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!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Last day, parked the bikes in Mar del Plata, Argentina.

Day 42 (629 km)

      Left the "Bates motel" before Sunrise and decided to get to Mar del plata that day, if the road continued to be that good ( 4 lane asfalt). Avoiding Buenos Aires and making a loop to the south to connect with RN 2, which lead to Mar del Plata, we reached that city 10 hours later in cold, windy, foggy weather and located quick the address of Diego's brother. We parked the bikes and left most of our stuff in his garage and he brought us downtown to a hotel, walked around the beach front in this crowded town and had a very good dinner to celebrate our end of the trip.

    Tomorrow, cleaning up and preparing our bikes and luggage for the next trip in November this year. Diego's brother meanwhile arranging for us tomorrow an "Asada" dinner.
Also we have to do the logistics to get on Wednesday back to Honduras from Mar del Plata.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Argentina for the 3rd time

Day 41 (356 km)

       Had a pretty good night in the Hostal as well as a good breakfast. Made a morning walk in the historic centre and then left town, taking the scenic road to Fray Bentos, which is the border place between Uruguay  and Argentina about 200 km north from us. Reached there around 3pm, had lunch and continued into Argentina, after our paperwork was done with customs and immigration, This all took only 10 minutes and they gave the bikes legal entry into Argentina till the 25th of November 2013. That day was important to us, because we want to come back in the Argentina summer (November), to go to Ushuaia in the Deep South (End of the road).

           Rode another hour in Argentina towards Buenos Aires and decided to call it quits and found a shady road motel next to a gas station in a place called “Ceibas” we nicknamed it the “Bates Motel” due to the isolation, ran down hotel and nothing is working and a weird female owner! Tomorrow we will try to bypass Buenos Aires and try to get close to Mar del Plat, which is the final destination for the bikes!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Right across the river from Buenos Aires, Colonia

Day 40 (230 km)

    In the morning. we went to the Naval Museum, which was small, but interesting and the main story line of the museum was the sinking of the "The Graf Spee" a German vessel, by its own

captain during world war two. Returning to the hotel, we packed up again and rode to Colonia to the west of Montevideo (200 km) and had a hard time finding a sleeping place, everything was filled up for the Good Friday and on the end ended up in a dorm style youth hostel!

   Still trying to figure out how to go to Argentna. We have 2 options 1) take the ferry across or 2) drive 400 km around and go to Fray Bentos, that is where they started to making and invented the famous corn beef.

Will figure this out tomorrow!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Punta del Este, Uruguayan Riviera.

Day 39 (295 km)

     On our rest day, we decided to visit Punta del Este, what is about 150 km to the east on the southern shoreline. It is the playing garden of Uruguayans, Argentinians and even Brazilians nowadays and has very nice beaches and lot of restaurants and terraces along side the boulevards and full of people. The weather was sunny, but I am sure the water would be cold this time of the year. Had 2 lunches in 2 different beach towns and we were enjoying the seafood for a change, first meal mussels in wine sauce and 2 hours later Calamares! 


 We had to take a photo of the hand sticking out of the sand, a famous landmark of Punta del Este!

       On the way back, I am still amazed of the lack of traffic in Montevideo, even downtown there are hardly any cars driving the wide one way streets, but then there are only 3 million people living in whole Uruguay!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Montevideo, Uruguay finally!

Day 38 (199 km)

       Today was the shortest time we rode on the motorcycle and before noon we reached Montevideo, Uruguay, what supposed to be the end of our trip! But as always plans change, so did ours. We got an offer to park our Motorcycles in Mar del Plata, Argentina, where one of my old wetbag instructors (Diego) originally is from. At the moment he is living in Singapore with his Japanese wife, she was an old divemaster @ Cross-Creek as well, but his brother will arrange the storage of the bikes in Mar del Plata, so we will meet him in the next few days, before returning to Honduras till the end of the year! 

