The Border with Haiti - A Motorcycle Ride Report -

cobraboy

Pro-Bono Demolition Hobbyist
Jul 24, 2004
40,964
927
113
For sure, just bring extra water :D
Although, I wonder how the air-cooled DT125 would do. The photos do not show it but the trail is STEEP for long distances and there is a ton of strain on the motor. I think it would do just fine though, I may be trying it myself next. The saying at HorizonsUnlimited.com is "The right motorcycle for the ride is the one you have" :chinese:
An extra 100cc would make a big difference, as long as it wasn't that much heavier...

Very, very well done, Tom.
 

ddoran

Member
Apr 23, 2006
164
4
18
great job
so jealous!!
did this trip in 1981 on a 125 honda when i was a peace corps vol in the DR? like going back to prehistoric time once south of dajabon
 

cavebiker

Have a dream, live it. Set a goal, achieve it.
Feb 10, 2012
124
5
18
www.justadventuretravel.net
The Border with Haiti


Another military border outpost where they inform me I need to get a permit to be here. The person explains in detail where to go and whom to talk with to get this permit, always being very friendly, pleasant and helpful. Everything is good. He is surprised to hear about where my ride started today.


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Further, down the trail there is an area of road covered in giant blue tarps. Haitians come here with huge sacks of potatoes they grow and sell them to someone who eventually comes up here with a truck. There is one military person here from the Dominican Republic, there are maybe a dozen Haitians hanging out in the shade with their potatoes.


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They all seem to freak out a little when I ask in Spanish if it's OK to take a photo, but then the military person translated to them in Creole that the photo is just for fun, nothing official, they light up. After a couple shots, everyone enjoys looking at their images on the camera.


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The trail continues to be rugged and steep. There is a young couple walking with a donkey loaded with firewood.


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After saying hi I ask for a photo. The young girl is into it, trying to make a good pose, her tattered and torn t-shirt is no hindrance. After looking at the image I remark how beautiful she is. They are both beaming with friendliness while lookig at the image.


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Stopping and chatting with people out on the trail is a huge pleasure and most times I cannot spoil the moment by whipping out my camera.


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coming down


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Civalzataion


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Finally the bottom of the mountain and a hard packed road with a small village, This village is on my map so my location is known, and thats a good feeling after an all day ride.


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The person at the first official building gladly takes my 50 pesos in exchange for a park permit.


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He is also happy to get his photo taken.


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I continue along the border until the start of the carretera internacional (international road). Again its a problem with my photocopy passport. Maybe this is an extra precaution because of the cholera outbreak, or just standard practice because this section of the trail runs into Haiti. No big deal, I did over 90 percent of the border, good enough, this was expected.


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Doing a U-turn signals the end of this ride. My body is screaming from fatigue, my ass is raw but I am heading for home, triggering a new burst of adrenaline, and that feels good.


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Today is Dia Independencia, Independence Day of the Dominican Republic, their independence from Haiti. Some villages have large celebrations and blocked off streets while others seem like ghost towns, probably because everyone is at the celebration village.


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Roadblock after roadblock pop up with children asking for donations for some good cause. The girls have a ball having their photos taken and looking at the images. Once I handed the camera over so they could look, I thought the camera was going to be torn to shreds form the girls grabbing it from each other.


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There are bands of roaming teenagers dressed in costumes wearing ghostly masks and cracking bullwhips. The masks have significance in the history of the celebration and in a way represent the conflict between the Dominican Republic and Haitian voodoo spirits.


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frank12

Gold
Sep 6, 2011
11,847
25
48
Fantastic and thorough ride report. You've inspired me to go out and rob a bank in order to buy another motorcycle and finance my trip. If my bank heist is successful, i will follow your route. if not, i will follow it when i get out of jail.

Could you please give a detailed description of the rooute you took.

Thanks, Frank
 

cavebiker

Have a dream, live it. Set a goal, achieve it.
Feb 10, 2012
124
5
18
www.justadventuretravel.net
- The Border with Haiti - conclusion


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I screamed the motorcycle toward home and made it to the large Caribbean port city, Azuaa and a sleazy $11 hotel before dark.


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The Dia Independencia celebration noise is blasting into my room. My body is toast and the only thing I want to do is drink a beer at the hotel and reminisce about the ride, and that works for me.


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Today I'm heading home to Heidi starting on the shores of the Caribbean Sea and ending up on an Atlantic Ocean beach, cool.




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Dominican Republic road-side coffee, strong and pre-packed with lots of cane sugar. Why does coffee always tasts better on the road?


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Empanadas!


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While eating an empanada I see this person doing a rear tire skidding halt. He quickly answers his cell phone and is just as quickly off again. Americanized ?


