Friday, November 17, 2006

Wednesday 15th November
Iain is going to head off on his own for a bit as Michelle and I have to get back to the lovely Rio Gallegos for these tyres. We quite fancied sticking around Ushuaia for a while but after a bloody freezing night in the tent and waking up to, yes snow, we thought we'd head back to Rio Grande today. After a slow start having to pop back into town and bumping into another overlander who was driving a land rover around the world, we headed off about 2pm in to the snow, oh joy. I must say, I have been pretty impressed with my Hein Gericke Cruise riding suit. It's been good in the heat so far whilst I'm now finding out what its like in the cold. As we head back up the Garibaldi Pass, the snow starts to get thicker, a lot thicker actually. Soon we are riding uphill in 1st gear with both feet on the ground and some trucks are having a bit of difficulty too which doesn't totaly fill us with optimism. We actually got to the top of the pass where needless to say, my bike (not me) found a patch of ice and promtly fell away from underneath me. There was no traffic a minute ago but now there were about 3 cars and a truck which just appeared behind us like magic. We got down to the really fun task of trying to pick up a fully laden GS in the snow in front of curious onlookers who were obviously wondering what the hell these stupid bikers were doing trying to ride in the snow. Amazingly, we got it upright again and within a couple of hundred meters or so on the other side, the snow just turned to mush and we were on our way back to Rio Grande, but not before being buffeted by some of the strongest bastard winds we'd encountered so far.

A GS practicaly begging to fall over on the ice

We headed straigh for Hotel Argentino but they were again full however when we asked where the campsite was, something we really didn't fancy, they thought we were asking to camp in their back yard and a few minutes later, we had our tent set up and the bikes were safely locked up in the shed- fantastic.

This place has a very nice living room area and after making some dinner, we ended up getting pretty lashed on various home brews brought out by the owner and one of their friends. It was actualy one of the best beers I've tasted and trust me, I've tasted a few. We got chatting with some english cyclists and listening to some ACDC, eventually getting to bed about 1am though I believe it went on slightly later than us lightweights could manage.

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