On the Peruvian antiplano
From the borderpost at Desaguadero I cut across the antiplano towards the coast and the Pan-American Highway. The last days of harvesting were underway before the cold sets in. On Day 2 in Peru I woke up to falling snow and a blanket of white on the surrounding mountains. The mining engineers in the hostel reckoned that the pass, Abra Huaytire (4800 metres), that I had to get over would have snow on it but rather than spend a day in ghost village of MazoCruz, I decided to hit the road and hope for the best, optimism outwinning logic. The first 50 kilometres were fine, but then the clouds came down and I found myself stuffing a peanut butter sandwich down and donning the wet gear. I was soon drenched and frozen but as I passed a bend in the mountains a house came into view and I sheltered for a couple of hours, whilst gingerly drinking a cup of mate that looked like it was made with the same water they washed the dog with. I also noticed the big rip in my waterproof trousers which would account for all the water getting inside. The fat-bellied owner of the little shop kept an eye out for passing trucks and every so often one would pull up, goods would be exchanged in an illict fashion. The most worrisome transaction concerned a small truck and its two occupants who bought two cases of beer for the road.
This could really ruin a nice day in the desert...I-have-no-idea-what-this-village-is-called, Peru
Trip distance: 32,442 km