Chris' 1994  R100GS/PDChris' new bike, a 1996 F650ULTIMATE JOURNEY Erin's 1997  F650
Living a Dream . . . 2 Live-N-Ride


Feb 8, 2002 -- Day 995

Credit to www.theodora.com/mapsPuerto Montt to Santiago...by car!

-- Story by Erin --

Sunday, Jan 26th: Arrived in Puerto Montt. Beautiful ride north of Bariloche, part of 7 lakes drive, then very scenic border crossing. Arrived in Puerto Montt and checked into the Hospedaje Rocco. Veronica and Polo are real nice, and full of helpful information. Had wonderful fresh fish dinner down at the port. Amazing to see the boats tied up to the docks, resting on the sand as the tide had pulled out leaving little water behind.

Tuesday, Jan 28th: Through a moto connection in Bariloche, Jorge Martinez, we got in touch with Juan at MotoRancho, the Honda shop 20km north in Puerto Varas. We needed a secure place to park up the bikes for about 3.5 weeks, the time we would be travelling with Chris’ parents by car/boat, and Juan had some space in the back of his shop.

Friday, Feb 1st: The day before parking the bikes at MotoRancho, we decided to give the bikes (and ourselves) a bit of a stretch and took a scenic ride around Lago Llanquihue with awesome views of the pair of volcanoes – Osorno and Calbuco. The view is quite spectacular as the two separate and distinct mountains seemingly rise high above the surrounding flatlands and small hills. The Osorno mountain is the more famous of the 2, for it’s gradual triangle shaped sides and snow-covered peak. It can be seen from miles away, in any direction (360) from the top. At the western base is the lake, which stretches some 50km back to Puerto Varas. The many beaches dotting the edge of the lake looked great, even with the black sand (ash). We made a side trip out to Petrohue with it’s emerald green colored lake – Lagos dos Santos. From this point we were only 25kms from Bariloche as the crow flies, but some 300km by road.

Saturday, Feb 2nd: Spent the day running errands and shopping for new shoes for Erin. In the afternoon we went by the Avis Rental Car office to pick up the car we would use for the next 3 weeks – First to drive up to Santiago to meet fellow overlander and good friend Liam, then a few days later, to pick up Chris’ parents at Santiago International Airport and spend the next 10 days touring south back to Puerto Montt together in the car.

Sunday, Feb. 3rd: Started the day early by getting on the road at 7am in rental car. Uneventful and boring 1,000+km drive up route 5 to Santiago. Gas prices were OK at less than $0.60/liter, but the $23 in tolls was unexpected and unappreciated. Speaking of unappreciated, we didn’t appreciate all the police on the side of the road with radar guns – sure hope we don’t come home to a few tickets!. We arrived in Santiago around 5:30pm, and checked into the Indiana Hostel----big, old, dilapidated mansion. Liam turned up around 7:30pm and we spent the night catching up on news and plans.

Monday, Feb. 4th: Liam, Chris and I drove out to Valparaiso, the port, to check on the status of Liam’s bike. Met up with Jason (R1150GS) at the office of the cargo agent. Jason found it too expensive to ship his bike to NZ via boat, as they don’t consolidate freight on the 18-day westbound route. He would have to pay about $3,000 for the entire 20’ container, or put it on a consolidated freight ship for $800, but would take 45-60 days.

Tuesday, Feb. 5th: Said goodbye to Jason in the morning. He was heading back to Santiago to store his bike and fly off to Rio for Carnival. We three spent the better part of the day getting Liam’s bike out of Customs. He only paid US$7 in total (including port fees) to get it released! That must be some kind of record. That evening we went out for Mexican food and had a fun time chatting with the 3 business guys sitting at the table next to us. One of them bought me a rose from a roving vendor. After, we strolled back along the walking street taking in the atmosphere. One vendor had 4 large telescopes set up for people to take a look at Saturn and Jupiter, for $300pesos a look. He offered us a deal for $500pesos (just under $1) for the 3 of us. The first peak at Saturn looked really fake, like a small picture must have been hanging in front of the lens. It was a tiny white ball with a distinct white line around it. Jupiter looked a tad more believable with stripes around it and 3 small stars nearby, which I suppose represent it’s moons. After that we also stopped and watched a painter work his magic with spraypaints, cardboard cutouts and crumpled newspaper, to create futuristic pictures of pyramids, Don Quixote and waterfall landscapes.

Wednesday, Feb. 6th: Liam left to head south and officially start his road trip in South America. Chris and I ventured back into Santiago to find another place to stay for the night and run some errands. It took the better part of the afternoon to find a hotel since the few cute places in our price range were full. Ended up in an okay, slightly run down hotel that also happened to be up for sale. Outside our hotel, another m/c traveller happened to stop in as well. His name is Glen, a.k.a. the Striking Viking. You may have heard about him recently----he’s an American motorcyclists who recently was kidnapped in Columbia and held prisoner/tortured for 5 weeks. Luckily for him he was released and now has more resolve than ever to complete the goal of his trip. It pays to have good, loyal friends who will come look for you, and resupply you with a m/c and gear after losing everything.

Thursday, Feb 7th: Chris’ parents flew in at 9:30am, a bright and sunny day. We spent the next couple of days walking through the city and sitting by the pool of the nice hotel we are all staying in, and catching up on news from home.

 


The port area of Puerto Montt -- major tide swings.



Typical house in Puerto Montt / Puerto Varas



Posing near Porto Octay, with the Osorno Volcano in the background



Getting closer....



Uncrating Liam's bike in Valpariso, 100km west of Santiago



Fish Market in Santiago



Dad & Mom in front of a Bottero sculpture in Santiago

 

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