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 09-26-2012, 10:12 AM   #226
JoeMongo
¿Por dónde?
 
JoeMongo's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Location: SF Bay Area, not exactly dirt moto heaven
Oddometer: 426
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpy View Post
Thank you, Chip Seal, that's very kind of you.

The next instalment is in the making...
KEWL!


We've been waiting, some more patiently than others. I can't wait to hear how it all worked out.
__________________
'08 990 ADV, '03 DR-Z400S

Anything worth doing, is worth overdoing.
JoeMongo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2012, 03:50 PM   #227
LethPhaos
brb
 
LethPhaos's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2012
Location: Belgistan
Oddometer: 567
thanks for continuing writing Pumpy, I'm all ears
__________________
| KTM 690 SMC RRP | Honda RD04 Africa Twin |
Balkan ADV - RR around Europe on the AT
Bacon trip log map
LethPhaos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2012, 12:11 PM   #228
Pumpy OP
Exiled Pumpernickel
 
Pumpy's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: Oxford, UK
Oddometer: 1,099
Jonathan and LethPaos, that's sooo lovely of you!

I just have the Dirty Girls do Oxfordshire report to finish; Jane and Nicky are off to Morocco tomorrow morning and I've promised that I would complete the story tonight...

Thanks again for your patience, much appreciated!
__________________
.
www.pumpernickelontour.com - Four months through South America on a DRZ - Ride Report: One day... you have to live your dream
Pumpy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2013, 11:07 AM   #229
Chip Seal
Beastly Adventurer
 
Chip Seal's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Western Orygun
Oddometer: 1,866
One year later ? Oh My!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpy View Post
Jonathan and LethPaos, that's sooo lovely of you!

I just have the Dirty Girls do Oxfordshire report to finish; Jane and Nicky are off to Morocco tomorrow morning and I've promised that I would complete the story tonight...

Thanks again for your patience, much appreciated!
Chip Seal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2013, 08:58 PM   #230
ICERIDER
Adventure Rider
 
ICERIDER's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Location: Stanley Falkland Islands
Oddometer: 431
Thanks Chip Seal for reviving this one, I often think about Pumpy. I wondered where it went, and where that year went too! It just shows you...no good dreaming about it all the time. One year goes just like that. In the morning I'm doing some planning!
__________________
950 SE
WR250R
950 ADV
ICERIDER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2013, 01:02 PM   #231
Sandino
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Sandino's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2008
Oddometer: 168
Great report, thanks for writing it!. Keeping my ready
Sandino is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 04:54 PM   #232
Pumpy OP
Exiled Pumpernickel
 
Pumpy's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: Oxford, UK
Oddometer: 1,099
Thank you, Chip Seal, Icerider and Sandino, that you are still interested in my trip. I'm really sorry that it takes me so long to post the instalments.

Nothing drastic has happened in the meantime; it's just daily life getting in the way: a normal 9 to 6 job, a busy social life, three bikes to maintain, lots of trail riding that needs reporting on, etc, etc.

However, I am still determined to continue the tale and possibly complete it before I set off to South America again in 2014. The next episode is almost finished...

Thank you for your patience!
__________________
.
www.pumpernickelontour.com - Four months through South America on a DRZ - Ride Report: One day... you have to live your dream
Pumpy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 05:03 PM   #233
Chip Seal
Beastly Adventurer
 
Chip Seal's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Western Orygun
Oddometer: 1,866
Can't wait!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpy View Post
Thank you, Chip Seal, Icerider and Sandino, that you are still interested in my trip. I'm really sorry that it takes me so long to post the instalments.

Nothing drastic has happened in the meantime; it's just daily life getting in the way: a normal 9 to 6 job, a busy social life, three bikes to maintain, lots of trail riding that needs reporting on, etc, etc.

However, I am still determined to continue the tale and possibly complete it before I set off to South America again in 2014. The next episode is almost finished...

Thank you for your patience!
No pressure, LOL!
Glad you haven't given up!
Chip Seal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 09:12 PM   #234
WeazyBuddha
Carbon-Based Humanoid
 
WeazyBuddha's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Location: RGV Texas
Oddometer: 4,558
__________________
A drunk driver killed someone I love
WeazyBuddha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 01:23 AM   #235
Pumpy OP
Exiled Pumpernickel
 
Pumpy's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: Oxford, UK
Oddometer: 1,099
Travelling broadens the mind...




In the small hours of the night I wake up again because it's so freezing cold in my room. Lesson number one: if you make the effort to carry a warm sleeping bag on your bike, you are actually allowed to use it even if you are staying in a hotel room. At the very least have the silk inner liner to hand before you go to bed...

I stare into the darkness and wait for symptoms of altitude sickness to manifest themselves. After all, Villazón sits at 3,400m / 11,155ft above sea level. Maybe I am a bit paranoid about this but one of the problems with travelling on your own is that no one tells you when you start to behave weirdly...

