28 March, 2000, Bolivia,
We are finally in Bolivia and enjoying the change from Peru. Needless
to say it was not our favorite country (although hiking the Inca Trail
to Machu Pichu was a liftime memory). Hiking the trail took four days
of grueling up and downs through the Andes. To make matters worse, we
decieded to hike independently from a group and carry our own gear. Hiking
up a steep incline at 4200 meters with 40 pounds on your back was not
an easy task. Thought that I was going to have a heart attack on several
occasions and that my legs were going to fall off. Well, may be a bit
of an exageration, but it was still much harder then expected.
After hiking to the Ruins, we headed south to Bolivia. Unfortunately,
however, Peru is pure desert along the entire coast. To make things worse,
the wind picked up and we found ourselves in the middle of a giant Peruvian
sandstorm that had no mercy for two Gringo motorbikers on 20 year old
Hondas. Fortunately, we made it to the border of Bolivia after three days
of riding. We are currently in Oruro, Bolivia with the Peace Corp. From
here, we plan to travel around Bolivia for the next two months.
So far Bolivia has been very impressive...people are friendly, it's
safe, and the landscapes is not desert (as in Peru).
Now that we are in Bolivia and have a little extra time we have decided
to make a few minor repairs on the bikes: Here are the lists we have compiled
for each bike.
Dan's 1980 Honda CB 650:
Front rotor is warped (bikes shakes while applying front brake), front
forks seals are completely shot (forks bottom out frequently), front headlight
works when it wants to, right footpeg fell off, windshield is cracked
in half (however, held together by zip ties), also large section of right
half of windshield is missing, exaust started to fall off (but now is
fixed), valves chattered like wild monkeys (was fixed in Peru), seat has
6 inch rip, mysterious shake above 65 mph, had to take link out of chain
due to an unstopable stretching problem, bent handle bars, handle bar
grips that continue to slide off (even after wire and glue), badly engineered
lugage rack that always breaks off bolts and shakes loose, broken speedometer
cable (who need to know your speed down here anyways?), dead battery with
three days of push-starting until we could buy another one, left side
mirror cracked, right mirror shakes so violently that I can not see behind
me, head gasket leakes oil, engine burns oil profusely (maybe 30 quarts
since Mexico), carburators leak gas if I forget to shut off gas valve,
real axle bolt is held on with wire instead of a cotter key, FINALLY...rear
break adjustment bolt is cross threaded (making adjustment difficult).
More to come I´m sure!!
Ryan's 1983 Honda CB 550:
handle bars are bent, seat is torn, hydrolic clutch barely works in
high altitudes (sometimes doesn´t work), windshield is cracked and
held together with plastic tie tabs, ignition switch held on with zip
ties, anti-theft hadle bar lock refuses to work, speed cable is broken,
slow leak in front tire, rear brake light works sometimes, only bright
beam works in headlight, rear blinker is held on by duct tape, exhaust
pipes have rust holes, front pegs for cruising have been ground down on
one sike from a little accident, bolt on oil filter is stripped, valve
cover gaskets leak oil, valves chatter occassionally (but not like wild
monkeys), burns oil (but only a little at this point), brake lever looks
like it has been ground down by a grinder (also from the accident), same
goes for the front blinker, one of the front reflectors fell off, plastic
handle grip is torn (but held on with electrical tape), bolts in luggage
rack break sometimes, saddle bags were torn but restitched, left mirror
shatter (but eventually replaced.
Hopefully this list does not grow much longer or else we will have little
more than a frame to ride on.
Well, just one more country. They should make it...hopefully.
best wishes from the road, Ryan and Dan