Friday, January 21, 2011

Day 127 (162km): Go Pato, everybody telling me to – by Pato Banton

There was no wind this morning when we woke up but unfortunately that meant that the bugs were on the rampage. I was eaten alive when I went outside of the tent for a pee. So after that we went into full-on offensive. We didn't come back out of the tent until we had all our riding gear on. Take that bugs! We packed up as fast as possible and hightailed it out of there. 
Interesting rock formations
Don't want to hang out here for too long
There were some nice views and we took our time, taking pictures and fixing parts on Alberto's bike that had rattled loose (his turn signal). It had rained a little bit last night so that kept the dust down. The road itself was actually our least favourite of the last few days. It's really bumpy and there was more traffic than we'd seen in a while. The tunnels are pretty cool though, despite the alarm bells going off in my head since they are in unsupported ground. I'm just glad we didn't meet any oncoming traffic in the tunnels. That was my biggest fear. 
Classic Canon del Pato photo for Naomi; check!
Classic Canon del Pato photo for Alberto; check!
Some cool waterfalls as well

The whole thing felt like it was over quickly and we were ascending again, leaving the turbid river behind. We were on a quest to find Nevado Alpamayo since my map showed a road going in that direction. All the locals just gave us blank looks until we got to Caraz where we were told there was no road; hiking only. Okay, off to Huaraz then. 
Tunnel from the upper road
 Our integration back into civilization was like a big slap in the face! All the traffic (read crazy Peruvian drivers) and potholed pavement were a complete nightmare. It was a horrible ride to Huaraz and I thought it would never end. Thankfully we survived the drivers trying to avoid the potholes, a feat in itself, and arrived in Huaraz. Alberto found a gem of a hotel and we both enjoyed the chance to take a proper shower. I guess there are some advantages of being back in civilization. 
The central plaza in Huaraz (our typical starting point to look for accommodations)

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