Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Parque Nacional Huascaran (Huascaran National Park)

13 km, that is all the tarseal we got from Caraz then back into it, rough, gravel, mud, deep shingle etc.....perfect

Destination Chacas we proceeded up to the park entry gates, this time $10 Soles each, this time the road up to the lakes was maintained and very nice, this was short lived tho and turned very rough very quickly.

Park entry

Joining the crew

New Zealand, here we are again, huge glacial cut valleys with daunting vertical faces steering at us with an unforgiving smile.

The lake at the first crest

Cool trees previewing the icy clay laden waters

Once past the lake we hit the zig zag .... awesome, the climb in front of us and taking us to the base of a glacier then zig zagging up and up, getting rougher and narrower, at 4000 meters we adjusted the fuel screws in as Maya was losing it, at 4400 meters we took the fuel screws in even further as it was difficult riding the tight switch backs with little power and trying to accelerate, this made a huge difference and she starting running much much better.

Adjusting the fuel screws at 4400 meters (14500ft)

Part of the road

Lakes in the distance we had past earlier

Sorry for the washed out colours but the poor ol camera was struggling with the glare from the snow etc.

Lunch, open air cafe, not much coffee but c h e c k o u t t h e v i e w

A reflection of our past

Topping out at 4710 meters we were pleased to hit the summit and started heading down as oxygen is thinner here so wrestling Maya in and out of big rocks, switchbacks etc with our gear was a mission.

The crest and the monster long downhill, just as awful on this side , this was at 4710 meters (15500 ft)

Further down the valley the day got warmer and slightly easier although some of the villages we rode through had had heavy rain causing muddy boggy ‘tracks” in the towns which proved interesting.

Between the elevational changes and the amount of gnarly gravel roads we had ridden the last few days it was starting to catch up on me, 3/4 the way down to our finish line I had to stop for a drink, breather, stretch and a few toffees for a sugar boost.

Unexpected we were greeted for the last 6 km to Chaca by tarseal sent by god, it was smooth and beautiful and a seriously welcome sight after thumping around in the sticks.

Yeah a nothing photo other than the welcoming road

Chacas, cool wee town with no wifi ... perfect, we decided to take a much needed rest day, do a small walk and catch up on some writing etc.

The timing of the thunder storm coming, we got in with good time, Chacas main square (plaza) donkeys and all.

A local lady selling baskets, she was very nice, in fact Chacas now holds the title for the most friendly town so far in Peru, the people were smiling and very welcoming which made us feel very homely.


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