2017-09-10T11:53:09+00:00April 1st, 2016|2015-16 Ride|

We finally leave Orsono – the loose wire is just that – and a local mechanico “sorts” it for us – we are back on track and heading south! The Chilean countryside is decidedly “Kiwi” – no two ways about it – with green pastures, grazing cattle, barbed wire fences, poplar trees (just starting to turn in colour) and snow-capped volcanic coned mountains!



Rural scenes that remind us of N.Z.


The side road up to Volcan Osorno is just awesome – twisty, smooth and very steep – with panoramic views out to the lake – and volcanic ash blown on to the road in sporadic patches.



Lake Llanquihe panorama from the Volcan Osorno road.



The beautiful “ash” landscape on Volcan Osorno.


We head back down the mountain and take another side road to Petrohue – for a look at another lake!



Following the river to Petrohue.



Stunning green colours at Petrohue.



Lago Todos los Santos at Petrohue – where you can catch a ferry to Bariloche.


We have had a “thing” with the Pacific Ocean since Vancouver Island – touching our toes in it – or just getting a glimpse. The air freshens as we approach the coast for the last time and the smell of the sea is like a tonic. Very shortly we will fly home across this ocean – followed by our bikes – and it’s starting to leave a lump in our throats!



Little ol’ Lee from Waipu feeling invigorated by the Pacific Ocean at La Arena, Chile.


The road ends at La Arena – you have to catch the car ferry from here – and this is the furtherest south we will venture.



Reloncavi Estuary on an incoming tide.



Caught in a Good Friday “march” – everyone’s wearing or holding crosses!


Around 6,000 German immigrants settled in Southern Chile after 1850 which has had a huge influence on society and the economy. The evidence is all around in the lakes district in the architecture and the style of farming – European deciduous trees everywhere, hydrangeas and Germanic foods.




Another “millpond” lake view at Puerto Octay.


We have our last break at Pucon – right on Lake Villarrica – with another snow-capped volcano overlooking town.



Volcan Villarrica forms the backdrop in Pucon.



Volcan Villarica outside Pucon.


Tip of the Day

It’s a good idea NOT to leave your walking shoes under the bed in last night’s hotel – especially in a country where the largest shoe for a woman in the shops is SIze 38 – and you happen to be a Size 41/42!!


Guess these Size 42 Mens Shoes are going to have to do for now!!

Guess these Size 42 Mens Shoes are going to have to do for now!!

Special People

We are in Pucon – a cute and bustling small town right beneath the picturesque Volcan Villarrica – and it’s Paul’s 60th birthday!! Mamas and Tapas restaurant has a great menu and is perfect for a “special” night – and time for me to reflect on how “special” he is! His contribution to our journey has been “above and beyond” – with his meticulous route planning every step of the way – his amazing “spread-sheets” for maintenance of both the bikes – his conscientious “handling” of all our documents – but most especially for looking after me!!



Happy 60th Birthday Paul!

Best Food

We are in Osorno staying in a cabana, which is sort of like a motel, and apparently the only place to eat in walking distance is called Las Brasas. We head there in the cool evening air – getting directions from locals as we go. It appears like a “truckie” stop on a stretch of motorway – but appearances deceive!! It’s really quite formal with impeccable service – and they have one waiter who can speak quite good English. We order a litre of beer, some glasses and a menu – and while we’re supping our “coldie”, an entree – on the house – arrives. It is called sopaipillas (pronounced sew-pie-pee-yahs) and it’s a small rectangle of pastry which has been allowed to rise, then deep-fried in oil which puffs it up with a crispy outside – which ideally leaves a hollow pocket in the centre. You then fill this pocket with some “pebre” (pronouned par-bra) which is quite a “hot” flavoured salsa – oh man – such an awesome accompaniment with an icy cold beer!! I am definitely going to try cooking these at home!!

On Two Wheels

We are up Volcan Osorno and a group of Brazilian bikers are very impressed by our journey – they are on a two week “romp” around Argentina and Chile – and we meet them again at Petrohue. They all seem to ride BMW1200GS’s in these parts – with KTM990 Adventures coming in second!



