On December 1, 2016 Deby and I fly to Buenos Aires, with any luck our motorcycles will arrive two days later. We can’t wait.
In 2013 Deby and I joined four friends and rode from Seattle to Buenos Aires over a four month period. From there we shipped our bikes home and settled into a more or less normal routine, or as normal as routines ever get for us. This time it will be just the two of us, travelling alone. The plan is to start where we left off in 2013 and ride the motorcycles home with a time frame of about six months.
In 2013 we had stickers made commemorating the 50th anniversary of MotoRaid, a South America trip made in 1963 by Keith Thye and David Yaden. In keeping with tradition for this trip I designed a new sticker.
Dos Motos Un Mundo means Two Motorcycles – One World. Whenever you see one of these stickers you will immediately know where you are because “X” marks the spot and the sticker cleverly states “you are here”. With one of these stickers you could never be lost. We hope, since we have a stack of these, there isn’t a chance we could ever be lost on the whole continent of South America. Hmmmm.
We have a few other upgrades as well. Deby is now riding a BMW F650GS. This is a 800cc twin cylinder motorcycle that is basically an F800GS except a little smaller. We bought is used but couldn’t pass it up because the color matched our stickers (big grin). In less than a year Deby rode it over 10,000 miles so I consider it sufficiently broken in. This is an incredible motorcycle that should serve us well.
For me…… I couldn’t resist getting a new bike and took delivery of the first Honda Africa Twin imported into the state of Washington. The African Twin is a modern interpretation of the 750cc version that won the Pairs-Dakar rally four times in the late 1980s. The upgraded version is Honda’s entry into the 1000 cc Adventure Motorcycle category. I opted for the Automatic Dual Clutch Transmission version, yes, an automatic transmission….. seems strange but I love it. We’ll see if the legendary Honda reliability holds for this first incarnation of a motorcycle. I’ve already put just under 10,000 miles on it without a hiccup. So far, so good.
We hope to get to Ushuaia, Argentina on the Tierra del Fugo archipelago, the southernmost city in the world. If all goes well we will be celebrating the new year there. The road to Ushuaia will be one of the most challenging of the whole trip. The Patagonia area is known for extreme cross winds and treacherous gravel roads. A dangerous combination. We hope that by travelling in the middle of their summer we may get a reprise, we’ll see.
I suppose in a way the trip officially started two days ago on Friday November 18th. That was the day we loaded up the bikes to deliver them to a crating shop in Kent, WA.
In the picture is my son Jon. Followers of this blog might remember him as the one who broke his leg on the Trans American Trail (See TAT ride on the right side). I’m glad to say he has recovered well and is back riding his KTM and YZ250 whenever he can.
Their job over the next five days is to build two custom crates around the bikes suitable for shipping overseas. It’s important to have certified wood and the proper inspection access. Fortunately I was assured they have done this many times and not to worry.
So, here we go again! If you want to follow us once more and are subscribed to this blog you should get e-mail notices whenever we post. Deby may cross post to her Facebook page so be sure to watch that. I plan on posting every day or two with pictures and witty prose about our travels. As usual, I try to keep this focused on being a motorcycle blog with an emphasis on the ride and trials and tribulations of travel in foreign lands via motorcycle. Don’t forget to leave feedback either on the blog or Facebook. We love hearing from our friends while we are gone.
If you click on the “Follow Us” tab on top by the pictures there is a map with our real time location from my DeLorme InReach satellite tracker. Feel free to check in once in a while to see if we are moving. If we go a few days without moving don’t panic, we might be at a resort on the beach. However, if we are not moving for a few days and in the jungles of Peru far from any road then, um, well…. I don’t know. Ah, we’ll probably be OK. I mean, what could possibly happen on a 20,000 mile trip through a dozen countries????
I hope you enjoy the ride.
Donn and Deby