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Old 07-20-2014, 07:47 PM   #2041
Trane Francks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightcycle View Post
Who knew all that stuff was actually good for you? Mindblowing...
ROTFLMAO!

Another great instalment, Gene.
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Old 07-20-2014, 08:04 PM   #2042
Turkeycreek
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You fell for the "if we go hiking, maybe we'll see UFOs" trick? You must have been tired.
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Old 07-20-2014, 08:57 PM   #2043
Jud
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Wonderfull stuff to live vicariously through.


I think I want to live in Ecuador!
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Old 07-21-2014, 06:47 AM   #2044
Max Wedge
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Thanks for the update Gene! Made my morning. If I had bacon, it would have been a perfect morning.
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Old 07-21-2014, 10:04 AM   #2045
ModalGuy
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Originally Posted by lightcycle View Post

Izhcayluma Lodge is a bit Granola. But that's okay, because Neda is a Granola-Wannabe. She doesn't really get full acceptance by the Birkenstock-crowd because she prefers to hug trees using her dirtbike. Funny story: next time you talk to Neda, ask her about the time she forgot to air-down the tires on her WR250F after riding street, and literally "hit" the trails...
I think I get the same deal with my Appalachian Trail sticker stuck on the side of my WRR. And I hug a lot of trees on my WRR.

I'll bite: Neda, tell us about the time you forgot to air down your tires.
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Old 07-21-2014, 04:47 PM   #2046
h2o_snow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightcycle;24610194
[COLOR=darkorange
[/COLOR]
Hanging out with Valentino in Jerez during breakfast

There aren't many things that dictate our travel schedule, but MotoGP is one of them. We stayed an extra few days just so that we could download the race that weekend, but to our surprise, the cafe where we stopped to have breakfast was actually showing the race live! Motorcycle racing is not very popular in North America, so it was quite a novelty to watch it in a public place.

We were the only ones watching the race in the restaurant, and we get quite excited and very loud when there's a close pass or a crash. One or twice (or maybe more often), the other patrons looked up from their nice and quiet Sunday brunch to frown at our outbursts...

Very cool!

We were touring Crete a few years back when the 'Tour was on. Just on chance happened to stumble in a bar and caught a live broadcast/summary. It became the ending of our day for a week - the locals actually started to talk with us & the beer was cold.

Thanks again for the update!
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Old 07-22-2014, 06:07 AM   #2047
CourtRand
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GREAT PHOTOS! Excellent report! Thanks for sharing the beauty of Ecuador!
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:01 AM   #2048
swamp
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if you are going where i think you are going.. get ready for some mud.
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:40 AM   #2049
lightcycle OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turkeycreek View Post
You fell for the "if we go hiking, maybe we'll see UFOs" trick?
I know, that's like the fourth oldest trick in the book...

Quote:
Originally Posted by CourtRand View Post
GREAT PHOTOS! Excellent report! Thanks for sharing the beauty of Ecuador!
Thank you for the suggestions!
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Old 07-31-2014, 07:54 AM   #2050
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Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/161.html



We're leaving Ecuador!

Heading towards the Peruvian border, we've got a choice to make: do we take the coastal road south or continue inland twisting our way through the Andes Mountains. On the one hand we love curvy, mountain roads, but the constant rains have really dampened (no pun intended) our enjoyment of leaning into corners due to dubious levels of grip. So we decide to head back to the coast, crossing into Peru and traveling along the western shoreline of South America.


Taking the corners con gusto! But it looks wet up ahead...


Need I mention it? Rain. And helicopters!


Saying sayonara to the Andes for awhile


Stop for lunch, pose for a picture

As we reach the coast, the weather is instantly warmer and drier. It's hard to believe a couple hundred of kms makes such a difference. The lush green hills fall away and we're greeted by sagebrush covering the flat plains. We are headed towards the border town of Huaquillas, staying overnight to attempt the border crossing while we're still fresh in the morning. We've read that it's a good idea to fill our gas tanks up with cheap Ecaudorean gas because the availability and quality of the petrol on the other side of the border is a bit suspect. Not to mention expensive!


Neda falls ill!

Our plans to cross the next day are delayed. Neda has developed a very high temperature and bad diarrhea. We get very worried when the symptoms don't abate overnight so we call in a doctor. Poor Neda has to do all the communicating, and I feel somewhat better when I can do a prescription run to fetch the various pills and potions to make her well again. I have a feeling that her flu was brought on by our killer-hike in Vilcabamba. We're not used to that level of activity and I think that the exertion lowered our immune systems. I always seem get sick right after I just start working out after a period of inactivity.

I like blaming exercise and hiking for everything. It's just not good for you.


Our first time in Peru! For today...

The next morning, Neda is feeling up for an attempt the border, so we prepare ourselves for the usual dance. Armed with dozens of photocopies of all of our documents, we pass an imaginary line on the ground and then immediately we're plunged into a chaos that's very un-Ecuadorean. This is the Latin America that we had last seen in Colombia and Central America - the roads crumbling beneath our tires and being surrounded by countless street vendors calling out to us and every tourist that walked by. Yes, walked by. We seemed to be the only vehicles driving through the border. Strange.

We rode around the Peruvian side of Huaquillas for quite a while trying to find the twin offices of Migracion and Aduana to stamp us and our motorcycles into the country. Nothing. No signs or any indications that we should be stopping. We rode further down the PanAm past the city limits. Still nothing. So we doubled back the way we had come from and asked a guy wearing an official-looking uniform where all the border offices were.


