Reaching Ushuaia

When I woke up on the morning of February 27th in Rio Gallegos, Argentina I had the original plan of taking 2 days to do the 600 kilometers to Ushuaia. For me, 600 kilometers is not far, but I also had to exit Argentina, enter Chile, take a ferry across the Straights of Magallanes, ride approximately 150 kilometer of gravel roads in questionable condition, exit Chile, reenter Argentina cross the Garibaldi Mountain Pass until I would finally be in Ushuaia. So why rush, the goal was to arrive and not die doing it.

The border crossing into Chile was busy but uneventful and before I knew it I was on the ferry crossing the Straights of Magallanes. The boat was right there when I arrived as if it was wait just for me. Next came the gravel road ad it looked like it had been graded within the last few days, how perfect. Several Lamas, fox and the occasional Rhea  kept crossing in front of me but luckily far enough off that I did not have to slow down and was actually able to get a couple of photos. Exit Chile, enter Argentina and I was back on the pavement and getting fuel. With a full tank of gas I knew I could make it to Ushuaia without stopping, it was still early so daylight was not an issue either. The closer I got the more excited I became, the end of the road, Ushuaia, months of riding and the final goal was only a few hundred kilometers away.

I stopped at the sign pointing to Rio Grande, the city I planned on stopping at for the night , it was still early only 3pm, I could make it to Ushuaia before nightfall. It was also my daughter’s birthday and I could send her a birthday greeting from the most southern city in the world if I just pushed on. So I rode on. It was cold and I was riding fast, getting colder with every kilometer. As I rounded a corner in the road there was an obligatory police check point and I was motioned to stop. Officer in Spanish “you are riding too fast”, Me in English – I don’t speak Spanish, Officer in Spanish “where are you going”, me in Spanish “Ushuaia! I have been riding for over 7 months from Canada”, Officer in Spanish “you do speak Spanish!!! go on but slow down”. I guess 180 km/hr was a bit fast, and I slowed down to something more reasonable for the mountain pass.

And then it appeared, the city of Ushuaia! Photos were taken, a birthday wish was sent and much beer was consumed. I spent the following day (Feb 28th) taking it all in, I rode a total of 59,218 kilometers across the Americas and it was a bit overwhelming. The 29th was spent exploring Ushuaia and answering the question “what’s next”.   Answer – ride North, it’s not like it is possible to go any further south.

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7 Responses to Reaching Ushuaia

  1. Hickery/ Muskoka On says:

    Congratulation on reaching your southernly goal…..

    All The Best

    Bob

  2. Pete Chester says:

    Nice pictures Greg. Where did you see the Penguins, were they in Ushuaia? It might have been to late in the year & they went somewhere else.

  3. Pete Chester says:

    In my reply above I didn’t get it all down before I sent it. Here it is again corrected:

    Nice pictures Greg. Where did you see the Penguins, were they in Ushuaia? I didn’t see any when I was there, being in April it might have been too late in the year & they had gone somewhere else.

    • greg says:

      The Penguins were just outside of Ushuaia. I took a tour from a company located down at the pier, cost $90 and was well worth it.

  4. Pete Chester says:

    Greg: What are your plans on returning? Are you thinking of going to say Buenos Aires, Argentina & shipping your moto back to the USA like a lot of people do, myself included? I had my moto sipped back using Sandra at Dakar Motos in Buenos Aires. She did a good job for a reasonable price, a lot easier than if I had done it myself. You can also stay at their moto shop for not too much. They have 4 or 6 bunk beds & you can also camp in the shops back yard. Or are you thinking of riding all or part of the way back. Some people ride up through Brazil, Venezuela to Colombia & then all the way back through Central America & Mexico to the USA. Others do the eastern side of South America & then go to Cartagena, Colombia where they ship their moto & themselves to Florida or other places in the USA. Something to think about. Of course time & money has a lot to do with the decision. What ever you do I now you will have fun. Pete Chester

  5. greg says:

    There are a few places in Argentina that I want to see before shipping the bike home. I have already been in touch with Dakar Motors and have the costs. Need to do a new budget in the enxt couple of days as well.

  6. Jane Rose says:

    Celebrating here for your success! And now, Patagonia…
    Loved the pix. Your new little friends are quite cute.

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