Journey America Part 2

Bajo Caracoles

In Bajo Caracoles we were welcomed into a town that seemed like it belonged in a model train world. Literally built in the middle of the desert, 15 people lived here. Their homes sat in a perfect tiny grid in front of a large hill on the other side of highway 40.
There was a hotel with a gas pump in front as well as a police office and a camp ground. We stayed in the camp ground with two Argentinian’s from the North who had quit their bike journey south due to the unforgiving winds and two Brazilians who were riding their awesome Harley Davidson motorcycles to Ushuaia.
We shared stories over a cheap bottle of whisky and a cup of noodles. We all agreed that without adventure life was not worth living. It was like a mini adventurer summit in the middle of the desert.
The following morning we continued south. Through this region of Patagonia, we rode by hundreds of kilometers of empty pastures. No cattle. No sheep. No horses. In many parts the fence line was sitting on the floor. The only thing that inhabited this raw desert was the Guanaco. And boy was there a lot of them. Thousands of Guanacos ran free through this land, watching us slowly trek south.
Every night we were forced to tie the horses to the fence posts that were still standing and sleep next to the road. There were no ranches or people to take us in. It was an extremely lonely and difficult stretch. And to make it worse, in the middle of nowhere the support van started making a terrible noise once again. We relied heavily on the vehicle in the desert. Without the water and feed we carried, it would have been almost impossible to cross the Santa Cruz desert.
Luckily, two days later, we managed to find a ranch with people and they took the horses and Toti in while I made the long drive back to Perito Moreno to get the van fixed once again.
Clara went back with me and while we waited for the mechanic to work on the van she went about searching for Butch Cassidy. Before we left Perito Moreno a week back, she had found a group on facebook for lost dogs in the area and she posted a photo of Butch and his story. Well, she checked the post now that we had returned and an elderly lady commented on the photo that she had seen a little dog like him a few days earlier. Clara wrote down the name of the neighbourhood the woman lived in and went about searching for our travelling companion. I stayed at a local gas station writing blogs and using the internet.
To my surprise, two hours later, Clara bursted in the door holding Butch Cassidy in her arms. He was extremely dirty but I ran and gave him the biggest hug ever! I had missed our little dog so much. I couldn’t believe Clara had found him.
“Just when I was about to give up hope I turned a corner and saw Butch wondering the street. I couldn’t believe it,” she said with the biggest smile ever stamped on her face.

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