         So resting 2 days in Montevideo is our schedule right now and sorting out how to get the moto's by ferry to Buenos Aires, Argentina on Saturday and then drive the final 400 km to Mar del Plata. There we will clean up the bikes, luggage and do some maintenance and then take the bus back to Buenos Aires next Wednesday and board late afternoon our free flight on points to Honduras, changing planes in Rio and Houston, so we get Thursday morning in San Pedro Sula, Honduras and then fly out to Utila in the afternoon.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Uruguay, no one lives outside Montevideo, except cows

Day 37 (535 km)

     Left today the first time before sunrise and it was pretty cold this time of the day, but that was because of the speed we were driving, full out. In no while we reached the Uruguayan border by Concordia and Salto on the other side of the wide river and the road across was actually a dam and it was pretty impressive! The immigration and aduana from Uruguay and Argentina were located in the same building, so within 10 minutes all was done and a new country in front of us.

        We forgot to fill up on the Argentina side for a dollar a liter and soon after 100 km in Uruguay we almost ran out of gas, due to the lack of gas stations, actually there were no houses or people as well, only grass pieces and sheep and cows. Luckily one little settlement had a grocery store what sold us 20 liters for $ 40.00 US.   

     After another 100 km a little town showed  up where we had lunch and topped our gas tanks off, again $ 2.00 a liter. Uruguay is so far the most expensive country, if it comes to gasoline!  After more as 500 km, we called it quits in Durazno, about 200 km before the capital of Montevideo. Looked for a hostel with wifi and found one around 4 pm and their internet is fast!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Argentina “auto piste” towards Uruguay.

Day 36 (405 km)

         Went looking for a bike shop and found one nearby and told him to change the sprockets and chain and an hour later and $ 14.00 US poorer, I was ready to go again. Scotty needed to change his back tire so the guy took us to a friend and there we found out what the problem actually was with my Brazilian tire. The guy showed me the inside of the tire and said it was no good and the wall was collapsed and rough and that caused all my headaches with flat tires in the past, so we condemned that tire and I went back to the hotel to get the second old back tire I had! 

Around 11 am, we left and tried to make some good time on the road to Uruguay and rode 400 km on beautiful paved road and ended up an hour before the Uruguayan border in a small town called Mocoreta. Found a small road hotel for $ 16.00 for two, with hot water, Ac and cheap beer, so the day ended good!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Riding through German small towns in Paraguay

Day 35 (379 km)

Left in cloudy weather Ciudad de Este to the Argentina border, but we didn’t want to go through Brazil, while us not sure if we were getting problems with the bikes, so we went over a new paved road through Paraguay to the city of Encarnacion. We stopped a few times and all we saw were German businesses and German advertisements, even the people had German features and most of them were talking German among themselves and all the restaurants and bars had German products.

It was almost surreal and being it Sunday, they all went for brunch to their own fancy restaurants and Sunday bands were playing German music all over the place. Around 3 pm we crossed the border and the procedure was fast, because we were already in the Argentina system and could stay with the bikes again till the 19th of November and collected 2 more stamps in my passport. Scotty’s passport been filled up and I asked them to stamp his entry stamps on top of others.

After I got rid of my “flat tire syndrome”, I started to get a new one now involving the chain problems, which I heard banging the last few days and as well slipping. Finally after the chain getting too loose every day, I found out what the problem was, namely the teeth of the rear sprocket were gone and it must have happened according Scotty in the last week, because he cleaned my sprocket recently and didn’t see any wear and tear. Anyway I decided to stop in a small place where I saw a hotel and wait till Monday to change the sprockets and probably chain as well. It was a good thing we have a spare set with us and it was five o’clock anyway!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Popping in Brazil again, to see the falls

Day 34 (0) 

     Today, we went back in Brazil again and it was the most chaotic scene I ever saw on a border, thousands of cars, moto and trucks on both side and thousands of pedestrians walking over the bridge to go shopping in Paraguay. It supposed to be the shopping mekka of South America and everything is for sale in Ciudad de Este on the street and shops!

