Edit Blog Post
Published: November 8th 2011
Well, Gerardo and I decided to have a break from our Moto High Andes Adventure next year, as he is in need of a 'Holiday' with his wife, Marisol and with his new job, time and commitment began to rule.
I thought it would be a good idea also, as I have been missing out on a few local adventure rides during the time that we are away in South America.
One idle day, after driving our little Citroen 2CV around a few back roads up hear in the North, this crazy idea came to me..."Why don't we take some of these little cars to South America?".......
So after sending a letter inviting expressions of interest, to the New Zealand Citroen Car Club, we now have three cars and six adventurous people committed to the adventure, along with another couple from the UK, that will join us part way through.
as these little cars will not be able to sustain the speeds that we do on the motorcycles, we have had to add a few more days into the adventure, we will now be on the road for 51 days.
The Citroen 2CV, was prototyped around 1938/39 and went into production
after the war. It was produced continually until 1990, when they were not able to meet the increasing stringent safety codes.
The 2CV is a very basic vehicle, it has a pressed steel and channel section platform, with very light steel body panels and a flexible fabric roof to keep some of the weather off the occupants.
It is powered by a massive 602 cc horizontally opposed two cylinder air cooled engine.
Raewyn (Bones) will be riding 'Shotgun' with me in our 1985 maroon and black Çharlston.
I went to AutoFrance, in Auckland and David and I spent a good three days, stripping down the engine and any other bits that move around to check for any wear and tear.
We fitted a new exhaust system, new shocks, new air cleaner,new plugs and leads, new coil and electronic 123 ignition, along with a good grease up and new oil, we are about as ready as we can be, to tackle the 10,000 km plus 'Shadow of the Andes Expedition'.
Paul and Melean are from Auckland, they have been involved with Citroen cars since ever and the have built up a complete 'new' car from a pile of bits and
pieces and have painted it Bright Yellow, so there is no way you could miss it on the road.
David Jones from AutoFrance has been of great assistance in the preparation of these cars for this expedition.
Allan Inch from New Plymouth will also be joining us, along with his good friend, Tony Barnes, also from New Plymouth, who will be riding 'Shot Gun' for him..(that means he has to push when the going gets tough). Allan will be bringing his 2CV that he has owned for a number of years.
Melean's brother Linton and his wife Heather, live in the England , but don't own a 2CV, but they really wanted to come on at least part of our adventure, so we have extended the invitation and they have decided to join us in San Pedro de Atacama in Chile and travel in the support truck through Bolivia and into Peru.
They will stay with us until we reach Arequipa where they have some friends to see there.
Turtle Wax have given us a blow up Turtle (and some car polish), that we have named 'Foley', he will follow us on our adventure and also report back
home. We are hoping that Turtle Wax will come up with a bigger Turtle, as this baby Foley may get lost in such huge scenery!
Here is our proposed route for our Shadow of the Andes Expedition Raid 2012
After clearing our 2CV’s from Aduana (Customs) we head North, then turning East over the Andes via Paso Redentor, on one of the most amazing roads in South America with fabulous views of the highest summit in the Americas, the 6,959 metre (22,841 ft) Aconcagua for our first night at Uspallata, in the Provence of Mendoza, Argentina.
From Uspallata, we head North, on roads less travelled to Barreal and onto Los Flores to a little boutique hotel for the night and to prepare for our next challenge, one of the most spectacular passes in the Andes as we negotiate our way over the mind blowing Paso del Agua Negra into Chile at 4700m
We will have to carry extra fuel as there are no gas stations, nor café’s for 350kms.
That night we will stay in a mountain Lodge in Chile’s Pisco Valley.
The next day we will make our way to Tongoy, on the coast.
North, along the Chilean coast to Copiopo, where we turn East again and cross back into Argentina over the spectacular Paso San Francisco, the highest Pass in the Andes at 4763m to Tinogasta, for a night in a lovely Adobe Hotel, this is our biggest day with 528 kms and no gas or cafés. The next day is a short hop (but, a bit of a challenge) to Belen, by another road less travelled.
From here we head North, until the fascinating city of Salta, where we have two days to enjoy this lovely Argentinean City.
Leaving Salta, in a westerly direction, we follow the railway of ‘Trene de los Nubres’ or Train to the clouds.
This road will take us up to San Antonio de Los Cobres at 4,000m and onto Susques and Paso Jama into San Pedro de Atacama in Chile.
In this small adobe town nestled within the Atacama Desert, about the most driest place in the world, where we will prepare for our next challenge into Bolivia.
This South West section of Bolivia is extremely remote, there are no paved roads, sometimes only a track in the sand.
We will have a back
up 4WD to help if there are any difficulties with traction and to take enough fuel, water and food for the next two days, via Laguna Colorada and onto Villa Alota, our destination will be Uyuni through one of the worlds most diverse landscapes including geothermal activity and the largest salt reserve in the world as we cross Sala de Uyuni
From Uyuni we drive up to the highest Capital City in the world to La Paz, where we take a day off, well sort of…we drive to Coroico for lunch, and return along the Yangus Road (Bolivian ‘Road of Death’)
Departing La Paz we cross the mighty Lake Titicaca and into Peru visiting the las Flotanes (Floating Islands) of the Uros People of Puno.
We move on to Cusco and the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu by train.
We have a full day exploring the Sacred Valley, checking out the Artisans, the people and the scenery.
We will leave very early for a full day at Machu Picchu so you will have time to explore this amazing and interesting archeological site.
We return to Ollantaytambo by train for the night, continuing onto Cusco the next
day, arriving in plenty of time to enjoy this historic City.
The following day we go South West to Chivay and the Colca Canyon area and onto Arequipa for two nights.
From Arequipa we head South to Arica and back into Chile, following the coast down to Iquiqui, and cutting back to San Pedro de Atacama via Calama.
We will leave San Pedro de Atacama in a South westerly direction, passing salt encrusted lakes with Flamingos standing tall in the mirror like lakes, on our way to Paso de Sico, and back to San Antonio de Los Cobres for the night.
From San Antonio de los Cobres we head South, taking the infamous ruta 40 down to Cachi and onto Cafeyate.
We then head inland to the Tucuman Provence, taking in the mountain scenery to our next two day stop over at La Rioja, via Andalgala (weather permitting) where we have a day to check out Minas Capallitas where they mine the semi precious stone, Rhodochrosite.
We keep moving South back into Mendoza Provence, San Juan and to Uspallata, to cross the Andes for the last time, over Paso del Chisto Redentor (we came into Agentina this
In the beginning....
Paul and Meleen's dream
way 49 days ago if you can remember) with fabulous views of the highest summit in the Americas, the 6,959 metre (22,841 ft) Aconcagua, then ride the spectacular highway back to Vina del Mar and a Grand Farewell Dinner.
I don’t know if you counted, but there are 10 Border crossings that we need to negotiate, so our paper work and patience will be put to the test.
If you are interested in following us from your arm chair, you can subscribe (free) to our blog and you will get an e-mail whenever we update the blog. (see link below).
Tot: 0.041s; Tpl: 0.023s; cc: 8; qc: 26; dbt: 0.01s; 1; m:saturn w:www (184.108.40.206); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.2mb