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I see that Kevin and Julia Sanders, riding two-up on a R1150GS, rode 27,200 kms in 35 days from Deadhorse to Ushuaia. That's about 780 km or 480 mi each day!
Except for the most northern 500 miles, Deadhorse to San Diego is paved. How much of the San Diego to Ushuaia trip is paved?
I'm a Gold Winger with dreams. I realize that the trip can be done on any bike, however large, and I wonder how much of the trip I would fight with a heavy touring bike doing what it was not intended to do.
On pavement, the bike is sublime! On gravel, the bike is....ummm....not sublime!
[This message has been edited by ChicagoMike (edited 02 February 2006).]
Howdy, Even though you see a few Goldwings in Deadhorse and Inuvik, even on the Trans-Labrador Hwy.------ South America, fugetaboutit. Asking for trouble. Those roads break all forms of vehicles. You can find mostly paved roads in the civilized countries, but there is not much scenery on them. The dirt roads are thru the most fantastic areas.
Why handicap yourself by hauling around all the extra metal and plastic? Less is more. I know that sounds silly, but the more I ride, the more sense it makes. If I could find a 250 that could haul my big butt and all my stuff around, I would use it down south.
Don't pay any attention to the Bozos who set records for distance or time on a bike. How stupid. I ride to ride not to impress others. Those people with endurance claims are to be avoided.
The following site is an interesting read. Two people on a Harley to TDF. Also there is a post on HU about a double amputee that did an around the world on a Harley. Sound quite possible but like the guy said. . . smaller makes more sense. Many paved roads can be a nightmare. http://homepage.mac.com/wonderlust04/index.html
[This message has been edited by Forsellini (edited 02 February 2006).]
For sure you can go from the US to Panama without ever leaving asphalt. No personal experience beyond that. I prefer a smaller bike so I can put it in hotel courtyards for safe keeping. If you can stay at upper end hotels, they will have parking, so that's not an issue either. Go for it.
THe Panamericana, as far as I have seen, is a paved two lane highway. You should be able to take it from Guayaquil (or wherever you ship your bike from Panama) till southern Argentina on paved road. There is a strech of ruta 40 in Tierra de Fuego where there is only grvel, but the main problem is the strong wind. I dont know, how your bike maneges that.
Thetre are also stretches in the Andes where you can go on paved road, eg. main tourist destinations. Look into the spare part situation, as finding tires etc. for big bikes can be difficult. BMW riders complain a lot about that. I have not seen a Gold Wing down here (but a Silver Wing in Argentina), so I suppose it is not very easy.
To Curtis, Forsellini, AndyT, Karl, and Karl the Flying Gringo,
Curtis - I do get it! Less really is more!!!
I was shocked when I realized that everything I needed for a comfy life could be carried on a motorcycle!
I'm sure you have a terrific friend who is in love with someone and you just can't understand why. That's me and the Gold Wing! I went through two other street bikes before I settled on the Wing. I just love the damn thing! I know, I know, on gravel/dirt I'm in big trouble, but I'm in love!
Forsellini - The wonderlust link you provided is awesome. I read the whole site. The site reveals that the road is pretty much paved the whole distance, if you so choose, and was fairly easily done on a Harley riding two-up.
The double amputee you mention may be Dave Barr who has stayed with me a few times. Dave lost his legs to a land mine, jumped on his Harley, and rode around the world. BUT, Dave is the most ABLED of men, and his ability to do anything he wants puts me to shame!
AndyT - It's nice to have encouragement from someone who's done it!
Karl - I did have major trouble with sidewinds riding in the gravel on the Dempster Highway to Inuvik in the Northwest Territories. I laid on the gas tank (well, it looks like a gas tank but it isn't) and waited for the winds to subside. They never did. It was rough on a Gold Wing.
Your parts statement is a good one. I'll check the Gold Wing Club to see where the clubs are down there.
Karl the Flying Gringo - Your sighting of Gold Wings is encouraging!
Thanks to all for respoonding!