       Soon we walked over the friendship bridge and our passports didn't had to be stamp on both sides as long as we didn't go further as the Foz do Iguacu city limits. Took a few city buses and reached the Brazilian National park where the falls are. It was all set up professional and buses brought you into the park and had different stops to see and do activities around the falls.

        The falls are very impressive and you can not compare it to the Niagara falls in the USA and Canada, everything here is ten times more massive, with hundreds of falls and with very high drop offs, also it was possible to walk to these falls up to 2 meters and had it as a tourist attraction very nice put together. Had an expensive lunch there with a few beers and around five we were back in Paraguay again, tired, cut my hair, because it was getting time to do so, had some more beers and called it the night!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Twice a stand off on the road to Ciudad de Este

Day 33 (324 km)

       Asuncion, we left 10 am and it took us at least one hour to get out of town and the traffic was hectic and lot of people and traffic on the road, but finally we reached after 30 km the outskirts, but  every 10 km there was a village or so, so we did not make good speed and it was only 300 km to Ciudad de Este, which is located on the border with Brazil and Argentina and where the famous Foz do Iguazo waterfalls are. They supposed to be more impressive as the Niagara falls, so will compare that tomorrow.

        Every 2 or 3 km there was a checkpoint on the road from the transito police and noticed soon that they only had it in for foreign plates and motorcycles and soon we were pulled over a couple of times and intimidated with fines for speeding, crossing a double line, no reflection clothing, did not like the Bolivian stamp in the passport and more crap and every time the conversation started polite, but soon started in a shouting match and worse. but these young  arrogant cops were no match to me and after threatening a few of them, that I will send them tomorrow to the Bolivian border  for a year or so for punishment, after I got my sources involved to back me up ( I have none!) and what helps always is taking their pictures and tell them I made a video as well of there scam, they gave quick the passport and other papers back and let us pass and took their revenge out on the next Gringo's, this time they were 3 Mexican bikers (one man, two female) and felt sorry for them.

        It is a pity Paraguay, tolerate this behavior from these corrupt cops on the road and is so far the only country in South America were this is happening to us, but unsuccessful.
I like these stand offs  and it is like playing poker and I am good in it!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Looking for "The boys from Brazil" in Paraguay!

Day 32 ( 336 km)

       Next to our Hotel, the selection of Buenos Aires was welcomed with police escort and there was a party all night with bands and thousands of people were on the street partying! and our bikes were parked outside the hotel door on the street, but everything was still in one piece next morning and left 9 am for Paraguay, about 300 km away to the north.

         We reached the border around 2 pm and an hour later we had all papers fixed up and went to Asuncion, the capital 45 km away. I was impressed with the business I saw on the street and the ride in town was at least 25 km long with all the international businesses, you can think about, I even saw my first McDonald and Burger King!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

One straight road 600 km to Resistancia

Day 31 (593 km)

     Early start and left on a straight rod to Resistencia for more as 600 km and passed through farm land and a  few villages in between. Stopped around 1 pm and surprisingly had a good dinner with goat meat and continued afterwards to Resistencia and rolled in around 6 pm, found a decent hotel in the centre, just before the rain started. That evening drank a few beers on a terrace and a lot of people were walking around and the city had a nice atmosphere

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Leaving the mountains and heading for Paraguay 1300 km away!

Day 30 (357 km)

       Got up 8 am to have breakfast and strolled afterwards through the village, what had a market for the tourists to buy crap, packed up the bikes and left 11 am to go towards Salta.
On the way there were a lot of demonstrations and just like in Honduras, the only way they can bring their cause over, is to block highways, but we were lucky and they always let us pass and by closing all these highways, we were lucky and ended up on a road, I did not know about and actually got us quicker to RN-16, which is 700 km long in a straight line to Resistencia in the east of Argentina, close to Paraguay.

Around 6 pm it was enough and ended up in a place called Joaquim V. Gonzalez and had an authenticate parilla dinner with all the meat you wanted and all kinds! The owner was Portugese/French and was stuck in this part of the world and had some interesting stories.
late we went back to the guest house.