The Sirens of North Argentina – Irresistible Salta and Jujuy

Mate, malavares, fiambre, ice cream, high quality beef, Malvinas, Maradona are all mainstream Argentinian experiences but one thing stands out above the rest for me: Of all the Latin American countries I’ve visited (there are a lot of them), Argentina can safely claim the nocturnal noise and sleep deprivation award by a considerable margin. No matter what…

Wild Desert Donkeys – San Antonio to Cafayate

After accidentally timing Paso Sico and San Antonio de Los Cobres perfectly with the busiest days of the year (or possibly ever), due to peak tourist season and flooding roads, it was a relief to finally leave.  My route continued via the famous Ruta 40 and after climbing up a pass of nearly 5000 metres it descended for 260km down to world famous vineyards through dry rugged cactus terrain intermittently following a divine river oasis. It was spiced up further by crazy wild donkeys, beautiful shaded plazas, leeches (!) and incredible rock formations.

Solo night riding to 5760 metres on the Altiplano – Lagunas Route via Uturuncu

THE LAGUNAS ROUTE DETOURING FOR VOLCANO UTURUNCU on THE ALTIPLANO OF SOUTH WEST BOLIVIA
Cycling the sandy corrugated 4000+metre high desert roads of Southwest Bolivia for hundreds of kilometres is undoubtedly tough. You have three riding options: ride standing and exhaust your legs, ride seated at an excessively slow speed or ride normally and have your backside mercilessly pounded by your seat (perhaps fun for some?). I’d maybe add one more…go off road into the deep soft sand…

Anticlockwise Ausangate hike – by bike

“Is this fun?” I think to myself stopping briefly to gasp on Ausangate’s thin air and ponder the value of my efforts. Stopping means no forward progress so I quickly get back to work and continue to haul my laden bike up the steep grassy slopes. I feel slightly dizzy due to my lack of good acclimatisation but, at last,…

Is Machu Picchu obligatory? Cusco

Whilst hiking through the jungle recently I stumbled across some rather pleasing looking buildings. Even though photos of this iconic structure have been published an inordinate number of times and 8 versions of almost identical photos probably exist somewhere on the web, I can’t quite help myself. Llama interlude More photos of MP With two days of travel effort it…

Slow down if you must but don’t stop – Huancavelica to Cusco

Keep going you lazy ****. Just find the damn groove. Don’t blow yourself up by going too fast but equally don’t stop altogether; find the sustainable pace that’s not overwhelmingly painful that allows you to keep making progress. Even if you’re hardly moving it’s better than stopping and making no progress whatsoever. If you know you can’t…