Friday, 6 December 2013

Banos To Ambato To Quilotoa To Ambato

With fame we stay....

The famous Don Julio the great, 525 rider extraordinaire, ridden South America and North America on a KTM 525 EXC on the factory block of wood seat ...dude is a legend.

Julio invited us to stay, we gratefully accepted and took the back road through to Ambato, a nice alternate to the main road being not as busy.

The are bonuses like this small gorge

Mum and Dad Ambato .... out for tea with cool hats

It just had to be done

A quick inspection on Maya revealed we had lost our joining link clip so we were extremely lucky it did not come off as a 525 size chain bailing off would be sure to wreck things ... no prob getting a new one sorted, Julio and I ... men at work

While at Ambato we made an attempt to get up to Chimborazo however we arrived in a shroud of cloud and fog rendering our accent useless for the day.

Heading north our next attempt was Quilotoa, on the way we pulled up behind another moto but with twin pipes, heading up the hills he was doing 85 - 90 kmhr so I figured it was not a small bike, we turned off, filled with petrol and headed to Quilotoa, arriving there sorting out our accom he rolls up, I point to our place and he rides over.

A quick spanish chat and I established he is an Ozzie, howdy neighbour, Joe then clocks into the place we are at then off to lunch we go, the afternoon filled in with a hike to the bottom of the crater lake which is 400 meters vertical so hard on the ol knees on the way down and hard on the ol ticker on the way up.

The three lads, Joe, Con? and me

Joes bike and Maya parked in the restaurant

I will add at this point we are at 4000 meters or 4 km or 13124 ft above stress level or 300 meters higher than Mount Cook in New Zealand (the highest point) so the oxygen in thinning quickly, this is now the highest place we have slept and the first night was difficult waking every couple of minutes and me saying breath Andi breath...remember you learnt that when you were young.

So we have no been hiking higher than the highest point in New Zealand

The following day was a hike around the crater with a Frenchie, Ozzie, Kiwi, Chinese and Belgiuminite so we had the world covered, the hike was 4 hours and was a harder than we all anticipated, we all thought it to be a walk in the park but the hill climbs were high.

Us ... but you knew that

On completion of our stay Ozzie Joe was heading to Cotopaxi to climb the monster and we wanted to go to see it so we travelled together.

The road out of Quilotoa, from this

To this

Arriving at the Cotopaxi national park they said no motos.....not even to the restaurant or we are not there to tear off into the park and wreck it but no way they would let us in, the discussion getting heated at one point so for us it was back to Ambato and Joe to Quito

Joe trying to reason with Starsky and Hutch from the park ... no bueno!!

Returning to Ambato was a quick spin down the Panam back to Don (sir) Julios ....we arrived at rip hour .... whose dumb idea was that!!!

Getting sorted in Ambato we finally said goodbye to Mum and Dad and our new brother Julio, we now have extended family throughout the world and all colours.

I huge thanks to Juilo and family making us feel welcome and great being involved at the family level ... our casa is your casa, it would be great to see you guys in New Zealand.

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