All Guns Blazing in Guatemala

Had a very tough last two days, particularly today. Yesterday and today started with long, tough climbs taking more than three hours to reach 21km and 11km yesterday and today respectively.

The hard climbs are never the main climbs but rather the valley crossings when you have to ascend after descending to the river bridge. It gets quite nasty when there are so many switchbacks and the gradient is so steep.

But today took the cake. After 68km on paved roads, we had to cycle 27km on an unpaved road. This unpaved road started really slowly for Dad and I. In fact after 72km, Dad told me to leave him and make sure I finish the stage of 103km. So I did.

I then gave it hammer and tongs and more. I finished at 16h07 in the afternoon after leaving Dad at 72km at 13h51pm. Dad was not looking good at the time and we were making slow progress together. I bolted and took a refreshment break provided by Tour d Afrique at 78km. There was no time wasting on my part and set sail through gravel, potholes, mud and water. It was real mountain biking.

So I got back to the hotel, washed the bike and took a shower before relaxing in the restaurant. Then Dad turned up. It turned out that he had made it! He had managed to get through the real tough stretch between about 72km and 75km and cruised to the finish. It was amazing because I did not expect him to cycle the entire 103km. He finished with the Tour d Afrique car guiding him over the last 10km to the hotel. Well done Dad.

No stage is uneventful but were lucky yesterday and today not to have any punctures while riding. We were blessed with good fortune over the last two days but we had to cycle hard across the mountainous backbone of Central America. There has been great scenery yesterday and today and many mountain and valley splendour.

Thank you all for reading these blogs. I must also wish Margaret a happy festive season and may I return to hacking next year. All the best everyone.

About wggreig

age 72 cyclist and runner
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