[This message has been edited by ChicagoMike (edited 03 February 2006).]
it's all paved from san diego down to ushuaia if you want. the last part of the road just before ushuaia is gravel (about 200 km).
last year they were upgrading the argentinian part out of ushuaia. i would go for the gold wing, comfortable and you'll make it for sure.
have a good trip,
Quote from markwittemann: [the last part of the road just before ushuaia is gravel (about 200 km]
the part just before Ushuaia is almost completely paved now, there's just a strech of some 20 km left. The approx. 150 km which lead through the Chilean part of TDF are still unpaved and no pavement in sight. The rest can be done on paved roads, at least from Quito down the Pacific coastline (I'm sure about the Peruvian part, not about the Ecuadorian part, no idea about columbia but probably all paved) on the Panamericana and crossing the Andes e.g. at Paso Jama (San Pedro de Atacama/Salta), Paso los libertadores (Santiago/Mendoza) or Osorno/Bariloche (Paso Cardenal Antonio Samoré). My recommendation: take all three of them. They are all worth it and all fully paved.
Good luck & best regards
[This message has been edited by winne (edited 04 February 2006).]
We're GoldWingers too. We have been for 26 years and a couple hundred thousand miles. We have looked at other bikes but have always come back to the Wing.
We've wondered about the road conditions in South and Central America too. We haven't been south of Guadalajara, yet, so we're glad you asked this question.
We're off to Europe, with the Wing, on March 1st on what may yet be a round the world trip. After a year or two in Europe, then, probably fly to South Africa, Australia and south to north thru the Americas. It depends on the money.
We're not planning on any off-road, but we have no problem with hard packed dirt/gravel roads. We have ridden many miles on them in the USA. Don't worry or plan too much, problems will arise no matter what. At that point do as Grant says "You deal with it." If a road becomes impassable for our bike, we'll go back, around, wait for improvement or fly above it. We have no commitments or schedule to meet, we're not trying to set any speed records, we're both retired and finally about to start the kind of travel we have dreamed about for all our working careers. We are going to take our time and enjoy it all. If you wish to you can follow our travels on our web page http://www.bobkatsjaunt.com
Maybe we'll pass somewhere in South America, seeing another Wing will be a rarity. Be sure and stop, chat awhile and I'll buy the first .
Well, all I can say is Good Luck to you all. I hope to hear of your wonderful trips.
I just know that if I started out on a big heavy bike I would have problems. I've been to all those places on 1150's and 650's and I much prefer the small bike. But that is only my opinion. Spare parts are not available for ANY bike so that is not going to be any different for you whatever you ride.
Don´t worry, it can be done on any bike: battery eating Guzzi´s, Cow-print Beemers, pizza delivery mopeds, heck Rupert even did it on a 49cc two stroke Yamaha scooter.
Most of the way is indeed paved. Just find a friend to ride the rougher stretches with. There is nowhere you can not go if you have somebody to give you a little push every now and again (physically AND mentally).
Another thing I would do is arrange with a shop at home to ship parts to you. Security is in my experience not a big problem, usually you can leave the bike in a save place at your hotel, campgrounds are usually safe places as well. I left my bike on the street in Santiago de Chile and Montevideo for a couple of nights: no problems!
I´ll be in ushy in 2 weeks. Having riden 60,000km from Prudhoe Bay to here in Buenos Aires over the last 9 months I can honestly say the best riding experiences, sites, smells, tastes and everything were had without seal under my wheels. It was often grueling, but oh so worth it. If I had come on a bike that couldn't have taken the more than occasional diversion into the unknown I am sure I would spend the rest of my days wondering. Before you know it the whole world will be sealed, and now is the greatest time in the history of forever to take a bike that can make it and take it and enjoy the wonders of this amazing continent in a political climate which offers a safe trip..... including Colombia.
Take 5 minutes and have look at this story i wrote, food for thought.
Either way...... two wheels is the only way to go, so who cares.... and ask my girl friend who patiently endures my need to explore and she will tell you Brazil was the greatest.... why.... because all the roads we went on there were sealed.....
How nice you are to judge me without even knowing me. Kev and I have travelled in Latin America since 1996, done over 100,000 miles there on one or two bikes since then. Yep, one 17,000 mile trip was an endurance ride and it got a world record. Why? Because we like to ride. The rest was travelling, pure and simple. Sometimes on a bike. Sometimes with a back pack. If I got a quid for everyone who played that predictable line of why do an endurance ride it, I'd be very rich. Same reason why runners from all over the world go to New York and do a marathon, but never see beyond the route. All bozos, I guess.
We are all out there, all on bikes, all riding the world. Let's encourage each other and share the dream, eh?
And the the answer to the original question, having just ridden Alaska to Ushuaia, Aug - Dec 05 with 12 other bikers, once you've conquered the Dalton Highway, you can stick to tarmac the whole way, apart from minimal good dirt of TdF. It'll all be black stuff in a year or two.
[This message has been edited by GlobeBusters (edited 26 February 2006).]
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