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If you stay off the main highway in the Dominican Republic, you are guarantees a scenic ride


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This is a view of where I camped several night ago.


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My motorcycle developed a new noise, its coming from the rear wheel. I check out the noise, the rear tire is rubbing on the chain guard. This is weird. I adjusted the chain tension slides to straighten out the wheel but I'm afraid a wheel bearing is failing or maybe the mono-shock, Its still a full day's ride from home. I take it cool and slowly ride on.


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Heidi and I tried this road a few weeks ago but we turned back, it was too brutal for riding two-up.


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This ride is almost over. I do not think I am the same person. I try to make the ?face?, the face that says ?Oh freaking yeah! What a ride!?


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Almost home to Heidi. I feel as giddy as this kid on the horse.
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The Dominican Republic will forever feel like a dream.
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Now that was fun! This is a do it again ride for sure, maybe combining it with a circumnavigation of the country, Oh Yeah!


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- Tom and Heidi -



I hope you all enjoyed riding along - The Border with Haiti -


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Here is a map of my route, color coded by day
 

cavebiker

Have a dream, live it. Set a goal, achieve it.
Feb 10, 2012
124
5
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www.justadventuretravel.net
Fantastic and thorough ride report. You've inspired me to go out and rob a bank in order to buy another motorcycle and finance my trip. If my bank heist is successful, i will follow your route. if not, i will follow it when i get out of jail.

Could you please give a detailed description of the rooute you took.

Thanks, Frank

Hey Frank, Now that is the kind of talk I can relate to. It's like me right now, I feel like I'm locked up with a full time job while trying to fill the piggie bank to buy the next bike. I will 'do my time' and I will enjoy it when I do finally brake out.
 

CFA123

Silver
May 29, 2004
3,500
381
83


I hope you all enjoyed riding along - The Border with Haiti -



Enjoyed your comments and photos more than I can express. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your experience. Never before have I had the least interest in learning to ride... maybe that'll change now!
 

Chip

Platinum
Jul 25, 2007
16,772
421
0
Santiago
Great report. The DR is certainly a great place to ride a motorcycle. And best of all if one knows the "rules" a very safe and entertaining place to ride as well.
 

dulce

Silver
Jan 1, 2002
2,493
164
63
Excellent report and fantastic pictures. This is the best of the DR that I will certainly never see with my own eyes.
Thank you and your adventurous girlfriend for taking the trip for me and sharing it.
 

zoomzx11

Gold
Jan 21, 2006
8,309
770
113
Enjoyed every second of it-almost like being along for the ride. One question. Mosquitoes!> Did you sleep outside under a mosquetero? (no idea how to spell it). That filmy cloth thing that keeps the mosquitoes from getting in. Thanks so much for sharing your trip. It was beautiful.
 

Playero

Member
Aug 24, 2006
84
3
8
Great stuff. Thank you very much for posting. I wish I had the guts to just saddle up and go...
 

Auryn

Well-known member
Apr 22, 2012
1,196
744
113
Your detailed account of your trip was most excellent. It reads like a novel and the pictures are beautiful. Thank you very much for sharing.
 

cavebiker

Have a dream, live it. Set a goal, achieve it.
Feb 10, 2012
124
5
18
www.justadventuretravel.net
Enjoyed your comments and photos more than I can express. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your experience. Never before have I had the least interest in learning to ride... maybe that'll change now!
You thinking this plus writing it makes the effort to post all worth it, thanks man.

Great report. The DR is certainly a great place to ride a motorcycle. And best of all if one knows the "rules" a very safe and entertaining place to ride as well.

Right On Chip, it?s all about following the rules and being an alert rider. Cobraboy has a great thing on his website about motorcycle road rules in the DR. I have ridden the roads in the DR for years but I still learned things.


Excellent report and fantastic pictures. This is the best of the DR that I will certainly never see with my own eyes.
Thank you and your adventurous girlfriend for taking the trip for me and sharing it.

:thumbup

Enjoyed every second of it-almost like being along for the ride. One question. Mosquitoes!> Did you sleep outside under a mosquetero? (no idea how to spell it). That filmy cloth thing that keeps the mosquitoes from getting in. Thanks so much for sharing your trip. It was beautiful.

No, I used ?Jungle Juice? deet and just covered up with the tarp.

Great job, thank you for taking us with you

do you have a website where you chronicle your south American Adventure?

Oh Yeah, --> www.JustAdventureTravel.net:rambo:

And thanks everyone else for the good words, this is fun!
 

snoozer

Member
Jan 22, 2004
282
6
18
Great read. I love reading about and seeing photos of this country off the beaten track. I used to ride dirt bikes in the mountains in Canada many years ago so I can identify with how your body feels after a full day of riding the rough stuff. I know I would need at least another 100cc's to do this though.