Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Salento To Murillo To Libano

After taking in Salento and thoroughly enjoying ourselves it was time to tackle the Murillo road. 

Leaving Salento and getting around the big bad sheep unscathed  we made our way back up toward Manizales just skimming the edge of town before heading up the road to 4234 meters above stress level.

Mum nature played well sporting us a pretty good day giving us a combo of fog, wind and sun so varying our views.

It got very cold at one point in the fog as it was propelled over us at probably 40 km hour side wind ...... chilly

Taking in our surroundings we broke through the fog line into the sunny stuff .... WOHHOH .

These trees or plants are called Frailejon and grow 25 mm per year so these guys would be 140 years old 

Here we are in Gods back yard looking down on the fog and cloud, there is some big ground up there

While making a wrong turn we spotted the top ... .always a bonus, the full glory of the 5321 meter high peak was unwrapped for around a minute before mum nature closed the window on us. 

We stopped at one point to get off Maya and do a 360 stand and view, to easy to enjoy the road and riding too much and forget about where you are, I know it is not work and t e c h n i c a l l y we haven’t got much to do but those days although extremely beautiful and slightly challenging you actually have to take your time, take it in, photo it for your fading memory and just be there, this being the most important!!

The road itself was easy as it was mostly dry, a few puddles and creeks but nothing bad, I could see in inclement weather how this could change dramatically.

We crossed the famous slip area which took out an entire village of Armero in which 25000 people, our friends in Bogota having personal friends and family who were lost to the tragedy.

Picture time for the alien

The rest of the road is great condition with a few lumpy parts with rock right down to almost to civilization at Murillo but there is one very strange patch of beautiful tarmac road just a couple of km out which was a real surprise .... then straight back to lumps again. 

Arriving at Murillo we had a late lunch at 2.30 pm, the original plan we to stay the night but they wanted bigger money than usual and had no wifi etc so I think that was a case of crosshairs on the whiteyfoo, a subcommittee was formed and a discussion group appointed then the descision was made to hit Libano 45 minutes away which turned out to be a far better choice, street tucker supreme.

But in Murillo, interest was stirred again

In Libano main square we pulled in and stopped, just along from us an XT660 with a very proud owner in a pink shirt making himself known to us which was cool, un momento ... he rang some buddies and said come check our this alien (we are getting used to this now) and el pronto some more moto dudes turned up on various bikes.

Big discussions, lots of photos and smiles, the one thing I love about Colombia is they love their bikes and love even more something that they either don’t see or see vary rarely so it is special for us to be treated with such interest as it makes our day as much as theirs and I know with our smiles and interaction with them it makes life better.

That evening we saw one of the moto riders in the supermarket and he eagerly pointed out to his chickie and amigos that these are the guys on that bike, pretty cool really.

If you get a chance to do this road it is one of the must-do's of Colombia.

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