Click on the picture, below the waving flags on the left and right, to see relevant photo's of the individual countries and trips throughout the years!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

El poy, this is the last border to cross this trip

Thursday 30 June 2011

Left early, because we had plans to reach Tela, Honduras tonight and continued our way towards the Salvador Capitol, had some breakfast in a fancy rest stop and we were the only customers and the food was good and plentyful.

Hit the road again and just before San Salvador , we made a right and went North towards the Honduran border, which was probably another hour to go, till we got to a line up of cars and trucks standing still.

We tried to find out what happened and the rumors was, that there was a bad accident around the corner and that an bus slid off a mountain, through a landslide and pretty soon we saw all the ambulances, Helicopters and the military coming to the rescue scene. Curious as I was, I walked towards the scene and saw the rescue in progress and saw a lot of injured and dead people on stretchers and everybody running, climbing walls, so I thought this is it for today! Standing around for a while, I start to realize it was an exercise with a realistic reenactment  from all the different rescue groups. 

After an hour the exercise was over and we could continue again and a little later , we reached the border El Poy

After leaving this border in a few minutes, we started to climb towards 2100 meter on a beautiful mountain road and past the 18 wheelers, who were barely making 10 miles an hour. On top of the mountain it was nice a sunny and stopped for a beer and were watching the impressive scenery

After the stop we had still 4 hours to go to Tela, but the road was in very decent condition and 6 pm , we rolled into Tela, and went looking for an Hotel a aquintance of Scotty owned and they had  a similar agreement if they were visiting each other hotel, so they gave us the presidential suite downstairs with all the amenities against cost price. It was a very nice gesture and we had dinnernwith the son of the owner later that night.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

One more country to go, El Salvador.

Wednesday 29 June 2011

Glad we left the Hotel this morning, not even the breakfast was eatable and an hour later, we reached Amatillo the border with Salvador and in 5 minutes, we left Honduras and entered Salvador and headed for San Miguel the first big city with his volcano as background, we had plans to go to Perquin, where a museum was about the guerilla war Salvador had in the seventies and eighties and during that time, I entered Central America for the first time and remember the news headlines and firsthand stories.

The road towards Perquin was through the woods, slowly getting higher and higher and late that morning we reached. Visited the museum and got an impression, what happened during that era.

Left Perquin after lunch and we had the idea to continue to Marcala, Honduras, using a dirt road and using a remote border crossing, which was not fully operational. The road towards the border was stunning and just before the border the Salvador Military stopped us and refused us to continue to Honduras and said this border was only for local people, After arguing for 2 hours, I gave up and we returned all the way back and used another border to get into Honduras, El Poy, atleast 7 hours away!

We hit the Pan American Highway towards the capitol,  San Salvador and halfway, just before it got dark, we stopped for the night in Cojutepeque

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Back in the good old USA, I meant Honduras!

Tuesday 28 June 2011

    Leon was a nice town and enjoyed it and has its charm, but we were heading for Honduras and wanted to take the next border, instead the 2 we already did, so we ended up in Somotillo on the Nicaraguan side and Guasaule on the Honduras side. both borders went fast and had no trouble, The Honduran police wanted to be smart and asked about the self made plates and I had to laugh and did not even answer him and showed him the papers and the Honduran permit I could drive without plates in Honduras, like he was not aware of this and wanted to shake me down. Anyway we left and after a few more police checks we ended up in Choleteca a heaven came loose and it pured more rain as I ever saw for about an hour and we were soaking wet again including the luggage.

After the rain, the sun came out and by the time we reached Amapala our clothes we were wearing were almost dry. Amapala is a small Island and had plans to go across with a small lancha, but after looking the size and the waves, we cancelled and didn't want to take the risks and turned back to San Lorenzo, where we stayed in an expensive but shitty hotel on the main road. It was the only one open, the other ones were closed by the tax people for not paying there sales tax 

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ended up in Leon, the old capitol

Monday 27 June 2011

   We heard about the horror stories of the dirt road from San Carlos towards Managua, this road is on the east side of lake Nicaragua, but to our surprise, the road was brand new, special made for us and the asfelt was still smelling fresh! So in no while we hit the main road from Rama to Managua and a little later entered Managua. Didn't want to stay here and tried to reach Leon in the north west of the country and was always mentioned in the guide books as a must place to see.

So we continued and we passed Lake Managua on our right side for a while and made a rest stop. We saw a fellow motorcycle rider, cleaning up himself after he must have hit the pavement and we could see he needed help. Scotty walked up to him, but he told Scotty, he could manage himself and ignored us, looking at his license plate, which was German, explained it all.

