I decide to ride this morning as I am longer vomiting and I kept dinner down. It is a cold morning at minus 1 degrees. The sun comes out by 7 am so starts to get warmer rapidly and there were blue skies most of the day, a few fluffy clouds later in the day. As we are quite high up in altitude (about 3900m) the clouds look like you could almost reach out and touch them.
I am a bit breathless so having to take the ride quite slowly, thankfully no steep climbs. We have long straight roads most of the day with a slight up gradient and a strong head wind after lunch. Once again quite barren countryside with tussocks, rocky hills, dry river beds, and lots of small farmlets, with people out watching small flocks of animals – sheep, cows, and I saw one with a few alpaca in the mix as well.
When I got to camp I had completely lost my voice and lightheaded, due I realized to being dehydrated. Usually I am really good at drinking water, but today not sure why I did not drink any. So I drank two bottles full then dozed in my tent for a couple of hours, after which I felt a lot better.
Once again bush camping. To go to the toilet it is a 5 minute walk across the field, to a mound of dirt visible from the main road. Thankfully not too busy – not a great situation with gastro.
There was a hungry looking scrawny dog hanging around camp all afternoon, being shoed away by a number of riders. The dog’s patience however was rewarded. The TDA staff were barbecuing meat for dinner, and took their eyes off it for a moment. The dog was last seen heading off at great speed with a very large piece of steak hanging out of its mouth.
At the riders meeting the question was asked as to why, when we are next to a town of 250,000 people, are we bush camping with no amenities . We understand bush camping when there are no other options, but we are not convinced in this case that there was no other option. Also there are a number of people with gastro, and the lack of washing and toilet facilities is unpleasant, and potentially leading to further spread. No real reason was given other than it is hard to find camping options for this amount of people.
We had steak and salad for dinner.
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid finished up in this area. Oruro was the last place they were seen jumping off a cliff into a lake.
Also Max from TDA told us at the riders meeting that there was a belief that the surrounding area is where Atlantis was. Will have to look into this on the next rest day.