Thursday, 22 November 2012

Day 138: Chillan to Orsono, Chile

Greetings all

Well today we could have been riding through NZ. It was quite amazing. Very cold as we left Chillan - a beautiful blue sky and clear day with the temperature around 9C. Perhaps I should unpack my bike trou and put my Draggin Jeans away! It was too cold for photos and just as well really. As we came out of Chillan and back on the freeway I struggled to read what Karen was telling me to do. Instead of bearing slightly right to get back on Al Sur (south) I went more right and wound up on Al Norte (north). I could have stopped and ridden the wrong way down the berm but by the time I got my head around it, it was too late.

That put us into a 20km detour as we went north, found a return route, paid a special extra toll and got back on Al Sur. Bugger! I thought that D&D had committed themselves to the southern route so was quite surprised to see them appear behind me at the toll booth. This was after I had paid the toll for just one bike!

Back on the way south we really copped the wind. It was mostly in our teeth but also from time to time in strong cross wind gusts. It was impossible to keep up our 120kph so we pulled back to 100kph or so. Passing trucks was .... Interesting!

Gradually the scenery changed (the temperature didn't!) to be a lot like NZ. Hectare after hectare of Pinus Radiata forest at all stages of growth, lots of eucalyptus gums, vineyards and market gardens. And beautiful clean rivers. As we came up and over a rise we saw snowclad mountains, one a perfect replica of Mount Taranaki.
I tried to get a photo of the one that looked like Ruapehu but its not great. To be honest it was too cold to stop specially for photos.

I was intrigued by the agriculture. Lots of dairy farms with round bales of hay wrapped in plastic and sitting in the paddock. All of this with an autopista with a 120kph speed limit pretty much all the way. I needed some sustenance along the way. Urk!

As we got into the afternoon the wind eased and we were able to rack our speed up a bit. We also met a few fellow bikers on the way.

Finally we arrived at Orsono and after a few times around the block found this lovely man who leapt into his car and guided us to the Motoadventura centre where we will have the girls serviced tomorrow and the tyres changed. It's a pretty kewl place! Just as well I'm broke!

The new 2013 R1200GS. Yum.

Eric from Belgium chatting to Diana.

And great gear on sale.

The folk in the BMW place recommended these cabanas (cabins) and here we are. They also recommended this restaurant for Aberdeen Angus beef which we went to and had the very best steaks that we have had anywhere on this trip. Fantastic!
And that's it really. We will get the bikes serviced tomorrow and then head for Puerto Montt about 100kms away. Then the really serious stuff of getting to Ushuaia will begin. Ferries, gravel roads, strong winds, no accommodation - the lot! Woohoo!

Todays run: 543kms
Cumulative: 35,436kms
Tip overs: 7

Location:Orsono, Chile

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