This is turning out to be way better than I expected and it’s only the end of day 3!
I can’t even begin to describe how amazing this place is for mountain biking and just in general.
I’ve ended up meeting the coolest German couple Kristin & Stefan who’ve been on the road for 10 months already and who happen to be pretty bad ass riders! They’re staying in the same place as me and we’re going to be riding together all week which is a godsend.
On the first day riding we went right up to the top of the inca avalanche race course at Abra Malaga around 4300m. The views from the road up were incredible and the trail itself goes from boggy, wet, slippy marsh to rocks, trees and single track that occasionally spits you out onto the road where you’ve got to get each drainage ditch bridge nailed accurately or you’ll be in big trouble! After that we did another trail not too far away bit a little lower in start point which took us to a salt pan farm. Also an epic descent. We.covered 28km down hill on one day. Nuts!
Day two saw us doing two trails from same valley – Patacancha. The first one was a bit disappointing with lots of road sections joining up to cut offs of single track, which were good but there could have been less road for all of our likings. The second trail was on the opposite side and took us to some Inca terraces which were really impressive. See the picture above. We rode from here back down into the town where we’re staying.
In the evening we met up with Ali Goulet the race director and headed down in a taxi to a local award winning brewery run by two really nice American guys, a Peruvian bartender that had spent 9 years in Bristol, and two really cute mouse catching cats. Great snacks, great banter. We also met Nicole and Will, a local couple who run tours now but used to help poor kids in local communities. This is also what one of the brewery owners does in his spare time, focusing on helping girls to get an education to try and break the cycle they’re families are in. Pretty cool and a nice looking guy too 😉
Today (Wednesday) we drove for around 2 hours to Lares for two runs off the same high trail. It started at 4661 metres and I was tired after 12km of descent but started feeling really queezy shortly after the end of run 1 so I had to sit out the second one in the van. Bummer. I don’t think the altitude was very kind to me today. Tomorrow we’re heading back up to scope lines on the Inca Avalanche course so hoping to get two full runs in and take our time getting down. It’s pretty varied terrain again and a few sections need real concentration.. and I need to remember where the chicken lines are for the jumps…