T – Peru!! We tried to research the border crossing last night, but there is very little solid information on it. It appears that Ecuador and Peru have combined some border stations but we weren’t sure. All we could tell was that we might be in for a bit of a wait.
First we had to cancel the Temporary Imports for our bikes. This was done at the incoming part of the border on the Ecuador side. But only this and only in one spot. We over shot this place and ended up in Peru without any stamps or exits. So back to Ecuador we went.
C – It was ridiculously confusing! After asking a security guard and a cleaner we ended up in the wrong Aduana office and finally got shown the right window to go to. I am sure what the three employees did with our import papers, but it took about 20 mins to get them back with one additional stamp on each one. This set the tone for the day!
T – Then it was into the border station inside Peru where we had to get our exit stamp for Ecuador and our entry stamp for Peru, plus our TIP for the bikes. Ugh. This was by far the crappiest border crossing for us. Worse than any of the Central American ones, simply because it took so bloody long.
We stood in line at the immigration section for over 2.5 hours just to get stamped out of Ecuador. The process was so long. Then we were stamped into Peru and 20 minutes later we had the import permits for our bikes. Normally Customs takes the longest not immigration.
C – The waiting in line actually got painful! There was a security guard and a police woman who had very different ideas how the line should work. We would obey what the security guard would say, just to have to do the very opposite when the police woman came back. I was a little frustrated!
T – We had to purchase insurance and being as we weren’t sure how long it would take us to do Peru we opted for two months at a whopping $55 each bike! Holy crap that’s expensive. Cars are only $70 for three months.
We were free to go after that and soon we were heading to a camping spot for the night just 70 odd kms up the road and right near a beach. Lovely!
At the camp ground we met another couple with their kids who are coming up from the south. They told us that the inland roads are bad and the further we go into the mountains the worse they get. Some roads are deep mud for days with many trucks making the roads worse and worse. Apparently the Pan Am is the best way south and that may even fall apart if Peru gets more rain. So we have made the sad decision to make tracks south. Apparently once we get to Lima there is almost no flood damage on the coast or in the mountains. So that is our focus for the next week or two. We need to cover around 2500kms to Cusco and Machu Pichu which is way down in the south. Luckily we are returning to this section of the world otherwise we would be sorely disappointed.
C – Driving from the border, we saw some evidence of the flooding, but it obviously wasnt so bad up this way.
Once we arrived at the camp site, we met a very lovely Peruvian Hairless dog called ‘Oso’ (Bear). He came and hung out with us whilst we set the tent up and then we played fetch with him, before we watched him attempt to dig to the centre of the earth!
T – Tomorrow we are going to try to knock out 300 plus kms, maybe even 400 if the going is easy.