Day 111/164: Villa Union to Tunnel camp (La Cianega) – 126km

Climbing 710 and down 250

We had over 100 kilometres into a strong headwind with some climbing, which made a very long day. The head wind started from the moment we left the hotel and apart from about 6 kilometres at about 30 kilometres mark, it went on until 112 kilometres. The scenery was basically desert with high mountain ranges all day, until the last 12 kilometres.

I was really dehydrated, riding in the wind makes me thirsty as I breathe through my mouth. I drank four bottles of water but was still really thirsty. At 112 kilometres I had no water left and the notes said a shop to the left, off route. What the notes didn’t say off route meant 6 kilometres to the next town. Given that it was siesta time I decided not to ride 6 kilometres there and back and risk it being shut, and then still have to ride another 14 k with no water.

The last 14 kilometres was up a steep gorge for about 4 kilometres, I was not sure with the new gearing if I would make it up a couple of the steep bits, hopefully I will get used to this new unimproved gearing before we go over the Andes into Santiago!!

We are bush camping by a tunnel. Dinner was Steak, corn, blue cheese sauce, mashed potato.

No cell service again, there appears to be no cell service at all in Argentina outside of the immediate area of towns.

There was a cold shower so I ducked in and out quickly. I kept away from the toilets though after the first time I flushed one and all the water that flushed then poured out onto the floor.

Once again a number of camp dogs with a well established pecking order so no fighting over scraps. They are well behaved and sit about two meters away from you, waiting looking hopeful rather than intrusive begging.

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