The place was very busy with a nice downtown with old colonial buildings, ate for a change some Chinese food and the hotel was 2 blocks away from the center, secured our bikes on the street and hit the town for it's night live

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Rio Frio Crossing, by boat only!

Sunday 26 June 2011

    We left Zarcero on Sunday morning early and the town was preparing for a religious procession, took som pictures and headed for Los Chiles, which is the border town,  from where you had to take a small boat to San Carlos Nicaragua, no cars is possible to cross and the 2 countries just had a border dispute what was more or less settled in international court in Den Haag. It was about the rights and protection of the river "San Juan", which forms the border from the Atlantic to Lake Nicaragua. We reached Los Chiles and checked the scene out and asked around How to get to Nicaragua and were advised to take the small river boat at 3PM
   After checked out of Costa Rica, we were waiting and the boat actually showed up and after talking to the captain and agreeing on the price of $60.00 for bike and our passage each, we start boarding the bikes, what took an half an hour and secured it with ropes. The trip was about an hour and was very interesting with the poor settlements on the banks, the monkeys howling and passing the Nicaraguan army post. Fanally we reach the lake and to the right we saw San Carlos and docked up pretty soon after that. Everybody was curious about the motorcycles including police and customs and were prepared for the worse.

Our insurance for Nicaragua on the bikes was still valid and they didn't give us the hassle with the plates, I was fearing, so an hour or so later we got a police escort to the hotel, he recommended and he was putting on his siren on to impress the local population and us and in no while we reached the hotel, said goodbye and told him we would buy him a beer later in town if he was still there. Checked in the crappy hotel with a loud A/C, but it was cheap and realized again everything is half price here compared to Cost a Fortune.
Had the best evening meal sofar this trip in a nice champa type restaurant on the waterfront, called Lagostinnas and at the same thing (Freshwater shrimp/lobster), the beer was cold so the night was pretty good for us

Saturday, June 25, 2011

3600 meter up on the Panam and visiting Volcano Irazu

Saturday 25 June 2011

   That morning ,when we left, I was surprised how high up the Pan American road went and how quick, within 15 miles we reached the top of the mountain road which was 3600 meter, more as 11500 feet and it became pretty chilly. Close to the top there was a restaurant with a very nice view and decided to warm our hands inside and get some coffee!

Getting closer to San Jose, we took a right and we went for another mountain road to the volcano Irazu, which was very impressive and there were quite a few tourists there, after taking some pictures, we went down the mountain again and an hour later hit traffic ni the capital of San Jose. it was still early in the afternoon and decided to stay somewhere north of San Jose in the mountains and after getting lost for a while , we ended up in a nice place, called Zarcera Found an hotle around the main plaza and did we regret that, because all night the local crowd, where popping wheelies and singing serenades and all the time all car alarms went off, I guess that is Saterday night fever in this place

Friday, June 24, 2011

Rio Sereno, quiete border off the beaten track.

Friday 24 June 2011

Border Rio Sereno, Panama

    Leaving David in the morning and took a nice winding road to the Rio Sereno border, which was recommended a lot of times to use instead of the Canoas crossing. Getting there early, we had the bad luck there was no electricity and that meant, we could not check out our bikes and get through Panamanian customs and without there exit stamp in our passports, we were not allowed to enter in Costa Rica, so we waited nearby four hours, till a lot of people had gathered there with the similar problems and then suddenly at 3 pm it was possible to cross, so it was all day crap arguments , that you couldn't cross without no electricity!
Anyway we still had valid motorcycle insurance from 2 weeks ago when we entered from Nicaragua, so the Costa Rica side went fast and hit  very bad dirt road to the nearest small village about 10 miles away and after that it changed into paved road with pot holes to get further into Costa Rica, We were still high-up so the weather was cool, but soon it started to drizzle and a little later it poured and reached San Isidro and looked for a road hotel and checked in and tried to dry our clothes again.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Trying to leave Panama to David

Thursday 23 June 2011

We did our laundry in the morning at the guesthouse and decided midday to leave for David, which is about 6 hours away and close to the Costa Rica border, so we had a good start the next day to cross the border in an alternative place, besides the busy Canoas crossing. I read about the Rio Sereno crossing and the road towards is that you feel like you driving in the Alps.
So midday, we took off but we hit a lot of rain during our8 hour event and got water soaked in David, looked for an hotel around the zocola and try to dry our clothes, while hitting the town for a bite
A/C does wonders to wet cloth and everything was dry the next morning.