Page 6: - Dominican Republic - Tropical Motorcycle Adventure /w Pics -Cordillera Central Mountains
All Right. Getting together with Robert is like getting together with an old friend. Of course the first thing he says is “I thought you would be riding the Sportster!” I like that. Anyway, what a blast we have just hanging out. I help work on one of his motorcycles, we talk about the Dominican Republic, riding, football (Robert a former pro football player), his motorcycle tour business, dogs, software and motorcycles, motorcycles, motorcycles. It ‘s great. We could have talked all night. Robert and Alida make me feel completely at home saying “mi casa es su casa” (my home is your home) and I knew they mean it. He asks if I am interested in taking a little ride on one of his motorcycles tomorrow, a Vstrom 650. Of course, I say “Hell yes!”
The MotoCaribe stable filled with sweet Suzuki Vstrom 650s:
Oh, I am not pumped at all for this!
Robert is into riding big-time. He lent me a full warm-weather riding suit complete with padded shoulders, elbows, hips and knees. I tell him I fell like an idiot riding around in my light pants. He says “I rode like that for years too” We ride, we stop and we talk. We ride, we stop and we talk. The little ride turns into the full ride he does with his MotoCaribe tour groups on their first day, plus routes that may be included in his future rides. The only thing we did not do was hike to the Jurassic Park waterfall and do lunch, I was in too much of a hurry because I had a long ride to get back to Heidi that same day. Anyway, we just did not want the ride to end. I wish I had some photos of the area we rode through but we were riding, and the riding was awesome. Robert is a great ride leader pointing out places where you should slow a bit to look. The views just cannot be adequately described with words.
This is the spot MotoCaribe stops for lunch the first day. We just had coffee and conversation.
All I can say here was “Wow, wow, wow”
This is where the road ended at the top of the mountain. No more palm trees here, just thick pine forests and clear mountain streams. I fell like I am in Colorado or something. Way cool! And boy, did I like riding the Suzuki 650 Vstrom.
We also tour a coffee factory. I am into coffee big time so this is a big treat.
Beans are sorted with machines by weight, size and color. This is where human hands sort out bad beans from good beans. The sorters are paid by how many bad beans they find and are penalized for sorting out good beans.
This is some of the best coffee in the world, and I am not exaggerating.
We had a great time together. Anyone who does a MotoCaribe motorcycle tour will not only be riding on an exotic tropical Caribbean island but will leave feeling they made a friend. Thanks Robert!
Check it out --> www.MotoCaribe.com <--
I start for home late and fly down the mountain. I stop just before the main highway and slam a Gatorade, yogurt and a bag of nuts. I change my plans, I am going to try another road I have never ridden before and is known to be a very slow and bad road. The roads are OK but as soon as I hit La Vega, I have a feeling I am going the wrong way. The sun is just too close to my nose instead of being off my left shoulder. I ask directions several times and keep riding but the more I ride the more I know I am going the wrong way. Well, I’m on an island and there is only one major highway running down the middle and that if I am running off course I should hit the autopista sooner or later, based on dead reckoning. I am right, I find myself caught in rush hour traffic in the huge city, Santiago where the autopista highway connects. I jump on the autopista and hammer north toward Puerto Plata. This is the long route but a fast route. I cannot believe my bike is a 125cc because I am flying. I make it to Puerto Plata on the north Atlantic coast at dusk, only 25 miles away from Heidi. As soon as I make it through the city, I call Heidi on my world phone to let her know where I am. I should have stayed somewhere in Puerto Plata that night but I really wanted to make it back to Heidi. My headlight sucks and my tail light is blue, not good. I just try to follow behind other motorcycles or cars with better headlights. I am an idiot for riding that last 25 miles in the dark. I did make it and I will never do that again.
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