What a fitting way to bring the end of Stage 1 of our expedition to a close – than the wedding in the group.
Steve & Lisa decided that the expedition and Tuscon in particular would be a great time to get married.
Mexico has been a real blast – chaotic, historic, surprising, friendly, and often beautiful – the riding has varied from rainy days in clouds at 2,500m, (we went even higher later - to 3,200m) to wonderful windy mountain roads near Copper Canyon (bigger than Grand Canyon), to steamy coastal strip near the Caribbean, to traffic snarled towns where stony faced aggression is the riding technique to choose, and a very few freeways.
The food is consistent - HOT! (pecante) - but I love it!
All in all great riding in a country I knew little about, but have enjoyed so much - “I will return”!!!
Well – some of it anyway.
That’s really Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama for us.
Seems like a lot to see in just over 3 weeks – but we have been moving slowly – short riding days – and lots of time to enjoy the beaches, mountains, lakes and volcanoes – and the great old towns as well. Towns like Copan Ruinas, Altitlan, Chichicostingango, Granada, and of course Panama City.
Sorry for the long break in entries. I fritzed the screen on my computer & had to rely on finding a monitor to plug into for quite a while. Thanks to the great IT guys in our Santiago office (Chile), I now have a new computer.
We went to the BMW Dealer in Panama & serviced our own bikes before we left (no real market for BMW motorcycles in Panama - he sells 10 a year), but the people there were fantastic - gave us the run of the workshop, tools, and parts - even gave us a grand lunch. New tyres for all (road tyres now - for the Andes), and we were ready to role.
From the oppressive heat of Panama City to Quito (at 2,800m) and quite cool.
A short flight & we go to our quaint hostel (we were the only occupants) in the old area of Quito, in the restaurant, club, travelleres part of town.
We certainly took advantage of the great restaurants and clubs as we waited for the bikes to clear customs.
After a few hassles, we went to the warehouse & rode 13 bikes from the bond area. This attracted a huge crowd of workers - about 200 - it must be a rare sight.
A little sight seeing near Quito - the "Mitle del Mondo Monument" for the equator & the obligoratory pose:
Mountains, lakes, culturally rich old towns & cities, well formed dirt roads (sometimes) or windy mountain bitumen, and a great bunch of people to travel with - yet more ho hum!!
Through southern Peru - as diverse as the northen section has been - then the Atacama desert of Northern Chile to Santiago - for a well earned rest and some repair - in dire need!
Patagonia - the highlight of the trip for me.MORE...
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