Wednesday, December 12, 2012

San Martin de Los Andes

We decided to ride a back road through the Andes into Argentina.  It meant 30 or so miles of gravel and dirt but it beat the alternative of the ferry and the Caraterra Astral.  It began raining as we got closer to the border and the dirt.  Enough so that when we got to the dirt it was well packed and in my opinion relatively fast, except for the pot holes.  Chuck struggled a little with the looseness and probably remembering the difficulty we had in Ecuador / Peru and I struggled again with some of the bone jarring the road induced in the bike.

Argentina Border Crossing Control Building

But the crossing went well no issues, very quick and we were in San Martin de Los Andes without much issue.  San Martin de Los Andes is a lot like Colorado ski resort town.  We rented a condo, with three floors and two bedrooms.  It was nice.  We stayed a couple nights as Chuck was also trying to get over a cold and I needed to work on my CB, the trigger button had broken. 

We eventually found another switch in town and JB welded it into the CB.  The trigger works now, but for some reason we have now lost all range with the CB.  Chuck will just not get the blessing of hearing my hacking voice as we ride, due to my cold which seems to make me cough continually while riding.

Eventually we got packed and moving the second day, but only had to travel to Bariloche about 100 miles, but about 30 on dirt.  We were eager to get to Bariloche because we heard we could finally get some good Argentinean beef.  What we have had so far, has been nothing to write home about.

Bariloche (Bear’ a low che)
Again, with the rain, the dirt on the road to Bariloche was full of pot holes filled with water and there was a lot more traffic than most of the dirt roads we have traveled.  I found that about 45 mph was the right speed to reduce the vibrations and keep the bike moving in the right line.  It took us some time but we made it through the dirt and finally arrived in Bariloche.  I had scoped out a hotel that seemed to be ok, so that’s where we stayed for the evening.  We consulted the desk clerk about a buen carne a rez.  His recommendations were de Belochi de Alfredo and de Parilla la Tony.  Because the ‘Alfredo’ was closer that’s where we went. 

WOW!  What a steak, it was great.  We had family style mashed potatoes and salad, as well.  The steak you could cut with a fork and melted in your mouth.  One of the best steaks I have had in a very long time and I like me some steak.  If you make sure you get a good steak house, the Argentinean beef is excellent, but you can also get yourself some very tough stuff in the less catered too establishments.

That was the highlight in Bariloche, the next day we were off to Rio Mayo.

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