Posts Tagged ‘Arbol de Piedra’


Yesterday I slept with the foxes and today I ate with the rabbits. I pushed on through the elements and then walked through the door of Hotel de Desierto. Such a stark contrast – I’ve walked from the cold howling winds into 5 star luxury.

Dinner with a view

Dinner with a view

I was as warm as toast last night. I made sure I’d set up the tent, cooked and eaten before sunset. A fox was interested in my food.

The fox wanted my food

The fox wanted my food

I wrapped up to the maximum to warm up, and an hour later, I was too warm and was able to regulate the temperature nicely. Lunch was in a rocky area with very convenient protection from the wind. I wasn’t alone. The rabbits were out and keen to take my lunch.

My little lunch friend

My little lunch friend

And the road. Expecting a diabolically bad road, I was pleasantly surprised. I was able to cycle most of the time, only pushing around 30% of the time. The wind remained fierce and blowing directly against the way I wanted to go. My spirits were high after yesterday. I’ll check the road ahead and see what tomorrow brings.

On the road

On the road

On the road

On the road

My humble abode

My humble abode


Last night I met a couple on motorbikes. They were beyond exhausted having just completed what lay ahead for me. Translating that for me, I discovered today that means pushing – almost the whole way.

The soft road

The soft road

Most of the problem is soft sand. At its deepest, you can push a few metres and gather your breath. The next level is its still too soft to cycle but you can push for longer without stopping. Then there’s a light sprinkling of soft sand over hard earth. This is ok for cycling (about 5km/h) if there isn’t a hurricane headwind. There was usually a hurricane headwind. Then there’s the hard earth – with rocks and corrigations, but cyclable.

Crossing between two tracks. The grass looks greener on the other side.

Crossing between two tracks. The grass looks greener on the other side.

I had generously given myself 3 hours to get to Arbol de Piedra for lunch. Then another 10km to a ruin on the side of the road for dinner. I arrived at Arbol de Piedra just before 3 and decided to stop for the day. I couldn’t risk being caught exposed to the howling wind at nightfall.Arbol de Piedra means tree of rock. It is a place with lots of big boulders just standing there on the sandy plains. There’s plenty of places to hide away from the wind. It’s a pretty cool place.

Arbol de Piedra

Arbol de Piedra

A beautiful wind break at Arbol de Piedra

A beautiful wind break at Arbol de Piedra

Reading the route description, today’s road conditions were arduous but not atypical. Tomorrow I have 10km of better road and 20 of shit road until the luxurious Hotel del Desierto. I fully hope to make it there tomorrow and spend USD120 on a room before finding a lift out of this place. It may all seem better in the morning, but holidays don’t have to be this hard.