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Old 03-01-2011, 02:38 PM   #211
Ok, Hold my beer ...
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Joined: Mar 2011
Location: North a Tucson, South a Flagstaff
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Luke ... freakin loved the south america RR ... unreal about the guy in belize ... anyway ... this RR is just as good so far ... can't believe you don't have a reality show yet ... ride on brother ... and Nick too!
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:36 PM   #212
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This trip is rocking! I was directed to this by your friend Davey Coop who I used to shread BMX with back in the day. Keep rolling, this trip is inspiring!
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:39 PM   #213
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Originally Posted by Bronco638 View Post
Hey Luke, no pictures of squashed dogs this trip, OK? TIA.
This. Please?
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:45 AM   #214
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Originally Posted by Bronco638 View Post
Hey Luke, no pictures of squashed dogs this trip, OK? TIA.
No promises, but odds are if I see one, it's going on here. I show most everything.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:49 AM   #215
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Originally Posted by thorzite View Post
Luke ... freakin loved the south america RR ... unreal about the guy in belize ... anyway ... this RR is just as good so far ... can't believe you don't have a reality show yet ... ride on brother ... and Nick too!
Thanks for the support. A reality show would be a dream job. I'm shooting this trip with plans to make a documentary out of it. The industry is almost impossible to get into, but stuff like blogging and this site can make a huge difference. Thanks for the love!
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:50 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by Bronco638 View Post
Hey Luke, no pictures of squashed dogs this trip, OK? TIA.
Originally Posted by Fishfund View Post
No promises, but odds are if I see one, it's going on here. I show most everything.
Sad to see things like that, but it's part of the experience. Way to keep it real FF...

Although poop pics are not necessary, I experience that daily myself . Goodonya for making it "scientific" this time though.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:32 AM   #217
Joined: Mar 2008
Location: Clare, MI
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Entry 24

We woke up before the sun came up and were on the road at first light. We had close to 600 miles to pound out for the day, which we've done before and know it's possible.

It started off pretty cool with temperatures diping into the 50's. Around 7:00 am we came across a very funny sight. We saw a naked man in the middle of the road in the middle of a village. He was doing all sorts of crazy things. He started by throwing poop at cars passing by, then he started putting his dukes up and dancing around. From the looks of the other poeple in the village this was not a normal occurance. We drove about 5 feet from him as we passed and he just kept dancing and waving his arms naked as we passed by. What is that all about?

We made the first 100 miles with no problems and stopped for some gas. The gas station we stopped at was at a pretty important fork in the road. We take a few minutes and discuss our options. We had two. Option one was 600 miles of highway; option two was 450 miles of dirt roads. The dirt roads in Namibia were very nice and we could easily cruise at 65 mph and sometimes at 75 mph. We decide to take option two. Dirt roads are always more fun, and the attendants at the gas station suggested that route also. While we were filling up gas we spotted our next bikes for an adventure.

We left the gas station and took the fork in the road which lead to the 400 mile dirt road section. The people in this area loved bright colored buses and writing gangsta sayings for having money on them.

Finally the dirt roads started and we were pumped. It didn't take us long to realize we wouldn't be driving as fast as we did in Namibia. Oh well, the roads were amazing and we could still average 50 mph. Plenty fast enough to make it to timmer tonight.

The nice roads started to get very rocky, along with nice tight corners. It made for great riding but sucked for making up time. It didn't help that semis wanted to drive on the road too and didn't seem too worried about hogging the road either.

After 100 miles of this we saw a remote village with a barbeque going. We decide to stop and eat. It was now close to 10 am and we havne't eaten. The villagers were very excited to get pictures taken and show off their BBQ.

I know what you're thinking. And the answer is yes. Yes those are sheep heads underneath the grill. Luke and I start looking at them and everyone was very excited to show them off for pictures.

Noone seemed to give us any information about a restraunt in their village so we decided to just grab a Coke. One thing I've learned in life is you can buy Coke anywhere, and I mean anywhere. After we drink our Cokes we hang out at the grill for a bit. They make a joke that they will sell us some meat for 500 shillings and everyone starts laughing. We don't know what's so funny since 500 shillings is roughly 33 cents. We decide not to take them up on the offer and try to find food later when it's lunch time.

After cranking out a few miles we see two guys with motorcycles on the side of the road with something wrong with the bike. We stop to see if their is anything we can do to help. Luke and I always have to stop and help out fellow motorcycleists. When we get off our bikes we find out their chain is broke and they don't understand any english.

