I had a few days off in San Pedro de Atacama, staying at a Warmshowers place. When I arrived at Carlos place I was the only cyclist but not for long. Next day three French and two German fellows had as well the pleasure to be hosted by Carlos. I think you could call Carlos place a “casa de ciclista”. He does host nearly every cyclist that passes by San Pedro de Atacama.
It was a strange feeling for me to leave Cachi. I spend hours the last weeks, reading my roadbook again and again. I found a really promizing route through the south of Argentina and the final border crossing to Chile. It included the highest pass of Argentina and some really remote passes for the boarder crossing. I was so exited that I just read the roadbook over and over again, after lunch hanging around in the tent. But with leaving Cachi it was actually at the point where I decided not to go to easy road torwards Salta, but take the hard way to San Pedro de los Cobres. Because I wanted to cycle the Pass in one day, and not to camp somewhere in last third of it, I had a easy day to La Poma.
After a nice restday in Punta Arenas, we were back on the bikes. The first 20-30k went really fast. But after leaving the bigger area of Punta Arenas the wind stopped us. Heavy sidewind made it impossible to ride. Not only once we were pushed into the ditch. Overtaking buses and lorries didn’t made the situation easier. We found a shelter place in form of a garage. After both of us had a short “powernap”, we started a new attemp.
No sooner said than done, my first task after my failed calculation about needed food/day, I had to do a 30k detour to Rio Grande. Before I arrived in the center of Rio Grande I saw a guy playing a trumpet in a field outside the town in an industrial area. So I stopped and listened. He immediately started a conversation and after the “traditional” questions Wherefrom, whereto and which country, he insisted in showing me the way to the next supermarket by driving his car in front of me.
Hola. I am still alive and I am fine :). Since a few weeks the internet connection here is really bad. If there is any, it is over satelite, which means interruptions and a really slow connection. Right now I am riding the Carretera Austral direction to Cochrane. In the next bigger city, which I should reach in about a week, I’ll have some restdays. The internet should be much better there and I’ll update the Blog. There is a lot to tell