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Posted by Kiwi | 11-24-2007 @ 09:41 PM | 8,651 Views
With a good nights sleep under the belt it was a dingoes breakfast (pee and a quick look around) and into the frontier post for the formalities. Customs, immigration all Ok and off we sailed.

Now the road from San Pedro is all paved and weaves its way along the borders of Bolivia and Argentina. You can take your pick which country you want to visit. Just turn left for Bolivia. But we were on a mission to make Argentina, again with no map, a Garmin handheld GPS that had some roads marked in the map but still no idea what we were heading into at all.

Departing the frontier the road was all uphill. The night was spent at 8000 ft and we soon topped out at over 10,000 soon after leaving SP. Thinking we doing OK son N01, who was commissioned to take the photos, decided hunger was no way to die and proceeded to knock up a sandwich. Luckily I had topped up with Red Bull in the morning so was in autopilot and not hungry.

Well we passed 10,000 in short time and soon seen 12,000 go onto the GPS screen. Then the sandwich hit. Something had been a bit crook in the filling and the young one called me to halt while the barfing went out the window. Thinking the barf had cured him I carried on, no mercy shown. Well soon we passed 14,000 and the lad sick from the crook tucker was now stricken with altitude sickness. Crikey he was not looking to cool at all but again Dad is about as merciless as a darned hangman so I told the little bugger it would not be long and we would be dropping altitude and he would be OK.

Stone the crows, soon we had the GPS showing 15,000 ft above sea level and still I could see we had some more up to go before got to go down. He was crooker than a robbers dog by this time but Dad, thats me, reckoned if we were going to make Argentina and the world champs then he better hang in.

Finally we hit 15.800 feet and I could see we were on the down hill run. All this had us about an hour or more so I figured that seeing as we were going down hill it wouldn't be long and would start breathing again.

WRONG!!!!!! assumption. Two hours later we arrived at the Argentinian frontier post. Still at 13,000 feet ASL. He was puking foam by this time and I think he must have been close to an inverted sphincter failure. Well we passed customs and immigration and the guys reckoned the young one needed some local herbs to conquer the altitude effects. So out we went to the little lady sitting in the tea shop, all 4 ft by 4ft were he was promptly dosed with a big mug of hot tea made from Coca leaf. Yep the stuff those guys sniff up the nose, same plant, but in tea form it really helps combat altitude sickness. Its quiet legal and sold in shops in the tea bag form. Well that helped and he went from barfing foam to barfing up luke warm coca tea.

Me, once again having no darned idea what the heck was ahead just kept going. I mean FG had me on a mission, we had to have coverage of the world champs, altitude sickness or not, we could not be stopped.

Ok lets look back here. 1.5 hours climbing up to 15,800, two hours at over 13,000 until we got to the border. It had to be downhill from there right??

WRONG!!!!! Another two hours at 13,000 and we finally arrived at this horrendous zigzag decline. Hells bells when we broached the top and seen where had to go down I almost joined the boy with sphincter problems. It was no place for a brake failure so our trusty steed was placed in second gear and down hill she went. We entered the top of that decline at 13,800 feet and about 50 minutes later rolled out the bottom at 7000 ft. They say that part of the road is a world heritage thing. I believe them as man it must have taken some skill to build a road up it in the first place.

Funny thing about all this altitude stuff is between 11,000 and 14,000 ft the place is teaming with wild life. Vicuna's, ducks, Llamas, Alpacas and even Nandu. Thats a South American Ostrich that a lot of people dont even know exists. They do trust me. So Africa, Australia and South America have these large birds. New Zealand had them as well but the conservation conscious natives made them extinct even before the white blokes arrived there so it gives some credence to the fact that all these continents must have been joined together at some previous point in history.
Posted by Kiwi | 11-24-2007 @ 09:13 PM | 8,539 Views
Well guys and gals I promised some photos and a few stories to give you an idea of what it took to get to Argentina for the World F3A champs.

Friday 9th we filled up the old truck with fuel, that hurt as it holds nearly 100 gallons of diesel and set sail for the East. Our intention (me and 22 year old son) was to make a small village way to heck and gone out the back called San Pedro de Atacama. That is the frontier where we needed to do immigration and customs etc. Its about a 4 hour drive from where we live.

Well we kicked her in the guts about 7pm and off we went like a startled rabbit, with no darned idea what lay ahead. I had never done this trip before and we did not know the way, had no map and no idea.

4 hours later we made the frontier and pulled up behind the military post to sleep the night. Now Latin America is no motor home haven and there are likely only a few dozen in the entire country. So sleeping sites dont exist, thus the choice to stay close to the police or the military. Maybe a false sense of security but its better than taking a chance out in the wop wops.

Seeing as that portion of the journey was in the dark there was a definite lack of opportunity to take photos.
Posted by Kiwi | 11-08-2007 @ 06:55 PM | 8,906 Views
Guys this is a dummy post, from a dummy of course to see how this freakin Blog stuff works.

That darned MadMax has all these technical stuffs that us older dudes just dont understand.

So WTH, at least I'm trying.