That is no problem. Luke has an extra master link. We can fix this! What are the odds that two strangers drive past with extra links and a chainbreaker on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere?

Well, the odds may have been good for that, but they were not good for the extra link to be the right size. Lukes master link and extra links were way too bike hold for very long. Luke tried to fix it with what we had, or at least fix it enough to drive to their village 10 kilometers away.

The chain is back on and we advise them to drive slow. In the meantime I decide to check out my rims. My bike is known for having weak rims but I decide to risk it to save some money and not buy better rims for the trip. The rims are loving this road.

No worries though, all we have to do is make it to Timmer today and then we can worry about the rims later. Meanwhile, our new motorcycle friends make it about 100 feet before the chain breaks again. They start tying a bungie chord to the handlebars so they could tow their bike. Luke and I step in and give them a hand. We are getting pretty good at towing bikes by this point. I think the new name for my bike should be "The Towtruck". We do our best to explain to them how we are going to tow them and off we go. We only have 10 kilometers to tow them on nasty roads, no problem.

We make it the 10 kilometers without a problem. We tow him straight to a motorcycle mechanic where all his buddies start cheering and asking the usual questions: "How fast does it go", "How many cc's", "How much does it cost", and "Do you want to trade for mine".

After a few fist bumps and thanks yous were hit the road again. It's pretty hot out, so we have to make ourselves stay hydrated. Our motto for the trip is "Hydrate or Die". Every so often we stop and pound some water. Especially on days like this.

Luke decides to take some time to check out his tire. Plenty of tread left. All we need is 600 more miles until we can get a new one in Nairobi. We got this.

So far this has been the funnest road we've driven on. Plus the scenerey was amazing.

Another added bonus to this road was all the drainage pipes running underneath. They made for some fun 50 mph wheelies and jumps. Of course, sometimes you had to be careful. Some of them were shady and would destroy the bike if you didn't slow down in time. Plus, my rims loved it.

Halfway through the dirt section of the day we ran into a fellow adventure rider. He was from Switzerland and had a really sexy bike. Plus he has some good news for us. The next half of the road was in worse shape than the section we were riding on. Oh well, we can still make it to Timmer tonight.

I have no idea how you get a drivers licence in Africa, but they seriously need to rethink the process. I've never seen so frequent of carnage on the road.

We finally make it to a gas station along the route and fill up. We finally got to eat too, by now it was 3:00 in the afternoon and we were starving. We decide to stop and find a decent meal and waste 30 min. It's finally nice to be in a cheap country and get really good food for such a low price. This meal cost us $3 including the Cokes.

Before we leave this city we buy twelve liters of water and fill up all our containers. We still had 300 miles to pound out and it was 3:30 with the roughest section comming up. It's going to be a long day. 10 miles down the road the weather is not looking like it's going to be on our side. The sky is looking pretty black and we speed up to try and get ahead of it. 20 miles down the road I start to feel my foot pegs vibrate more than usual and something is starting to sound funny when I give my bike more gas. I slow down to investigate. When I let off the clutch and give my bike gas I hear griding sounds from the gearbox, and my bike vibrates like crazy. This is not good, but accourding to Luke I was due for a break down. I guess that little weasel was right. Just before I was going to tell Luke to stop, I hear Luke on the intercom say, " Nick, we need to stop. I just got a flat front tire". Perfect, both bikes decided to break at the same time. I tell Luke my problem and we stop to figure things out.

We decide we probably won't be able to meet Timmer today, since my bike is more serious than a flat tire. The weather looks bad so we set up the tent just in case. Then we get to work. We put first priority on Lukes bike since we know we can fix it tonight, and he might have to tow me or go get parts. Luke finds the hole in his tube pretty quick and starts to patch it. The problem is, he can't find his patch glue. That's ok, I have some. Unfortunately my glue exploded inside my toolbag. Luckly we salvage some and Luke can patch his tire. We don't have anymore glue for future patches though, which could make for interesting situations in the future.

Of course locals have to stop and investigate.

While Luke finishes his repair I start trying to figure out my problem. We prop my back tire off the ground and see what the bike does. With no load on the tire it seems to run fine. So we check out the rear wheel and notice it shifted a little. I get the rear wheel off and the problem is blatently obvious.

My rear wheel bearings blew out. Funny thing is I replaced the rear wheel bearings before I shipped the bike to Africa. I knew these bike were known for having bearings go out, but once again I decided to risk it. I did keep the old bearings as spares so hopefully we can get this fixed tonight.

