Towards the fun!: La Balsa to Huaraz

Entry stamps done and so the countdown starts. Six months is all we’ve got to explore Peru. I looked in the map, which Dang has been carrying since I don’t know when, she prefers to have a real map of her own and not just follow my ass. I see a massive landmass comprised of desert, rivers, jungle(Amazon!) and mountains. That last one is what we’re interested in. It sure does have the monopoly of the Andes, at least the meaty ones. Given our undeniably snail’s pace, my first thought was I don’t think half a year is enough to explore this country.

We really need to hightail to Huaraz since we’re also pausing in Cusco to meet with Dang’s family for several weeks. We’re time pressured for the first time in a while but whatever. If we have to cover that much distance and make it in time for her family’s visit, we might resort to taking a bus for a section of Northern Peru as some point. Certainly not what I prefer(the bus thing) but Dang, the boss, have spoken. It’s still up for debate which section we’re skipping when we left the border and I was hoping it’s not going to be much.

On the bright side, we have some replacements arriving straight from Toronto. We’re planning to tweak our set-up just in time for the massive mountains ahead. That’ll definitely settle whatever qualms I have about the bus thing. Also, as I have mentioned before, I’m super stoked to see the atom bombs that are Dang’s nephew and niece. I’m sure they have a thing or two to say about my long flowy hair since they’ve never seen me like this.

So much for reading my thought balloon…Back on the road, we never actually spent much time at the border since we got there around lunch time. Some minimal wrinkles getting the stamps and that’s all. So off we go towards the fun!

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No shit! Trust me it was never this worse as the sign suggests.
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That’s more like it. Be gentle Peru.
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It must be the air. I never expected sunset is pretty around here.
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And the morning is beautiful too! Nothing but blue skies.
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We stick to as much dirt roads as our limited time allows.
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We passed some forgotten towns.
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In Mollebamba, Dang was greeted by this friendly and energetic woman. She took pity on Dang(pobrecita) when we told her we’re looking for a camping spot. She insisted we stay in the hospedaje across her store. We cave in, hot shower was hot, for a few dollars.
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Oh boy. Our introduction to the infamous Peruvian shake soon started. This one a neat 1000m.
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As expected we dropped down the canyon after all the morning hard work.
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Viento means wind. Thanks for saying the obvious…good thing there was light traffic on this section.
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Caraz 39km. Oh wait its 40! Getting closer to Huaraz now.
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But before that, we passed the Cañon del Pato, tunnel after tunnel after tunnel. It was pretty cool for the first couple of tunnels until we went head-on with vehicles. Then it becomes a bit scary.
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In Huaraz, we found some familiar faces. Jalene and Keith, both from Oregon, who we met back in San Agustin, Colombia are camping as well at Jo’s Place.
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And look who showed up once more. Señor Gregorio with his Ogre shod with Maxxis Chronicles in front and Minions out back. Notice the rear rack? He was still on the fence if he still the needs it. He eventually sent it back to the U.S. from Cusco.

You can view the whole route here.

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