December 11, 2005 GMT
Welsh Cakes

I've taken the liberty of a small detour northwards before turning south again; there's a Horizons Unlimited Travellers' Meeting near Viedma next weekend, and as I missed the Mexico meet I'd like to go and maybe join up with others heading south to Ushuaia.

Talking of which, half the world is on its way there - just yesterday I met John and Olwyn from Kings Heath in their camper van at one stop, and six chaps in three 1950's Austin Healeys rumbled in as I was having a sarnie at another stop. I reckon around Christmas there'll be more foreign-registered vehicles in Ushuaia than locals. Should be a good party.

Let me explain about roads here, and how lonely they can be. Let's take a major route: imagine riding/driving up the A1 from London to Edinburgh. Around half the route is paved, some of which is pretty good and the rest dire. The rest is varying degrees of ripio ball-bearing. There may be anything up to two petrol stations, one of which adjoins a (derelict) cafe. It's possible there's a small town, but it's more likely to be some way away from the main road. Oh, and you'll see maybe 20 other vehicles during the ride. The wind is unremitting and it's almost impossible to find anywhere sheltered to stop.

When I finally escaped (again) from Coyhaique I had a wonderful send-off. Having managed to book the ferry (around seven quid all in for the two-and-a-half-hour crossing) so there was no excuse for being kept in captivity any longer, as it was a holiday on Thursday the family piled into the Nissan Patrol Shed and we barrelled down together to Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez on Lago General Carrera (Lago Buenos Aires if you're this side of the border). While picnicking on the quayside, blow me down if Patricia and the girls and Rodrigo and Pauline arrived, also for a picnic. I reckon they were really making certain I was actually leaving this time. But it was great to have them all there waving to me as the "ferry" sailed.

Once on the other side at Chile Chico it was about 10km of ripio to the border, where formalities on both sides amounted to all of ten minutes, and the Argentinian customs chap recommended the hotel they stay at in Los Antiguos, which is at the border and Argentina's cherry capital. And the next day it was glorious virgin tarmac all the 230 miles across the pampas and through the oilfields to the deep turqoise Atlantic Ocean.

Today I'm in Trelew, although as it's Sunday everything's closed and the population go to chapel; but I should be able to get myself a Welsh tea with proper Welsh cakes this afternoon and I'll report back on how they compare with the ones Yoshi's mum makes.

Posted by Cynthia Milton at 02:59 PM GMT
December 21, 2005 GMT
Heading for Another Party

As I rode across the isthmus to Peninsula Valdés to see the killer whales I saw in the distance the unmistakeable form of a wheelless bike and a man doing a little light inner-tube wrestling.

It was Patrick, Swiss, Honda 400 trailie. So I gave him a hand and we rode together to the campsite at Puerto Pirámides where we met Adriano, Italy, Africa Twin. There followed a couple of days of chilling out by/on the beach with a little light eating and not-so-light drinking. Adriano's on a time limit so left for Ushuaia on the second day, and Patrick has to get back for work in Bahia in Brazil.

So I continued north to Viedma for the Horizons do. Well, furtle up my bits with an exhaust spanner, I rode on to the campsite and there were no less than seven UK-registered BMWs, including a 1200GS and a 100GS outfit looking like a grown-up Wasp outfit. The rest of the gathering were variously US, Mexican, Australian and Argentinian on a variety of machinery.

On the Sunday rideout we went to see the sealions, then to a farm (lots of ripio) for a lamb asado. That's where they split the body down the breastbone and spreadeagle it on huge spits over a wood fire. Fabulous. Anyway, the farm was owned by Julian (also a motorcyclist), and he handed out fresh sheepskins to anyone who wanted one. I think I ate part of the animal mine is from. He cut them more or less to size for our saddles with a fearsomely sharp knife and explained how to prepare them with soaking and salt and soap.

Everyone had ripio stories similar to mine, and I was rather relieved to find that far from being a wimp and a girly even the rufty-tufties like Martin and Alan (R1150GS each, from Marlow) had decided life's too short and are avoiding it where remotely possible, even if it means big detours.

So I'm back in Trelew, and riding south with Bev and Fritz on their 100GS and Nick on his 1200GS. We'll probably spend Crimble in Rio Gallegos and be at the end of the world for New Year (along with everyone else). Our sheepskins are drying out in the hotel car park.

Posted by Cynthia Milton at 06:29 PM GMT
December 29, 2005 GMT
The End of the Year at the End of the World

The Strait of Magellan is awesome. The little roro ferry crosses Primera Angostura from Punta Delgada in about half an hour for less than 4 quid, surrounded by frolicking sealions and penguins.

Tierra del Fuego is also awesome, starting out as desolate pampa and becoming mor mountainous and green as you go south. Much of the road is ripio, but mostly the Chilean kind which is much easier than the Argentinian. South of Rio Gallegos (on the mainland) you have to cross from Argentina to Chile, then the Magellan Strait, then back into Argentina 50 miles north of Rio Grande on the Atlantic coast of Tierra del Fuego. The seafront at Rio Grande is lined with Heroes of the Malvinas memorials - this was a major air and naval base during the war.

The first sight of the Beagle Channel is off the scale.

And if you stopped every time you saw another big bike going north or south you'd never get anywhere. The most notable encounter was with Michel Marek the Mad Pole (first words "You must be the English lady" as he'd met the Austin Healey mob in Ushuaia).

So, I've finally made it to El Fin del Mundo after a ride of 33,167 miles in 16 months. And it was worth every mile.

Posted by Cynthia Milton at 06:32 PM GMT

HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.

Renedian Adventures

Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!

What turns you on to motorcycle travel?

Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.

Books & DVDs


All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.

Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!

Story and photos copyright ©

Sorry, you need a Javascript enabled browser to get the email address and dates. You can contact Horizons Unlimited at the link below. Please be sure to tell us WHICH blog writer you wish to contact.

All Rights Reserved.

Contact the author:

Editors note: We accept no responsibility for any of the above information in any way whatsoever. You are reminded to do your own research. Any commentary is strictly a personal opinion of the person supplying the information and is not to be construed as an endorsement of any kind.

Hosted by: Horizons Unlimited, the motorcycle travellers' website!
You can have your story here too - click for details!