The big trip

Where have you been riding? Tell us all about your trip. Prove it with pictures! If ya didn't take pictures, it didn't happen...
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This is the place for you to post reports about your rides. Remember the mantra: "If you don't post pictures, it didn't happen".
Posts: 69
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 6:11 pm
Location: Calgary Alberta Canada

Re: The big trip

Post by milesmcewing » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:50 am

Hello Yvonne and Fran!

It's been long while since we spoke.

It's great to see you guys have now gotten to South America, we enjoyed the Stahlratte as well. Sorry to hear of the clutch troubles, ours made it until Chile - I changed it on a picnic table at the beach on Christmas day. Have fun in Colombia, we really enjoyed it there. Peru is coming! our favorite roads on the trip.

One piece of advice - buy insurance at the Ecuador border - or Peru border (there was a direct line from a phone box on the side of the road at the customs hut!), we were advised to wait until further in Peru and that was not a good idea......... the police did not think so either. It took until Lima to sort out.

Happy Trails!
2009 Flat Black Patrol

Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 162
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 9:06 pm

Re: The big trip

Post by Fran » Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:17 pm

We were just talking about you the other day and wondering what new adventures you have got into since we spoke. We plan to be in Columbia until December there is so much to see here. Hope you are keeping well and thanks for the advice on the insurance and everything else. Happy riding to you both.

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Peter Pan
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
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Joined: Fri Jan 31, 2014 11:30 pm
Location: Heredia, Costa Rica/actually Bäk, Germany

Re: The big trip

Post by Peter Pan » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:03 am

Hello Yvonne and Fran,
quite some tires to fix in Germany and Poland...not only Urals to repair:
Bycicle 1x, Thomas's Royal Enfield 2x, my german W800 3x.
Return back home to Costa Rica should be next week.
Enjoy every day, its a gift.
Sven ... d=39585075 ... e-39701278 ... e-39808377
Sophie Travelair = Patrol 2013 =>43.388km+nacked :shock: :pot:
8 weeks 12.000km Oregon-Alaska-Oregon
With a DIY foam air filter the rig runs well even in tropical rain = :moto:
Final drives: 1. at 5000km, 2. at 34.000km(+friction plates) 3. at 42.386km
transmission: 1. 40.000km. 2. installed
Engine: 1.43.388km :gahhh:

The Avatar are 2 rice grains stating life's essence:
"The most important you cannot see!"
=> Attitude makes the difference!

Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 162
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 9:06 pm

Re: The big trip

Post by Fran » Sun Aug 18, 2019 5:15 pm

Here is the latest.
We are presently in Barichara, Columbia so since I last wrote we have been in Costa Rica and Panama. Not a whole to say about them. CR is very expensive much the same as Ventura. We were there too long but that is how it worked out.

Panama was the wettest place we have been in our lives and that is something coming from 2 Paddies. On our first day we were at the border for 4 hours a combination of the insurance office opening at 9.45 instead of 8am. Without insurance you can’t proceed any further, then she spelt my name wrong. Head office didn’t answer her calls to change it for an hour or more. While Yvonne was inside I was out in the sun guarding the bike. Only then can you start on the official paperwork. Anyway it all got sorted in the end.

We still had 200k to go to our planned stop. We had crossed on the Caribbean side of Panama and I must say the drive was nice except just when you thought you could relax and enjoy the drive the road would go to fertilizer. We got to the turn-off to cross the mountains just in time. or we thought, to make the hotel before dark. A bit of a clanger that as what we didn’t know was Panama is an hour ahead of CR.

The road was twisty and slow and it started to rain and get dark. The rain got worse and worse and darker, all the potholes filled up so there was no way to know how deep they were. Some of them were very deep but fortunately I missed most of them. A very stressful welcome into Panama.
A wet cold and miserable a couple of hours later we made it to Davide and our hotel. Everything was wet so soon the room looked like a cheap laundry with every bit of our clothes hanging off things to dry. The rain stopped as it always does when we had got to out room so with the drying under way I nipped out to the local shop for some stuff. On my way there it started to rain again and came down with a vengeance, I waited in vain in the shop for nearly 45 minutes for it to stop. The streets were like rivers the only thing missing were salmon heading upstream to spawn. Being Irish I thought I knew what rain was, Panama sure made a joke of that assumption.

