A Mindful South American Journey

A Mindful South American Journey | RoadRUNNER
Photography: Federico Tondelli, Euto Mandalari

As motorcycle enthusiasts, we must acknowledge that our passion for nature and adventure has a significant environmental impact. However, selling our bikes isn't the solution.

This journey through Chile and Argentina aims to describe both epic adventures and simple acts with the potential to create a positive impact. It's not rocket science—consume local food, minimize waste, adopt a conscious riding style, and offset your carbon footprint.

It’s all about embracing mindful choices.

Our journey begins in the Calama region of Chile, which is sadly famous for hosting the world’s largest landfill for used (and unused) clothing from major fast fashion chains. In contrast, San Pedro de Atacama is an enchanting village with houses made of sun-dried mud bricks, exuding simplicity and harmony with nature.

The village serves as a hub from which numerous excursions lead into the Atacama Desert, the world's driest desert. This is where we take our initial steps to acquaint ourselves with the motorcycles, the terrain, and the altitude.

We have plans to ascend beyond 13,000 feet multiple times in the coming days, so we must acclimate both our bodies and minds to riding in low-oxygen conditions.

Exploring San Pedro de Atacama

The Baltinache lagoons lie at the end of a flat and fast 31-mile trail to the south. This route, when traveled without luggage, adds a special flavor to the ride. The water in these lagoons is so salty that it burns your lips upon contact, and the earthy terrain surrounding them is covered with a delicate white salt crust.

There is no better place in the world to savor the sunset than the Valley of the Moon, with its tall dunes of fine sand that blaze red as the sun sets. The valley leading to the village of Caspana and El Tatio geysers is enveloped in a Western movie-like setting, while the Los Flamencos National Reserve mesmerizes the eyes with dozens of flamingos and a few hundred donkeys that have survived rural depopulation.

Motorcycle & Gear

Triumph Tiger 1200 Rally Pro

Helmet: Airoh Commander
Jacket & Pants: Alpinestars Andes V2 and V3 Drystar, Alpinestars AMT-10R Drystar XF
Gloves: Alpinestars Booster Gloves, Alpinestars Corozal Drystar Gloves, Alpinestars Apex V2 Drystar Gloves
Boots: Alpinestars Corozal Adventure Drystar
Luggage: Giant Loop Round the World Panniers and Tillamook Dry Bag, Giant Loop Zigzag Handlebar Bag, Giant Loop Armadillo Bag 1gal
Comm System: Sena 50S/50R

As uniform as the desert may appear, it is, in reality, a universe of delicate balances. There are well-marked trails and paths, which are rightfully enforced by the personnel in the area.