Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Ecuador - Ride Report (Part 1)

"The motorcycling trip through Ecuador is finished!

1300 km through the mountains and swampy plains, on asphalt and gravel, on cobblestone and in wonderful mud. Through the humid heat and in the cold rain, under a bright sun and in the fog. 0 to 4 km elevation changes, sometimes in a matter of few hours. It was some adventure!

And the excellent group of fellow motorcyclists made it all even better!" - S. Ivanov

Day 0 - arrival to Quito and the first night.

Ok, we made it safe to Quito, Ecuador and already a little drunk.  They make some really good Mojitos here and by the time we got to the dinner part we were ready for some Salsa and Merengue.

Our crew in Miami International Airport

On the way from airport

 First dinner in Ecuador
Also mental note to myself do not attempt to install  camera on the helmet after few drinks.

Day 1 - getting the bikes and journey to the town of Chugchilan 

Our crew met in the hotel lobby and after a hearty breakfast took a cab to Ecuador Freedom Bike Rental. We arrived there around 9:00 am, but faced a closed door.
Interesting how everybody assumed that Court, owner of the place, will be there so early. To make long story short, he got to the shop around 11, and we started final preparation for our departure from Quito. 

ready to roll

Jaimie and Temich also have been in touch with a friend of a friend, who rides motorcycles here in Quito; he and a couple of his riding partners expressed desire to meet and ride with us for some portion of the first day. To make long story short, they made getting out of Quito easy and almost painless.
getting out of Quito is a breath, thanks to our new Ecuadorian friends
We stopped for a lunch at small town Saquisili for a first taste of local cuisine.

After fulfilling lunch of some pork with rice, and Ecuadorian version of cheese-filled potato latkes we got on our bikes and took a beautiful road to our final destination of the day – Chugchilan. It was a great day of riding on fantastic paved, cobblestone, and gravel roads. Around every corner Ecuador would present us with the views of the mountains. Our motorcycles were climbing up and down on the  fantastic roads.


Upon arrival to Hotel Mama Hilda right in time for dinner. After the dinner we enjoyed drinks near the fireplace and discussed plans for the next day.

Day 2 – Crater Lake and unknown
We woke up early morning, had a breakfast and started packing our bikes.
Our route from Chugchilan to the Crater Lake took us through some beautiful mountain valleys, and it was 100% dirt riding, just the way we like it. Overall road conditions were pretty good, but on occasion we would hit some muddy parts of the road, which makes it harder but more fun to ride.

We rode through some tough muddy roads and faced some surreal landscapes.

We finally reached paved road and I was ready to kiss it. Oh it so nice to have a good traction with the road.
We saw the sign to a Crater Lake and after paying small entrance fee, $2.00 per bike, entered the parking lot and walked to the edge of the Crater to see true natural beauty, unfortunately no picture can show the true colors of the lake and real beauty of surrounding area. 

The Crew

After the Lake we programmed our GPS to search for a nearest gas station, since we were running pretty low on fuel. Once our bikes were topped off with gas we hit the beautiful and very curvy mountain road that kept climbing up all the way to the clouds.

It is very interesting to ride through the cloud forest. I’ve never seen so many shades of green and so many different forms of vegetation, but also the fact of piloting motorcycles through the curves in a cloud and rain creates nice adrenalin explosion in your body.

look and the small land slide behind us, we've seen a lot of them during this trip

 We stopped in some small mountain village for a lunch. It was really good and very inexpensive. We had warm corned based soup with chicken and then more chicken with rice. This lunch cost us $17.00 for all five of us.

At this point of the day we realized that we crossed mountains west towards Quevedo instead of going east to Banos, where we had hotel reservation. We made a decision to continue south-west to town called Ventanas. We programmed our GPS to search for hotels and found one with promising name -Hotel Vera. Along the way we saw a few motels, but they all looked to us like the places where you pay for hourly use of facility.

We stopped at the mechanic’s shop to do some repairs on Barak’s luggage system. Guy took care of the problem and refused to take any money from us. He also gave us his phone number in case we need any help on the road or in trouble with police.

It was getting dark when we entered Ventanas and found our hotel for the night.
bikes and a crew in the hotel lobby

Our hotel

my room

On this positive note I will finish first part of our ride report. I will comeback with more with next couple days.
Thanks for riding along,



  1. Thanks for sharing! Anxiously awaiting for the next batch of posts. Ride on:)

  2. с нетерпением жду продолжения.....

  3. Great pictures and story except that I arrived at the office at 9:45 am not 11! We open every day at 10 am! Thanks for sharing! -Court at FreedomBikeRental.com

    1. Thanks Court, I am glad you like the blog. Yo might be right and you did come around 10, but the point is that non of us have contacted you and asked you about your business hours. So we actually hang out on the street for more than an hour, before one of your guys opened the shop. Any way, thanks again for providing great service and great riding experience in Ecuador. I look forward to more trips in Ecuador.