Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 1418, Batallas – Copacabana: Shores of Titicaca

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on Aug - 08 - 2014

Distance: 91.39 km
Ride time: 7:02:25
Average: 12.99 km/h
Altitude: 3841 m
Total: 28425 km

During the night it had started to rain, something I have not experienced in a long time. Furthermore, sleeping at above 4000 m I would have expected it to be snow. In the morning there was indeed a thick layer of ice covering my tent and bike. Oh well, another night at the altiplano.

I was now cycling on flat roads towards Lake Titicaca. Seeing the famous lake for the first time out there in the horizon was a true milestone. Ever since I read about Kon-Titi, the raft built by the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl and named after the Inca sun god Viracocha, the Titicaca lake had a magic attraction to me.

Now, behind a hill, the lake finally revealed itself. It was indeed a magic moment.

What was not so magic was the fact that I was fighting a strong head wind – again! It honestly breaks my heart a little to know that the head wind might continue for the next 500-700 km. Oh well, once I reach the coast of Peru I think there is hope for more favourable conditions.

Reaching the shores of Titicaca, the landscape turned more green, and I started to see trees. Apart from the small forest I saw when leaving La Paz, trees is not something that has been a part of the landscapes for thousands of kilometers. I welcomed them back!

I found myself climbing some steep hills before I descended into village of Tiquina. From up on the hills the lake looked more like a deep blue ocean. In Tiquina I was waiting for a small raft to take me across the narrow strait at the end of the lake. It was a beautiful, short, and windy ride on Titicaca.

On the other side of the strait the steep climbs continued. By this time I was truly exhausted from the long day in the saddle, as I slowly made my way up the climbs above 4000 m.

Then I experienced something I have never tried before – I started to hyperventilate. Even when I stopped and rested, my lungs kept grasping for air, and I started to feel dizzy. It was honestly quite scary, but luckily the condition only lasted for a few minutes. Afterwards, as I rolled down the other side of the mountain, I knew it was time for a rest day tomorrow.

Categories: Bolivia
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3 Responses so far.

  1. sandeep says:

    Cool 🙂 very best 73 de
    Sandeep vu2mue

  2. thomas says:

    I am looking through your posts every few weeks, and I must say:

    Amazing photos, great adventure.

    Good luck & Keep pedaling!


  3. Thanks Thomas! Glad you like the updates, more coming soon 🙂 Greetings from Arequipa!