I’ve been on some white knuckle roads in my life; the ones you switchback up nothing much more than a concrete trail up sheer cliff face. Sure, it’s a feat of engineering, but will traveling on said road be a feat of another kind?
Yes. Among others, this road I’m talking about is the legendary North Yungas Road, near La Paz, Bolivia. Given the name in 1995 (must have something to do with the 200-300 estimated deaths on the road each year), surviving a ramble on it, is just that, a feat. In fact, it is so stressful, even feared, that the locals have made a tradition of indulging in a few drinks before embarking. You know, to kill the nerves. Now that can’t be good. I like to think it’s a noticible lack of anything safety related, combined with blind corners and thousand foot drop-offs, that leads to the memorial crosses, more or less, lining the road.
Almost defying logic, tour companies continue to take mountain bikers up the road for an adrenaline packed, danger spin back down (the approach to “Death Road” is pictured above). Sound like something you’d be interested in? Check out TravelDudes blog about his experience… just hold on tight.
Jon lives in Butte, Montana, spending most of his time on skis or bikes; sometimes both. He began travel writing while teaching in Korea and is currently pursuing his Master’s Degree in Technical Communication at Montana Tech. Jon has begun writing his first book, The Story of Will, whose movie rights are still (very) available. Catch more of Jon at TheJonWickproject.wordpress.com. (@ExpedJon)
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