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Old 04-04-2013, 05:03 AM   #2326
Panama
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Location: Jacksonville Beach, FL
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Packing

Hey John,
We are heading out on our ride to Panama tomorrow. Your reports have shown us that the average guy can go do this stuff without a bucket of cash. We are on bigger (650) bikes but hope to take it slow and save on gas.

I am really impressed with your packing. I have packed and repacked trying to get the volume smaller (down to 40-50 lbs) It is amazing how heavy/big two spare tubes and a few extra bolt and zip ties are.

We plan to take a similar route as you and were wondering what you estimated the coldest temperature to be?

I have a 20 sleeping bag that is the size of a basketball and about 5-6 lbs, and local sports authority store has a 45 bag that is really small/cheap ($20). We hope to camp almost as much as you. Did you ever wish you had more or less sleeping bag?
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Old 04-04-2013, 07:08 AM   #2327
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Originally Posted by jkam View Post
Hola Juanito.

I was thinking (we know, that's troubling) that it would be interesting to continue this ride report in certain areas.
I'd love to know for instance, your cost per day once back in the USA. Be interesting to see how different that will be, at least for a comparison.

Thanks for the continuing entertainment/education.

Bien Viaje!
Hi jkam,

Will do. I haven't been reporting daily expenses lately because I haven't been riding much for the last while. If I had to pay for accomadation here in Poblado, this would be more expensive than riding in the U.S. As it is, I've been spending 100 bucks a week on food, disposable razors, soap, some gas and that's about it. I could live on social security down here easy. There are so many expats that could use some home improvement from an honest English speaking Gringo, it would be cake to work part time down here.

Surprisingly, riding from Nebraska to Mexico was one of the cheapest legs of the trip. Mainly because there are so many free places to camp and there are lots of folks on the tentspace list. I didn't spend anything on lodging for the first month of this trip.

I'll keep up the ride report when I get back stateside.

Saludos,
Juanito
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Old 04-04-2013, 08:45 AM   #2328
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Panama View Post
Hey John,
We are heading out on our ride to Panama tomorrow. Your reports have shown us that the average guy can go do this stuff without a bucket of cash. We are on bigger (650) bikes but hope to take it slow and save on gas.

I am really impressed with your packing. I have packed and repacked trying to get the volume smaller (down to 40-50 lbs) It is amazing how heavy/big two spare tubes and a few extra bolt and zip ties are.

We plan to take a similar route as you and were wondering what you estimated the coldest temperature to be?

I have a 20 sleeping bag that is the size of a basketball and about 5-6 lbs, and local http://="http://www.sportsauthority....e has a 45 bag that is really small/cheap ($20). We hope to camp almost as much as you. Did you ever wish you had more or less sleeping bag?
Hi Panama,

That is great news! I look forward to following your progress. Should be fun!

As far as cold temps go, the high elevation mountains in Mexico, Guatemala and Costa Rica above 8000 feet are where it gets chilly at night. I don't know the rating on my down bag. It packs down quite small with a compression sack, and was plenty warm for me in the mountains. No need for it down in the lower elevations. I would take the 20 dollar lightweight bag. You'll be fine.

Mind you, it is hot down on the coast no matter what time of year, so it is just a matter of camping in the lower elevations and riding in the upper elevations during the day in the dead of winter. But things are warming up since I was there. It's April now and the cool mountain air will feel good after riding in 90 heat down on the coast.

If you have any questions along the way, feel free to post up or PM me. Always glad to be of service to fellow riders.

Buena Suerte amigo,
Tio Juan
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Old 04-04-2013, 11:50 AM   #2329
Shibby!
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I rode Mexico, Belize, Guatemala with a +5C rated bag last winter and was cold almost every night camping where I was away from the coast.

I'd suggest a warmer bag. I will be carrying a -7 next time.
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Old 04-04-2013, 12:46 PM   #2330
zilla
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDowns View Post
I'd like to thank Warren Brown and Ronald Zissler for sponsoring this weeks ride report. It means a lot.

Muchas gracias amigos,
Juanito
johnthomasdowns.blogspot.com
Anytime. I've enjoyed reading your travels!
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Old 04-04-2013, 02:48 PM   #2331
AK Smitty
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Great RR and way to keep up to date.

I am back at work now struggling to shake off the adventure of the road and get back into the grind. It was a good run for me and cool to meet you in Nica. Poblado is not a bad place to hang out for a while other than its a little pricey!

I am also hoping to be back in SA next year. Maybe our paths will cross again.

Josh
White F800GS
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Old 04-04-2013, 04:35 PM   #2332
BC Brian
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Originally Posted by JDowns View Post
Whether it's e-books, or coffee table books, or tee-shirts, or decals, or kickstarter, or whatever. I want to know how people with limited funds can get some crowd sourced funding to head out into the unknown.

It's not cheap taking off from work for 6 months and riding your brains out. I am willing to do the research and development for those that follow in my tire tracks.