Breakfast is served at 7.00 downstairs at smallish tables among a lot of big guys who seem to be mainly truck drivers - we are in a busy border town after all. Despite the sceptical glances from every side, I enjoy my frugal meal consisting of a bread roll with butter and jam and black tea while trying to translate the Arabic proverb on the wall.



I think it goes like this:

Don't say everything you know,
don't do everything you can.
Don't believe everything you hear,
don't spend everything you have.

Because:

He who says everything he knows,
He who does everything he can,
He who believes everything he hears,
He who spends everything he has,

Often

Says what he shouldn't say,
does what he shouldn't do,
judges what he doesn't see,
spends what he cannot afford.


I'm sure there are a number of lessons that can be learnt from these pearls of Arabic wisdom.

After packing my stuff, I head for the gated courtyard where my baby has spent the night, and arrive at 9.00 on the dot as agreed the evening before. A young man opens the gate but there is a big 4x4 blocking the entrance. No worries, the owner will also collect his vehicle at 9.00 hrs.

9:20 hrs and nothing has happened. I return to the hotel. What is this guy thinking? I ask for his whereabouts at the reception: Se ha salido - he's gone out. Great. Maybe I've missed him on the way, so I go back the two blocks to the parking site. The gate is now open but the 4x4 is still sitting there. I try not to get worked up about the delay, ask the young man if he has some old rags and start to clean my bike - mumbling all the Spanish swearwords I can remember under my breath...

10.00 hrs and no driver in sight... Once more I return to the Hostal Plaza, try to make use of the time by writing my diary but at some point I am so annoyed that I ask the receptionist if he knows of a locksmith who can help me open the car so that I can drive it out of the way. Silly, I know, and wasn't one of the objectives of this trip to practice a bit of stoicism and not getting stressed so easily?

It's no big deal, really, it’s only 100 km / 59 miles to my next destination Tupiza, and there is nothing the receptionist or the young man at the parking place can do (well, the latter shouldn't have let the guy park in a way that was blocking everybody else's exit route, inconsiderate hijo de p*ta). And breathe...

Finally the receptionist reaches the driver on his mobile: the car should be gone by the time the fuming gringa has made her way to the parking site for the third time. I relax immediately and feel quite embarrassed now that I have let my anger take the better of me - and thus made everyone around me pretty uncomfortable. That's a lesson that will still take some learning, I suppose...

With the obstacle out of the way, my mind is open again for the sights and delights of Villazón - the slightly moralistic street art


... and the urban wildlife...


The young man from the parking courtyard meets me halfway down the road to tell me the good news, we're both relieved and laugh; I collect my baby and thank him very much for all his help. Quickly I lube my chain, load the bike and set off.


After a nice chat with the female attendant of the filling station on the outskirts of town, I reach the border control-cum-tollbooth again, explain that I was just staying overnight in Villazón but had no intention of leaving lovely Bolivia already, pay my 3 Bolivianos (under 30p) and enjoy the new smooth asfalto. Gliding through the beautiful panorama of the Altiplano, it slowly dawns on me that my water bladder is almost empty. How stupid! Haven't I learnt the lesson yet to check my water supply every morning and stock up while I'm still within a human settlement?

Oh well, only 65 kilometres / 40 miles to Tupiza left - I will probably survive. Shortly afterwards I pass yesterday's junction where the road branches off to Tarija in the east and the Ruta 14 carries on to Tupiza in the northwest. Again, all directions are clearly sign-posted and I'm a bit puzzled how anyone could miss these obvious crossroads unless seriously intoxicated... The tarmac has disappeared by now but the Ruta 14 consists of nicely hard-packed, fast dirt.

Blue sky, glorious sunshine, clean and fresh air, the absorbing solitude of a vast and seemingly empty landscape - I feel the morning's tension dissolve into the thin air and admire the mountain tops in the distance. Big mistake. All of a sudden the handlebars are out of control, the bike leans left, right, left, right and down in a matter of split seconds and I find myself in a heap of deep gravel, getting a final kick in the back from my own steed... God, I'm shaken - never take your eyes off the road, as the surface can change in an instant, is the fifth lesson today.



Fuel is dripping out of the tank, the GPS has a deep scar, there may be more things broken but I am fine, I think. Phew, sit down at the roadside, helmet and gloves off, take a photo, calm down, drink some water - damn, I really have nothing left, and if there is serious damage to the bike, I'm pretty scr*wed. That's the difference between important and vital lessons, dear reader...

A bus approaches from the north; I wave him down and a group of young men descends. They ask what happened and if I hurt, they help me lifting the bike, and one of them starts talking to me in English. That's not necessary, really, but somehow I feel strangely comforted by hearing the language of my adopted home country: Thank you for speaking English, señor.

After my saviours have left I still rest a bit longer and assess the damage: mirror, GPS cradle and screen have scratches, the handlebar units are slightly twisted, the straps of my soft panniers are torn off - but I am ok, thank God and the Hi-Art Halvarssons suit for that! It may make my bum look big - but far more important, it just saved it! If that's not worth another lesson...

