Tag Archives: Ushuaia

Rio Grande to Ushuaia, Monday, 4 February 2013, Day 216

Made It!!!

Star date February 4 2013 captains log after 216 long days wandering the Americas Star ship Daisy and her Captain Philly of Phillysbigtrip.wordpress.com have finally completed there mission of Alaska to Chile or is that Argentina so they boldly went from the Top of the World to the Bottom of the world with a few Zigzags thrown in for just for a laugh or due to the Captains woeful navigating skills.

Extra Extra read all about it

Cor Blimey Guv I think they gone and done it who would have thought! What they gonna do next!

Tune into next weeks instalment at phillysbigtrip.wordpress.com when he gets round to updating it lazy bugger or if you got any suggestion on how the two of the are going to get home well answers on a postcard to yes its that blog again phillysbigtrip.wordpress.com

Message above posted on Facebook so it looks like Philly and Daisy made it 🙂

So lets recap I have just ridden my bike 52,213km I started on the 5th June in Halifax Nova Scotia so had to cover 11,500km before I even hit the start line at the Arctic Circle so a few km to get the tyres warmed up. It is 17,848km from the Artic Circle at the top of the world to Ushuaia at the Bottom. As we all know my navigating skills are pretty mediocre and that I am easily distracted so I did 40,600km and I could go on and on with loads of stats and numbers but I am not sure you all would find them as fascinating as me 🙂 So one final stat I have been on the road for 216 day and it took me 183 days so no speed limits or records broken and no animals where harmed in the making of this blog (well there was that squashed snake in the Mississippi and all the road kill on the side of the roads)

So what was the final day like I had a nice breakfast and Alex and Andrea popped by but did not stay long as they wanted to get to Ushuaia before the wind got up like yesterday again so plan to meet them at the Campsite in Ushuaia. (They just wanted to be first to Ushuaia is my theory :-))  The Ruiz brothers and me hit the road at about 10am after a leisurely breakfast and the mandatory photo shoot for willy for his Facebook site https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bed-Breakfast-RUTA-40/300645910050700?fref=ts

Ruiz Brothers and Willy outside Ruta 40 B & B

      

The wind had dropped considerably still blowing (it never ceases) but is manageable so we are off. The Columbians are running at a much faster pace than me and disappear off into the distance I am determined to enjoy every minute of this last 210km so I set of at a more sedate pace and stop every now and again because I can and takes some photos. Nice run and soon I am back in the mountains I stop for some petrol but they are topping up the pumps so it will take 45 minutes I have enough to get me to Ushuaia so I press on and then after some nice twisty mountain roads I am there.

Nearly there!

So how am I feeling about getting here especially after yesterday failure? Well to be honest I have no idea yes I am chuffed to bits as for me it’s a completion of one my life long ambitions and I just slam dunked it!  It was bloody hard at times extremely scary at others but on the plus side bloody awesome most of the time (lets forget about all those times I was whingeing about being to hot to cold to whatever) But what now how am I going to top this one. So with joy and elation comes yet other feelings of what next as I have been totally focussed on this goal for the past 7 months (longer in you count the endless years dreaming about this trip) to reaching this point and I have ignored everything else telling myself that I will deal and handle them once I reached Ushuaia and now I am here I am going to have to start making some tough decisions and I have no idea where to begin its like a huge void has just opened and I have no idea on how to get to the other side. So my day of elation that I been working on for so long marred by the reality of real life and that bloody awful question what is it that am I going to do when I grow up!

So today I am not to keen on camping so find a hostel and then go and try to find A & A at the campsite to see how they are feeling about reaching the most Southern town in the world.

I was a bit confused as I thought Chile was at the bottom of South America but when folks started telling me Ushuaia was in Argentina I was even more confused but looking at the maps I was right it is Chile at the bottom for some reason the bottom of South America has been carved up and each been given a chunk so Argentina and Ushuaia is the most Southern Town Punta Arenas the most Southern City and Puerto Williams in Chile as well is the most Southern Post office so my original plan and tag line of Alaska to Chile was sort of right.

A & A were not there so I head back to the hostel and veg out as well as working on this and enjoying the great views from the top floor common room across the harbour bay and mountains it looks like a great place maybe should venture out!

