Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 159 (364km): Entering Chile...again

We didn't have far to go so we were pretty lazy this morning getting going. Alberto noticed that my oil leaks were back. In the same spots. The oil leaks themselves aren't really that worrying cause they are minor but the fact of the matter is that they indicate not everything is right with my engine. That's what pisses me off. We eventually rolled out of town around noon. Again the sun was shining, and it was surprisingly warm on the road (at some points pushing 18 degrees!).
Riding in Argentina
We had a plan for where we were going but we missed the turn off. After a while I was thinking to myself, we should have turned south by now. The turn off we missed was very inconspicuous and much better signed going in the north direction. So we ended up going all the way to Esperanza, getting gas and then using the paved roads to get to the border.

It was another typical day of scenery we are used to seeing in Argentina. The Argentinian side of the border was pretty low key. It seemed that when we entered Argentina they didn't give us a piece of paper we needed. The guy just has us fill it out there and then he stamped it. Thankfully we are not in Central America. I'm sure that little bit of help would have been worth a few dollars. The Aduana guys were having a good time chatting with us and I started up a conversation with them about the Argentinian National Football team. I got an education as to why Maradona is better than Messi.
Oh  Chile, we meet again
Next we go to the Chilean side (which is 12km down the road). When we walk in and I see the x-ray machine I almost lose it. Not again! What is wrong with Chile. We have to go to three different people and fill out paper work. What I don't get is that why do you fill out a form for Aduana in Chile, and then they take your form and use it to populate information in the computer. Why can't they be like Argentina who just put your information straight into the computer and give you a printout. And why can't they pull up your information if you've already entered the country? What is that information doing in the computer!? It seems very inefficient to me. Anyways a guy did a useless inspection of our bikes but thankfully no x-raying was required. I just want to go to Torres del Paine not run loose in Chile.

Once we are in Chile we realise we have no money. There is no where to get money so we hope that we can get by with our good looks. The other shocking thing is that the park is a fair ways away from the border. This day is turning out to be quite a bit longer than I had anticipated.
HELLO Torres del Paine
A nice shot of the bikes with the mountains in the background
The road to the park is dirt and the view of the mountain range, in particular The Towers (torres), is pretty spectacular. We also saw some wildlife: Huanaco, flamingo and some badass looking birds. The guys at the park gate were really nice. The guy in charge gave us a run-around on the map of the park and a bunch of useful information. And with that we drive off in the direction of a campground. I should mention that we managed to use Argentinian pesos to pay for the entrance fee but they totally scammed us on the exchange rate. So much for getting by with our good looks.
The badass bird at the side of the road. If John and Ann are still out there please educate us on what this is.
Huanaco on the loose
We chose to camp near The Towers in a nice treed campsite by a creek. We were both kind of tired by our not so long but actually long day so we called it a night pretty early. Maybe it's those party animals Dachary and Kay who are to blame. They've worn us out over the last two days. 
The impressive towers
Camp for the next few days

1 comment:

  1. interestingly enough that huanaco looks very similar to a certain camel!