Quick peek: Mountains. Rain. Tube Explosion. Amazing Hospitality.
I finally decided to roll out of Tegucigalpa. I’ve had a wonderful time with Daya and family and even though I could happily stay on for a few more days, I figured I really need to keep going. I felt ready to rock on and bid farewell to the family and got on the road. It was almost 8:30 and I figured I might not make it to the big town of Danli. So I decided to take the long way around to check out the popular tourist villages of Santa Lucia and Valle De Angeles.
I was bracing myself for the mountain, but I had underestimated the effort. It was friggin hard work, all the uphills were 10% at time hitting 14% and the same with the downhills too. Which meant I was on the brakes a lot and tiring my arms out. The route went up and down for the first half of the day and I had climbed my preferred quota of 1000m before I hit the 20 km mark. I still had a bit of hills to go and had a long sweeping downhill and flats to come.
The initial bit getting out of Tegucigalpa was a bit of a bitch in the traffic. I had set my GPS to pedestrian mode and it routed me thro some seedy looking neighbourhood. I rode around and found the roads to be too terrible and headed back into the highway. Once I got out of the Periferico, the traffic eased up and after the first hour, it became a really pleasant route to ride on.
The hills were tough, but since I had enough rest, I was able to work thro the steep sections on my granny without complaint. The rain was spitting on and off and it was punctuated with some strong sun or clouds. I had the jacket on and off all day along. The weather was super cool and that made the climbs easier.
The adventure for the day came when on one of the uphills, my rear wheel exploded dramatically. I looked down to see the tube had torn to shreds and pushed the tire out of its mount. I was lucky it didn’t happen on the downhill and I made a quick inspection to see if the tire was ok. The Schwalbe Mondail’s are tough buggers and the tire was in ship shape. I inspected and figured that a small puncture of the tube caused the explosion. I had stuffed the tube with a puncture resistant fluid called slime and seems like a micro puncture and some nudging had caused the explosion. Anyhow I changed the tube and continued on the climb.
I passed Santa Lucia and skipped visiting the village as it was an uphill detour. The town of Valle De Angeles was pretty and designed for tourists. I wanted to stop for coffee, but the prices were too steep and I decided to carry on. The descent on the other side was equally steep and a bit scary with some good rain pouring down. I eventually got down to the flats and rode the rest of the way in the relatively cool weather. I had a rainbow keep me company for nearly 2 hours and it was beautiful riding with the awesome view of the mountains.
I got to the junction town of Ojo De Agua and started looking for a spot to sleep, it was already getting dark I spotted a roadside Comedor and thought it might be a good option. I got the food but the lady was living in town and was closing shop and didn’t want me to be there unsupervised. Bummer. But her husband called up one of his friends and he showed up in 10 minutes and offered for me to sleep in his house. Say what! An absolutely random encounter and a completely random family was hosting me today. He even brought his truck to help me take the bike back to his place!!!
We rode thro the bad roads of Ojo De Agua and ended up in his house and his family was very welcoming of me and let me hang about, take a shower and sleep for the night… It’s always awesome when serendipity strikes. So I suppose when you see a rainbow, there is something made of gold where it lands!
Route: Tegucigalpa to Ojo de Agua
Distance: 81 km
Road: Good Asphalt, tough gradients.
Traffic: Shit traffic till the outskirts of Tegucigalpa. Little to no traffic rest of the way
Services: Pretty often.
Expenses: SG$ 6.00
Comments: The rainbow was a harbinger of good tidings. I ended up at a random person’s home. Stunning hospitality to be had in Honduras.