Two-wheel legend Nick Sanders is currently in Argentina, riding, writing and generally having a good time as he cris crosses the county on his Yamaha Super Tenere, now that it’s finally been released by customs anyway….
After leaving Buenos Aires, Nick set out on the big Yamaha, shod with our new TKC 70 adventure bike tyre, to cross the Argentine Pampas, and he’s been keeping us up to date in true Nick Sanders style with his latest blog:
“There is a point in a journey when you think it cannot get any better, and then, it does. That has not yet happened. The Argentine Pampas is flat, the roads are lined with shrines and flags shredded by an unending wind and scruffy settlements have at their corners small temples of rusting vehicles. There is beauty in these flatlands across what can only be called a fascinating landscape in secret, and it is these hidden moments that I am sure the Pampas does not give up easily.
All journeys are compromised, mostly by lack of time and local knowledge but that doesn’t mean an adventure shouldn’t be started. As I too rode across what looked like a souless plain, the wind racking against flimsy fencing, there would be little chance of unearthing hidden gems – dinosaur footprints are said to be everywhere. I was too preoccupied in riding a motorcycle across coordinates to look deeper. Yet every few kilometres there was an easy history of people having died. Small brick-built shrines housing photographs of some young person would stand sentinel to the vehicles passing, their possessions stood in some public display alongside. The Egyptians buried their Phaeroes with what they thought would be useful in the afterlife, here it felt more like a demonstration of who they were on earth. Somewhere facing the wind and also a strong sun, a young boy’s bicycle was painted white and stood next to his photograph – a callow youth with swept back hair – and next to that a photograph of the revolutionary Che Guevara smoking a Havana. “This is who I am,” these artifacts stood to say, “these are the people I would wish to have been like and in death they are my friends.”
In the midst of all of this nothingness, except for a million acres of “low thicket of grey leafed thorns which gave off a bitter smell when crushed.” All the towns fit the shape of the road, like a ribbon village, paper thin, just a few streets thickness from the edge of brown hills and more barrenness. 80% of what the town comprises off could be seen without leaving the saddle of a motorcycle. Hanging around oily entrances, Gomerias with their dirty hands would fix peoples tyres. Gas stations served cafe con leche and wi-fi and an abundance of auto servicios either gave life or the last rites to dead or dying motors, whereby they rust away by a tree or some place you imagine dogs would stand aimlessly and bark.”
More from Nick Sanders on his Argentina trip coming soon!
Check out the new TKC 70 here.