domingo, 27 de dezembro de 2009

Lhasa / Kathmandu - First Day!!

Lhasa (3650m) - Chushur (3600m)

Distance - 65 km + 20km

On that day I woke up at 6:45 am, after 4h hours of bad sleeping, filled up with strange and abstract dreams...In the day before I went to bed very late because of my greediness to enjoy the last minutes in Lhasa... Although, I was about to facing a wonderful day, a beautiful scenario and an amazing challenge!

Before I arrive Kathmandu I had to ride my bike during 1400 km, though the maximum distance that I ever ride, in my entire life, was just 40 km, between Faro and Rocha da Pena (in Algarve, Portugal), more than 10 years ago. I also had to conquer and establish some altitude records. The maximum altitude that I have ever been, using my own effort, was 4808m of the Mont Blanc, however during this trip I had to face 6 passages above 5000m and some of them above 5200m.

Despite the fact that I had no true idea of what I was about to facing, the feelings that I had on that very single moment, when I started to pedal, were just amazing! In one hand I was feeling sad because I was about to leaving Lhasa, but in the other hand I was feeling incredibly motivated and wishful to "be driven", in a slow motion, through the natural and human landscapes of Tibet :-)

My first 15km were not easy...I had no city map and because of a misunderstanding between me and Da Wa I took the wrong road and, in the end, I rode the bike more than 10 km, loosing more than an hour...In the town outskirts I asked a tibetan guy the directions to the road that would take me to Chushur. But the only word that he could understand was Chushur. So he went back home to catch his motor-bike. After 5 min he set off with me and rode more than 5 km just to show me the way. The gentle tibentan guy, comfortably seated on his 250cc motor-bike, got astonished when he realizes that I was on the way to Kathmandu.

I arrived early at the destination. It was a easy ride, almost flat at all times. We set our tents by the river edge (Brahmaputra river). After that I fell asleep, listening the gentle sound of the flowing water and facing a beautiful scenario :-) After a few hours I was riding the bike again :-) I went back to peer a small village and the people working at the surrounding fields.

The next day, the road would lead me to Kampala Pass, at an altitude of 4700m...

Farewell Potala

Friendship Highway

Mountains, dunes and tsampa fields

Feeling wonderful after the firsts 60 km :-)


Prayer flags by the Brahmaputra river

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