In my previous blog, I wrote about the technical issues that I had with my gears. A missing spring, not even a centimeter long, was the cause of these problems. My father even had to send a package to fix it. However, this did not go very smoothly. I’ve been stuck for almost a month before I could finally continue. I will write about what I did with this time.
The first package that my father sent was supposed to arrive in Trujillo, a big coastal city without any atmosphere. I visited the post office on a daily basis, to ask whether my package was already traceable in their system. Every day without any results. My hope that the package would arrive soon faded away with each day, I could not wait for ages here.
I decided to give it a couple more days before I would take other measures. I took a bus to Cajamarca to do something nice while I was practically waiting for this stupid package. Cajamarca is a nice city in the mountains and was a good distraction. I stayed a couple of nights before I took a bus back to Trujillo. I walked into the post office with renewed hope of a positive answer, but this was not the case. I could not wait any longer here, this town was driving me crazy. I decided to take my bicycle on a bus to Caraz, without any intentions of coming back to Trujillo. This turned out to be the right decision, because to date, the package still has to arrive in Trujillo (mid-July).
View over the city centre of Cajamarca
Classical Volkwagen cars in Trujillo (the city looks better than it actually is here)
While I was in Caraz, my father sent a new package to Peru. This time, he chose the DHL Express service. A very expensive option, but you can be certain that it will arrive within a couple of days and the entire logistical process is transparent. After some weeks of doing nothing in Trujillo, I didn’t want to repeat this in Caraz. I went to the same hotel as Pim and Nienke, the Dutch couple that I met earlier in Peru. They were preparing for a four-day hike through a beautiful National park, and they invited me to join them. That was a great idea. While the package was on its way, I could complete this hike. I just needed to find a backpack. Afer all, I had all my camping gear with me.
We would eventually start the hike with four people. Shane, a Scottish guy that Pim an Nienke met earlier in Colombia, would join as well. Shane’s gear was brand-new, he had just bought everything. He already completed some organised hikes, but he wanted to be able to do it himself with his own stuff.
On an early Wednesday morning, we were ready to leave. A tight and chaggered van brought us to the starting point of the hike, an uncomfortable ride that took over two hours. We were all happy when we finally arrived. We drank a coffee, took a group picture and were ready to go!
Ready? Set? Go!
The four-day hike was absolutely beautiful and time was flying. Physically, it was perfectly doable and the views were literally breathtaking, with snowy mountains that ended up in turquoise blue glacier lakes. Funfact: We walked past the mountain (Artesonraju) that Paramount uses in its logo. You always see that mountain before the movie starts. We were a very good group. Despite arriving pretty tired at the end of the days, we all did our tasks without really communicating about this. It was a natural process. We had a fresh breakfast every day with fresh coffee and concluded our days with a big plate of delicious spaghetti with fresh vegetables. We did a good job. Pim and Nienke brought their good camera, so I can finally upload some quality pictures again.
Selfie! left to right: Shane, me, Nienke & Pim
Pim & me in the background, entangled in deep conversations
A group of donkeys, part of the organised tours, would regularly pass us along the way
After four days of hiking, the trail ended up in the habited world again, a little village where we could easily fix transportation back to the town where we were. The four of us were squeezed into the back of another worn-out car that took us back via small mountainous roads. Shane’s fearful eyes were looking at the ravine that was right next to us. Because my phone made contact with some antennas again, I could immediately check whether my package had arrived or not. To my big relieve, it had arrived in Huaraz after an adventurous trip. Netherlands – Germany – UK – Spain – Peru; quite the trip for a tiny spring! After a well-deserved (and needed) shower, we went out for dinner together to conclude our hike. After four days of spaghetti, it was nice to eat something else.
I left Caraz the next day already to go to Huaraz, the city where the package was waiting for me.
The first thing I did after collecting the package was testing the bicycle, of course. It was all working fine now and I could finally continue cycling. Pim and Nienke arrived that day by bicycle, we are inseperable already 😊. They are going to prepare for a next level hike that will take them nine days to complete. Nine days! It will take them through the Huayhuash mountains and is supposed to be more challenging. So the hike we did was basically a warmup for them. Shane is joining them again. I was thinking about joining them as well, but I preferred to continue cycling. I’d been looking forwards to a beautiful rough road for a long time. It’s called the Peruvian Divide.
In my next blog, that will follow after this one shortly, I will write about this trip.