• Suzie

Week 89 - New Year Lakeside!

We left Mendoza with Paul and Aida (lifeunloadedrtw) via their friends house, who also loved bikes. Sadly they didn't have time to come on the mini adventure with us, we also found out that we would be unable to go to the lake we'd planned to go to (Laguna del Diamanté -34.16642, -69.69490) because the road had been closed. Damn!

We made an alternative route plan given that we couldn't get to the lake, and decided to head to San Rafael and then towards Atuel Canyon. Instead of sticking to the tarmac Ruta 40 we decided to head off to San Rafael on a different route, which made things a bit more interesting. We ended up on a super gravelly dirt road which came as quite a challenge. I'd definitely got more used to these types of roads, and a little more comfortable with the back wheel squirrelling around, but to say I was completely relaxed and comfortable would be a rather big overstatement! Finally we got to the end of the seemingly never-ending gravel road and stopped for some food, chain lubing and fuel in San Rafael.

Massive hail stones! - AvVida.co.uk
Massive hail stones!

It was such a beautiful day, although sweltering hot, but as we left San Rafael and headed off on RP173 towards the Camping Municipal in Parque La Paloma (-34.82492, -68.45523) we could see some monstrous black-grey clouds in the distance. As we got closer everything got a lot darker, and all of a sudden the floor was covered with leaves, branches and white balls of ice. There has obviously only just been a huge hail storm and there were cars parked under all of the trees; they'd obviously tried to take shelter from the onslaught of deathly hail stone. We were so thankful we'd missed the downpour as we were completely open to the elements, and we'd literally only just missed it by a minute or two. Phew!