Day 2. 98km. Baquedano – 95km post

Posted: August 30, 2019 in Chile, Cycling
Tags: , ,

‘This is glorious – God’s creation. Look around and see the beauty.’
He was so excited as he spoke to me after pulling me aside.
The truck drivers were in form today.

The truck drivers were friendly

The truck drivers were friendly

Another driver stopped and insisted he load the bike onto tbe back of the truck – it’s too far on the bike. Another gave me water. All tooted their horn and gave me the thumbs up.

The weather seems to follow a pattern. It’s been the same both days. A morning head wind, a midday calm and an afternoon tailwind. Today I crawled up the hill out of Baquedano into the wind to the last shop 10km away. A truckie stop, I filled up on a kind of créme au caramel and a jelly trifle.

Truckie stop

Truckie stop

I then passed a solitary tree that comes with its own sign ‘agua por favor’ – ‘water please’. There seems to be no lack of doners. The ground was very damp around the tree.

Agua por favor

Agua por favor

Again, like yesterday, midday was not only windstill but the sun was strong. Stopping anywhere in the sun, the sweat rolls off my body. Lunch has to be eaten where there is a building. This time it was at a mine guard’s building. They were happy to let me eat in the shade there, but there was speak of ‘contaminacion’ and acid and other nasties. People were walking around with gas masks. I was careful to stay away from the copper mine’s nasties while I ate my lunch in the shade.

Mining lunch stop

Mining lunch stop

My decision at the end of the day was whether to risk returning cramp and make the climb for 10km ahead of me or try to camp at a particularly exposed landscape. I pushed on up the dead straight climb that I had seen from 25km back and made it to my flat spot up the top of the pass back from the road behind some mounds.

The climb ahead is visible

The climb ahead is visible

Dinner was pasta and a tin of canned fish. It tasted awful and I lay for several hours in bed hyperventilating, wondering if I was going to throw up.

I didn’t.

  1. valerievolk says:

    Wise to wait overnight, but the dinner isn’t exactly cordon bleu ….

  2. burt4754 says:

    You are truly a bad ass top drawer bicycle tourist….stay safe!

  3. Eliza Waters says:

    Incredible and amazing!

  4. […] 200km traverse of the desert from Baquedano to Peine saw me pass solitary trees marking the passing away of loved ones, eat lunch in the shade of mine buildings and road signs, […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.