|Chile, Argentina and Bolivia by bike|
|The journey was undertaken solo with only a vague plan and a one year time limit. The plan was to fly from Australia to Santiago de Chile then cycle south for three months. This would bring me to the middle of summer. At that point I would turn north and keep going that way for six months until mid winter before heading south again to Santiago.
From previous experience I'd decided not to set specific targets of either distance or landmarks but rather to go at a comfortable pace and to see what I see. I moved with the seasons. The plan worked a treat.
The route followed a very rough figure of eight from Santiago heading south on the Chilean side of the Andes as far south as Cochrane on the Carretera Austral and then heading north mostly on the Argentine side as far as Mendoza - roughly the same latitude as Santiago. At that point I crossed the Andes back into Chile and headed north through the Atacama desert and into Bolivia. A brief excursion along the western shore of lake Titicaca into Peru marked roughly the northern most point of the trip. After a few months on the Bolivian Altiplano my return course followed the Argentine side of the Andes south before once again crossing the Andes between Mendoza and Santiago.
All text and images copyright Syd Winer 2004