On our last day of cycling in the High Atlas, our bicycles decided to seek revenge for all of the punishment we’ve put them through…
It was almost as if the universe was a rogue mechanic. Within feet after hitting pavement, Gin’s rear seatpost bolt exploded, sending her saddle to the ground along with a jingle of metal parts bouncing down the roadway. Earlier that day I noticed a creak in my bottom bracket. It had gotten worse throughout the day, to the point of a ceaseless grinding that would surely bring me to a halt at any second. Thus, we had to make an early exit from the mountains after several days of stunning scenery and a few stretches of great (albeit very strenuous) riding. That particular exit was a serpent of tarred switchbacks bringing us down over 5,000 feet to a random town where we would either need to find a bike shop or catch a bus to our next destination. Here are some photos from the last couple of days in the Atlas:
From the last post
, we left off during a long dirt route in the last post…
Looks like a nice drop, but it’s time to find a camp site.
Our dueling Velocity rims
. Gin’s Cliffhangers now have a solid 12,000 kilometers on them and they are still as true as can be.
A glorious camp site on a hill overlooking the Atlas.
We has a hell of a light show that evening.
The ride the next morning brought us into a small village where we immediately found a place serving chicken couscous. Delicious.
We rode through several completely desolate villages.
Not many people to be seen, but the buildings were interesting.
A working dog watching me from a ridge.
The kids got extremely aggressive in these parts.
The crisp and clear air added to the bizarrely surreal views.
An interesting ridge on in the landscape.
Morocco’s version of street art.
Once again we hit pavement for a long traverse before we split off on a dirt climb.
Our home for a couple of hours.
We found some fossilized seashells on the ridge at the top of a long climb… irony.
I followed this strange insect around for some shots. Similar to a hummingbird.
A ribbon of goat track to explore.
Here is a good campsite…
Gin whipping up some veggie and rice stew.
Another light show.
Some nice climbing the following morning, before disaster struck.
Only twelve thousand some-odd kilometers on the SKF; I am a little disappointed. I expected to get 5 times this although the sand of the Sahara may take partial blame.
For more information on this route, including GPS and logistics, click here. Also, check out our growing list of bikepacking and dirt road touring routes.