Sunday 27 January 2008

MTB Rough Road Touring 2001-7

Cannondale MTB history - Central Australia 2002 Eastern Tibet 2003 & 2005 Burma 2004

I liked the lightness of the Cannondale aluminium frame and the headshock suspension but after 2 rugged and brutal trips in Tibet it was showing lots of wear (worn rear dropouts and rack bolt holes). Partly due to the 50 kgs I loaded on the rear wheel. The BOB Yak trailer proved invaluable in Tibet- with a backpack I could get off the road and go exploring in the mountains.

Icicles and Bicycle 2005. This photo was taken just below Tro La at 4965m climbing to the pass (Kham Tibet). No BOB trailer- Judy took it with her on the back of a truck over the pass.

..and down the other side. Descending roads like this really put the strain on the bike (climbing was harder on the body). Descents from 5000-3000 meteres asl were common. Lots of ice and mud - wearing on brake pads and rims.

Velosmith 'Jota' history
2006 Trans-Himalayan (Yunnan-Kathmandu) 2007 Central Australia . A sturdy beast. Chromoly frame - tougher and more reliable than the Cannondale. Rohloff hub - less gear maintenance. A revolution for MTB touring. Everyone wants to have a go!

2006 This is the infamous Gama La en route to Lhasa. 77 switchbacks, only 7 shown. A descent of 2000m down to the dusty Salween canyon - punishing for the bike with BOB & 50 kgs.

At around 4000m camping in a snowstorm on the triple passes between Zhongdian & Deqen, Yunnan. Woke up to an icy white world - and poor old Jota buried under snow and encrusted with ice.

Early morning cycle shadows on the Tibetan plateau at 4200m. Between Shegar-Tingri heading towards Pang La and Everest base camp. A typical dirt road on the high plateau.

2007 Painted Desert, South Australia, between Coober Pedy & Oodnadatta. Magical landscape. Great cycling with old friends from Alice Springs to Port Augusta.

2007 Old Andado Road Simpson Desert NT. Riding between the sand dunes was difficult going. Corrugations and deep sand. BOB had a hard time of it..and so did we. Pushed the bike and trailer for over 10kms. Carrying 15 litres of water and 8 days of food. Wild and beautiful scenery.


roentare said...

Amazing journey!

B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

This is an interesting blog, 'specialy as I used to live/work in Ecuador, near Quito. I enjoyed your photo's. Must pop back and see how you get on!


Anonymous said...

A wonderful,stimulating and no doubt surprising journey ahead-keep safe pedro-steve and sal

velaia said...

Hey, wonderful blog and great shots! I´ve started my own South America journey together with my father just 3 or 4 weeks ago in Caracas. We´re now about to enter Columbia and I´m happy to have found your site with the latest information and a motivation to take good shots.
I´m so sorry that you had the accident and wish you all the best, that you recover quickly and hopefully continue your journey!

Greetings, Daniel from Merida