Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 1281: El Leoncito National Park

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on Mar - 28 - 2014

Distance: 49.83 km
Ride time: 2:40:05
Average: 18.69 km/h
Altitude: 2280 m
Total: 25038 km

After waking up at sunrise watching the last stars and planets disappear from the sky, we could feel the wind picking up. Petter and I had been fighting some crazy head winds together in Patagonia two months ago, but this time luck was on our side. We would be enjoying a steady tail wind and with the road descending for the first 20 kilometers of the day, we were constantly cycling between 40 and 50 kilometers per hour.

We were cycling so fast that I almost didn’t notice my bike computer ticking over 25000 km. I stopped to take a few photos and think about the ride so far, including passing the 10000 km point just outside of Kuala Lumpur and the 20000 mark on the North Island of New Zealand. What a morning to celebrate this milestone. I was feeling as happy as ever on the bike.

We soon turned off the main road into a rough dirt track leading up into the mountains. This was the road to El Leoncito National Park. At the free camp site next to the administration office we took a quick siesta before setting out on the 4 hour hike to the Cerro Leoncito peak at 2550 m. A nice way to get used to using the hiking muscles as we plan to do some more challenging hikes later. For now we could enjoy the views of the 6770 m high Cerro Mercedario on the other side of the valley.

Back at the camp site we were cooking a quick dinner. As if the day had not already been action filled enough, we were planning to visit the observatory which would open at 9 pm. To get to the observatory we would need to cycle up another mountain in darkness. Luckily the moon was out, and the new head light I bought in Santiago is bright.

After a couple of hours looking at stars and planets I had learned a lot about the formations and the signs. It was almost midnight before we were back at the camp site, completely exhausted from the long day.

Categories: Argentina
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