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  • Writer's pictureLisa

The first ride is the deepest (ENG)

I can't say it any other way: holy shit! So much has happened during the past few days. Nervewrecking and exciting at the same time, but that's what traveling is all about. You never know what's going to happen next and in the end everything works out fine.

Medellin was a good mix of latin-american jumble and chill times in the hammock.

The best moment was, when I gave one of the staff members of the hostel my suitcase, since I didn't need it anymore. He was so happy, it almost made my hear burst.

After four nights of getting used to the climate and altitude, I left Medellin and the steep hills made me suffer straight away. Komoot, the app I use to plan the routes, sent me through sideroads from hell, onto main roads from hell. I had to get off and push 17 kilos of bike and 35 kilos of luggage up super steep hills, so many times.

I got dizzy and almost blacked out. I was devastated "Am I able to do this?!", but then I reached the road that climbs up 1.000 meters in altitude, within less than 10 kilometers. It was tough, but the roadbikers who passed me, gasping for air, obviously fighting to climb this mountain, made me feel better, since I was the one, who had all the bags on the bike. They cheered for me, even cars honked and people gave me thumbs up. When I reached the top at 2.600 m in altitude, a group of cyclist cheered for me on the other side of the road.

At a lookout a young man asked me, where I was from, where I was going and if I was going on my own. And then he said something, that wrapped my heart in a warm blanket. "Memories from traveling are the most valuable memories we will ever have. When we're in deathbed it's exactly those moments, that we will remember!"

And then there was more climbing, downhillparts on gravel roads with huge rocks, more climbing, gear-issues and more climbing.

30 km out of Guatapé I stopped . Each time I wanted to shift front gears at the foot of a hill, the chain got blocked and I had to get off, turn the pedals counterclockwise, in order to get back on. Also my energy was getting pretty low. I tried stopping a truck, but nobody would stop. A young man passed me on a bike. Five minutes later this man, called Carlos, came back, to ask if I was having any issues. He had a look at my bike, but couldn't solve the problem.

"Do you have a repair kit?", he asked and pointed at his back wheel, which was super flat. I helped him fix his tire and in return he cycled the last 30 KM with me. Since it was already getting dark, I was quite happy about having him by my side/ in front of me.

Since the reception of the camping-hostel I was going to stay at, was already closed, Carlos and I decided to first get food and then search a different hostel for me. Good idea, since my body was sending signals to me, that the oatmeal-breaky and the sandwich from lunch were long time burned.

After climbing the 700 steps of the rock of Gautapé the next day, I went to get my bike fixed. I explained the issue and the young man quickly found what was causing the problem. on of the spockets was bent. I was shocked, since I cycled 80 KM the day before. It must have happened during the transport inside the box.

I felt sick to the stomach, while the guy started hammering. I was there for two hours and watched, while he kept hammering and sweating. He kept leaving for testrides and returned shaking his head. But then he returned smiling and said "Okay, now you have to take me to Germany with you!"

I was so relieved. He insisted to charge me one euro, So I brought him some german candy afterwards.

The start of my trip might have been a but bumpy, but I have met so many amazing people already, who I will never forget.

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