The Best Sign


Please don’t throw paper in the toilet!


We now realise that there are much LESS countries in the world where you can actually flush your paper down the toilet than there are that allow it – and in light of the “wet wipe” problem in Australia, it’s not surprising!!



Always a bin beside the toilet for “used” paper!


Story of the Week

By George, we’ve done it!! Eighty thousand kilometres, forty countries and one year!!! We are in Santiago and making arrangements for our return “down under” – and it’s starting to really sink in what we have achieved! Our KTM’s have taken us around the world – across oceans – provided hours of adrenalin-pumped riding – and allowed us to fill our minds with incredible memories. We have met so many interesting and wonderful people – shared stories and become “friends”! The last five months have been in Spanish-speaking countries – trying so many new cuisines and learning about so many different cultures.




We are ready for home now with the thought of our own bed, cooking our own food, cold beers in the fridge and family and friends! Our trip to New Zealand with the bikes that was put on hold for this journey is back on the radar…


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  1. Ro & Allan April 5, 2016 at 9:46 am

    Hi Lee & Paul

    Amazing following your journey – can’t wait to see you back in Oz (over that wine or 3 or 5 or 7 and maybe a couple of beers).

    Ro & Allan

    • Lee April 6, 2016 at 2:40 am

      Thanks guys! Absoloootally!! Looking forward to it! Talk soon xxxxxx

  2. Rod C April 3, 2016 at 10:50 am

    Happy 60th birthday for last week Paul! What are you planning for your 70th? Hard to top this one.

    • Lee April 3, 2016 at 3:53 pm

      Thanks Rod! Catch you guys soon in Maleny… xxxx

  3. Gary & Kerrin April 3, 2016 at 5:14 am

    Wow, congratulations you two. An amazing adventure. We look forward to the untold stories over a quiet wine or three.

    • Lee April 3, 2016 at 9:23 am

      Looking forward to it guys! xxxxx

  4. Raewyn April 3, 2016 at 12:36 am

    Ola Lee y Pablo !
    Que bien es de oir de tu viaje!! Congratulations to you both!! A trip of a lifetime & one I’m sure you’ll have many memories of ( both good & ??? ). Will look forward to getting together in the nearish future & reminiscing!!
    Till then …… continue the travels & big hugs to you both!


    • Lee April 3, 2016 at 3:30 am

      No hay compañero de las preocupaciones , los fríos en nosotros!! See you in Oz Rossco – with bells on!! Just had a great last night in SA – three beers, two bottles of wine and lots of reminiscing…bring on N.Z!! Big love to you guys xxxx

  5. Paddy O'Connor April 2, 2016 at 3:55 am

    I thought having Dad as the person in the final episode of the “Special People” segment was quite fitting. You summed him up well.

    • Lee April 2, 2016 at 1:19 pm

      Cheers Paddy! He’s enjoying not having to “think” about all those things at the moment!! We’re going to try and find him a new watch today to replace the one that fell off his wrist in Central America! Then when he gets back to Australia we have to try and put some “meat” on those bones!!

  6. Diane April 1, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    What an amazing journey you have had with fabulous memories forever. Happy 60th birthday for Thursday Paul. Hope to catch up with you in Auckland at Mum and Dad’s.

    • Lee April 2, 2016 at 2:16 am

      Thanks Diane – see you at the Village with bells on!!

  7. Kerry Bullock April 1, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    You are both awe inspiring! Can’t wait to see what your next adventure will be.

    • Lee April 2, 2016 at 2:16 am

      Won’t need one for a while Kerry!! Looking forward to being back in Brissie – catch you soon xxxx

  8. CT April 1, 2016 at 7:27 pm

    Hey O’Cs
    Simply Fantastic !
    Have loved reading your blogs, Thanks for taking me along for the ride . So sorry we missed you in Montana and again in Nicaragua, Really amazing you’ve made the year, cultural changes and miles with no major accidents or illnesses. A testament to your dedication and tenacity. I was really hoping to log some miles with you, perhaps on the return trip.
    All The Best,

    • Lee April 2, 2016 at 2:14 am

      Hey CT! Cheers for your comments…sorry we missed you too – here’s hoping we get to ride somewhere, sometime, it would be great!! Feeling very emotional right now – the bikes are packed and ready to fly and we leave in two days time. Looking forward to home after two years away – have you still got your bike in N.Z?

