The Pilgrims

May 5th, 2016

There are two highways out of Oaxaca, both heading south. We decided on the less-busy Hwy#131/161 and were rewarded with no traffic and great scenery.

What happened…

Amanda writes:
Today was pretty uneventful, more of one of those days where I love riding bikes. I love turning the wheels and falling into the rhythm of my mind being so entered and clear minded. This is why I’m doing what we’re doing; I love to be on my bike. The scenery was nice although not amazing but just riding with my partner by my side in a solid groove made me so at peace. Even our rain soaked wild camp sight was more enjoyable that one would think.

Andrew writes: It was hard to leave this morning. The dogs are so amazing, and I felt a little sad to be leaving them without me. Oh well, I guess there’ll be other dogs again somewhere down the road, right? So today was a ride of two halves. Getting out of the city itself was mostly painless. After a few days of sightseeing, we knew where to find the bike route, and also, cycling in the city with the cars isn’t very stressful. I did get a little turned around when I saw signs pointing to Puerto Escondido 302km away via Hwy#175, and I kept looking for Hwy#161 signs but didn’t see any. It’s not really well marked how to get out of the city south, on the roads less travelled. Once out and away from it though, immediately we found ourselves in farmland, with horse-drawn wagons and roadside fruit and floral shops. We saw signs claiming we were on the “Ruta Magica de las Artesanas”, with icons promising pyramids and cathedrals and knives and forks.

The latter half of the day turned into rolling hills, and the landscape seemed very brown and arid, almost as though we were back in Wyoming. Up ahead at first we could see some large mountains looming, and before we knew it, we were in the thick of it, with the climbs getting longer and longer, and less in the way of downhills. Around about quitting time we entered San Sebastian, and there were signs for caves and hot springs. A Mexican man had told me about them as being something cool to see/do. I was just worried that accommodations nearby would be expensive as a result of it being a tourist draw. With storm clouds overhead, I was ready to just grab a cabana, but Amanda wanted to scout ahead a bit. I found someone renting cabanas for $200MX for the night, but Amanda was suddenly nowhere to be found. I waited a few minutes and then set off up a long climb ahead to find her. She met me a minute or two later, cycling downhill towards me. One thing lead to another (peacefully, I should add, although it isn’t always the case) and we agreed to keep climbing a bit more and find a place to wild camp.

Lightning began to flash in the distance, and thunder began to boom loudly throughout the valley and I knew that we had mere minutes to find someplace flat and hopefully dry. We found a pair of laneways that looked promising and it was the second one that we ended up pushing our bikes up. We found a flat spot under a tree and setup our tarp, just as the skies unleashed a lethal afternoon storm upon us. We were able to read and cook under the tarp and when the rain shower passed, we setup our tent and made good for the night.

Today’s Photographs

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The Pilgrims