Heading south along the foothills of the Andes from Mendoza. Our morning will be a flat straight paved road until we get to the town of San Rafael. From here we will tour the Canyon de Atuel, where the Atuel river has carved a mini-canyon out of the desert (dirt road).
We are searching for the infamous Ruta 40, and we will find it at our stop for the night, Marlargue. Ruta 40 is one of the most important north-south highways in Argentina that runs along the eastern side of the Andes. It is slowly being paved, thus taking away some of the trickier sections of travelling by motorcycle in Argentina as this road is not always in good shape.
Strong winds challenge all. Malargue is famous for the chivo (goat) and holds the annual festival of the goat which is in January and spans 5 days of music and goat roasting. If we can, we will try to sample some goat here! Malargue is the true gateway to the Patagonia.