Saturday, January 18, 2014

January 17 & 18, 2014 Last days in Columbia

We've decided another day of rest is in order, stomach issue are subsiding but I still have a head cold and now kennel cough has set in. We have a nice shopping center across the street so we decide to replenish our emergency rations and buy a few groceries for todays lunch and tomorrows breakfast. Still cannot find beef jerky down here which was one our favorites if we were unable to find a safe or suitable place to eat. Peanut butter is it's replacement and I have to say its very tasty.
 Church in Pasto, Columbia.
 You still see carts pulled by horse or mule everyday.
Grocery store in Pasto, Columbia-almost everything you want is available here.
The attached link is to Alex and Nathaniel's blog, we met them in Panama City, sailed together to Cartagena, and spent 3 days with them at the hostal before parting company outside Cartagena  Alex is a professional photographer and both Alex and Nathaniel write an awesome blog.
Our last day in Columbia starts at a cool 14 degrees C. and eventually drops to 12 as soon as we start gaining altitude (about 15 minutes) I'm thinking to myself I should have layered the clothing this morning but really don't feel like stopping and looking for a long sleeved shirt.
Somehow we've missed the turn to Ipiales and are now at the export office. Two of the government employees speak English and we are told we are only 15 minutes away from the Las Lajas Sanctuary so we decide to back track before exiting Columbia. The basilica church is built between the canyon walls and spanning the Guaitara River. 
 Las Lajas Sanctuary
Have a look for the roasted Cuy (Guiana Pigs).
The border crossing was defiantly the most civilized crossing yet. A quick stop to export the bike out of Columbia, then next door to have our passports stamped. The lineup here took about an hour but we certainly picked the wrong line as the couple in the line next to us were through in half the time. We then drive about 50 meters to the Ecuador immigration for a pass port stamp which took about 10 minutes then  off to customs to import the bike for another 45 minutes.
While waiting to exit Columbia I meet a late 20's man from Germany who started hiking in Alaska, down the west coast to Mexico, flew to Cuba and then to Ecuador where he purchased a brand new Honda with machete for $2000. His plans are travel all the countries in South America on the Honda and sell it for about $1000 when done.


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