2016-12-04 – Day 84 – Arequipa, PE to Iquique, CL (742 KM – 7:50 hrs)
2016-12-05 – Day 85 – Iquique, CL to La Serena, CL (1329 KM – 13:50 hrs)
2016-12-06 – Day 86 – Iquique, CL to Santiago, CL (451 KM – 5:00 hrs)
2016-12-07 – Day 87 – Santiago, CL
2016-12-08 – Day 88 – Santiago, CL
2016-12-09 – Day 89 – Santiago, CL
2016-12-10 – Day 90 – Santiago, CL
The last few days were dedicated to getting, as soon as possible, to Santiago, in Chile, where I must undertake rear suspension repairs.
Contrary to the last border crossings, the contrast was felt later in the day and was not with landscapes, but rather with a major cultural change and a noticeable difference in the population’s physiology.
Getting out of Peru was simply and fast. In spite of all modernity of Chile’s installations, and even with the help of the iWatch worn by one of the customs officers (wow, impressing!), I am welcomed in Chile with a series of archaic procedures and questionable verification. I had to fill a few standard forms, but it is having to take off my metal panniers from the motorbike was a bit demanding. I wonder what their X-ray scanners can see thru this metal!
No fees, no copies, and I was not asked to produce proof of insurance for La Gorda.
The first surprise was the quality level of the roads. The infrastructure of Chile is very modern and so similar to what is found in Europe, that, at some point, I had a few moments thinking I was in Spain. This feeling was reinforced during my passages in Iquique, in La Serena and especially, in Santiago.
A few pictures of Iquique, where the architecture, the physiognomy of the people, that differs from the Peruvian population (a lot less indigenous) and where I was hit with the much higher Chilean prices for hotels and food.
An early start towards Santiago.
The arrival of major highways, several hundred kilometres north of Santiago, also meant pay tolls, for all vehicles!
My first mission, once arrived in the superb, huge and modern city of Santiago, is to get rid of my luggage and to entrust my motorbike to Carlos, from moutouring.cl so that he undertakes the change of the back suspension of my motorbike. I besides had to cross last 1500 km of road with a completely inoperative amortisseur, what is translated by a pitching sometimes strong and uncontrollable of the back axle assembly. The only reason why I went to the single piece is that roads in Chile are simply perfect.
The work was professionally done, and in spite of some communications issues, which seemed to me cultural, La Gorda was ready to hit the road the following day, even if other some work which had been promised, we’re not done.
I, however, decided not to leave immediately and rented a flat to stay for a few days. I use this time to get back to jogging, to visit the city and even if I came here several times in the past, I’m always impressed by the modern aspect, the cleanness of the centre and the size of the city. I even discovered a couple of delightful neighborhoods never seen before.
« Nobody wants to play with me… Sniff sniff”
“How many hundreds of litres constable?”
The local soccer team (Universitad Catolica) was victorious against the team from Iquique. Completely mad!
I am also taking the time to do a bit of work on the motorbike and to add a new accessory to better protect my auxiliary lights.
I finally met Stephen and his son Liam, friends of Tim in Montreal. They are here for a month and are trying to purchase 2 motorbikes (KLR’s) to go to Ushuaia. They, however, got a cold shower from Chilean bureaucracy… After a week of tries, they are stuck spending the evening with me instead of driving south!
Thank you, Stephen, for the nice dinner in an incredible restaurant. It had been months since I had such a night of eating and drinking like kings!
Liam, when they go on a trip for months, it is important to bring your cell phone charger!
Finally, I also took an important decision. I am going to come back to Montreal on December 20th, for holidays, in order to spend a little of time with my girlfriend, family and friends.
For the first time in months, I have no plans, and this, for next 10 days.
The next post will therefore come from… Who knows where!
2016-12-11 - Day 91 - Santiago, CL to Lujàn de Cuyo (341 km - 5,5 hrs) 2016-12-12 - Day 92 - Luján de Cuyo, AR 2016-12-13 - Day 93 - Luján de Cuyo, AR à Mendoza, AR (24 km - 1 hrs) 2016-12-14 - Day 94 - Mendoza, AR 2016-12-15 ... Read more
2016-12-01 - Day 81 - Lima, PE to Ica, PE (337 km - 6:30 hrs) 2016-12-02 - Day 82 - Ica, PE to Arequipa, PE (720 km - 9:30 hrs) 2015-12-03 - Day 83 - Arequipa, PE This entry will be short and I will let the images tell the ... Read more