Whether it's freecampsites.net or the tentspace list on ADV, or couchsurfing.net, or GPS waypoints for free camping sites in Latin America. It is my mission to find a way for more people to take off and head into the unknown.
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Old 04-04-2013, 05:13 PM   #2333
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AK Smitty View Post
Great RR and way to keep up to date.

I am back at work now struggling to shake off the adventure of the road and get back into the grind. It was a good run for me and cool to meet you in Nica. Poblado is not a bad place to hang out for a while other than its a little pricey!

I am also hoping to be back in SA next year. Maybe our paths will cross again.

Josh
White F800GS
Hi Josh,

Glad you made it back safely. It's the good people you meet on the road that leave a lasting memory long after the ride is over. You were one of them. It was a pleasure meeting you.

And I guarantee in another 30 years when you're old like me you'll still remember the time you got a free ride in a C-130 out of the Colombian mountains with your bike. It will bring a smile to your face even then.

Hope to see you down the road. Maybe next year amigo,

Buena Suerte,
Tio Juan
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Old 04-05-2013, 06:26 PM   #2334
dvmweb
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Thumbs down Well now.

Better'n books. Better'n tv. I waded through this report in my spare readin' time these last few days. Kept a tab on safari on my iPad on this.

Doggone it I really liked it. And, I wish it wouldn't end.

JDowns if you can promise us that you will do this some more I'd be be glad.

Thank you for the humility, the insight, the effort. Thank you.

We have to figure out a way way to help guys like this and not be thwarted in the effort. Thank you.

Walt
NE lower NE Michigan
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:46 PM   #2335
Dracula
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Hi John!

We are going to miss you. Several months with no JDowns reports.. ugh.

Best,
Vic
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:15 AM   #2336
JDowns OP
Sounds good, let's go!
 
Joined: Mar 2005
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Originally Posted by dvmweb View Post
Better'n books. Better'n tv. I waded through this report in my spare readin' time these last few days. Kept a tab on safari on my iPad on this.

Doggone it I really liked it. And, I wish it wouldn't end.

JDowns if you can promise us that you will do this some more I'd be be glad.

Thank you for the humility, the insight, the effort. Thank you.

We have to figure out a way way to help guys like this and not be thwarted in the effort. Thank you.

Walt
NE lower NE Michigan
Hi dvmweb,

So glad you enjoyed the report. It has been fun writing and uploading photos the last six months.

And yes I promise I will continue on reporting live from South America next fall when I return. I'm not leaving until next week. Haven't had much to report lately. Have just been hooking up gas lines down in the kitchen here at the Shamrock since they are opening for breakfast next week.

Here is Al supervising the cooks going over the new breakfast menu:



I was fortunate to be one of the guinea pigs for some scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon and toast:



I ended up eating the homemade yogurt, fresh fruit and granola as well. Along with a BLT. Didn't get pics sorry. It's like home cooking.

I finally waddled away and mounted two new LCD TVs high on the wall so now they have 4 TVs for maximum sports viewing down in the restaurant.

Gotta go now. Have to finish hooking up the video cams and get over and finish painting Albert's cool new apartment.

Hasta Luego,
Juanito
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South America and back on a 250 Super Sherpa Minimalist Adventure
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=831076

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Old 04-06-2013, 01:14 PM   #2337
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Traveling for the last six months and and hanging out in Colombia for the last three months has been wonderful! The people here are so friendly and warm. It has given me time to reflect on the last 6 months of travel. Let me just say once again, this has been the best rides of my life. More because of the wonderful people I met along the way than anything else.

Starting in Oklahoma with Throttlemeister:



and all the great ADVriders in Oklahoma at the Zombie Apocalypse training camp:



and continuing down to Texas and visiting Schizzman when the gas tank was a veritable virgin:



and the great folks at the Roll the Bones Rally:







and grneggs who gave me his tent:



and the fabulous Tricefamily who gave me shelter and intoduced me to the best damn ribs and brisket I've ever tasted:



Not to mention Arte who is the king of parilla in Northern Mexico:



and my buddy from Naranjo who fed me for free and wouldn't take my money:



Not to mention MikeMike who treated me to an AWESOME ride in Veracruz state. This guy is off the charts nice:



and out in the Yucatan the thought of a Mexican bus driver inviting me to his house to spend the night. What a great guy! Hospitality with a capital H!:




more later….
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Old 04-06-2013, 05:23 PM   #2338
slowoldguy
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John. We all consider ourselves fortunate to be characters in the play.
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:24 PM   #2339
JDowns OP
Sounds good, let's go!
 
Joined: Mar 2005
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Finishing up working this afternoon and who rides up but two more Sherpas. Meet Hektoglider and Rosie from northern Ontario:



Three Sherpas in the cul-de-sac. Sherpa rally!:



I took them out to dinner at the Italian place Toscano's up the street:



Zero problems with their Sherpas so far. They own five Sherpas. They showed me pics of the sweet ones they left at home. These are my kind of people!!!!!


Saludos,
Juan Sherpa
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:53 PM   #2340
Hektoglider
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Thank you
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