Category archives for Travels

The Carretera Austral

About 30 years ago, Chile sensed that, if it wouldn’t do any effort to get the part south of Puerto Montt more Chilean, it would soon be a part of Argentina (especially because Argentina would be very happy to have access to the Pacific Ocean). Therefore, Pinochet decided to start one of the biggest construction projects in Chilean history: to build a road from Puerto Montt all the way south to Punta Arenas. They didn’t get all the way, because there were some glaciers in the way, and even today some parts can only be travelled by boat. Furthermore, when talking about “a road” don’t think about a modern highway like we know them in Europe, but think more in the direction of “dust, gravel and potholes”. But it’s possible to travel on this road by bike and we decided to cycle a part of it.

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It’s all a matter of perspective

It’s all a matter of perspective. That’s what old people say. “You will see, when you are old, you will think differently. It’s all a matter of perspective!” And maybe we needed a trip to Patagonia by bicycle to realize that maybe those old guys aren’t all wrong…

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Welcome to Patagonia!

So here we are, in San Martin de Los Andes (Argentina) after having cycled pushed our bikes over the first Patagonian roads dust-spreading, unpaved kind of 4WD-tracks. The terrain wasn´t always very easy and as such we didn´t always get as far as we planned to go sometimes only did 40 km a day. A big problem in Patagonia, is the absence of good maps: our best map has a scale of of 1:1.600.000 (yep you calculate it right: 1 cm = 16 km) and some vague indications of altitudes basically has no appropriate altitude indication, making that sometimes, to our big surprise we had to go up 700 or 800 meters, whereas we were expecting to go down…

What else to say? The weather has been nice acceptable: we had good weather most of the time, but on one bad day, we had to pack our tent wet in the morning after a night of rain, in the hope that in the evening we would be nice and toasty in a guesthouse, but thanks to our bloody incredibly precise map, we had to emergency camp somewhere in the pampa, in our wet tent and damp sleeping bag…

We hate love Patagonia! And cycling here was the worst best idea we ever had! :-)

Vera & Jean-Christophe

Pic’ in the Picture: What’s the fuss about the Dragon?

The picture below was taken at the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma), the biggest and most important temple of Myanmar.

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Told you so…

It isn’t always very easy finding our way by bicycle and as a small “preview” on Patagonia, we decided to leave without map for our trip to Germany. Anyway, everything is indicated and there are signs everywhere, so we thought…

Vera & Jean-Christophe

Not many words are needed…

… to tell you how we feel…

A close-up of our nerves

A close-up of our nerves


Vera & Jean-Christophe

As a little training-tour…

We decided to cycle from France to Darmstadt. As we weren’t too trained, it wasn’t always easy.

The first deception...

Day 1: The first deception...

Furthermore we seriously started wondering why we had the crazy plan to go to Patagonia, where we will for sure be riding in strong winds and rain and eating basic pasta and rice, whereas in Alsace and Germany we could enjoy some good wine and decent food.

Well, too late now, our plane will be leaving tomorrow!


Vera & Jean-Christophe

Pic’ in the Picture: Moscow time please!

This picture was taken in Moscow, Russia and shows the one and only so-called “Moscow Time”. Russia is a country so big, that it incorporates 11 time zones: from GMT+2 to GMT+12. Therefore, in order to keep track a bit, and to make it easier for everybody (somebody in Moscow certainly thought), trains tables, departures and arrivals are always indicated with the Moscow time. So if you are in Irkutsk and your train ticket says a departure at 17h15, this means in reality a departure of 22h15 local time as Irkutsk is 5 hours ahead of Moscow. However, keep in mind that trains that don’t cross time-zones (local trains), go on local time! So if your ticket says 17h15, it is indeed 17h15… Easy once you understand it, but until then, you might be in for some surprises.
Moscow Time!

Moscow Time

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