• Thursday , 21 September 2017
Hanging Our Toes Off the End of the World, Tierra del Fuego

Hanging Our Toes Off the End of the World, Tierra del Fuego

We have been headed south for fifteen months and here we stand at the end of the road unable to ride another turn of the tire. We have reached Ushuaia and rode past town another fifteen miles under gray skies that spit sleet and wet snow, just so we could come to the exact spot where the road ends. Some wood posts blocking the way and a gravel parking area normally do not illicit joy and euphoria in sane people. But our beaming smiles betray the fact that we have reached a milestone as nomadic wanderers, we have ridden motorcycles from the Arctic Ocean of the Northwest Territories in Canada to the Beagle Channel in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. We have bisected the western hemisphere. Nice!

Ushuaia was our Point B with Seattle as our Point A on our macro overview of our trip through the Americas, a trip that will eventually take us around the world. This is going to sound trite but it is true nonetheless, the entire adventure has been found between points A and B. Ushuaia is stunning but so are a hundred other stops we have had along the way. The real magic for us is that we now have our imaginary bookend to neatly bind all the wonder and amazement we have collected since leaving Seattle. Ushuaia gave us a place to aim for and now that we have arrived it gives us a mile zero to begin the next leg of the journey. If we had this to do all over again would we still come all the way to Ushuaia? Absolutely.

It was worth the hard riding and incredible distances to get Ushuaia and it is even worth the new tires we will need to make it out of here again, we ate up our “new tires” in record time in the run down here. This is some of the wildest and most pristine country left on earth and we are lucky to say we have seen it with our own eyes, under our own transport, and with a tent and a camp stove as our home.

Shannon has been worried about the wind in Patagonia since we left Seattle. So far we have been lucky, and while very powerful, the wind has not been bad enough to slow us down. While stopping for this photo our friend Wayne from New Zealand happened to drive by. As we narrow in on Ushuaia we are seeing an increasing amount of overland motorcyclists.

Shannon has been worried about the wind in Patagonia since we left Seattle. So far we have been lucky, and while very powerful, the wind has not been bad enough to slow us down. While stopping for this photo our friend Wayne from New Zealand happened to drive by. As we narrow in on Ushuaia we are seeing an increasing amount of overland motorcyclists.

We were told the Perito Moreno glacier was not to be missed. It was beyond expectation in size, scale, and raw beauty. Calafate, Argentina.

We were told the Perito Moreno glacier was not to be missed. It was beyond expectation in size, scale, and raw beauty. Calafate, Argentina.

We hoped to see one of these hanging slabs of ice crash into the lake but it was all quiet on the Western Front while we were there.

We hoped to see one of these hanging slabs of ice crash into the lake but it was all quiet on the Western Front while we were there.

Perito Moreno Glacier, Calafate, Argentina.

Perito Moreno Glacier, Calafate, Argentina.

Feels like home. Rednecks have shot holes through all the road signs and trash cans at this rest stop overlooking the Santa Cruz River Valley.

Feels like home. Rednecks have shot holes through all the road signs and trash cans at this rest stop overlooking the Santa Cruz River Valley.

The Patagonian pampas sounds romantic but after hundreds of miles of the same scene it can get a bit mind-numbing.

The Patagonian pampas sounds romantic but after hundreds of miles of the same scene it can get a bit mind-numbing.

Times like this we wish we had a better camera. Pink flamingos live in some of the the most inhospitable places on earth. Between El Calafate and the frontier with Chile our shortcut took us on an 80 mile dirt road that passed many salt ponds filled with flamingos.

Times like this we wish we had a better camera. Pink flamingos live in some of the the most inhospitable places on earth. Between El Calafate and the frontier with Chile our shortcut took us on an 80 mile dirt road that passed many salt ponds filled with flamingos.

Secondary roads off of Ruta 40 have no traffic so stopping in the middle of the track to make tuna sandwiches is no problem.

Secondary roads off of Ruta 40 have no traffic so stopping in the middle of the track to make tuna sandwiches is no problem.

Chillin' like Bob Dylan on the road to Ushuaia.

Chillin’ like Bob Dylan on the road to Ushuaia.

From Punta Arenas, Chile we didn't fancy the idea of backtracking back to Ruta 40 so we opted for the ferry to Porvenir.

From Punta Arenas, Chile we didn’t fancy the idea of backtracking back to Ruta 40 so we opted for the ferry to Porvenir.

Roberto runs a campsite on Laga Fagnano and loves motorcyclists. He pulled us aside one morning to show us the model train diorama of his hometown that he has been building for 26 years.

Roberto runs a campsite on Laga Fagnano and loves motorcyclists. He pulled us aside one morning to show us the model train diorama of his hometown that he has been building for 26 years.

The duck goes "quack", the cow goes "moo", and this motorcycle goes "potato, potato, potato".

The duck goes “quack”, the cow goes “moo”, and this motorcycle goes “potato, potato, potato”.

The ghosts of fishermen past prowl the shores of Lago Fagnano. Tierra del Fuego, Argentina.

The ghosts of fishermen past prowl the shores of Lago Fagnano. Tierra del Fuego, Argentina.

No idea what is out there but I was powerless not to try when a rare break in the relentless wind happened one afternoon.

No idea what is out there but I was powerless not to try when a rare break in the relentless wind happened one afternoon.

Frisky Lago Fagnano rainbow trout made the afternoon complete.

Frisky Lago Fagnano rainbow trout made the afternoon complete.

The common area at Camping Hain is decorated with homemade signs from travelers past. We were honored to hang our S&M Boiler Works sign with our road heroes "Life Remotely".

The common area at Camping Hain is decorated with homemade signs from travelers past. We were honored to hang our S&M Boiler Works sign with our road heroes “Life Remotely”.

24,000 miles after leaving Seattle we reach the end of the road. This sign marks the end of Ruta 3 in Tierra del Fuego. It is the furthest south we will ever ride on our motorcycles. We can now say that we have ridden from the Arctic Ocean, down the length of the Western Hemisphere, and reached the end of the road at the Beagle Channel and the Southern Ocean.

24,000 miles after leaving Seattle we reach the end of the road. This sign marks the end of Ruta 3 in Tierra del Fuego. It is the furthest south we will ever ride on our motorcycles. We can now say that we have ridden from the Arctic Ocean, down the length of the Western Hemisphere, and reached the end of the road at the Beagle Channel and the Southern Ocean.

We are here. Time to head north and catch our boat to Europe!

We are here. Time to head north and catch our boat to Europe!

Ushuaia, Argentina.

Ushuaia, Argentina.

Ushuaia, Argentina.

Ushuaia, Argentina.

And we thought Alaska had the biggest King Crab! Ushuaia, Argentina.

And we thought Alaska had the biggest King Crab! Ushuaia, Argentina.

Mel and Zack were at our sending off party in Seattle so long ago. What a pleasure to have them meet us in Ushuaia to celebrate this milestone. Ushuaia, Argentina.

Mel and Zack were at our sending off party in Seattle so long ago. What a pleasure to have them meet us in Ushuaia to celebrate this milestone. Ushuaia, Argentina.

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