Thursday, August 4, 2016

Summer holidays in Colombia: Death road, Caqueta-Amazon, Florencia with Vlady

I never tire of these trips down to the Amazon and my fave road on the planet!  This one was special due to the fact that a former student of mine, from 20 years ago in Pasto, joined me for this one.  Vlady and I biked to Mocoa down the ´death road´ 20 years ago and he hadn´t been back since!  So it was high time for a reunion.  Wilfredo Insuasty a good friend and Colombian cycling legend joined us up to the first pass at Alto de la Pastora so he could bajar la panza pues....and JuanFe/mini Froome joined us to Sibundoy the first day and then rode back, as he has to go to school.  From left to right....Mini Froome, Wilfredo, and Vlady.  5 day trip.  Pasto to Sibundoy (stayed at the sister in laws place and Maria came with the kids), then the death road down to Villagarzon, then to Curillo, Caqueta via road and a boat ride, then 110km to Florencia and lastly a 5 hour climb up and over the mtns to Altamira, Huila and a truck back home to Pasto.

No worries on a bike....he´s got his helmet on :)

Bit chilly up on the Paramo at 3200m....but you´ll warm up if the drink the advertised product on the billboard behind.

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Interesting hiway engineering, as the water just goes over the road rather than under

Having a chat with a local miner.

Caldo de pata.  Hoof soup

Soaked to the bone....and Vlady heads for the shower.

They used to have every other day to go up and the other day for downhilll traffiic, being so narrow.  Now its a free for all!


Yup...lots of people have died on this road.

Another crazy cyclist....a Colombian with home made panniers!



A candle for the virgin ....for safe passage


There are about 10 crossings like this.

Down to the bottom and the classic, incomprehesible view of the Amazon jungle that stretches 5,000km???? to the Atlantic.  With only a drop of about 400m metres!

Amazonian egg tree...

Typical jungle road

wee bit of an oil spill....

The ´port´at puerto rosario.....the red/white boat is hours.  80 kph with a 150hp motor on a smooth, wide Rio Caqueta....one of the tributaries of the Amazon.


Rubber boots are a must to board the boat at this landing.

Plantain and Coca bushes

Welcome to Caqueta....what are you doing to take care of the environment?


View out the hotel window

Should have stayed another day!  Great little town on the river.


Guayaba


Amazonian fast food drive thru....on the fly....Guayaba





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Leaf cutter ants....just like us humans running wild on the planet



We are so close to the limit that we could wake up one day and realize that there is nothing left to save.

Just doing the good samaritan thing.....looked like he could use a drink.  Hormigero??  Anteater??

one side....

....and the other


one can never eat too many beans and rice.....as my farts don´t stink.....



Cacao.....chocolate beans.....in this case a lady was just sucking the sweet, white pulp off the outside of the bean and spitting away the beans.  Yum!

Too blurry, but I have to give a shout out to Ciclo Rodriguez in Florencia for fixing Vlady´s bottom bracket and replacing our hydrolic disc brake pads, and not charging us any labour!  Great father son teaam :)

Sugar cane alcohol for sale.

Variety of fruit for sale

5 hour climb....4 hours of it in the warmish rain.

4 tunnels

The top...up from Florencia at 250m to ????  can´t seem to find it on the internet....2500m I´m guessing....the monument is called el portico....the doorway/entrance

Papaya and Guanabana

Grenadilla


Hongos....mushrooms

Now that´s a great idea!  Plantain hamburger!

...and lastly....a flat tire on the way home.  Bikes in the back for the 8 hour trip.


1 comment:

Juan Carlos Gomez Rojas said...

Me parece fantástico Steve que recuerdes a tus alumnos de hace 20 años como si fuera ayer porque a pesar del tiempo te has convertido en buen amigo . y tu lo demuestras cada vez que visitas nuestra ciudad y sacas el tiempo para visitarnos y dar a conocer la gran belleza que tiene mi país gracias por tus buenos comentarios .


Tu amigo : Juan Carlos Gomez