Day 146. 54km. Yozgand – Safedoron

Posted: September 26, 2015 in Cycling, Tajikistan
Tags: , , ,

‘It’s a big switchback – just skirting around a stream – probably not very steep.’ We chuckled later as we gazed towards the heavens, admiring the switchback from below. We climbed very high, and are in awe at the beauty of this valley.

Looking down at our climb

Looking down at our climb

I am the pupil and this terrain is my teacher. I have not cycled along such roads – my bike and myself are rattled to the bones. I lost a pannier screw, and had to use a less crucial screw from another pannier as a replacement. The muddy sludge wedged its way between the tyre and the mud-guards and break pads. I had to regularly squirt them down to keep the wheel turning. Stream crossings also helped in dislodging the mud.
I have not cycled past such remote villages where the shops are bare – the people grow and make their own food. My food stocks are dwindling as the shops only have lollies and biscuits (and soap, fluffy teddy bears and Barbie dolls). Lucky we bought pasta earlier.
People don’t drink bottled water (which is good). I feel bad about having used bottled water up to now. So many plastic bottles (even if I always disposed of them correctly). I now filter the stream water – with my very very slow filter. You realise the importance of water when you have to squeeze every drop you drink through a ceramic filter. And scaling mountains is thirsty work.

On the way

On the way

Outside the shop

Outside the shop

We are staying in an abandoned hut high above the valley. What a spectacular place to have dinner and sleep. We are truly blessed.

Our dinner view

Our dinner view

Comments
  1. Alessandro says:

    Hey Matthew, things are getting more and more “interesting” now that you seem to be getting into less populated areas. Good of you to keep us posted on internet. (how do you get connectivity from such empty places?)

    • Hi Alessandro. Not really a secret as I think I’ve mentioned it a few times in the blog – since I left Turkey, I’ve been building up a delay. This is in order to not post on certain countries while in the country itself. My blog is now 3 months behind. A daily entry is written and will be posted automatically. I am currently in southern China on the high Tibetan Plateau.
      I have decided to keep my videos more up to date, so you can see some more recent videos of my adventures under the ‘videos’ tab of my blog. 🙂
      Once I have left China, I may let my blog ‘catch up’ by posting several posts daily over several months. We’ll see.
      Anyway, greetings from China. 🙂

  2. valerievolk says:

    Magnificent, Matthew! Know what you mean about water, though. You really learn to appreciate it under these conditions.

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