Lars' Revanche in the Andes

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Hello hello !

In 1 week ( 6 days, 23 hours and 25 minutes ) me and my bike are flying.
Flying high and hopefully dry ;-) ( we have to cross an ocean or 2 )

Destination : Santiago de Chili
Route : first south, all the way to Punta Arenas.
Then back to Santiago ( with plane or boat/bus ) and continue north, cross the Andes a couple of times ( Paso del Agua Negra ) , cycle into Peru to Lima, the end of my trip 7 months later.

It's a double Revanche; during my first trip through Peru back in 2004 I failed crossing the Andes, got sick ( from altitude sickness ? ) and couldn't cycle for a week.
My second trip in South America in 2009 I had to stop my trip after 7 weeks because my mom was sick again and mom, when I am on the top of Paso del Agua Negra I am 4779 meters closer to you !!!
And I am climbing it for you , every meter ...

So it is a very special trip, in many ways.
Seeing lots of volcano's, a giant gletscher, deserts, lakes and the Pacific ocean.
And not to forget the great and mighty Andes.

And I am testing 4 chains on my bike.

Marco de Wit from bike4travel gave me a chain to test.
He made, very smart, 1 chain out of 4 different pieces.

1 quarter is a KMC X1 chain ( 32,95 euro )
1 quarter is a KMC Gold chain ( 29,95 euro )
1 quarter is a KMC X8 chain ( 14,95 euro )
1 quarter is a Shimano HG70 chain ( 14,95 euro )

Every 1000 km I measure the chain to see how far it is worn out and to see which chain lasts longest.

So it will be an interesting trip in many ways !!!

I hope you enjoy, I am sure I will :-)

Lars
Veel plezier Lars !!! Op een voltooide reis! Maar is de reis ooit voltooid? Altijd weer nieuwe doelen en wensen....

enne...die test zal wel weer een kettingreaktie teweeg brengen hier op het forum (bij de thuisblijvers).

Afijn, go for it! Have FUN!
Fokko
Nou ja je weet hoe het bij Frank van Rijn is afgelopen, dus dat komt vast goed.

Veel plezier Lars! (ben iets benieuwder naar je verhalen dan naar je ketting maar goed dat is persoonlijk)

Gijs
Gaaf man!

Veel plezier...
Een beetje laat maar alsnog: veel plezier Lars,
en ik hoop dat de start goed was!
Nu al benieuwd naar de verhalen bij de WF bijeenkomsten!
Veel plezier daar! Ben er zelf ook geweest en helemaal verliefd :-)
Als ik je nog tips mag geven: fiets door naar Ushuaia !
En als je terug met boot cq vliegtuig wilt, kan ik je de boottocht van Puerto Natales naar Puorto Montt zeer aanbevelen, erg gave tocht. http://www.navimag.com/sitio/en/patagonia/Default.aspx

edit: je bent al weg zie ik, maar wellicht lees je dit nog....
Dank allen voor de leuke en informatieve berichtjes :D

Hier is deel 1 :

Buenos dias !

In Holland we have a saying : ' Een goed begin is het halve werk ' meaning : a good start is half the work.
If the opposite is true as well it is going to be a hard, full time job.

What happened ...

