Yesterday was an epic ride filled with unexpected adventure. We woke up in Russfin which resembled a logging camp from Northern Ontario except in nice condition. There is a sawmill there, the lodge where we stayed and not much else. There was a single dirt road going in and no place to buy fuel, but we are prepared for that.
A few minutes outside Russfin we pulled into a gravel pit and filled all the bikes up with gas. I took advantage of the locale and did some pit riding, putting the Beta through the paces. A moto bike it is not, but I had fun ripping around and was joined by several of the other riders. We got underway once again and travelled about 60 KM where there was a gate across the road at what looked like a small Chilean military airport. It is there that the bad news began to arrive.
We learned that a bridge went out somewhere up ahead so we may have to do a water crossing. We also learned that one of the support trucks had broken down. The crew managed to get the truck limping but because of the issue with the bridge, the border crossing was closed, we have to backtrack.
No sooner did we get back on the dirt, one rider blew a tire and another took sick. The group was split up, I was ahead with our guide, Roberto and 5 other riders. One of the Canadian brothers was not feeling well and he just chilled out on the grass waiting for the flat tire crew to rejoin. Eventually Robert - the one not feeling well - had to stop riding the bike and rode in the support vehicle instead.
We back tracked about 160KM to get to the next border crossing which put us farther from Ushuaia than when we left Russfin. Crossing the border was another big delay and it must have been 6PM by the time we crossed back into Argentina. 288KM still to go and we were pretty tired already. The plan was to ride dirt roads to Ushuaia and in the end we just held the Betas pinned wide open and rode the pavement to Ushuaia. We made it there with three stops along the way.
We were paid a handsome reward for all these struggles mind you, the last 100 KM of the journey was mind blowing as we got into the mountains. I was expressing aloud with many colourful adjectives at the beautiful sights and just a few minutes from Ushuaia as we cam down the hill, the setting sun cast an alpenglow on the massive rock faces that was more than sublime. We made it just as the sun was going down and hot pizza and cold beverages awaited us at the hotel.