Bolivia, Downhill Biking, La Paz to Buenos Aires Adventure

Cycling Los Yungas aka “the Death Road”

Months ago, around the same time we booked our around the world tickets, we also booked a day tour activity called the “Death Road”. An old trade route where hundreds of trucks had fallen down the steep cliffs that followed the narrow road that today is mainly used for cyclists. This day trip had been our parents biggest concern for our travels, but when getting on top and seing the amount of people that take this cycle tour every day, and getting a good security explanation from our bicycle guides at Vertigo, we quickly saw that this is a trip that anyone can do safely by just going in their own pace.

At 8 o’clock in the morning we set of on the one hour drive to “La Cumbre”, the start of our tour, located at 4700 meters above sea level. From there we had a 45 minute downhill ride on tarmac, crossing through beautiful landscape while getting used to our bikes, before we once again jumped into the van to drive a few kilometers to the starting point of the Yungas Road, also known as the Death Road.

At 10.50 we started paddling downhill through clouds and muddy roads. The climate changed several times between sunny, foggy and rainy, and the temperature gradually got warmer as we went down. After five hours, 54 kilometers and a descent of 3500 altitude meters we could call ourself survivors of the death road. We had reached Yolosa, which was the end of the cycling part and drove from there straight to a hotel where we could have a shower, a swim at a pool and a good lunch, while talking to other groups that had done the same crazy ride. On the three hour ride back to our hotel in La Paz, everyone were sleeping after the exhausting downhill ride, and when we returned to our hotel at 8pm we were so finished that we just went straight to bed.