After a journey of 30 hours ( 1 car, 2 planes, 8 hours stopover in Atlanta ) I was pretty tired, planning to find a place for my tent as soon as possible. Just 5 km from the airport I saw a gasstation, great, gas for my multifuel stove ! Walking inside I saw ATM machines ( for getting money ) and I thought, great, gas for my stove and money for my wallet !
So I looked at the machine, yeah, I saw the mastercard sticker so no problem.
Ahum ...
Everything in spanish, I made it to where you can fill in the amount of money and then the machine said something about a foreign card but I did not know what to do or which button to press. Maybe I waited too long or pressed the wrong button(s) but the machine turned to the beginning screen and never gave back my card or money.
F ... k
I looked hopeless around and the owner came to me and wanted to help. There was a phone nr on the machine, 2 phone nrs !
So he called the first one, the people at the other end of the line told him to dial the other nr. So he did. Many times,
You know these nice computerprograms where you have to press 1, or 2 ?
Wrong choice, tuut tuut tuut
Try again ...
He tried several times and finally had a person at the other end of the line.
No sir, we cannot help you, you have to call this nr.
So he called that nr, no sir, you have to call that nr.
And that a couple of times.
Finally the poor guy gave up, it's hard he said, difficult.
One other man started to help, and phoned some nrs too.
No succes; he was so nice to change 100 USD for Chilean pesos but then had to go.
Nice man nr 3 came by, offered me a coffee and he too made some phone calls.
Then he came with the briljant idea of going to the bank who owned the machines, or the money within, and so we did.
First we went to the counter where an assistant couldn't help us.
His chief came and made a phone call.
And another one.
Impressive that you are still reading this shit by the way ;-)
And he gave us some more phone nrs.
So we went into the lobby and this nice helping man nr 3, Jorge is his name, hello Jorge ! made really, 8 to 10 more phone calls, without succes.
Steam was coming out of my ears by then so we went back inside where I insisted of speaking the manager.
So we did.
He too made like 7 or 8 phone calls and came with the briljant and very helpful conclusion : difficult ....
For foks sake ... THAT I knew by then !!!
Impossible was a better word to describe this whole stupid, impossible to believe and hard to accept, situation.

But after 5 hours ( did some shopping in between ) of waiting I gave up.
Thank God I have 2 more bank cards, credit cards, with me so hopefully I can get money out of a ATM machine, not from *#@%^><&* bank Santander next time ...

So at 5 pm I finally cycled away from the gasstation and found my campspot 1 hour later, just before my firtst 'pass' .
Quickly pitched my tent because I saw some dark grey clouds over the mountains coming my way. But it stayed dry, I washed myself, cooked, went to bed and opened my ebook to read this great book : 50 tinten grijs ( Fifty shades of grey ) from E.L James but by the time it had started up ( 15 seconds ) I was asleep hahaha. Tired as hell ...

Next day the sun was back, I drove a quiet road through lovely mountains, people gave their thums up sign and it all was nice again.

So, in fact it is good that it started bad.
I am not a guy who likes doing half the job, always going for the best, the full monty, give everything, if I may say so.
But it is true, you know what is true too ?
When I quit my job my nice collegues gave me some presents, of which a little book with nice sayings in it.
I plan to read one saying each morning and the first one was : He who knows himself will always win.

And that my friends is exactly what I am going to do.

To be continued ...
Omg wat een hel.
Nou, kan alleen maar beter worden, toch? :-)
Veel plezier, Lars. Buen suerte.

Gaele
Ik neem aan dat je de ingeslikte kaart wel direct heb laten blokkeren?
Verder kan het inderdaad alleen maar beter gaan. Nog twee ATM's te gaan, dan zijn je kaarten op... ;-)
Wimmert schreef:Omg wat een hel.
:lol: :lol: :wink:
Meneer of mevrouw roosterveld,

Heeft u die boottocht van Puerto Natales naar Puerto Montt gemaakt en hoe was dat ? Ik ben een beetje bang om misselijk te worden, ik word al zeeziek als ik in bad zit en naar mijn eendje kijk wat vrolijk ronddobbert .....
Nee serieus, ik begrijp dat er een stuk in die reis is waar je op open zee vaart, maar hoe is de rest, kalme, vlakke zee ?

En bedankt anderen voor de wijze woorden, nog 2 te gaan, ik zal aftellen oke ?

:D
Beste Lars,

De boottocht is zeker aan te bevelen. Zelf ook gedaan en zeer indrukwekkend om door de fjorden van Chili te varen. Het stukje open zee valt op zich mee. Eventueel op tijd medicijnen tegen zeeziekte en rekening houden met alcohol. In ieder geval is het altijd de vraag hoe je zelf reageerd op de deiningen. Als vervolg kan ik het traject Puerto Montt naar Bariloche aanbevelen. Zie bijvoorbeeld de site http://www.cruceandino.com/web_cruceand ... index.html.

Succes en enjoy!

JP
Veel plezier Lars en pas goed op je zelf.