We had got an invitation to spend a night up the mountain with a guy called Bobby. His place was on the side of a canyon with a container as a guest house and his quarters up at the other end of the property overlooking the canyon. What a view to wake up to.

Bobby is very generous with his hospitality and there was an ex Colonel from Argentina there and two other travelers dropped in for a few hours. A pleasant evening spent eating, drinking and enjoying the view more than justified the time getting there and the fact the clothes still needed more drying.

The next morning the other travelers showed up for breakfast and then we all headed down the mountain. The others to head North and us South. At the main highway we bid our goodbyes and headed our separate ways.

We were heading for a small town on the coast called Pedasi. We decided to take 2 days to do it and when we got to our hotel I made the decision to dump my riding boots. To say that they were a bit toxic was to put it mildly. Dictators have been overthrown for less dangerous weapons of mass destruction than these.

We spent nearly a week in Pedasi pottering around walking the local beach which was about 3 miles long and nearly completely deserted. That and visiting other local places and beaches took all our time and energy. Thankfully we had a lot less rain except a couple of afternoons. It was a lovely way and place to recoup from the rigors of the road.

It was then off to the Valle de Anton. It is a small town in a volcanic crater, actually there are 2, a big one and a smaller one inside it. The town is in the small and a very popular weekend retreat from Panama City as it is nice and cool all year round. After almost a week there pottering about doing nothing really except going walking and exploring the surrounding countryside it was time to brave the drive to the big city.

Apart from the old town and the Malecon it didn’t have a lot of tourist value. The Malecon was good for the daily walk and it was well maintained. A big plus considering some of our previous walking routes, a few of them reminded me of some WW1 battlefield. The old town is small and rapidly becoming gentrified much to the consternation of the local residents.

My highlight was our visit to the Panama Canal. The Miraflores lock is open to the public. You can watch the ships going through from a set of bleachers and viewing platforms. Even though I had seen the car carriers up close in Port Hueneme when I worked there it reminded me of just how big even “small ships” are. The whole thing took about 30 mins from entry to exit. It was great to watch especially as I love big engineering and everything about the locks are big.

About a half mile in the background is one of the new locks designed for the supermax container ships. The canal has been expanded to accommodate these ships which can carry up to 15000 containers. The new locks recycle the water from the locks as otherwise they would drain the canal rather quickly.

After watching all this it was time to visit the museum, what a disappointment. It takes talent to turn a story this interesting into a big yawn. It has to be one of the worst museums I have ever been in. It was small and spread over 4 floors each one dedicated to a different theme. Very little information badly presented is my summary of it. It is amazing to think that someone had the imagination and daring to conceive it and build it. Especially when you think of all the problems they didn’t even know about especially mosquito borne diseases like yellow fever etc. and equipment they had.

The only other thing we needed to do was restock the wardrobes and new shoes. We found a Columbia store in the most expensive mall in town. The only problem was shoe size, who knew my size 10’s are at the extreme range of foot size here. I only needed a pair and eventually they were found. A large amount of money later the wardrobe was restocked and we could hold our heads high again.

With all the chores done, the bike checked, we were ready for the sailing ship, Stahlratte, to Columbia. Here is a link Yvonne’s story of the boat, in case any of you missed it before, written better than I ever could.

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Hope you are all well and enjoying good Uraling weather, happy motoring.

Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 162
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 9:06 pm

Re: The big trip

Post by Fran » Sun Aug 18, 2019 5:17 pm

For some reason that link didn't work try the one on the previous page.

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Mr Wazzock
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
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Location: Boston, UK

Re: The big trip

Post by Mr Wazzock » Sun Aug 18, 2019 7:27 pm

Fab thank you :thumbsup:
Mike H
2016 Ural cT, in glorious terracotta
(aka Oranzhevaya Opasnost, "The Orange Peril")

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