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Out of the bubble......... One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.-- Henry Miller

Climbing to Cuenca starting June 2nd

ECUADOR | Thursday, 6 June 2013 | Views [643]

climbing through the clouds...attempting a 4100m  pass to get to Cuenca.

climbing through the clouds...attempting a 4100m pass to get to Cuenca.

Right out of the shoot ...meaning from sea level - we climbed up a  mountain attempting the 4100m (13500 and some f) pass to get to Cuenca. Feeling strong the first day - climbing over the clouds up to 2000m. Riding through the clouds wasn't a whole lot of fun, but I had the feeling the sun was waiting not too far and sure enough we broke through the cotton looking mass and then it felt like riding on the clouds.......heaven....I couldn't help but sing the song from the German singer Reinhard Mey: Über den Wolken muss die Freiheit wohl grenzenlos sein....alle Ängste alle Sorgen -sagt man- blieben darunter verborgen und dann würde was uns groß und wichtig erscheint plötzlich nichtig und klein

Over and over again....in the rhythm of the pedaling motion.....easy going and beauty all around.
The night was spend on the side of the road by a restaurant overlooking the ocean of clouds. It was a parking lot, but good enough for us...
We were greeted by the sun in the morning, high mountain peaks all around imbedded by clouds. 
 
Quick breakfast and off we went climbing...this time my legs didn't feel right...couldn't find my climbing legs...
Bummer, I didn't want to be exhausted. NOW? We got another 2100m to climb to the pass. It'll be windy, cold and steep....heard that before!
Well at about 3100m I was done - finished, toast couldn't go any further. Dizzy, my legs hurting and in a pretty pissy mood, I admitted to James that I am ready to "throw in the towel" and hitchhike to town. James had been waiting for me just about at every corner. We sat down discussing the situation. I am toast, James....can't do it!
Yes, I do want to see the park, the peak and the descent to Cuenca. So, the compromise was to catch a ride to the next hostal and ride the rest the next day - after all it really wasn't that far, just steep and cold and windy.
We were picked up by a pick up truck with a goat and a sheep - we joint those two animals with our bikes in the back, in between wet grass, fur and slimy wood.....James and I were pretty sure the driver understood we wanted to find shelter for the night, but somehow he drove past the hostal, through the park, over the peak and down the other side of the mountain before we could make ourselves heard by yelling and stomping and trying to make all kinds of noises for him to stop and let us out. ...it was too late...we past the highly unusual landscape in this high altitude with it's lakes, rock formations weird plants...indescribable....It all went so fast...how weird to go by car...
We were dropped off near an overpriced little hostal, spend the night and rode the rest of the way - all the way down - to Cuenca the last 20km.
first climbs of Cuenca...like riding through a birthing canal.
Good thing it was descending...I was sick with a fever and all I could do was find a place to lay down and sweat it out for a hole day and a night....sick as a dog...

 

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