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Old 01-13-2009, 09:45 AM   #61
ArmyMedic
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Oh geez, another road trip report to South America...

I'm in!!!
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Old 01-13-2009, 10:30 AM   #62
bigdon
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I'm N!
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Old 01-17-2009, 01:42 PM   #63
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Older Bro

Decided to join the forum eventhough I am a 4 wheeler.
Ride safe, lil Bro'
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Old 01-17-2009, 02:07 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H-Jay's Older Bro
Decided to join the forum eventhough I am a 4 wheeler.
Ride safe, lil Bro'
Welcome my Big Bro. I'll be updating the blog soon. We are in Panama for a few days trying to work out shipping and flying in to South America. We are also pounding the area looking for a rear tire for Chris. The local BMW dealer will not get a new shipment in until February. One of the local Moto Shop owners (Panama Bikers) has a tire but doesn't want to part with it.
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South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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Old 01-17-2009, 03:40 PM   #65
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Border Crossing Blues...



From San Cristobal, Chiapas we headed to Guatemala for our first Central American boarder crossing. I’m planning on doing a separate posting in the Latin American Forum on border crossings. Every time I start looking at my notes I have unpleasant flashbacks, so it might be a while. For now I’ll give the short version here. The boarder crossing process varies from country to country but they all follow a consistent four step pattern.
  • Export the body (Immigrations)
  • Export the Moto (Customs)
  • Import the body
  • Import the Moto.

In Central America the borders are romantically called the “Frontier” (or Fronterizo in Spanish). But there is nothing romantic or pleasant about them. The locals have discovered they can make money off of people from other parts of the world by helping them through the process. Most are unintentionally rude in their approach. They have to play on your fears and compete against the other helpers for your attention. Consequently, in 90 degree heat, a confusing mix of official and commercial activity and the drone of noises, they can get their victims to give in.

After doing a lot of research on boarder crossings by reading reports from the likes of the Sergeant Marty, Daveg and others, we decided we would run the entire Central American gauntlet without relying on helpers.



Getting out of Mexico, steps 1 and 2, was painless. We overlooked the need to stop at a bank in Mexico to pay the $25 USD visa fee. We were able to easily do it at the local Banjicito Bank at the boarder. We also went to the office next door to cancel the $400 bond place on our credit cards. That was to reimburse the Mexican government if we later sold the motos in Mexico. We also got our passport exit stamp. In to Guatemala was step 3 and 4. It took a while because of the long lines, but we got through the process without using any helpers.

Oh yeah, we had to pay this guy to spray or moto tires off with stinky insecticdes before we could roll in to Guatemala.

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2007 BMW R1200GSA
1968 Norton Fastback
1969 Triumph Bonnie

South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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Old 01-17-2009, 04:08 PM   #66
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We are in Central America



Once away from the border er frontier, the fun riding continued. Imagine fellow flatlanders that you are alternating roads between the Blue Ridge and the Rockies. Yep that is what it is like..now. The evil road builders are busy leveling every high point and straightening every sharp bend they can. Sad. Better get that trip south underway or you will forever regret it.









The first nite in Central America was spent in Huehuetenago Guatemala. The town was not much to look at but the hotel was a delight…and cheap, maybe 27 dollars total, including breakfast and WiFi. We stayed at the Zaculeu hotel a block passed the square.








The next morning we swallowed hard and asked the hotel front desk how to get out of town. The hotel had one of their employees hop on his 125 and lead out of the city maze to the highway.








Did that volcano just belch in front of me?





Market day in a little town we passed. looks interesting and colorful.



The next day we made it in to our next new favorite city Antigua, Guatemala
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2007 BMW R1200GSA
1968 Norton Fastback
1969 Triumph Bonnie

South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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Old 01-17-2009, 04:42 PM   #67
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Antigua Guatemala - The Colonial Era Capital



The road to Antigua was under construction but motos get preference. We were expected to go to the front of the stopped traffic and in some cases sent on through the construction site. The bus and truck drivers would frantically wave you ahead if you didn’t move to the front. Interesting how close you can get to a big front loader as it is digging in to the mountain side.



