13 03 2008
A 10-minute slideshow compiling the videos and photos taken on the trip: 

Headed home.

25 05 2007

Buenos Aires is an incredible place, one of those few cities I could imagine living in for a while. I spent a lot of time wandering around, eating good food in good company (Sydna and her sister passed through for a while), and taking tango lessons. After some time in the shop with her new best friend Javier, Jesse is back to normal. I drove her to the airport yesterday, put her on a pallette, and had her wrapped in plastic for the flight back to Dallas. I´ll be on a plane in a few hours, and as usual when a trip comes to an end, part of me is ready to be back home and another part wants to keep travelling. Hope you enjoyed the blog.

Until the next trip- Marcus
motorcycle route
The route on motorcycle (in red)


Javier saving the day

pistonhelge motos

Jesse´s last ride: m. 6,784 to m. 7,113

1 05 2007

We were about 10km north of Rio Grande in fourth gear, facing a fierce quartering headwind and struggling just to stay on the road. We had another 4,000 kilometers ahead of us, most of which we had already travelled, and Jesse decided she´d had enough. The engine cut out as if the ignition had been shut off. As I released the clutch to gear down and get off the road, I heard crunching metal either from the gearbox or the motor or both. We sat on the side of the road in the wind, letting it all sink in. First disappointment along with a pit in the stomach, then a sense of relief, followed by thankfulness and joy. We reached our goal, and now it´s just a matter of making it back home.

Jess is in a truck on her way to Buenos Aires, and I will follow tomorrow on a bus that will take more than 40 hours, during which time I´m sure I´ll appreciate the freedom of motorcycle travel more than ever. While Jess is in a mechanic shop, I´ll be taking tango lessons and enjoying the city life.

last ride

El fin del mundo: m. 4,058 to m. 6,784

26 04 2007

I´m at the end of the road at last. This place really has the feel of the end of the world, with a rich history of native seal hunters, antarctic expeditions, and maritime exploration. The leaves are changing, and the mountains are covered with snow. I feel a deep sense of accomplishment having reached my goal, but at the same time, I´m excited to turn around and start the trip back home.

¨The prettiest sight is looking back on a town you´ve left behind¨ – Townes 

I´ll leave Usuaia tomorrow morning. I haven´t decided yet, but I´ll probably head north.


The end of the road.


A rusty nail punctured my tire on the most desolate road I´ve ever been on. Luckily, I had a spare tube tucked under my seat.


Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid built this cabin near Cholila, Argentina and lived here for six or seven years.

Perito Moreno Glaciar

Perito Moreno Glacier, Argentina

¨Ernesto¨ Widmer

I met ¨Ernesto¨ Widmer on the road. He´s a fellow motorcyclist with a kindred traveller´s spirit. We have a lot in common, and it was a pleasure hearing his stories and sharing a few days on the road with him. 

sideways tree

At the mouth of the Mylodon Cave, Patagonia


The abandoned Estancia San Gregorio, Patagonia 


Ushuaia prison, now a museum

run aground

Run aground in Patagonia

Patagonia at last: m. 2,312 to m. 4,058

12 04 2007

If all the signs in Chile weren´t in Spanish, I´d think I was in the U.S. Parts of Santiago felt like older versions of an affluent New York City neighborhood. The lake district, in the south, looks like Washington State and smells like Colorado. Some of the regions in between could pass for the central Californian countryside. But of course all the signs are in Spanish. I´ll take a few days to fish here in Pucón before the plunge south, into the cold and the wind.

northern Argentina
A valley in northern Argentina, between Salta and Cafayate

3,000 mile tune-up
3,000 mile tune-up, Mendoza, Argentina

Chilean fishing
river in which I caught my first Chilean rainbow trout

Uyuni to Salta, Argentina: m. 1,642 to m. 2,312

30 03 2007

For the first time on this trip, I felt completely isolated and almost lost in the Bolivian altiplano- the vast, treeless expanse in the south. I drove for hours on dirt roads without seeing a soul. Only llamas and hawks. Then the road began to twist and I was in the mountains again. Eroding mountains of red, grey, and sandy colors surrounding lush valleys and quaint villages. And into Argentina and back onto the tarmac. South past the valley of the seven princesses, where Incan royalty fleeing the conquistadors hid their treasure of 14,000 kg. of gold still waiting to be found (by a stranger from a faraway land according to the prophesy). I´ve landed in Salta, a tranquil city, and a good place to do some motorcycle maintenance and try my first Argentine mate.

northern Argentina
Northern Argentina, between the Bolivian border and Salta

Southern Bolivia, near Tupiza

The middle of nowhere, Bolivian altiplano

New Land Speed Record- m. 1,179 to m. 1,642

27 03 2007

Sunday was a long one- starting with the world´s most dangerous highway, blockades and La Paz traffic in the middle, and ending with 5 hours of brutal dirt roads: gravel, powdery silt, ruts, and knee-deep river crossings. My hands are still numb. Jesse and I held up just fine, though, and spent Monday playing on the salt flats of Uyuni, the largest in the world. Tomorrow I´ll be in Argentina.

crossing a narrow part of lake Titicaca on a ferry

early Sunday morning near Coroico, Bolivia


train graveyard outside of Uyuni, Bolivia

on the salar de Uyuni (notice the salt caked onto the engine)

salar perspective
loss of perspective


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