|2013-09-12 Click on this date link to see more photo's|
12/09/2013 Huanuco – Cerro dePasco – La Oryla -Huancayo (by bus)We woke up to all of a sudden very busy streets in Huanuco. The strike, road blocks and demonstrations had finished and and the moto taxies were buzzing around like crazy. We decided to travel by bus to Cerro de Pasco partly to make up for lost time but mainly because we didn't fancy the 2400 meter solid climb. It would have taken us every minute of daylight to cycle it. So we just cycled out to the outskirts and found the right bus. Being able to speak some Spanish did help!
Within 15 minutes of arriving our bikes were loaded on top of the bus along with sheaf's of corn, sacks of maize and all sorts off outside luggage. Our panniers went into the hold of the bus without problems. We had intended to take all of our valuables on the bus with us in a ruck sack but it all happened so quickly we forgot. To our surprise all passengers on the bus ad to give their name and identification number even children but when it came to our turn we couldn't provide a passport number because it was in the hold. Luckily this was accepted. The bus left when it was full. Many seats carried an adult plus child but we continued to pick up more passengers along the way who filled the aisled. It was not a bad journey though .The seats were quite comfortable and the three and a half our journey passed quite quickly. Cerro de Pasco turned out to be a big mining town and like most mining towns it wasn't the prettiest of places. Many houses didn't have windows and it looked a very bleak and depressing place. ( apart from an astro turf football stadium with all the trimmings) On arrival at the bus station we spotted a bus ready for departure to Huancayo , we didn't hesitate for long. We knew from reading blogs that we weren't going to miss out on any fantastic scenery or riding so we quickly purchased some tickets for the next leg of the journey. This time our bikes and bags had there own private compartment underneath the bus. We needn't have bothered buying supplies at the bus station because at every stop people came on board selling food and drink. We were entertained by people giving speeches, singing or giving sales pitches and the journey passed quickly. We are now in Huancayo a huge city with a very modern centre with everything on sale you would expect to find in a city in the UK. The contrasts in this amazing country are quite hard to grasps. Both in terms of the country side which ranges from the absolute awesome to a dump and the stark difference in living standards. Not just between different towns but also between people living almost next to each other.
The next few days promise to be very tough but beautiful riding so we will take our time and see how we get on