What on earth can persuade four grown men to ride their V-twins to a place where for decades gazillions of mosquitos, free range guerilleros, sinister paramilitary, paranoid drug runners and desperate indigenous people have been doing their level best to prevent Panamericana’s last missing miles being built. Some call this white area on the map the ‘Darien Gap‘, to the Four who went there it is the mother of all roads, the Mud of no Return. What they did was to try and to close this last gap in the road connecting the two Americas. They were using Milwaukee machinery, mildly modified using stuff from the W&W Cycles shelves. The ride included police encounters, homicidal truckdrivers, lousy hotel beds, stampeding cockroaches, DIY river crossings, tropical downpours, Panama beer and forcibly removed distributors, and ended – in the mud. Mud beyond all imagination. Mud, so bottomless that only a four wheel driven Big Foot truck could rescue the intrepid riders. A specimen of this mud of muds is still sitting in a climatized W&W safe, a warning to the world that no road is so pitiless as the Mother of all Roads, the Panamericana.
- width x height: 30 x 23.5 cm
- 60 pages
If you thought that “Operation Panamericana” (Darién/Panama 1996) had already reached peak rpm you better shift into the next gear now. In January 2004, from the dark and oily basements of W&W, 4 enthusiast staff members on 2 Knuckleheads, 1 Panhead (Panamericana proven) and 1 Evo Sportster took off for a bone-shaking test ride.
Starting in Buenos Aires/Argentina and ending in Ushuaia the journey will lead them along the famous Ruta 40 to Patagonia and Fireland, where the penguins meet the whales...you mean this sounds like a nice weekend trip, eh? Ok, let´s take a closer look at it then: 3000 kilometers of asphalt (or what Argentinians consider as asphalt) plus 2000 kilometers of gravel roads of the type that makes your teeth want to fall out. Endless plains, bizarre mountain ranges and - wind. Wind that blows harder than the exhaust of a V-Rod on nitro.
True to the slogan ”We ride what we sell“ the four Patagonian riders sit astride the best what the W&W catalog has to offer so the 4x4 service truck can stay at home. After all, this ain´t no disco.
Just lost my tent!
Penguin meets Leatherman!
The world´s southernmost beer at the world´s southernmost bar!
It‘s not the end of the world, but we can see it from here.
W&W The Mud of no Return Posters
W&W Eat Dust Posters
W&W ¡Más Revoluciones! Posters
The plan is to do some easy miles to meet Cuba's Harlistas first. Our Milwaukee tractors carry us deep into the tobacco growing country until the road just stops on a picture postcard caribbean beach. We cruise the setting sun on Malecon and greet the falling dusk in the Floridita bar, one of Ernest Hemingways favourite watering places.
The street in front of Sergio's becomes our home. We drink coffee, we chat, we do some wrenching, and there’s beer. What’s the point of bikes running like clockwork? Were not those days with Sergio the better life? Let's drink another Cuba libre to that. Oh, and go easy on the Coke. A squirt of lime juice is all it takes. ¡Vamonos!
Wrecking Crew Book Set
The Other End of the Road
Doing it can be a lot of things, but it isn’t half as dangerous as some people would like you to believe, given a certain amount of planning and preparation. And it wasn’t the first time, that W&W Cycles went out of everyones way to ride roads no one usually cares to call roads.
In 1995 it was the MUD OF NO RETURN. The Panamericana Highway between Panama and Colombia. The Problem: a gap in the road. Not any ole pothole, but the infamous Darien Gap. The attempt to cross 70 miles of trackless jungle on two specially prepared rigid framed Pans and Shovels ended in bottomless mud. In 2005 we went to EAT DUST. We took four vintage Harleys down the gravel Ruta 40 to Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, to the southernmost beer in the world. And just there, sipping a well earned Beagle beer, the question popped up, how the other end of the road might look like. No one around knew, so we decided to have a look.
Said, done, ridden, frozen, printed. So, get your fireplace going, grab a drink and turn the page. And don’t forget: A BIKER’S WORK IS NEVER DONE. ’Cos the next road is waiting around the corner.
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