Mario
Lars: het is gewoon Rutger hoor, geen meneer of mevrouw! :D

JP heeft eigenlijk ook al antwoord gegeven maar het open zee gedeelte is idd niet zo groot, en de deining hangt natuurlijk heel erg van het weer af. Wij hebben er totaal geen last van gehad. Waaien zal het daar natuurlijk altijd. Het is een prachtige tocht door de fjorden en over het algemeen wel rustig. Prachtige uitzichten over de bergen, eilanden en gletsjers. Onderweg hebben we orka's en walvissen gezien, super. Ik kan het ten zeerste aanbevelen!! :D

Succes en veel plezier!
Hola amigos !

One of the great things I love in South America are the Plaza's de Armas; every city, town, even a small pueblo has one.

My guide book says the one in Curico is one of the most beautiful in Chili.
But I think that is not true, it is the people on the plaza's who make them a great place to hang out. To see couples in love, kissing on a small bench in the park, children running around. People who come to me for a chat, good to practise my spanish and always fun.
But only when the sun shines, and that wasn't always last week.

In Curico I stayed 1 1/2 day, unplanned but it rained all day.
Not too bad because I could rest a little more and I stayed in a nice hotel with a cozy communual room, radio, a big tv and .... a fire place !

Outside it was raining and I was warm and dry inside, with a good book ( you have to read fifty shades of grey ( vijftig tinten grijs ) from E.L James ) in front of the fire place, glass of red wine, mmm, life isn't too bad sometimes :-)

The second day since I left Curico brought me to a water reservoir, a lake. On my map was a way around it but I already heared from people it was not sure if I could cycle there, something with a guard and private road.
I was already close, didn't want to go back so decide to go for it.
And yes, after 15 km on a dirt road there was a fence.
Not a small fence but a huge fence, impossible to get my bike over there.
And it was locked.
No guard but I saw a telephone, picked it up and started a conversation in my bad spanish with the guard, 20 km away, at the other end, who could see me on camera.
I waved at him and asked if I could get through.
No he said, camino privado ( private road )
He said a lot more but hey, still practising my spanish he !
I asked it ten times, ten times he said no.
Then I asked him to make an exception, for a cyclist from Holland.
Again he said a lot of words of which I understood the three most important ones : esperar, patron, llamar ( wait, chef, phone call )
So I asked if I should wait and he said yes.
After 5 minutes of waiting I picked up the phone again but too soon, again he said wait chef call, ofcourse in fluently spanish.

So I waited for a couple of minutes more and suddenly the phone rang; I picked up with a smile, a phone call, in the middle of nowhere, for me !
The guard said something like wait, small truck so I askerd him if I should wait, yes he said. How long I asked, 30 minutes he replied.
Now, the sun was back that day after a long long time so I grabbed my chair, my bag full of food and had a very pleasant wait, still a little uncertain if I had interpreted the spanish language right but that we, my bike and me, would see.

And yes, after maybe 20 minutes a pick up came from the other side of the fence and opened the fence.
Great !!!
I had to put my bike and stuff in the back of the pick up and off we went, to the other entrance.
Me with a big smile on my face; it really has its advantages, travelling by bike, believe me !!

So now I am in Chillan with again a great Plaza de Armas.
Yesterday I ate at the fire brigade barracks, thanks to my lonely planet guide book, otherwise I never would have looked here to have dinner. Salad, bread, rice and chicken and a beer for 4.30 euro.

Tonight I will have dinner on the Plaza de Armas, a whole roasted chicken from the supermarket with a bottle of white wine, looking forward !

And southwards, because that's where I wanna go ...

Have a good one !
Lars, wil je alsjeblieft niet zulke leuke avonturen beleven en er ook alsjeblieft niet zo leuk over vertellen.

Ik word stinkend jaloers.




Maar ik wens je nog heel veel meer moois!
Hi hi, sorry :oops:
Lars je blijft mijn held 8)
Hoi Lars, ga zo door. Spannende verhalen die ik lees in mn luxe hotelkamer in Kayseri Turkije. Ooiit zal ik het je nadoen, dus ik wil graag alles weten. Jaap