After these past few weeks, Jill was especially ready for some beach time. In fact, even Mike was ready for some beach time. So with our thoughts locked on warm, sunny days while lounging on a beach we took off to Huanchaco. That was not the right mindset to be in for the ride that we took. Instead of dropping straight down to the coast, we decided to loop through Cajabamba, Huamachuco and passing by Otuzco to get a more scenic mountain ride. The start of it certainly was that.
(this area is proud of being the best cuy producers in Peru - now that's an important claim to fame)
And then we kept climbing...into a rain/sleet/hail/snow storm at 4300 meters (over 14000 feet). That was cold. These pictures don't do it justice, but you will get the idea. And keep in mind we are already wearing swimsuits and flip flops (in our minds, of course).
Finally making it down to Huanchaco around dusk, we checked into My Friend Hospedaje. It turned out to be a screaming deal at 10 soles a person (US$4) for a private room with bath, and they let us pull the bike in at night. Even better, the hostel was full of fun people (especially Andy, Georgi, and Cassie, also included, Victor aka Vincent). We ended up getting fully Huanchaco'd and stayed for awhile. Some days were relaxing, some party fueled, others recovering, and some recovering by partying. We had a lot of fun.
(pic taken by Georgi/Andy. Used without permission, but we assume they're fine with that)
(Cassie, Victor, Jill, Georgi and Andy enjoying a good morning)
While there, Radioman (ride report linked here)
saw the TA by chance on the street and dropped in to say hi. Mike and him had even emailed about Ecuador customs paperwork in days past, but meeting him in person was a pleasant surprise.
(enjoying a Trujillo in Huanchaco with Mark. Pic taken by Mark, used without permission. I'll ask him next week when we meet again in Cusco. EDIT: He's good with it, so it stays.)
Eventually we built up enough self discipline to actually pull ourselves away from the Hotel California that is Huanchaco...