You can't bring every tool with you, so sometimes you have to improvise. Rocks become hammers and screwdrivers become bearing pullers. After smashing my fingures a few times Luke give it a go. Neither of us can get the outer ring to budge. We decide to have luke drive the 30 miles back to town to see if he can find someone who can get what's left of the bearing out. I give him all the parts necessary to put the new bearing in, so he can have that done at the same time. Luke takes off for town and I hop on the computer to try to catch up on some updates.

I hear Luke coming back one hour later. I'm not sure if this is a good sign or not. I run to the side of the road to meet him. He gives me the thumbs up and has a huge smile on his face. Not only did he find someone to get the bearing out; he somehow manage to find a guy who had brand new bearings that were the exact same part number. Not to meantion it only cost $10. Now all we had to do was but the wheel back on. 15 minutes later the wheel was back on my bike and I take it for a test drive. Everything seems to be running fine. By now it's 9:00 and we are still 250 miles from Timmer. We can't make it by tonight like we wanted, but we should be able to make it to him before noon tomorrow.

Luke also managed to find us some dinner while he was out in town. Our dinner consisted of Cokes (who's surprised) and some kind of french fry omlette. We crawl into our tent and try to get caught up with our updates. It's a rough job. We have days of material to write about and it didn't help the smell of our tent could make you gage. 4 days of riding with no shower and the same clothes gets rough.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:46 AM   #218
Joined: Mar 2008
Location: Clare, MI
Oddometer: 52
Entry 25

5:00 am came early. We started to pack up while it was still dark and hit the road as soon as we were finished. We only had 250 miles to go. We should have no trouble making that by noon. Even though we pitched our tent on the side of the road, we didn't have anyone stop and bother us all night.

We were pretty lucky. The weather looked like it was going to be on our side today. The dirt road was the same as the day before. The adventurer who came from the opposite direction as us was incorrect; the condition of road wasn't worse. This was more good news for us. Maybe we would finally have an easy day. We spent the first few hours of the day trying to drive fast and get to the next major town along the dirt road. That town would be our last gas station for 150 miles, so we needed to stop there. The ride their was beautiful.

It looks like their bridges are not always up to code. It's a good thing the water wasn't flowing today.

After a few hours of driving through gourgous scenery we made it to the city were we could buy gas. While we were their we stopped and tried to find a snack. We managed to find a Coke and a plain tortilla shell. So that's what we ate; one tortilla shell. I think they called it a pancake, but it was a tortilla shell. A guy at the gas station said their was only 103 kilometers of dirt road left. Not bad. This means only 1.5 hours of dirt roads then 100 miles of tarmac. We should be able to do that fast. We leave the city and hit the road again.

I stop to put my helmet camera on and a little old lady comes to talk to us. We have absolutly no idea what she was talking about. She spoke zero english, not even hello. After 5 minutes of her trying to talk to luke I say goodbye and wave. I guess she thought that meant, "come over and talk to me. I feel left out". Because that is what she did; now she spends the next 5 minutes talking to me. Finally, after smiling the whole time, we wave goodbye and start up the bikes.

I don't care how often it happens; I always get a smile and feel good when kids get excited and wave at us. The best is when they are so excited they jump up and down and wave both arms, or when a pack of kids try to run next to you waving the whole time.

The guy at the gas station was right. After 103 kilometers we hit Tarmac. Nothing could stop us now.

I guess I lied. We made it 10 miles on the tarmac and Luke gets another flat front tire. Not a big deal, that is only a 20 minute fix. Luke gets to work and finds the leak. Strange, it's less than an inch away from his last whole. Something is probably in his tire causing him to get flats. Luke takes the tire off and finds the culprit, it looks like a small thorn was stuck in the sidewall. That's good, now we should have no more flats. That was the good news, the bad news was we didn't have any patch glue. I guess I was right when I said it could make the future a bit more interesting. Since we can't patch it, Luke can just put a new tube in. Luke starts digging through his gear and gets out his extra tube. Jokes on him, he accidentely brought two 18 inch tubes instead of one 18 inch and one 21 inch. That's no problem, I have an extra 21 inch tube for my bike. We get out my extra tube and blow it up. Joke was on me this time (and still on Luke), my brand new tube had two holes in it. How does a new tube straight from the box have two holes in it? I guess it was my turn to go get help.

