Colombia-Ecuador 2013. Day 22: Yangana – El Salto del Inca

2013/11/04yangana - el salto del inca

Click on image to see map

Bad morning and a good afternoon made this one a long day.

I knew I had to go up that morning, and I was ready for that, both phisically and mentally… but something just didn’t work out. I had some stomach pain, it could’ve been that. Or maybe the heat (I left early but the sun catched up with me halfway through; is a long pass that one!). The thing is I found the uphill very tiring.

The views are good but not stunning neither. The same goes for the road: it’s a steady climb, so that’s good, but I founf it little bit boring (and hard). And when you get to the top… it happens that it’s not the top. Few kilometers later you’re uphill again.

Then the downhill. First 3 km or so are ok. Then the asfalt ends. And it doesn’t do it in a nice way. There are roadworks there and the road is completely broken. Everything is very sandy and/or dusty as well, so everytime a truck goes by (and there are quite a few here) you feel as you would in the middle of a sandstorm.

At the bottom is Valladolid. By the time I got there, I had had 5 km of the worst downhill ever (and I do love offroad, but…). I didn’t like Valladolid (not the name, nor why it’s named like that, neither the kids that wanted to be a little bit too cool, nor the locals calling me gringo; and the town is small and there’s nothing to see). So I kept going (I said bottom but it still continues slightly downhill).

10 more kilometers of pain. The roadworks are SHIT, the way they’re building up the road is a mess. Huge round rocks make the road for short whiles, and it’s hard to cycle there (even more without breaking anything).

In Santa Rosa, close to Palanda, those works ended, and the road transformed into a normal unpaved road. Great!! Finally!!!

I liked Palanda. Small town with a nice square and friendly people. Wouldn’t have minded to stay there, but I kept going.

The road keeps going downhill, but it’s finally a nice downhill. Previous kilometers had been down, but I rather have them up if that meant the road was ok. You cross some rivers in this area (and in the previous one also) which only makes it funnier. Great!!

Then, on km 70, the uphill starts again. Initial 2 or 3 kilometers are probably the hardest ones I’ve found so far. It’s very steep and it’s an unpaved road. Just be careful!!! The views are really nice here; just don’t forget to look back sometimes…

I was hoping to make it to Zumba but I had to stop in El Salto del Inca instead. I guess the morning (and pedalling at midday as well; it get VERY hot here!!! It’s quite low and no much wind) had left me tired and Inwasn’t going very fast. Good, because I found a really nice small town full of really nice people!!

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