Day 6 – Esquel to Bariloche

I’m a little out of sequence with the report days. Day 4 was a rest day so we had time to get cars serviced and do the tourist thing in Esquel. A “largo” or bay where there are lots of whales apparently but any desire to see them was negated by rough seas.
At the end of the day after a meal at a local restaurant, we could smell fuel in the cabin of the car. On inspection found that the seal on the sender unit was leaking. Being a novice myself I wondered why this would suddenly happen but it’s apparently quite normal in Morris cars.
Of course Steve had a spare gasket and he proceeded to drain the tank of fuel, that we had recently filled to the brim for the next day. Mouth fulls  of fuel to syphon fuel into spare tanks after a nice fish meal? Not in the order of the day!
Still. Had to be done. Late into the evening being hampered by a sprinkler being set off right behind the car didn’t help.
All done and sealed in, the repair was a success. Good that it was noticed when the leak began or the entire boot would have been filled with fuel in the morning!

Day 6.
A short distance day of 364kms. This section of the rally takes us into the foothills of the Andes and the alpine lakes that make up a beautiful region of snow capped mountain peaks and tranquil lakes. It’s spring and the area is in full bloom with wild lupine and broom flowers. Clear blue sky and quite warm.

Scenery en route

The road immediately becomes gravel and we run for 123 kms to the first Regularity run through this fantastic countryside. The road is rough with the bedrock jutting through the gravel making for rough riding. Denise loves it and many scalps taken. Unfortunately this doesn’t earn any points. It just gets us up commencing the Regularity before them.
The Regularity section, the Butch Cassidy, is short and straight on gravel. Very dusty but far more interesting than Tarmac.
Not a good time we were 8 seconds slow.
The next stop for lunch is at a relatively famous El Maiten Station. There’s an ol steam engine here with carriages that is now just a tourist spot. The train with the old carriages operates a short run just for tourists. Interesting.

At the famous railway

Always keeping an eye on the fuel availability as we carry on to the next Regularity but the result is an 8 second late outcome. Loosing points.
Then straight onto a Kartodrome racetrack. One round of a fairly long track and back onto the road.
Steve comments that the brake is a little spongy but we carry on through the Tarmac freeway onto our final destination for the day. When suddenly coming through a bend in the road and the need to apply the brake, nothing! Couldn’t stop. Panic and plan B changing gear and using handbrake he controlled Denise to a pull off on the road.
On inspection he found that a rock had bent the brake line to the rear left wheel and punctured it. It had slowly let out the fluid to the point that brakes were ineffective. Not one to muck around, Steve quickly got under the car and flattened the tube temporarily to block fluid from escaping, filled up the brake cylinder , tested, and we made our way to the Liao Liao resort. Of course he had a spare.
No time for checking into the hotel Steve attended to the replacing the pipe in short order. However the spare pipe was the one we flattened in Mongolia on the Peking to Paris rally. No good.
One of the competitors proffered some pipe and Steve made up a replacement.
Alls good now.
Good thing that the brakes didn’t fail on the kart track. We would have ended up quite badly.
The hotel is very grand on the shores of a lake with mountain parks all around. Fabulous situation but small rooms.
Still nice and tomorrow is a rest day!

Getting to the destination at Liao Liao hotel

5 thoughts on “Day 6 – Esquel to Bariloche

  1. I read your mails every day and so far many points of recognition (roads, names, pictures, Fangio museum, Welsh Tea) from our own Carrera Copacabana in 2010. We had a rest day in Liao Liao hotel. Very nice hotel indeed and Alps like surroundings. For me still a place to go back once. Though not for the many Germans that settled here after World War II (escaping punishment by court).

    Interesting troubles with the car, but good to hear all problems are solved. Funny spare part from PtP by the way! And a nice picture of Steve with all the girls; that’s the way I now him.

    Have a nice trip; I keep following you with some jealousy.

    Anthony (and Sonja) Verloop
    Netherlands

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  2. Sounds like a “hair raising” day but good work getting her up & going…..thank goodness the hand brake worked – take care boys!
    Kathy

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  3. a bit of excitement to mak the heart bound a little faster guys – does look like fun though scenery so like NZ lots love jr sis

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