|Whereas there are very few published travelogues covering cycling in South America there are a huge and growing number of web sites to mine for information. I won't list them all, just the ones I've found most useful. Links to external sites open in new windows.|
|FORUMS :: TRAVELOGUES :: PLACES TO STAY :: ASSOCIATIONS :: FAVOURITE TOURING SITES (NON SA) :: TOURING BIKE MAKERS :: MAPS|
|Lonely Planet's Thorntree - On Your Bike forum. I sometimes post here as "manonbike".|
|South America Bicycle Touring Links
A huge collection of links to online South America Travelogues in many languages.
In late 2005 and early 2006 iik followed much of the same route as I did from the Careterra Austral, Futaleufu and then along the eastern side of the Andes to Mendoza and then crossing the mountains to Santiago. Have a look at his site for another (and more recent) view.
|PLACES TO STAY|
|La Torre Suiza - Villarrica, Chile
Run by a pair of Swiss Round the World cyclists. A great place to meet other cyclists and swap info.
Casa Perla - Puerto Montt, Chile
|ASSOCIATIONS & MAGAZINES
All of these organisations cover their own turf first and foremost but their services are well worth a look and their magazines occasionally run South America stories.
|Adventure Cycling Association
An American organisation who publish cycling maps for the USA as well as the touring magazine "Adventure Cycling".
Cyclists Touring Club
Bicycle New South Wales
|MY FAVOURITE TOURING SITES|
Cycling the amusing roads of Asia with Felix and Mr Pumpy.
Discovering Germany by Bike
|TOURING BIKE GEAR|
When my 21 year old Clamont 1000 (a triple butted 700c cro-mo tourer) finally wore out (2008) it was replaced by one of the Thorn expedition bikes - a Raven Nomad. Fell in love with them when I met a cyclist on a prototype Nomad on the Carretera Austral..... Long wheelbase, rugged components, 26 inch wheels & touring geometry. Basically the bikes are designed to handle and go well when fully loaded.
St John Street Cycles (sister company to Thorn) have a massive range of gear online and ship worldwide.
Wayne at The Touring Store in the US is great to deal with and will ship panniers and racks worldwide.
The following recommendation are based on my trip. This was quite a while ago now so maybe better maps are available....
|Chile - Turistel's Mapa Rutero
I looked at lots of maps in Chile but it was the slim Turistel Mapa Rutero atlas that was the most accurate and up to date. It is updated every year or two and although a relatively small scale was more accurate than anything else I found. It was available at many newsstands, book shops and, oddly, telephone offices. It indicates most roads, both sealed and unsealed. Fortunately for you road building has been continuing apace so more roads will be sealed than most maps show. The military published a more detailed atlas of topographic maps but many of them dated back to the sixties and so were so far out of date as to be useless. Expensive too!. Lonely Planet published an appalling Chile Atlas of cartographic doodles that thankfully appears to be out of print. Other maps were published by the major petrol station chains. I remember seeing a very nice 1:200,000 scale cartographic map of the lakes district published by one of the telephone companies. Some very fancy looking maps were also published of the Carretera Austral but in reality were less accurate than the Turistel map.
Best news is that the entire Turistel Mapa Rutero is available online in high resolution now! Grab it and print it out before they realise that they're just giving it away.
Argentina - YPF Atlas Vial
2008 update: the YPF Atlas Vial appears to be out of print but YPF's Guia YPF may include the atlas.
All text and images copyright Syd Winer 2004 - 2009