Beautiful ride today as I climbed up and over a low ridge of mountains.
No longer as cold in the morning, so easier to depart at sunrise. The first 16km went slightly downhill and along the mountain range to Nonogasta.
Nice views of the sunlight starting on the hills.
At Nonogasta the road turned west for a 30km/1100m climb. There were one or two short sections of 8% climb but most was much more gradual.
Passed a turnoff for small town of Sanogasta.
Alex came cycling past.
Looks like a local mountain biker.
This truck was loaded with household supplies and very slowly driving down with speakers on advertising the wares for locals to come shop.
The shrines have become fancy with this one having a painting of Gauchito Gil.
Another more fancy shrine. Somehow they become fancier in more remote areas.
This donkey was grazing right next to the road. As soon as she figured out I wasn’t any threat, she continued the graze.
Close to this shrine the road started to climb more steeply.
Here is a view looking back on the canyon I had climbed up.
The summit was just over 2000 meters.
A brief descent and then a second summit.
A pretty canyon on the other side as well. There was a small village at the 60km mark. I stopped and had a coke stop here. I had originally considered stopping here for the night, but it was a hot afternoon over 30C (high 80s) and the likely camp spot seemed hot and dry to stop in middle of the afternoon. Instead, I descended further and eventually the canyon opened up and it became flatter.
Some wide open cycling the last distance.
At 107km was a turnoff to Villa Union. The town was still several kilometers up the road, but I stopped at first reasonable hotel I found since I knew I would need to come back on the same road again tomorrow. Overall, a warm afternoon but pretty cycling particularly in the red canyons on both sides of the pass.