This shot was taken from the side of Route 265 in Chile, overlooking Lago Gral Carrera midway through a three-week buddy trip down Patagonia.
My friend and I have ridden aggressive itineraries in several countries around the world, and always with an ultimate destination in mind – Siem Reap, Mongolian wrestling event, or Machu Pichu. Despite challenges we’d somehow always managed to avoid delays caused by significant crashes, crippling weather or other unknown perils and make our destination intact and triumphant.
At this point of our trip we’d covered roughly half our mileage and were once again on-schedule for a celebratory dip of our tires into Ushuaia’s Beagle Channel. What we couldn’t know at the time of this photo is that our trip would eventually be cut short by an underpaid (and striking) Chilean Border Patrol.
Despite our planning and attention to detail, the border patrol was an impossible barrier to overcome. After disagreements with their government they’d shut the border for six hours and left us outside Torres del Paine National Park drinking coffee and eating hamburguesa’s the size of our head.
Maybe we could have made up the time on the road, sprinting past Torres del Paine and innumerable other sites in a mad dash for a chance to see penguins and to high-five another journey completed. Instead we chose to explore Torres for an extra day, stop a little more often and eat better snacks. This photo – my mid-trip moment of zen – reminds me that motorcycle journeys don’t need finish lines, just close friends and a sturdy bike.