Cautiously I continue the journey - staying in the harder ruts made by previous vehicles and slowing right down at every dip and bump. From time to time I find a stretch of tarmac where the roadwork is already completed but soon enough there's a sign again: Fin de pavimento


... and it's back onto the dirt track again


At least there is now some vegetation, so I can go into the bushes...


Impressive heights the cacti reach here!


As I come over the mountains towards Tupiza, the land gets a bit more fertile and agricultural


There is more water...


... I pass through little villages


... and cross small streams that must be raging torrents in the rainy season (and not all of them can be crossed via bridges...)


Tupiza lies at the river of the same name which has created some gorgeous gorges in the area


It's just after 3pm when I arrive in town, most of the inhabitants are still holding their siesta, but after the obligatory sightseeing tour I finally find the Hotel Mitru, warmly recommended in the South America Handbook


Yes, they have a single room, [I]con baño privado[/], secure parking, breakfast buffet - and all that for 70 Bolivianos, which is about £6.30... The room is delightful, airy, and spacious


There is a little desk, the bathroom has its own window - what more can the battered and bruised traveller ask for?


After a quick shower I explore the hotel's facilities - garden, pool and roof terrace...


... from where you have a great view over the city...


... and the dramatic red rock formations the region is famous for


Is there a cobbler nearby who can repair my soft luggage? Just one block down the road, advises the receptionist. The shoemaker understands straight away what needs to be done to make my panniers usable again. Give me until 7pm, señora. There is no rush, sir, I will stay another night in your lovely town – mañana is early enough.

I like Tupiza; the climate is pleasant - we are down to 2,800 metres / 9,200 ft again, the people are friendly and helpful, and I hugely enjoy strolling aimlessly through the city, absorbing the ambience, watching the locals watching football...


... and admiring the somewhat fancy architecture


The mercado is colourful and picturesque but I don't feel comfortable taking photos; I'm not in a zoo here and it feels disrespectful towards the market-people to point the camera into their faces while they are pursuing their day-to-day tasks. There are still enough inanimate objects worth photographing around


I call Possu, assure him that I am still alive and make light of the accident; then I walk back to the bridge and the railway crossing over which I have entered the town earlier - both look like they have seen better days...


Tupiza has surprisingly many Pizzerias - and a nice sense of humour: 'Your Pizza'


... and they all promote their vegetarian menu. I feel spoilt for choice - "are you decisive, Ms Pumpy?" "Mmm, let me think about that..." - I've been known for almost starving while passing one café after the other on my trips, because there could be a better one around the next corner... In the Pizzeria I finally settle for, I meet Ylon from Israel who has been travelling through South America for six months and is now in his last three weeks. We exchange recommendations: he must go and see the Iguazú Falls, I should not miss Northern Peru and Ecuador - which I probably will, as I have only 3 1/2 months to spare...

After dinner I'm looking for an internet café, there are plenty about but they are all full - I try in at least eight places to get a free space but to no avail. It certainly doesn't help that the whole of Tupiza relies on one dial-up connection, or so it seems to me, after I have finally managed to upload one photo on the hotel computer - in 15 minutes...

What an eventful day, lots to think about and digest into lessons learnt and others that will still need recapping for a while... Suddenly I feel very tired - and what prevents me from going to bed before 9pm if I feel like it? I'm on holiday, it's a free country and tomorrow will be another great day, I'm sure.

¡Buenas noches!
__________________
.
www.pumpernickelontour.com - Four months through South America on a DRZ - Ride Report: One day... you have to live your dream

Pumpy screwed with this post 09-25-2013 at 05:03 PM Reason: Posted same photo twice by accident - replaced with correct one.
Pumpy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 07:54 AM   #236
duibhceK
duibhce Kaelann
 
duibhceK's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: world capital of beer
Oddometer: 365
the story continues!
duibhceK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 08:30 AM   #237
poolman
Gnarly Poolside Adv.
 
poolman's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Darnestown, MD
Oddometer: 728
Spectacular Ride Report and pictures!

Great installment.
__________________
~~~~~~
poolman

Sacred Valley of the Incas
Costa Rica Solo
poolman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 04:07 PM   #238
Chip Seal
Beastly Adventurer
 
Chip Seal's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Western Orygun
Oddometer: 1,866
Terrific!

Great stuff!
Love the pictures.
Looks like a mad builder went wild on the turreted building.
Thanks.
Chip Seal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 05:14 PM   #239
JoeMongo
¿Por dónde?
 
JoeMongo's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Location: SF Bay Area, not exactly dirt moto heaven
Oddometer: 426
Talking Welcome back! We missed you!

__________________
'08 990 ADV, '03 DR-Z400S

Anything worth doing, is worth overdoing.
JoeMongo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2013, 05:08 AM   #240
jharrell
Gnarly Adventurer
 
jharrell's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Oddometer: 120
Great report on an awesome adventure.
Congrats!
__________________
2012 Triumph Tiger 800XC
jharrell 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 03:34 AM.


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