January 01, 2007 GMT
New Yearīs eve in El Calafete

I have received some email asking about my status since the last time I updated was Dec 21 or so. Thought I would give you a quick update but no pictures since the connections here in El Calafate, Argentina (now you know where I am on Jan 1st 2007) :=) are really slow. I was in Ushuaia (the End of the World) for 5 days. I had Christmas eve dinner with 13 other motorcycle travelers and we heard that there were that many or more at the campground just south of town. As you can tell, Ushuaia seems to be the place to be (at least for motorcycle travelers) for the Christmas and New Year holidays. Sal and I left Ushuaia on Dec 25 and headed north. We worked our way to El Calafate, a very nice little town with a LOT of tourists. The area is surrounded by snowcapped mountains and glaciers. We did the touristy things and visited the glaciers (got lots of pictures that I will download later). I also got the chance to go fly fishing one day and it was great. I landed 3 large trout and let 2 nice ones slip away when I lowered the rod tip too soon. :=) To my surprise, the guide started a fire, cooked two of the trout, broke out two bottles of wine and I had the freshest trout lunch you could ever have. Course after the two bottles of wine, I was done fishing and needed a nap! :=) Today is Jan 1st, 2007 and Sal and I are making the run to Buenos Aires where I have a plane ticket home on Jan 8th. Sal will continue riding and the folks at Dakar Motos in BsAs are going to take care of the sea shipment of my KLR. I will post a final update and some more pictures of glaciers, snowcapped mountains, and trout when I get back home. Thank You for following along on my wonderful adventure. More later from home! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Posted by Rick McDermed at 01:42 PM GMT
January 11, 2007 GMT
Home Sweet Home

OK, made it back home again and I am already into the old routines. It
feels good!!!

We were able to take some tours of the very nice snowcapped mountains
and the many glaciers around El Calafete.

As I said, I was also able to go trout fishing and had a little success.

Even though this area is very touristy I enjoyed the visit very much.

We left El Calafete on Jan 1st and headed northeast. The first part of the road was 120 miles of gravel. We never saw ONE car but we did see this....

A couple of 400 miles days and a couple of 500 mile days and we were in Buenos Aires. A very BIG town compared to what were used to. We found Dakar Motos with only a few wrong turns and enjoyed a couple of days visiting with all the other motorcycle travelers that had also found their way to the place.

I was able to get a city tour of BsAs that went to many different sections of the city. One of the coolest sections was the Caminito section where the Tango was
born. I even managed to get in a few steps with one of the many dancers
that "hang out" in the area! :=)

My flight out was on Jan 8th and it was with very mixed emotions that I headed out to the airport. Glad to be going home (I REALLY missed Julia), and sad that a very great adventure was coming to a close. I did have a LOT of time on the plane to do some planning for the next one though. I think a circumnavigation
(or at least as much as can be done) of Australia would probably also be
a great adventure. Stay tuned!! ;=}

Many people have asked me why I decided to do this kind of ride. I tell them that I wanted to see some more of the world, visit some of those places that I had only read about, and meet people from other cultures. I tell them that because that is what I think they want to hear. The REAL reason for the trip as "BRAGGIN RIGHTS" :=) I figure when I am sitting around the rest home with all the other old curmudgeons, I can start to talk about "back in ought 6 when I rode my motorcycle from Prudhoe Bay to the tip of South America" it will be pretty hard for most of them to top that! :=) There are some more pictures starting here RickMcD.smugmug.com/gallery/1920143/40/122370364
(yes, there are a lot of me at the End of the World. I was trying to get a good one that I can frame for my cubby hole at the rest home) :=)

In case you were curious, I rode 23,300 miles from my home up to Alaska,
down to Ushuaia and then back up to Buenos Aires in about 5 months time
(btw, I am standing up while I type this).

Thanks for tagging along. I hope we get to take some more adventures together!!

Posted by Rick McDermed at 11:32 PM GMT

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