Posts Tagged ‘Abandoned Hut’


‘This is what it is all about’ I thought hurtling along in the sun on the flat smooth road, watching the high mountain plains and the Yellow River roll by. The absolute misery of the morning had turned with food in my belly and the sun on my back. The misery had now become adventure. I have been cycling for one year today and I am on the Tibetan Plateau. How awesome is that?

The plains

The plains

This morning sucked. I had another 16km to go to make it from my abandoned hut to the village where I wanted to have a late breakfast. The road can’t get any worse, I thought. Wrong. It was a mud bath plied by big trucks, ploughing through the slush. And the road climbed – always in the deepest slush. Bumping down a mini-pass I got another flat tyre – 7km out of town. It was raining, there was so much mud wedged between the tyres and the mudguards and brakes, that a tyre repair would have not been easy. I decided to walk. In the village I fixed the tyre, cleaned the bike, and had a horrible lunch of yak with rice. No chance of replenishing my chocolate supplies. This village had nothing that I felt like eating.

The mud

The mud

The roadworks continued, although much less severe. It was usually possible to find some bitumen to ride on, even it if meant weaving around rocks. After 89km, at my 4pm meal break, I was informed by the owner that the roadworks had ended. The sun came out, and the world changed. Fourty-two kilometres to the next town, and I ate up those kilometres to make my daily total almost 100.

P.S. I guess I must admit, the cause of the second flat tyre was as I had a fold of the inner tube inside the tyre. I guess I wasn’t at my best when I fixed the tyre in the abandoned hut.. ☺


I wanted to post a 130km day. The Gods didn’t want that. An unexpected 60km of muddy road-works and then a flat tyre during the final sprint saw an end to that. It was raining and getting dark. I am in an abandoned hut a few hundred metres from where I had the flat tyre. The universe provided.

Evening flat tyre

Evening flat tyre

I guess I am a loner. Today I fled from a group of cyclists. I have seen them over and over the last few days – a group of about 10 Chinese cyclists. I ran into them on a pass this morning, and then a thousand photos were taken. I then continued up the hill, only to be passed by people planning to take photos of me climbing the hill with others in view. I just had to get away. I sprinted, passed everyone and fled into the tunnel at the top of the pass. They had to wait at the tunnel entrance for everyone to gather.

The cyclist group

The cyclist group

The photographers

The photographers

I like cycling with 1, 2 or 3 people. I like cycling away from the crowds, and away from the tourism activities offered by the tourism industry. I cycled straight past the lake viewing platform, and the tourist busses lined up there. The guided group of cyclists today gave me the willies. I am interested in my own reaction. Maybe I am a hermit.

I left the main road today on a major secondary road. The altitude profile was more or less flat, and there was going to be a tailwind. I set my sights for the 60km distant town. Well, there were serious roadworks the whole way. It rained. The tailwind stopped. There were no towns – or anything much on the way (except a few yurts). And it was hilly. Up and down and up and down. And then, a flat tyre in the middle of nowhere, 15km from the town. I know, at the start of this trip, I might have panicked. A flat tyre in the rain, getting dark, at 3500m on the Tibetan Plateau. Well, Mr Hermit didn’t panic this time (of which I am quite pleased), and found the abandoned hut – I am sharing the hut only with a very loud cat.