Archive for the “Argentina” Category
It’s a surreal moment in Customs in downtown Buenos Aires when all the papers are finally signed, and the Jeep is officially transferred out of my name. Less than 15 minutes later I book plane tickets, and have just over 24 hours remaining in Latin America.
Not for the first time in my life, I give away stuff and condense my worldly possessions until they fit inside my faithful backpack.
I jump in the driver’s seat for the final time and make the journey to the airport, trying to soak in every last minute of time I have with my much-loved Jeep. For a year and a half I’ve been saying “Ella está mi novia” (She is my girlfriend), and we all know breakups are difficult.
Just before midnight on April 12, 2011 the wheels come to a stop for the final time after 64,517km.
That’s a touch over 40,000 miles in 667 days, or 1 year nine months and 28 days.
For the next twenty-nine hours I wait, read, write, think and sleep while moving through different airports, never feeling present in any of them. I’m greeted by my always-grinning brother & his girlfriend, holding a huge banner they made for my welcome, complete with Jeep pic and map.
Welcome Home Dan
Together, we cross the final border of the adventure.
The familiar words uttered by the friendly customs officer make me realize how much I’ve missed this place.
I think I’ll stay for a while.
“Welcome to Canada”.
I’m currently writing up posts about trip stats, total costs, gear reviews and more.
They’ll show up over the next couple of weeks.
If you have any questions you want me to cover, just ask.
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With all the madness involved in my attempts to sell the Jeep I’ve been very remiss in my photo taking duties, so I don’t have a lot to show for the weeks I’ve put in.
Over the last while I…
- Spend almost two weeks in and around El Bolson & Bariloche. Many Argentineans want to buy the Jeep, though the paperwork is never going to happen. There are also a lot of foreigners here, so I wait expectantly for something to turn up.
Los Alerces National Park
- Hike to the top of Cathedral Alta, the ski resort in Bariloche. There is no snow yet, but that doesn’t top me from imagining snowboarding all the different features.
- Drive across to Buenos Aires, where there is a solid buyer on the line. I make around 800km three days in a row, which is too much.
- Hang around BA again, moving from Customs offices to attorneys and back to customs.
- Take a ferry to Uruguay because the buyer doesn’t exactly have a “legal” status in his passport, so we head over and back just to get a new stamp in his passport. From the little I see it feels like a really beautiful, friendly place. Country number 17 for the journey, although without the Jeep, I’m not sure it counts.
Beautiful sunset at the final campsite
Things are very close now.
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It turns out selling the Jeep down here is a lot more difficult that I first thought. Argentina and Chile both have extremely strict importation laws to protect local producers, which makes things more than difficult. The funny side effect is the cost of imported foreign cars here. I’ve found my Jeep to be worth a very large sum of money to Argentines and they’re pretty keen to find a way to buy it. Jeeps from the 60′s sell for US$10k, from the 80′s about $15k and 90′s $20k. Every day I also see various junker death-traps selling for around $3k-$5k that make my Jeep look like new.
Every second person that sees it’s for sale for only $6k immediately asks to buy it. After I politely explain they really can’t (foreigners only) people think of all kinds of crazy ways we can make it work. Most revolve around reporting it as stolen, some involve stripping it for parts and even crazier ideas involve various takes on insurance fraud. Hmmm.
Singing a “Power of Attorney” for an Argentine guy is the closest I’ve come yet. He is to “drive it around” for a little while until I “come back” in a year or two. (cough, cough). At the border leaving Argentina the customs guy catches on pretty quickly to what we are trying to do and immediately puts stop to it, almost having the guy arrested for driving it until he realizes I am there too (Apparently in Argentina the Jeep and I are literally inseparable). Upon re-entry the guy is very formal and strictly checks all my papers twice.
Very quietly, off to one side, he mentions that in two weeks he will be at another border station, alone, and we should talk more there.
My new favorite word in Spanish is Corrupción
About an hour into Argentina we drive through a routine police stop where they very throughly check all my papers, search for drugs and generally waste our time until one officer asks about our intention to import the Jeep into Argentina. Apparently our friend at Customs has called ahead and told them to give us a good old fashioned shake down. This is all pretty funny to us, as we know we haven’t done anything wrong, and they have to let us proceed.
After all this has been explained in great detail to willing buyers, each and every Argentinean tries to buy my tent separately. Then my tool box. Then the spare parts. I think somehow they just want a piece of what they know is selling for super cheap, we just can’t make it work.
I’m sure something will present itself.
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Posted by Dan in Argentina, Jeep
For Sale: 2000 Jeep Wrangler 4-cyl
Amazing overland vehicle perfect for one or two people.
- 2000 Jeep Wrangler (TJ) – Excellent condition
- 4-cylinder 2.5ltr engine (20 MPG . 13L/100km always)
- 72ltr gas tank for 600km range
- 5-speed manual transmission
- Soft Top
- STRONG 4×4
- Canadian (Alberta) Registration / Number plates (easy for any foreigner)
- Security storage box to keep all your stuff safe (no backseat)
- 160 piece Mastercraft tool kit (as new)
- Haynes repair manual for the Jeep
- Box of spares (new radiator & heater hoses, fire extinguisher, emergency triangle, filters, oils, hose clamps, fuses, puncture repair kit, rope for towing etc, etc.)
- More tools (12v compressor, multi-meter, hacksaw, maglite, jumper-leads, etc, etc.)
- Two person, three-season tent (with spare poles, it’s getting old)
- Everything else I don’t take with me (camping chair, 20ltr water jug, tarpaulins, maps, guidebooks, etc.)
77,000kms in two and a half years of ownership without a single problem. I’ve always followed the book for oil changes / etc. and it’s never let me down.
Over 50% brakes front and rear.Needs new tires soon.
$USD 6000 or best offer.
Jeep from the back
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