Highs & lows of touring.
It's the highest of highs being almost 6,000mtr up on a glaciated volcano all the way to being low, following a river through the Amazonas region for 300+km.
It's also a mental & physical game of highs & lows. Today being a stark contrast to yesterday.
Yesterday I set off in the cool shade that enveloped me in a huge gorge that had stretched for an untold amount of kilometres. Surrounded by huge limestone chossy rock walls, fantastic morning
All of a sudden I rounded a bend & was struck by the beautiful morning sunshine. There were tiny hummingbirds native to the area flying around. Bright orange, yellow & fluorescent blue butterflies almost in swarms.
The tiny village that appeared sat just metres off the waters edge glistening in the morning dew. There was even a smattering of palm trees around. It was pure joy to be in this place. A place that few other gringos had even set eyes upon let alone bike tourers.
I was tempted to stop right there for the day, but conSidering I had only done 7km I thought it best I keep going.
I continued on toward my goal of Chachapoyas a town that was supposed to be quite beautiful & surrounded by some archeological artefacts some 1400 years old.
My legs put up a protest as the day wore on & I promised them a day of relaxation tomorrow. Trust me when you cycle solo you tend to talk to yourself & your legs a lot :)
The final climb was 15km completely out of my way & would bring me around 10,000mtr of vertical climbing in the last 5 days. That's a lot of climbing with a loaded steel touring bike.
I finally arrived in the town. To say it was oversold was an understatement. Also it was the first time I had seen gringos in 5 days. Along with gringos comes " gringo troubles " overpriced accom & food mostly.
As soon as I got to the Central Park I was asked for money & my drink. Of course I said no I had just ridden 100km in 35 degree heat & of course this person cursed me & carried on.
I even noticed the gringo near by staring at me. I'm sure they were in disbelief as I said no to giving away a drink that had literally cost me 60c
I found myself some cheap accom thankfully. All of $5 with a nice hot shower, wifi & a kitchen. There were some other travellers there but I found myself feeling like I didn't belong.
One person put some very loud trance music on the computer whilst others mused about how difficult bus transportation was. One young guy of 23 spoke about how he had come away & was hoping to find himself, & how he felt that travel had been very underwhelming for him. ........
I listened, told him to stop looking for himself he has plenty of time HAHAHA. I then went to bed around 10 which brings me to today.
So far I have ridden 40km away from this town. Not an easy task when you have legs under protest. Today I feel flat, frustrated & just not thrilled. I feel a little annoyed with myself after promising a rest day.
I've had another dog bite a hole in my other pannier, been ripped off at breakfast & struggled along in the heat.
I'm still travelling upstream & am aiming for another 30km before camping somewhere.
Excellent I got a flat tyre. Then whilst cooking dinner in one of the best camp spots ever aside from the bugs early on, I knocked over my pasta losing half of it on the ground.
The button broke off my pants in the dark so now that's gone, but hey the stars are shining & I can see the southern cross.
Solo travel is great but sometimes I wonder, is it putting me out of touch?? At this stage I am just happy to be away from those pesky gringos in an amazing camp spot......
Tomorrow will be a better day. I know it. I'm going up to Revash Mausolsum then a short 30km where I plan on finding a place to stay.
I am an ultra runner, Mountain biker, Packrafter, Climber, Ironman, Endurance Athlete