11-2013 at 06:31 AM Reason: Upgrade and add detail
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Old 06-20-2008, 03:31 PM   #99
kennyanc
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Great info Sjoerd. This site is a wealth of good information.

I haven't really had any close calls myself but I tend to stay away from the bigger cities. If I have to go thru I try to make a beeline for the other side on the main roads and they usually have lights.

That makes if fairly easy to remember...red means stop, green means go. Why couldn't I figure that out...


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Old 06-20-2008, 04:43 PM   #100
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SJ gave a nice summary of Mex signage.
When in some colonial cities you may need to learn some even more different rules/customs with signage actually on the buildings. Colors can take on a whole new meaning for one-way streets.
It's pretty cool, and it really does works.
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Old 12-20-2008, 11:20 PM   #101
pegsdeep
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leaving SA without the bike??

Apologies if it is hidden in here somewhere already but...

I am planning to do my ride south in 3 or 4 legs.
I work one month on then get one month off so the plan for the first leg is to get Vancouver to Costa Rica or southern mexico....lock up the bike with friends and fly back to work.
Coming back to the bike in a months time to do it all over again getting to Peru next time....ect ect.

Green on all this so hope one of you boys could tell me if I will have any problems with this in regards to customs with the bike?
Once you import the bike into the country do you HAVE to leave with it? I have 2 passports (Can and NZ) so could use a different one to get out but thats a last resort as it gets complicated and risky.
Anyone?
Great thread, thanks for taking the time to post this stuff as it would be a steep learing curve without it!
Many thanks!
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Old 02-18-2009, 01:10 PM   #102
TRAVELGUY
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DRIVERS LICENSES Motorcycle

BEFORE YOU LEAVE GET A SECOND COPY OF YOUR DRIVERS LICENSE FROM YOUR STATE, tell them you lost the other one. Yes that is illegal in most states, do it anyway. Get two INTERNATIONAL DRIVERS LICENSES FROM AAA. That is legal and use them. My drivers license was lost or something by a Costa Rica offical entering country. Calls to my local BMV were a waste of time. I had photo copies of my drivers license with me but they were refused by all officials in all countries. Would have had to ship motorcycle back from Costa Rica if I had not been able to obtain a Costa Rica license. You won't have time to do that. Also get a dupicate copy of your motorcycle title from your state BMV. You now need a original vehicle title to enter some of the Central American countries, previous years you could use you registration but no longer. Any other information you may want feel free to PM me. Have a great trip.
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Old 04-08-2009, 05:13 PM   #103
Martincito
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Jeff,
Your pdf with the info about CA was the most useful thing that I got from the web in my trip through CA.
Very accurate.
Thanks!
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Old 04-08-2009, 06:02 PM   #104
Dilligaf0220
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martincito
Jeff,
Your pdf with the info about CA was the most useful thing that I got from the web in my trip through CA.
Very accurate.
Thanks!
Which one was that?
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Old 04-08-2009, 07:37 PM   #105
Martincito
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I'm talking about the pdf at the beginnig of this thread with a bunch of tips about all the borders crossing in CA

"For those who wish to download and print these tips, you can find them here it in Adobe (.pdf) format. (Print version for download)"
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