And of course the views were spectacular. We thought sporting riding would be over once we left Mexico. Guatemala was just as much fun in the mountains.

This photo is shameless pandering to my wife. We spent several weeks in Xela studying spanish last year. After the 6 hour bus ride from Guatemala City she declared..no more bus rides through mountains. I'm appealling the decision... maybe Antigua next winter. Its closer to Guatemala City.







We reached Antigua, our new favorite city, early enough to walk around the Parque. Antigua was the colonial era capital of Guatemala. Its no surprise the Europeans chose the spot. The surrounding volcanoes and the mountain climate made it a perfect location. That is until they discovered those pesky earthquakes required a continuous urban renewal program. Some of the half destroyed Cathedrals build in the 1500s, make the city …like eye candy for history buffs.

















Our Hotel for the night.















From Antigua we made it out of Guatemala and in to El Salvador.
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2007 BMW R1200GSA
1968 Norton Fastback
1969 Triumph Bonnie

South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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Old 01-18-2009, 01:26 AM   #68
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Nod of the helmet.

Glad I washed my K bike today and got in the mood for a ride report. Keep it coming.
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Old 01-18-2009, 11:20 AM   #69
pdedse
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Great report...I've followed about 10 of these during the last year, but I just don't grow tired of them...I've learned so much about different places that I never would have read about...it's also fascinating to see what makes an impression on different folk passing through areas that I've lived in, traveled through myself. Waiting for more!...
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Old 01-18-2009, 06:20 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H-Jay
Welcome my Big Bro. I'll be updating the blog soon. We are in Panama for a few days trying to work out shipping and flying in to South America. We are also pounding the area looking for a rear tire for Chris. The local BMW dealer will not get a new shipment in until February. One of the local Moto Shop owners (Panama Bikers) has a tire but doesn't want to part with it.
LB,

Down at Mom's and we traded blog visits. I showed her this forum and she logged me into Allison's N.Korea blog. Seems she spends more time out of country than teaching.
Mom said to tell you "Hello". It has warmed up to 27 de today. We had -5 on Friday.

BB
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Old 01-18-2009, 06:21 PM   #71
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We are definitely enjoying the commentary and photos of your adventure.
Ride safe.
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Old 01-18-2009, 08:50 PM   #72
theturtleshead
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Colombia

You,ll find all the tyres you need in Colombia!!!
Al theturtleshead
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Old 01-19-2009, 07:13 AM   #73
H-Jay's Older Bro
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Originally Posted by H-Jay's Older Bro
LB,

Down at Mom's and we traded blog visits. I showed her this forum and she logged me into Allison's N.Korea blog. Seems she spends more time out of country than teaching.
Mom said to tell you "Hello". It has warmed up to 27 de today. We had -5 on Friday.

BB
Let me correct my stupidity. She is in Vietnam not Korea. It dawned on me as I was running in this stupid 19 de snow this morning.
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:38 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by theturtleshead
You,ll find all the tyres you need in Colombia!!!
Al theturtleshead
Al, thanks. Any suggestions on a shop to get the tire? We also need to get the oil changed. I'd prefer to do it myself in someone's shop if they would sell me the oil and filter.
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2007 BMW R1200GSA
1968 Norton Fastback
1969 Triumph Bonnie

South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:40 AM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H-Jay's Older Bro
Let me correct my stupidity. She is in Vietnam not Korea. It dawned on me as I was running in this stupid 19 de snow this morning.
ooohh how I'm missing the weather there. kipping Michigan winters can become habit forming.
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2007 BMW R1200GSA
1968 Norton Fastback
1969 Triumph Bonnie

South America Blog

Patagonia Bound Ride Report
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=420453

Alaska Ride Report http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250239
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