Our police escort through Peruvian Huaquillas

The official talked to Neda and told us this was not the official border crossing. Which was weird because this *was* the Pan American highway. I found out much later the problem was that we had actually stopped in Huaquillas. Most travelers bypass the city and cross the border at the official crossing, which was a few kms before the city.

We asked for directions to the real crossing but the official told us that it was unsafe for us to be riding through Peruvian Huaquillas alone. Huh?!? We had been roaming around for half an hour all over the area looking for the offices! It didn't seem unsafe at all. He told that he would radio for us a police escort to the real border. Alarm bells started going off in our heads. Why do we need a police escort to the border? We had never had one before? We tried to gauge how official this guy was, was he setting us up for an ambush somewhere?

In the end, our trusting natures prevailed, and we waited patiently until a couple of policemen riding two-up on a small 150cc motorcycle pulled up to us, talked to the official and then motioned for us to follow them. Seemed legit. *shrug* We followed them.


Our circuitous route to Peru, back to Ecuador and then to Peru again

We rode through Huaquillas on the Peruvian side again. Still didn't seem very dangerous... I watched my GPS as the policemen took us south to the city bypass and then back into Ecuador at the border crossing. We thanked them as they waved goodbye to us. This was probably a very common problem.


Our second time in Peru... today.

Because we were entering Peru from the wrong side (from Peru), there was a huge mixup in getting our bikes stamped out of Ecuador. The Aduana was actually several kms past the border on the Ecuadorean side. It took us another hour to find this out, and we actually rode across the border back and forth several times looking for the office. This border crossing was taking forever!

I thought about all the cheap Ecuadorean gas we were burning up and felt a bit sad. Neda thought about the small breakfast she had over 6 hours ago and she felt a lot hangry. All the scary Peruvian gangsters in Huaquillas pale in comparison to Neda running on low blood sugar...


Riding in Peru! Not so deep and dark...?

The actual border process was quite simple once we figured out where all the buildings were. We fed the Dragon (Hungry Neda) and then all at once everything seemed well with the world. We were riding in a new country, the weather was nice and sunny and over the intercom we made plans to research all the things we wanted to see and do in Peru.

Personally, I only know two things about Peru: Paddington Bear (I used to watch this all the time when I was a kid) and Machu Picchu. I did a search on my GPS for "Deepest, Darkest Peru".


Our first stop in Peru

We decided to find a nice beach-side town to reward ourselves for making into another country. Because that doesn't happen too often when you travel as slowly as we do! The northern coast of Peru is lined with many such towns. The largest and most popular one is Mancora, less than 2 hours south of the border. It's lined with plenty of stores, surf-shops, restaurants and hostels and has a great hippy vibe to it. We find a cheap, yet nice place just outside the city and settle in for a couple of days.


Nice place to relax


Sharing the beach in Mancora with a line of fishing boats in the distance


Surfing is very popular along the northern shores of Peru


Typical tourist fare


Panama Hats made in Ecuador, sold in Peru


Sunset on horseback

Mancora was a great place to hang out and chill. Our first few days in Peru have been quite relaxing, although it was quite clear how much more clean and affluent Ecuador is after crossing the border. And how cheap the gas was as well!


Back on our way to find Deepest, Darkest Peru!
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Old 07-31-2014, 08:09 AM   #2051
Schussboelie
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Awesome repôrt and inspiring pictures as always!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by lightcycle View Post
I like blaming exercise and hiking for everything. It's just not good for you.

Because we were entering Peru from the wrong side (from Peru),

All the scary Peruvian gangsters in Huaquillas pale in comparison to Neda running on low blood sugar... We fed the Dragon (Hungry Neda) and then all at once everything seemed well with the world.
You cracked me up three times in one post. I so love your humour and attitude.


I hope all is well with you guys and Neda's Mom Gene, wishing you guys all the best!!
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Old 07-31-2014, 11:43 AM   #2052
Blader54
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The super quality of your reports is spoiling us! But don't stop...Please! Best wishes to Neda and her family...and you too, of course!
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Old 08-01-2014, 04:22 AM   #2053
wrenchead
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Moto GP

Gene, I am sure you are probably aware that there is now a Moto GP app.
MotoGP Live Experience ($16.10. Android, iOS) It is not cheap but if you are hooked on watching it at least it will give you the freedom to watch it wherever you are.
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Old 08-01-2014, 06:40 AM   #2054
Trane Francks
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Originally Posted by wrenchead View Post
Gene, I am sure you are probably aware that there is now a Moto GP app.
MotoGP Live Experience ($16.10. Android, iOS) It is not cheap but if you are hooked on watching it at least it will give you the freedom to watch it wherever you are.
I'm pretty sure the app only offers live timing and commentary. If you want to watch the races, you need to have a video subscription at the site itself, which is WAY more coin. Worth it, IMO, but expensive when you also do WSBK.
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Old 08-01-2014, 10:08 AM   #2055
Max Wedge
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Gene and Neda,
Your RR always just makes my day (especially at work). I try not to think about the fact that it will come to an end at some point, and enjoy the moment. Your attitudes are infectious. Mrs. Wedge and I now regularly use the "Don't worry about it, that's FutureMax's problem." philosophy. Life changing. Thanks for that.

Hope things are going well for you and your family.

PS-if I give you Mrs. Wedge phone number can you convince her that hiking and exercise is bad for you also?
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