13x (can’t remember) from Safaga to a desert camp. I took off in the morning by myself to recapture some of the greatriding of the day before. Not to be disappointed, I was awe inspired by the sun rising – the rays and shadows making great pictures on the red mountain walls. I was recently asked what I think about on these long rides and the answer that came to me this morning was “Everything and Nothing”. It is hard to describe but it is the same as how in one glance I would see an entire mountain and yet an individual flake of rock. It was the same for my thoughts… There is a peacefulness that comes from these solitary rides.
Other interesting things riding up the canyon were the water pipe that followed the road. It had two major leaks and one gushing leak that I later found out were caused by the herders who tap into the water line for water for their animals. Also interesting were the periodic cell phone towers that were manned by a cardboard/tin shack (home to the caretaker) and a couple of dogs that always charged the road when we went by.
After 40km, I was ready to join up with the group. So, I tagged onto the pack and for the rest of the day enjoyed a joyful, easy spin with a group of about 14. We trade off leading in the front for a kilometer or two – not as tight as the Tour d’France, but the concept of teamwork is the same. It was a great way to meet more people and spread more laughter.
Camp was in a barren lot behind a police checkpoint. We had a great yoga session under eucalyptus trees and a full moon. The peaceful night was only disturbed by a car accident about 4am. As we slept in our tents, I was awoken by a massive screech of tires and then the crash of a windshield… some loud voices in Arabic and then a “it’s ok!”. I peaked my head out to see four taxis drive by so rolled over and went back to sleep.
Again, apologies for late posts due to connectivity…