View from the Hostel not bad but should really go out 🙂

Eventually I go for a walk nice town nice feel to it I am looking for somewhere to eat but nothing takes my fancy so I head to the supermarket and Philly will be cooking tonight and let me tell what I cooked was absolutely disgusting I brought what I thought was chicken cordon bleu which I thought I could just pop in the microwave and hey presto dinner. Nope these are not for the microwave so I end up doing them in the frying pan and they are breaded ham and cheese no chicken so as I said disgusting but cheap!

Sociable place so chatting with folks a late night at the bottom of the world I hit the sack planning to do a lot of sleeping for the next couple of days, as I am totally exhausted.

Ushuaia, Tuesday, 5 February 2013 to Wednesday, 6 February 2013,Day 217 to Day 218

Shall I just get on one of these and keep heading South?

As I left the last post I said I was exhausted physically mentally and every other type of exhaustion you can think of I think I had been running on my reserves for quite a while just trying to get to this point and now was a chance to stop and have a rest. I could have done this earlier but I was and I am still concerned about the weather and winter coming so hence the strict hard push south. So the short-term plan was to do as little as possible for a couple of days and it started with a lie in and a leisurely breakfast. Alex turned up while I was eating brekkie and I arranged to join them for there breakfast / lunch. They had been looking into trips to Antarctica, which sort of wetted my appetite everyone I had asked for suggestions from about what to do next was along the lines of turn round and head north and go up the other side of South America but as we all know I always ignore good suggestions and like going against the flow so jumping on a boat to Antarctica seemed to me like a good rebellious act. A & A had a few leads and that afternoon I checked out a few leads and a few of the travel agents looking for that elusive cheap deal to Antartica leaving within a couple of days.

Maybe this bus is going to Den Haag!

  

I was also had some domestic thing to do such as laundry and Daisy needed looking at as her chain was making some horrendous crunching noises I thought this was due to all of the dirt roads we been on and there may be some rocks jammed and rubbing but it turned out chain was just slack as hell and needed some adjustment I think I adjusted it recently but maybe I did not so took out the slack cleared some debris out from around the front sprocket in the hope that this would stop the horrible crunching noises I was hearing. (Paranoia setting in!). I was unable to take of the sprocket cover off as one of the Allen key bolts was slipping and rounding I need an impact driver but could see the front sprocket and it looked fine (I was worried the same thing that had happened with Alex may be happening with mine)

The plan was to do a test ride up to see A & A at the campsite and crack a bottle of champagne that we did not drink on news years eve either that they had been carrying but it was late and raining so I decided against this went for some dinner (there is no way I deserve my cooking twice in a row) and I met a Swiss guy who I had met in Puerto Natales and a Japanese/German/Canadian girl so  I joined them for dinner and then back to the hostel for another sociable evening.

A & A had found that elusive deal to Antarctica and where leaving on Thursday Phillys is still looking I have a few leads but they all mean hanging around for a week or two which I am not sure I fancy and it is still not that cheap so I am not sure I want to afford it as its an awful lot of money and I have spent a small fortune already and still need to get home so I am having my doubts about me going to Antarctica.

They knew I was coming and my dislike of dirt roads that they did me this stripe especially for me ( The road not the billboard!!)

Day 2 in Ushuaia still in my very lazy mood I was supposed to get up early to go into the Tierra del Fuego national park to take the mandatory end of the road pictures as it was free to get in if you got there before the gate attendants showed up for work at 8am but both today and yesterday I had two late nights and was enjoying having a lay in and being lazy for a change so that is what I am doing so that is a lots of procrastination and I will go tomorrow mañana I have been in Latin America to long!

 

Anyone going to Antarctica do not take up much room? View from hostel!

Meet up with A & A for late lunch and arrange to meet them that evening to say goodbye in their posh hotel, which is part of their Antarctica package I am a little bit jealous as yet that elusive deal to the Antartica had not turned up yet for Philly.

Saying Bye Bye to Alex and Andrea they are of to Antarctica I am heading North

  

I went for a walk and then back working on this as I was determined to have this damned blog up to date before I left Ushuaia (NB he failed!) and I spent a pleasant final evening with A & A (Hopefully I will meet them down the road as they are great low level maintenance travel partners :-)) and later another sociable evening at the hostel and yet another late night yapping.

