Day 174

DU-SHAN-BAY!

So I made it to dushanbe with D the Japanese cyclist who started in Cape Town after 26,000km…

Tajikistan is like nothing else. I have to be quick as I am just about to leave with D, Christoph and Xavier so I can not put down everything that has happened over the last few days but suffice to say this country is beyond special. Come here before everybody else finds out.

The happiness in the childrens faces, the 5500m mountains that loom over you in the morning when you crawl out of your tent, the cold crisp air being blown off the mountain rivers as you ride past, the Anzub tunnel (of death), 76km downhills, meeting up with friends again and hitting the 5000 mile mark.

There are strong negatives like the roads which are beyond a joke. Death on a stick comes to mind. Try riding next to the edge of a 250m sheer drop with cars at the bottom testifying that you do not want to make a mistake.. tarmac is used occasionaly but for the majority it is unpaved, rough as hell and the risk of rock falls and land slides help to concentrate the mind and lead to the constant worry of
(a) the wheels collapsing
(b) the luggage coming off (now strapped down with a washing line)
or (c) my fillings coming out

So off into the unkown once more to try and get over the Pamirs. A number of warnings about closed sections due to land slides, a number of high altitude passes over the 4000m mark, a 120km section without water and the section next to the Afghan border all being land minded.. well it should be interesting to say the least.

I will be off the grid until China, so no more updates until the start of September. Roll on Kashgar….

Wish me luck…

3 Responses to “Day 174”

  1. Sy says:

    God speed dudes!

  2. Heleen says:

    Be careful and stay away from the floods in and around Pakistan! xx

  3. Gemma says:

    In stitches yet again reading your blog, thank you for all the entertainment. Will be thinking of you Andy, please be careful and remember you have lots of people thinking of you ever day, hoping that you are OK.

    I’ve only got a week and a half left in India now boooooooooooooooooo! Very sad to be leaving and going back to the reality of doing a 2 year MA, but i strongly urge you to venture into India if you get the chance. It’s a place filled with culture, colour, culinary delights, also chaotic and some are still very backward in their values of women! However, it has the most hospitable people I have ever met, who have all bent over backwards to help me in so so many ways, despite only knowing many of them a matter of days or weeks! Also there are some of the most beautiful natural sights and animals i have seen on my travels anywhere, here in India, especially in the south: elephants, rain forests, natural waterfalls, views 4000metres above see level that feel like your looking over the whole world, and lets not forget your favourite, the monkey! So if you get the chance, i highly recommend it!

    Stay safe, let us know your OK when u can,

    Gemma
    x

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