South of Santiago

Posted: May 3, 2012 in Chile

After spending only a couple of hours in Santiago to take a look at the center, I took the highway towards San Antonio on the coast. On the way I met a few riders and they invited me for lunch. My KLR had a hard time keeping up to their highway speeds on their BMW, KTM and Honda but they were nice and slowed down to wait for me. Thanks again for lunch guys and really nice meeting you!

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Patricio in the middle but I don’t remember the gentleman’s name on the left.

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While riding after lunch, I saw this statue along the road…

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I made it to La Boca. It was circled on my map so I was going to check it out. A nice small town with an incredible view of the river meeting up with the ocean.

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There was a campground in town but why pay for a dirty space next to a house when you can camp for free by the ocean with no one around.

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No one bothered me so I had a great sleep. Next morning, more riding…

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Who needs yellow lines on the road really?

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Camping in a deforestation site once again with a sweet view. A few people driving by asked me if I was the security guy for the site.

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Next morning, get up, pack up and ride… again…

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… but it wasn’t going to be an usual day. It was day 1 of the curse to come.

I was going about 100km/h on a nicely paved road that was ending and becoming gravel and rock. The my wheel hit the gravel road, which was going on a steep decline, I loose the rear and bike goes all over the place. I’m able to stop safely and surely enough, I’m on the rim. The hill is too steep to take the wheel off so I slowly get the bike down to the bottom of the hill about 1\2 km down.

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A big nail riped my tube up.

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I am thinking, no big deal, I have the spare, which was my thick tube I used for about 40 000km. A nice drunk old man passing by helps me get the tire on with the spare tube. We forced it a bit and pinched it too. Had to use 2 patches and hope they hold.

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Well, 60 km down the road, I started losing pressure again, about 90 % of it. This time I was 3 km to a town and it seemed possible to ride with only 10% or so pressure in the tire. In town, all the tire shops were closed. I waited in front of a mechanic’s door for about an hour. I wanted to vulconize the tube instead of using patches. I was thinking that my 2 patches came off. It was actually an old patch so the mechanic vulconized it. I asked around town and locals told me that I could camp by the river close to town.

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Nice spot… and once again, free.

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Next day, after riding for another 60km or so, I started losing air again. This time I was close to a city and if I kept adding air every 10-15 minutes, I could ride like that. I needed a tube really badly. At a Yamaha shop, I was able to get a really thin tube for about 15$ but it was the best one in town. I had it changed and thought that was going to be the last of my tyre problems for a while.

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