From Cajamarca to Huanchaco


Time to keep moving…so we pack up and head west toward the coast and some ruins and cities we want to visit. We leave Cajamarca fairly early one morning and plan to turn south at a small town called Chilete.
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The road looks like it’s gonna be dirt for 50-60 miles from the turning at Chilete until we hit another paved highway and then turn west again toward Huanchaco, just north of Trujillo. And sure enough when we get to Chilete and turn into the small village and onto our “highway” it’s a gravel road and runs off into the distance somewhere in the mountains up ahead.
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We stop and Brian lets some air out of the tires since we will be on gravel for a while.
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And off we go again….
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The view are incredible and as we climb I can look down and see the road we have covered on the way up.
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We finally reach the top and crest this ridgeline of mountains drop down the other side just a bit before riding into Contumaza just in time for a cold drink and snack.
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Two local women are sitting on a bench out front and ask about our travels. They can’t believe we have ridden all the way from the United States. One of the women is the owner and she gets up to go make lunch for some soldiers who are working in the area.
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Back on the road out of town to start climbing up the next ridge which isn’t too high, and then we start down the other side of it all for the river valley off in the distance.
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The view is amazing. Our road is a skinny, single-lane gravel road that passes through a tunnel and through some rock narrows and over a couple of bridge. We meet a small bus on the way and find a wide spot in the road where he can meet and pass us.
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On the way down we get to a pretty rough section of gravel. Looks like it hasn’t been screened very well and there are some pretty big chunks of rock in the mix. It’s deep and rugged and makes for some harder riding.
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And on we go….
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Finally we drop into Cascas and catch the pavement which makes the going a little faster.
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Huanchaco is another hour or two away and we ride a bit of the PanAm Highway at the very end of the day just before landing in this small beach town.  I’m reminded why we haven’t ridden the PanAm in several hundred miles…it’s packed with trucks and aggressive traffic.

We end the day with a vegetarian dinner and a beach view. Perfect.

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