I take off with my bike and drive 10 miles back where we came from and find a motorcycle shop. They either didn't understand or wouldn't let me buy their glue from them. But they did patch the hole for me for only 33 cents. It took quite a bit of time but they finally finished. I hightale it back to Luke so we can get driving again. Luke spent the hour I was gone working on his tan and listening to music.

Now that the hole was repaired, Luke had the bike together in no time.

The tire held air with no problem and we started cranking out the miles again. This time nothing could stop us!

I lied again. Apparently we are not suppose to make it to Timmer and climb Kilimanjaro. Luke coasts to a stop on the side of the road and tries to start the bike back up. Fuel injection codes start flashing again. We are lucky (or maybe not) the fuel injection code is 3 long and 7 short. Do you remember when Lukes bike died in Zambia? Well, it decided to do it again. At least we know how to fix it. Luke gets started. This time it's easier since it's light out. The last few days have been an emotional rollercoaster. Every days something happens and we think it's impossible to make it to meet Timmer, then somehow we manage to fix it and there is still hope. This is just another one of those times. The bike died and we thought we were screwed, but then we find out we can fix the problem in 30 minutes. Great! Lets get to work.

I think finding hecklers in Africa is as easy as finding Coke to drink. Even miles away from any sort of village we see a guy selling Sunglasses and other miscellaneous trinkets.

Luke fixes the bike and we are ready to ride again. Everything goes easier the second time doing it. The hecklers heckling even paid off for them. Luke decided to buy some sunglasses for Kilimanjaro. I guess everybody won. We hit it hard ready to make up some time. FYI it's about 4:00 pm, so we didn't make it before noon like we expected. We had one more curve ball thrown at us though, but it was easy. The road was under construction and we had about 10 miles of nasty road, which didn't help in the make up time department.

Do you know when you leave your gas cap open, and people try to tell you by pointing at your car and you have no idea what they are talking about? Well we had no idea how to tell this guy what was up, so we didn't even bother.

The road constuction ended and we finally started making up time. We made it to Arusha and got gas. Now we were only 50 kilometers from Timmer and it was 5:00 pm. We fill up with gas and try to find some food. Remember, we've only eaten one tortilla shell and had a Coke to drink. We find a street vendor and grab a french fry omlette. Why are people so excited about these things? They are not the best.

We know we are suppose to meet Timmer in Moshi, but we have no idea where he is staying in Moshi. We would call him on the satilite phone if it was working, but it's not. So we use my cell phone. Luckly Timmer answers his phone. We tell him we are 50 kilometers away and he yells with excitement. He went 7 days with no idea where we were or if we would make it. And from his point of view, it wasn't looking good. By now it was dark outside and we were suppose to begin the climb in 14 hours. He had pretty much given up on us by now. He tells us the name of the hotel and we find it on the GPS, we'll be there in 1 hour. Luke and I take the center lane out of town, and by center lane I mean the center line. People from both lanes have no chose but to move over. The finish line is in sight and we are on a mission. We role up to the hotel at 7:30 pm. We find Timmer at the buffet and run over. WE MADE IT!
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:59 AM   #219
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Originally Posted by isaac004 View Post
This trip is rocking! I was directed to this by your friend Davey Coop who I used to shread BMX with back in the day. Keep rolling, this trip is inspiring!
The one, the only, DAVEY COOP!!! have fun with that kid. He has the right radattitude.
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:10 AM   #220
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I'm loving this report Luke and Nick

I have been a fan of Lukes ever since his 3 months on a husky report.

I really like you guys attitudes over coming all the issues.

Can't wait for more
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:15 AM   #221
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Your "making it happen" dudes! Thanks for taking the time to post.
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Old 03-02-2011, 11:17 AM   #222
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Nice job guys. Can't believe how many miles you guys are doing in a day, its has to be exhausting. The section riding at night avoiding elephants was hardcore. Hope the bikes hold up.
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:16 PM   #223
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Originally Posted by lukeman View Post
Nice job guys. Can't believe how many miles you guys are doing in a day, its has to be exhausting. The section riding at night avoiding elephants was hardcore. Hope the bikes hold up.
"Hope the bikes hold up"

Shh, don't jinx them...
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:32 PM   #224
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This is awesome guys..
"Quote" The advantage of the rain is that, if you have a quick bike, there's no advantage.
(Barry Sheene) .
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:35 PM   #225
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Damn but you guys have been busy. Loving the RR so far, stay safe and hydrated, look forward to reading about Kilimonjaro!
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