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One country, one word

To ask for a “chela”, go out to “corretear” with your “parceros” or when something is “malogrado” you need to know that Spanish is not the same in Latin America. Each country has it’s own specific words, more than what I imagined, and I chose one of each country that caught my attention.

Mexico

Simon!: Means “Si”. Yes, or indeed.

Cuba

Jinetero/a: To understand this one you need to know a little bit about Cuba. It was originally another name for prostitutes, but nowadays is more commonly used to describe someone trying to offer any kind of service on the street in the search for some US dollars. It could be touristic information, sell cigars or recommend a restaurant or hotel in exchange for a commission. They are everywhere, and walking in places like La Havana means that you will have them approaching you all the time.

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A day in the life

What’s all this Adventure Motorcycling Travel about? Well, going to interesting places, meeting a lot of people and living different day to day experiences like this one.

You are driving in a road in Mexico, in the state of Oaxaca, and you see a person with a big machete standing in a curve asking you to slow down. You see behind him a few guys cutting down a tree, so you pull over, watch the guys work and wait for someone to tell you that you are good to go.

A 20 meters tall tree falls down across the road, then another one, and this time very close to you. By this time, a thought may comes to your head that these guys are not very professionals. Next, the chainsaw is turned off and all the workers seat on the fallen trees. Dozens of people arrives in buses from one side of the road, hop off, walk over the trees and hop on buses on the other side, all in a very natural way, I was the only one with no idea of what was happening. One thing I knew by then, those were not road maintenance workers. What do you do?

The friendly rioters

The friendly rioters

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Amerika!

The main Highway I wanted to go through in the US is the California State Route 1. The road is part of the Pacific Coast Highway and follows the coastline of California. At the end I ended up adding a few more places to my route and my four week trip to the US, not counting Alaska, ended up being a six weeks trip.

The US route

The US route

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Improvising

A walk, following your intuitive promptings, down the streets of a foreign city holds rewards far beyond a planned tour of the tried and tested. Such a walk is totally different from random drifting. Leaving your eyes and ears wide open, you allow your likes and dislikes, your conscious and unconscious desires and irritations, your irrational hunches, to guide you whenever there is a choice of turning right or left. Continue Reading →

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Not all those who wander are lost

Grand Junction, Colorado. It’s not the nicest city. For me it was just another place that I was supposed to cruise through, maybe stop for gas and then continue my way somewhere else.

But, when you are riding a vehicle every day for many miles and through tough roads you can expect at some point for something to go wrong, it’s Moore’s Law, machines breaks.

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Rocky V: The day I ended up in a pit

This post continues from Rocky IV: Colorado

My last detour didn’t end up that well, it was a 40 miles mountain pass called Cottonwood Pass and includes some unmaintained gravel roads.

The darker spots are loose gravel, ride over distracted and you are off the bike.

The darker spots are loose gravel, ride over distracted and you are off the bike.

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Rocky IV: Colorado

Rocky III: Yellowstone

I had two main reasons to go to Fort Collins in Colorado, the first one was to have the bike serviced again and the other one was to visit one of my favourites Breweries, Budweiser. Well, no, Odell Brewing Co.

In Colorado I stopped using my GPS and switched to paper maps, I got lost a couple of times but that made me find places like this one:

Poudre Canyon, Colorado

Poudre Canyon, Colorado

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Rocky III: Yellowstone

Rocky II: The Dude

South of Montana and enter to Wyoming, where the main attraction is the first National Park in the World, Yellowstone. The Park is full of thermal activity and wildlife, especially big buffalos on the road.

Bison are Wild and Dangerous

“Bison are Wild and Dangerous”. Nice sign to read when you are stuck in traffic on a motorcycle.

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Rocky II: The Dude

Rocky I: Canada

I crossed the US border into Montana and I met the real life “The Dude” from The Big Lewoski movie. Daniel gave me some cool motorcycle maps called Butler Motorcycle Maps, they show the regular information you would find on a state map but they highlight the best motorcycling roads in the state along with a description of each one. Since then I stopped using my GPS and started using paper maps through Wyoming and Colorado, and they made me take a couple of detours just to go through these more scenic and fun roads on the map.

Glacier National Park, Montana

Glacier National Park, Montana


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Rocky I: Canada

Sometimes is not about the destination, it’s about the ride! It may sound like a motivational phrase, but going through the Rocky Mountains it’s the way you feel, you just don’t want to get anywhere, just keep on riding.

The Rocky Mountains stretches all the way from Canada to the south of the US, 3000 miles of fun motorcycle roads, mountains, lakes, caves, wild life, glaciers, geysers and hot springs.

The Icefields Highway

The Icefields Highway


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