It’s the first week of June and the plans for Expedition 65 are only now starting to solidify, only 99 days left!
After our meeting at the Overland Expo, almost every point of the schedule hinged upon the shipping lines and the available space for our containers. With those dates in our hands we’re finally able to arrange to get the bikes in place and the bodies on the right continent… plus the rest of the dates in alignment and for the few hotels that need advancing booking, get them booked.
If everything goes as planned, and we get the van, trailer and everyone’s bikes to Miami by the 15th of August, Pablo and any other available bodies for the team can help load the containers and do the customs paperwork before the end of the week on the 19th. The next available sailing day would be the following Friday, the 26th.
The journey by sea only takes 4 days, which will put the containers in Colombia sometime on the 31st of August, a few days before Labor Day weekend. At this point, we’d all agreed to arrive in Cartagena after the holiday, or arrive with family and friends FOR the holiday and get to work releasing bikes on Monday (since it won’t be a holiday there in Colombia).
That will give us time to brush up on our local slang….
Shipping containers are typically allowed a few days of free storage, which will give us operators time to arrive to release them, extra days run only $65 per container, per day. Hopefully we won’t need many of those days and we’ll be on the ground to work with the broker, Dian and the port. And if everything goes as smooth as possible, we can be on the road out of town by Wednesday, wish us luck!
That said, here’s the short plan for the whole trip as it stands at revision 9. Thanks to Colin for all of the logistics put to paper.
Assuming that the bikes are cleared from Customs and we can leave midweek after Labor Day.
Stick to the mountains and include a spare day in Quito – skip the coast/beach resorts – head for the Andes in Peru via Vilcabamba . Celebrate my 46th.
Peru – to Cusco (October)
Plan for 9 days but allow 10 days in the schedule to allow for rest or incidents. Two days in Cusco to visit Machu Picchu.
Cusco to Arequipa to Copacabana
Arequipa and Colca Canyon then Lake Titicaca to border at Copacabana – or spend more time riding around Cusco.
Lots to see in Bolivia and lots of rough off-road – Death Road, Yungas Road, Across Salar Uyuni, Hotel del Desierto road.
San Pedro to Mendoza
San Pedro de Atacama, the Atacama Desert, then Paso de Jama, Routa 40 from San Antonio del los Cobres. Wine time in Mendoza. Rest day.
Mendoza to Santiago then Futaleufu
Easy ride to Santiago – spare day to change tyres and oil – stay on Chile side of the Andes until crossing to San Martin de los Andes to include Siete Lagos ride to San Carlos
Futaluefu to Puerto Natales (November)
Stay on Chile side of the Andes – southern section of the Carretera Austral then Argentina to get south to Puerto Natales.
Puerto Natales to Ushuaia
Puerto Natales is the gateway to visit Torres del Paine – then onwards to Ushuaia.
Ushuaia back to Punta
Return bikes to Punta Arenas – time to prep for shipping and leave
Sounds simple right? Pish!
At this point, the only city or place that I can say is familiar is Cartagena. But if you ask me in December, I’ll be able to rattle off every one of these, in order, and many of the place in between… SO much to learn!
Who here has ridden to the end of the world? Tell us about it in the comments below!