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Photo by Mark Newton, Mexican camping

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Mark Newton,
Camping in the Mexican desert



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  #1  
Old 30 Jan 2012
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Current prices of boats from Panama => Colombia? + Timeline question

Hi friends:

Starting to look at how I'm going to cross the Gap. I have a boat reservation with the Steelraht which is $820 for me and my bike. I'm wondering how this compares to other recent prices people have paid for the same trip. The lowest I've seen (if you want to do the cargo ship shuffle is $600 or so for me + the bike. I'm 100% interested in sailing with the bike and am not interested in flying/shipping. I have a boat reservation on March 6th with the Steelraht.

1) Am I accurate in my idea of current pricing for boats?
2) From all my research, the Steelraht seems to be everyone's favorite boat... or at least one of the top 3.
3) I have probably 1-1.5 years more for this trip. I'm wondering whether it's best to just take this boat reservation on the 6th and spend more time in South America than Central America. The alternative would be to have an extra month or two in Central America but have to arrange my own passage in Panama when I get there... It seems like I might have to wait up to a few weeks to arrange passage to Colombia. I'm leaning towards must making the boat reservation on the 6th and having more time to explore south america (I have already been on the road exploring mexico/central america for 5 months).

thanks for your help!
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Hi I'm David; headed to South America via a Suzuki V-Strom 650.
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  #2  
Old 30 Jan 2012
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You have a whole month to mess around in Central America. More, in fact. I'd head to Colombia as scheduled. Virtually everyone prefers South America, and a year is definitely not too much time to spend there. Note, however, that I'm saying this without any faint clue what you like to do, see, experience, eat, drink or ride. Plus, not only will the Stahlratte be back, but as you've noticed there are other options; it's not like it's the end of the world if you miss your boat.

Get your tire in Antigua; should be possible to order it in from the capital in a day, and Antigua's worth spending the time. Note that Colombia's the best place in Latin America for V-strom parts; they assemble them there.

Hope that's helpful.

Mark
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  #3  
Old 31 Jan 2012
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Thanks for the advice. I'm going to make this boat date. I've already delayed the trip to S. America twice; and I don't want to do it a third time. Plus the price jumps $80 to $900 for the Stahlratte, starting in June.

I'll be in good company - there are 10 other motorcyclists on the boat!
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  #4  
Old 4 Feb 2012
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I came with the stahlratte to Panama 2 weeks ago. Good trip.
The 16 months I spend in S.A. were not too long, rather too short - I missed out on Venezuela and the north-east of the continent in the end.

I'm now on the island of Ometepe, Nicaragua for a few days, then heading further north. Drop me a line if you're in the area.
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  #5  
Old 8 Feb 2012
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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla - ALAS International Holdings Inc. announces that the PV Enterprises team has been working extensively to complete and sign an agreement with local authorities to establish ferry services between Panama (Port Colon 2000) and Colombia (Port of Cartagena). The 30,000 GRT 650-ft ferry that accommodates 1,600 passengers will commence daily express service between the bustling port of Colon, Panama and Cartagena de Indies, Colombia in late March/early April. The vessel can accommodate 160 trucks and up to 400 cars in addition to the 1,600 passengers. The future vision of the company is to expand the ferry operation in late 2012 to engage more islands and major ports. (Press Release) Editor's Comment: Very cool. I don't know how much this ferry service will cost, but it's probably going to be cheaper than flying. Nice upgrade. And, it will probably put all of the sailboats carrying backpackers out of business. That's probably a good thing, because many of these operators are dangerous. A handful (like Capt. Jack) are responsible, but the dangerous drunks seem to outnumber the responsible professionals by about three to one. And, there's no oversight or government regulation
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Old 9 Feb 2012
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The ferry sounds great and will put a dent in the worst sailboats. But I think the mode of a sailboat adventure will still keep a good ship full.
Bill
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  #7  
Old 9 Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buyarbi View Post
The ferry sounds great....
The ferry sounds highly improbable, at least as it's described. By the end of this year? No way.

Mark
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  #8  
Old 7 Apr 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panavalk View Post
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla - ALAS International Holdings Inc. announces that the PV Enterprises team has been working extensively to complete and sign an agreement with local authorities to establish ferry services between Panama (Port Colon 2000) and Colombia (Port of Cartagena). The 30,000 GRT 650-ft ferry that accommodates 1,600 passengers will commence daily express service between the bustling port of Colon, Panama and Cartagena de Indies, Colombia in late March/early April. The vessel can accommodate 160 trucks and up to 400 cars in addition to the 1,600 passengers. The future vision of the company is to expand the ferry operation in late 2012 to engage more islands and major ports. (Press Release) Editor's Comment: Very cool. I don't know how much this ferry service will cost, but it's probably going to be cheaper than flying. Nice upgrade. And, it will probably put all of the sailboats carrying backpackers out of business. That's probably a good thing, because many of these operators are dangerous. A handful (like Capt. Jack) are responsible, but the dangerous drunks seem to outnumber the responsible professionals by about three to one. And, there's no oversight or government regulation
Any idea if this ferry has commenced or is still slated to commence operation? If so, cost?
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  #9  
Old 16 Apr 2012
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No bikes on sailing boats Cartagena - Panama

Sailing boats out of Cartagena are no longer allowed to take motorcycles. Discovered this today - was due to leave on Wednesday..
Legally they've never been allowed to take motorcycles but i'm told that they're now enforcing the rule due to the start of the ferry service (in May according to the other thread)
A boat was turned back this week leaving Cartagena harbour.
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  #10  
Old 16 Apr 2012
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Whoa. An interesting development. I wonder whether things are still working out on the Panama end....or for arrivals from Panama.

Which boat were you on, esville?

Thanks for the update.

Mark
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  #11  
Old 17 Apr 2012
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I was booked on the 'Gypsy Moth'.
Seemed like honest people. Spoke to the captain on the phone. He'd been to see the harbourmaster who'd said no more bikes on boats as they were starting to enforce the existing law.
The captain speculated it was because of the new ferry.
Anyway, i'll be in Turbo tomorrow to see if i can get up that way.
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