Bike Tour To Panama City: The Frontera

October 4, 2013 | By | Reply More
The journey to the frontera begins. 94 km to go!

The journey to the frontera begins. 94 km to go!

My goal for the day was to make it to Paso Canoas which is a town in Costa Rica that borders Panama on the Pacific side. It was quite far from Palmar Norte, about 94 km far. Palmar Norte is where Highway 34 which runs along the Pacific coast intersects with the Pan-American or Interamericana Highway.

I woke up around 6:00 a.m., checked the weather on my iPhone, filled up water bottles, and got ready. According to the weather report, it looked manageable in the morning with 50% chance of rain in the afternoon. It was still a green light for me to go.

I left the shady hotel and biked to the center of town to look for breakfast. I had fried chicken and a pastry. I was actually surprised to find fried chicken so early in the morning, so I thought why not? Then, I went to the market to buy a few bananas to load up on potasium.

At 8:00 a.m., I was ready to start my journey to the frontera. I had been waiting for this moment to cycle on the Pan-American Highway since first thinking about this trip. It was exciting!

Here’s the photo recap and rebroadcast of the live stream for the day.

There is no shoulder on the road between Palmar Norte and Canoas. The ride was getting a bit hairy.

There is no shoulder on the road between Palmar Norte and Canoas. The ride was getting a bit hairy.

Countryside in Costa Rica

Countryside in Costa Rica

Cow poses for a pic

Cow poses for a pic

Store and soda at Km 37

Soda at Km 37. A soda is the Costa Rican version of a diner.

Click to watch a rebroadcast of the live stream.

Rio Coto

Rio Coto

Taking a break in Rio Claro, a small town along the Pan-American/Interamericana Highway.

Taking a break in Rio Claro, a small town along the Pan-American/Interamericana Highway.

Trucks line up at the border waiting to clear immigration

Trucks line up at the border waiting to clear immigration

As I saw many trucks on the side of the road, I knew I was at the border. I was happy that I was able to go the entire 94 km and exceed my personal record of 80 km. The whole day was more mental than physical to stay focused on the finish line.

Drying laundry in hotel room

Drying laundry in hotel room

Once I check into my hotel room, I have a routine of taking a shower and washing my clothes at the same time. I hang them dry with a fan blowing to speed up the drying time.

Palmar Norte to Paso Canoas 94 km

Palmar Norte to Paso Canoas 94 km

This was the longest bike ride I’ve done so far in my life. By end of the day, my legs weren’t as beat up as I thought they would be. It was more my ass being sore from sitting in the saddle all day. I think I could have pushed myself harder. I’ll increase my capacity as the journey progresses.

The entire day took about 9 hours with a 1 hour lunch and power nap.

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