Slip Sliding Away (319 and Carara)

My friend Robert and I were to take a ¨short¨ ride on Monday, April 11th, a holiday in Costa Rica. First, we had breakfast at La Choza de Doña Emilce.

After breakfast I asked him if he wanted to do the little alternate route from Grifo Alto down to Purires (See previous post), Calle Agüero, which I had done last year. He did!

Calle Agüero to Purires
Calle Agüero

Calle Aguero is first cement, then gravel, then dirt. It is a little one-lane track. It has two small downhill parts that are slightly technical. It is a fun detour to do when on route 137 for, well, the fun of it!

We had planned on going up to La Potenciana, but because I was a bit hesitant to do one short part that is a bit challenging, we decided to do a some recon near the Bijagual de Carara area. The joke was on me! 🙂

We took route 319 since Robert has been wanting to do more off-road riding on his new BMW 800, Q2.

Tajo Sulai seen from route 319

At the local store in Turrubares, we asked how the road to Carara was. Some friends of mine from Moteros CR group had done it a couple of months ago, and I assumed it was doable. (Truth be told, I did not see their video. I do often watch videos before I do a new route, but this was unplanned. Had I seen it, I would not have gone! Hahaha! See it here. ) The store owner insisted it was fine, that cars drove it. We asked, ¨Are you sure?¨ He said, ¨Absolutely. You will have no problem.¨So off we went!

As you can see, route 319 is lovely at first. I was delighted that we had decided to check it out.

But, before long, it became a most difficult route of wet, slippery clay on up and down inclines as we crossed several creeks! Oh the ironies of life! Here I wanted to avoid tricky routes in order to not fall, and I fell twice on this one. Hahaha!

First fall, I was silently furious that I fell because I was almost out of it! I need to improve sustaining my momentum and sight ahead. Clearly, I am not skilled on riding on clay!! LOL
When both the rider and the motorcycle are too exhauted to move! LOL

By my second fall, we were down at the bottom of the last stream, completely wiped out. Zero energy left. We were too tired to lift up my bike.

I thought we might have to spend the night there. Seriously. We had no cell phone signal. Robert tried to walk up to find signal, but it was too long a way uphill, and walking in his motocross boots, caked with clay, was impossible. He returned…and we despaired. Hahahaha!

I love this photo!

And then the miracle happened! Five local angels came riding down! Our saviors!!

They first took my bike half way up the mountain. But I was unable to walk up further. I have never been so utterly exhausted. I could barely move. The moist heat did not help. So, they ended up taking our motorcycles all the way up. It was about 600 meters uphill.

The motorcycle with carried us up.

Then, one guy with a slightly bigger motorcycle took first me, then Robert, up to the top. We would not have made it up and out without their help. It was too slippery. Several guys had to push his bike from behind to support it as it went uphill. Too heavy for the slippery trail!

Top of the hill

We tipped the guys and thought we were in the clear. And we began paddle-walking the bikes onward. But then Robert’s front wheel would not spin! Hahaha!

We called our friend Cristian for help and continued resting. After about 45 minutes, Robert mustered up enough energy to clear the mud from under the fender, and the wheel eventually broke free. Phew!

The road was still too splippery to ride. Back to paddle-walking the motorcycles down slowly till we hit gravel. This left my arms and thighs sore for two days!

I let people know we were in the clear and on we went!! (I am so touched that my friend Erik Vargas later sent a message that said that if he had not heard from us by 4 pm he would have organized a rescue party.)

We were joyfully and wearily relieved and grateful to finally reach gravel, especially the road to Bijagual! We had made it! Los LOCOS por las MOTOS habían sobrevivido otra ruta RECON!

At Bijagual we stopped for drinks and french fries to recharge our drained bodies. We had been on the road 10 hours. I couldn’t help but laugh when it started raining. (Video.) Fortunately, it stopped, and we carefully rode down and out … and home!!!

The next day, while washing Storm, I took several chunks of clay out from behind the back fender. Then I took Storm to the mechanic for minor fixes (new mirrors since one had broken), despite my tired soreness! And, yesterday, I took her for a new Motoz Tractionator Adventure front tire and to get pressure washed since another piece of clay fell out of who knows where! 🙂 She had loved it all, of course, even the falls!

There are many trails I have done that I would not have done had I known how difficult they would be. Luckily, I have survived! After all is said and done, however, one is naturally pleased to have had such intense adventures. Robert and I have had much fun exploring together. We know we should not do recon when it is just us two, yet, things happen spontaneously, like this amazing journey. I do not regret having done this.


Date of ride: April 11, 2022.

Song, suggested by Robert : Slip Sliding Away. ¨You know the nearer your destination, the more you’re slip sliding away.¨


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