Ushuaia to Rio Grande, Thursday, 7 February 2013, Day 219

Finally make it to the end of the road for the mandatory photo shot 🙂

  

So what is the Plan Philly has spent 3 nights here which is a long time by my standards and it is time to hit the road again and a new destination that being Iguazu Falls, Brazil so that should please some of you that this trip is not over yet and I will be headed up the west coast of South America it was always my intention but needed to put in a dramatic pause as a will he won’t he moment to keep you guys interested.

I was supposed to be up early so that I could finally go to Tierra del Fuego national Park and get in free and get the mandatory end of the road Photo.

But I have got used to wallowing in my pit again so late start it is cold and I think its been snowing in the mountains (It has I just got a note from Andrea telling me this) the wind is also pretty strong so I am off to a great start for my return leg got to get of Tierra del Fuego island the same way I came and I am hoping that it will be a lot easier than on the way down but I need to get some early starts if I am going to avoid the wind which picks up later in the day.

I had not got round to giving Daisy a test ride since fettling with her a couple of days ago and on the run down to the petrol station crunch grouching sound still there bugger looks like the chain has developed a tight spot that is what happens when you do not look after your chain bugger and double bugger. So I am going to have to keep an eye on this and see how this develops but guess I am looking for a new chain this one has only done 22k on it last one lasted 34k and was still reasonable when I changed it as a precautionary measure and this one looks like it shot already the tyres are pretty shot as well with only 8.4k on these so it looks like Daisy is going to need some work done on her soon at the first big city in Argentina me thinks as she is definitely looking a bit sorry for herself especially after all the dirt we been doing in so some serious TLC  is needed if I am going to continue to churn out the miles that I have been doing during last couple of months.

I fill up with fuel and crunch up to the park and try and blag my way into the park free saying I only wanted to take some photos and I have come all the way from Alaska but no they heard this a thousand time before but if I get there before 8am I can get in free yes I already know that but I am an idle sod. So I cough up the money and there is an easy 20km dirt track to the sign. The sun has come out and the park is very pretty but its full of buses as there a couple of cruise ships in town so on my last run to the end of the world I am in a traffic jam!

Gorgeous and foxy!

The folks on the buses are fascinated by what I have just done and I am surrounded by loads of folks when I get to the end of the road sign and they all want to shake my hand and have there picture taken with me so I was a bit miffed when I thought that the park was going to full of tourist but as me and Daisy are the center of attention and its like I am some kind of celebrity and everyone wants a bit of me so I am loving the attention and I think Daisy is thinking you bastard you could at least have given me a clean and polish considering all these folks want to take my picture but I say the dirty rough look is butch and all the range with long distance motorcycles in  2013 which will buy me some time before the next bike wash the last one was in Columbia!

Been a bit of snow last night need to start heading North ASAP

Loads of question are being fired at me from the adoring crowd funny thing was they where all pretty negative questions such as did you have any mechanical breakdown, nasty situations, kidnappings etc. they seem to dwell on the negatives side of things rather than ask how wonderful some of the place I had seen they wanted to know how bad the place I had been to where which I found very strange but I am noticing that folks are more interesting in bad things than good things and I guess I am guilty of that trait as well but it very strange being surrounded by a group of people looking to hear horrors stories so it was only polite that I obliged.

Philly at the bottom of the world

I finally freed myself from he crowd (there bus was leaving) and I went for a bit of a walk and a ride around the park nice place but it was still a bit parky so one of my plans of camping here the night went straight out of the window and I was heading to Rio Grande. A nice run the wind was strong but not enough to impede progress so was just about manageable and I hit Rio Grande ay about 4pm and the wind was really starting to blow again for the last 30 minutes but I was nearly there. I headed for the place that A & A had stayed at it was supposed to be cheaper but as usual GPS let me down and I could not find the number of the house and it was not obvious and I did not want pull my computer out and look it up again as I already put the dam number in the GPS and then it disappears so if anyone knows how to get it back again I would really like to know. Plan B to Willy’s at Ruta 40 B & B and I checked in there, as the wind is getting stronger. There is me and a German biker called Doris www.doris-auf-reisen.de staying there and we head down to the supermarket for supplies or literally get blown to the supermarket. Philly is cooking again tonight this time edible pasta with ham something I can do and another evening with the PC chatting and working on this. Strange Internet very slow but very good for uploading pictures so I am getting them up to date at least

Nice old car!