After recovery day in Huaraz we set of back toward the coast first across a wide plateaus before desending on a million switchbacks.
Next day we rode thru Lima stopping only in a mega mall for a familiar subway sandwich before heading further south to tourist town of Pisco and Paracas on the coast. We just spent the night then in morning took a dirt track south through Paracas National Park which is this expansive desert, not a living thing in sight right up against a beautiful coastline of cliffs and secluded beaches. We totally blew it by not researching in advance as this would have been an awesome place to camp out. Tk trying to get close to the pink flamingos. The beach around this fishing outpost was littered with dead sea life. Lots of dead pelicans, seals, sea lions, even dead sea turtle. In chicama our hosts told us the fishermen poison them so they catch more fish…..The track we rode was 120km long and we entered with some hesitation as the route finding was not super clear, gps was confused and thedesert felt super huge with no one we could see. The scenery was so amazing we pressed onwards and all was fine. The ride had the same feeling as snowmobiling on the Pemberton Icecap, soooo expansive. Half way the track leaves the coast and we start inland the route had some soft sand and lots of washboard. Tk had some trouble with the sand and resorted to mind over matter levitation techniques. When that didnt work she tried the ‘mind over Mark’ technique and i felt magically compelled to pick it up.
Anyone planning a similar sort of trip and while deciding which bike to take, either a 500lb bmw or 300lb dual sport, i suggest trying to ride 100m of soft sand first. We arrived out of the desert around 1:30 and were properly knackered. The Dakar rally rolls through this area approx jan 8 and I have fullll respect for those riders as they ride approx 700kms a day of mixed road and dirt. For us 250kms is a huge day. Rolling into Ica we had lunch and somehow had picked up a nail rolling through the garbage dump on the outskirts of town, so we found a llantera (tire guy) and he had us rolling quickly. Made to Nazca that night and will take a plane ride over the famous Nazca lines’ in the morning