Colombia-Ecuador-Perú 2013. Day 34: Aguas Calientes – Huamachaco

2013/11/20Aguas calientes - Huamachuco

Click on image to see map

I was going to leave early in the morning to avoid the heat at the bottom of the valley but I “couldn’t”, so my cycling day started at 8am. Still, it wasn’t too hot to be honest. It didn’t start downhill neither, like everybody has said…

The uphill towards Cajabamba is an easy one. Only the roadworks that forced me to stop twice were annoying. And the moskito bites from last night. There’s nothing special to mention here nor in Cajabamba, an average big town.

The road from Cajabamba onwards, on the other hand, was quite strange. It goes up, truth, but not too hard so it’s an easy climb. The views are nothing special neither even if you end up going quite high. Only the kilometers closer to the top offer a good view. The road is very narrow and full of very small wooden bridges so expect almost no traffic at all.

The special thing about this road is the houses next to it. There’re millions. I don’t think I spent 100 m without being next to a house. It’s not a town but a continuity of houses. It’s a weird feeling.

This area seemed quite poor to me. Speaking to a local guy, it was obvious he never went to school (and I don’t want to be mean; his words spoke for him). It really feels like it’s a little bit far away from everywhere. Good for cycling but…

Still, the biggest town, Marcabalito or something like that, has built a bullfighting ring. Clever. Good way of spending the little money the valley may have.

After the pass and a little downhill, there’s a very nice lake. I should have stayed here. The area is very nice and it looks like a good spot for local families. The road East of here was closed due to roadworks, by the way.

Last 10 kms were a pain. The road was full of sand, lots of traffic (really lots!!!), up and down, more roadworks, a broken road, intense mining and some light rain. And Huamachuco happened to be a much bigger town than what I had expected (and therefore I didn’t like it). That made it more expensive as well… Oh, and colder. Not only because of the rain. I don’t think I’ll go and visit the ruins next day…

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