      • Clarence Beede April 4, 2016 at 1:38 am

        No, sold the BMW in NZ, just before I left there a couple years ago. A shame since it was a nice bike , but was a pain storing it every time I left. If I get to Oz and you’re up for a ride, I’m sure I can find one to rent. Save journey home.

        • Lee April 6, 2016 at 2:48 am

          I think we could sort something out for sure!! The bikes leave Santiago today and meet us in Brisbane on Friday! Having a quick catchup with Paul’s parents – beautiful weather here in Auckland…

  9. Runt April 1, 2016 at 11:48 am

    Now for the $1000 question…..what happened to the Bintang sweater ? Have been missing it in the photos.

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:48 pm

      Ga, it got put in a bin – probably on Vancouver Island – and it was a “big” moment! We have a wedding in Bali in October so I guess we’ll be shopping again!!!

  10. Dave April 1, 2016 at 11:05 am

    Hey you guys I am so proud of you both!! You have achieve such a wonderful trip & experienced life to the absolute full leaving no stone unturned!! I can not wait to get pissed with ya’s again to share the wonderful stories I know you will have, along with the insight you have gained. This is so far ahead of the pack you can count yourselves as trend setters to be followed!! Love ya both so much can’t wait for the hugs!! Safe jourey home xxxx
    Ps I think I will cry!!!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:46 pm

      Let me tell you there were a few tears shed on the motorway to the airport this morning and again when the bikes went into the cargo shed – all wrapped in their “cacoons” – with the next stop Brisbane!! We can’t wait to put the first two cartons of Boags in the fridge – although I don’t think they’ll last long!! Looking forward to that first “session” very much – love you too xxxxx

  11. Dave Pidcock April 1, 2016 at 9:39 am

    Hi Guys
    Great as always to read your post. What an achievement – so much fun and so many adventures.
    Enjoy the last days and looking forward to catching up when your back.
    Happy trails

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:42 pm

      Have to get our KTM’s together for a ride, Dave!! They went into their “cacoons” this morning at the cargo terminal the cleanest they’ve been since new!! It was quite emotional relinquishing them and now we feel like we’ve lost a limb!! See you very soon xxx

  12. Brian Johnson April 1, 2016 at 7:54 am

    Amazing trip. Well done, awesome planning by Paul and a belated happy birthday.
    Hope to see you again one day in old Blighty, NZ when we return there or Brisbane. Xx to you both

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      Cheers Brian! One of the most magical parts of our journey was all the new friends we made – I’m sure our paths will cross again – for sure!! Of all the places we went, England is where I want to come back!! xxxx

  13. Kay Cotterill April 1, 2016 at 6:49 am

    Love reading your news of your travels and would like to pass on birthday wishes to Paul for his special day…..it is amazing what you have accomplished and will have such wonderful memories forever!!! Will look forward to catching up at some stage when you are home and settled and hopefully young Julie will be over from home….love and hugs from all the Cotterill/Bertie Clan in Brisbane 💥🍷😄🍾💞🍻

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:35 pm

      Thanks Kay – would love to catch up with you guys and I’m sure that sister of mine won’t be far away!! I love Brisbane in autumn – a perfect time to come home! xxxx

  14. Beverley April 1, 2016 at 4:46 am

    Good job, well done! So great to have had you come via Tucson, AZ….Thanks for the visits.

