|At 4400 m climbing to Laguna Llaca in Peru´s Cordillera Blanca (July 2014)|
You might be wondering about the title of our blog. Machaca is a Spanish slang word that basically means a hard core enthusiast of a sport (the verb machacar means to crush or grind). To be honest, neither of us actually is a machaca - we don't train every day or participate in races, and you won't find us mixing up protein shakes or taking any performance-enhancing drugs!
This blog started back in 2010, when we were living in London. Back then, we decided to record our rides as a way to keep track of our great times on the bike, to have a place to store our thoughts about cycling, and to post our routes and other information in case other cyclists might benefit. Over the course of our time in London, we gradually developed a taste for longer rides, both of the audax (randonneuring) and touring varieties. It culminated in the decision to take around some time off to see the world (or at least one corner of it) from our saddles.
There are so many parts of the world we want to see. In our previous travels, without bikes, we always felt language was a barrier that prevented fully experiencing the place we were in. With that in mind, as well as the stunning landscapes, interesting communities, and unique wildlife, we chose South America for this trip. North America came as a "natural" continuation of our trip, an area neither of us had visited by bike previously, and that became intriguing after meeting other cyclists on the road.
The plan, quite simply, was to start from the Andes in Ecuador, and cycle down to Ushuaia in Argentina. We threw Colombia in also, and what a great idea it was! We eventually reached Ushuaia in late April 2015, and felt we weren´t quite finished yet...A few planes, a ridiculous carbon footprint and renovated spirits, we spent summer 2016 riding in North America, and then headed to Spain before finally making it back to Vancouver in late 2015.
We have received incredible hospitality from each of the countries we´ve been passing through. The world is a good place, despite what we may so often see on the news. This blog is dedicated to all those who have helped us along the way, be it family members or random people we´ve encoutered. We're desperate to repay all this kindness, so if there's anything we can help with or if you have any questions at all, don't hesitate to email us at machacasonwheels [at] gmail [dot] com, or look us up on Warmshowers.
|16 months on the road, more than 16.000 km and 300.000 m of altitude gain...and we found ourselves in Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego, Argentina). South America was tooo good!|