T – We had a few errands to run this morning before we buggered off out of the city. We needed a few bibs and bobs for the bikes. Mabel has lost 2 of her three engine mount bolts thanks to the very rough tracks we have been doing, we are using an engine mount adapter for the Lifans, and the motor is basically held in place by the exhaust header at the moment.
On the way back from shopping, where we also found some new camping mats, we stopped in at a Royal Enfield bike shop. Lucky for Mabel she wasn’t there or else I may have traded her in on one. We have both been thinking we might do our trip again but in reverse next time on some Enfields. The new Himalaya was on display and I quite liked it but there’s no beating the looks of the Classic.
Pictures taken from royalenfield.com
After the new bolts went in and we packed up we said goodbye to our overlander friends Dave and Chris and headed out of the city. For us that meant a trip down the autopista through crazy traffic before we finally found a quiet little back road.
C – Thankfully, the autopista was a little less crazy than it was on Friday when we rode in. There was much less traffic on the road and therefore I did fear death the entire time we were on it! Soon enough, we were climbing out of the valley that hugs the city.
T – It was a nice ride, again offering us incredible mountain views and the road soon became a one lane affair with sparse sections of bitumen, a few rocks and a bucket load of fun!
We made good time and eventually the sealed stuff was upon us again and as we climbed another mountain mother nature unleashed a little fury on us. The heavens opened up and soon there was water running down the road in streams. Lightning flashed and crackled all around us and the thunder echoed off way down into the valley. It was brilliant! We had donned our wet weather gear but within 5 secs they gave up the ghost and we were soon drenched through. I love heavy rain like this and it is always nice when the rain is warm.
C – The downpour was amazing! A true tropical rain that even managed to fill my gloves with water and start to soak through my wet weather jacket (which has never leaked before!). And, as always, it was lovely to then ride along for the rest of the afternoon with a pool of water gathered in my crotch region.
T – We eventually crossed another mountain and began following a very wet, very slippery clay track. It went on and on and both of us were battling to keep the bikes upright. Eventually Chantelle took a spill and a lovely man walking by helped her pick her bike up.
C – The track was not particularly long, only about 30km, but the condition of the track meant that this took us well over an hour. It was exhausting riding. The track continually climbed up and down going over 2000mtrs then back down to 1700mtrs, and it was difficult navigating the ruts, streams, bog holes and large slippery loose rocks. Despite this, I actually dropped the bike on a straight section of track, when I was not particularly accelerating or braking. I was not going fast, so it didn’t hurt, but I was riding straight then I sliding sideways on the clay! Poor Rosie!
T – After a very exhausting ride we found a bitumen road. We could have kissed it such was our delight to find it. The roads are starting to make their marks on our bikes with Rosies wiring again failing and leaving Chantelle without indicators, a horn, or any types of lights. I will fix it in the next day or so as I know exactly where the issue lies.
The town of Jardin was our stop for the night. It appeared to be another stunning little place and we had a short wander around the square as darkness fell.
C – Again, we had not ventured near food since breakfast (which was just a pastry) and so we were both starving and keen to find a decent sized plate of food. We found a wonderful little restaurant, upstairs with a balcony overlooking the square. We subsequently dined on chicken and vegetable soup and then pork with rice, salad, beans, fried banana and a beer! Divine!
T – Then it time for bed. We are going to spend another day here in Jardin before we head towards Bogota.