  15. Phil and Evol Prince April 1, 2016 at 4:11 am

    Eighty thousand kilometres!!!!!!!! F—!!!!!!! that is awesome. Safe travels across to EnZed and across the ditch.
    Phil and Evol

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:32 pm

      We’re still pinching ourselves Phil!! Bikes packed up this morning – I shed a tear!! Down Under here we come xxxx

  16. Emma April 1, 2016 at 4:06 am

    Can’t wait to hear more of your great adventures when you are home. Yippee! Happy belated birthday to your very organised man 😉 xx

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:31 pm

      Cheers Ems! Looking forward to catching up on your life and loves!! C ya soon xxxx

  17. Barb April 1, 2016 at 4:02 am

    Well done Lee and Paul . Have loved the travel blog and photos and hearing of the experiences . What a year !!!! Xxx

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 4:30 pm

      Huge year!! We are in Whangaparaoa for two days (Paul’s Dad is 93) on the way home. Then I think it will be sleep, sleep, sleep!!! xxxx

  18. Paddy O'Connor April 1, 2016 at 3:48 am

    Awesome. Say hi to Grandma and Pa for me.

    P.S. That sweater made it too.

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:55 am

      Thanks Pad…will do! It was a good purchase that sweater!! We were shelling peanuts the other night with a beer and thought of that great bar in Victoria with the shells all over the floor!! Love you xxxx

  19. Aunty April 1, 2016 at 2:50 am

    Well done 😀😀. Such an amazing journey and such an achievement. So looking forward to the book!!!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:05 am

      See you soon Aunty! With big hugs xxxoooo

  20. Vera Zappala April 1, 2016 at 2:45 am

    Congratulations on such an achievement! I will miss your regular updates! Have enjoyed journeying around the world with you on the back of a motorbike!!! Certainly won’t be endeavouring to do it myself. I am in awe of the both of you!.

    Thank you. Hope to see you when you eventually get back to Brisbane!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:04 am

      Thanks Vera! A catch-up will be great – will be in touch xxx

  21. Annie April 1, 2016 at 2:21 am

    What an achievement and so many memories for you.
    I’m busting to see you and hug you both, then drink a whole heap of beers with you!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:03 am

      That sounds like a plan Stan!! Bring it on…. xxxxx

  22. Bruce April 1, 2016 at 2:05 am

    Congrats to you both. Welcome to the 60’s Paul.

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:03 am

      Is that from one old fart to another?!! Thanks Cuz!! xxx

  23. alison morgan April 1, 2016 at 1:37 am

    Well done guys will miss the reading. xxx

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:02 am

      Thanks Alison – come down to Brissie soon xxxx

  24. Sue Hird April 1, 2016 at 1:25 am

    Congratulations you two on achieving your goal – I’m in awe of everything about your trip.
    Also, a belated happy birthday Paul; guess you’re now officially an “old prick”!
    Am going to miss these regular blogs, will have to revert to the library for other people’s travels!
    Safe passage home. XO

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 3:02 am

      Thanks Hirds!! He is an “old prick”!! Does that mean I can trade him in on a “new” model!!! Losing the bikes in the morning – will really feel like it’s “done” then! They are sooooo clean it’s like magic!! Enjoy the Great Ocean Road xxxx

  25. Hilda Pye April 1, 2016 at 12:38 am

    Awesome!!! You guys have had such an amazing journey and it has been great following you all the way! Have a great flight home and we’ll be up to see you guys soon xoxoxo

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 2:59 am

      You bet Pyes! Will be in touch…we have a 3 night stopover with Kev and Les for his 93rd birthday – then home James!! xxxxx

  26. Nick Monaghan April 1, 2016 at 12:16 am

    Tash and I climbed that volcano in Pucon! Took us 5hrs and then we got to slid down on our butts!

    What an awesome trip you guys have had. We have been back home for two weeks. It’s great seeing all your pictures and reminding us of our trip through South America!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 2:57 am

      That’s awesome! We’ll have to catch up and compare notes some time!!

  27. Gay and Rob April 1, 2016 at 12:07 am

    You’ve gone and done it! Well what an achievement and adventure. Well done to you both and Happy belated birthday Paul, what a way to celebrate your 60th year! We can’t wait to see you again!

    • Lee April 1, 2016 at 2:56 am

      Thanks guys and looking forward to lunch!! Not to mention your smiling faces and a big hug!! xxxxx

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