Salt n peppa (seriously though, no pepper) – Sabaya to Uyuni

The Salar de Uyuni is probably the most infamous tick on any Bolivian bound cyclists bucket list. It’s such a unique experience that even the most serious of route explorers can’t help but take a break and enjoy the ride. Coipasa is certainly a less popular and quieter salar, but every bit if not more beautiful than its larger sibling. With a smooth surface and relatively little traffic, it’s a perfect piece of tranquility before hitting the more touristy route onto Uyuni.

We did the same as many have before us. Riding from Sabaya to Llica via Salar Coipasa and doing a full west to east crossing of Salar de Uyuni. While boring in description, visually a very interesting landscape to cross. We have no tales of getting lost, or interesting shortcuts. Everything was textbook, with no dramas to speak of. The days were calm and clear, the route was smooth and dry. There were even times we felt bored by the lack of challenge. Salar de Uyuni is so immense that if you don’t keep a keen eye on your bearing, you can easily  start riding the wrong direction. This happened to me once while I was busy exploring the route on my GPS and I looked up only to realize I was 30 degrees off course.

We decided to shoot some nudes on Coipasa. We decided maybe they’re not suitable for the blog but if this kind of thing interests you, follow this link.

For GPX track, follow this link

wpid-dscf0823-edit.jpgKind of like a turtle’s shell. The small ridges were nice and smooth to ride over in Coipasa. There are no limits to where one can go.

imageBreaking through the small ridges did kick up a bit of salt. I could hear my bike’s steel frame complaining.

imageThe first ride in quite awhile where the fat tires felt like absolute overkill.

imageA right of passage on any ride across the salars. Perspective photos.

imageSpeaks for itself.

imageA windy camp on Coipasa. Trying to peg though the ground just wouldn’t concede. Eventually got a decent hold which lasted the night.

imageThe track running from the south of Coipasa was in rough shape. We tried a little shortcut but turned back because *gasp* even we couldn’t ride through the deep sand!

imageFloating islands.

imageMuch anticipated military rations from Rocky.

imageThe larger ridges and blockier formations on Salar de Uyuni make detouring off the Jeep tracks more uncomfortable. Paul G broke a seat post doing it!

imageAnother rite of passage, naked in the salars. I wasn’t so keen but Gina couldn’t get her clothes off fast enough.

imageThe trip wouldn’t be complete without a good cleaning afterwards. If you can’t find accommodation where you can clean your bikes, there are heaps of lavanderias where you can do the job for a small fee. Probably the cleanest our bikes have been in months.

Onwards to the Lagunas!


3 thoughts on “Salt n peppa (seriously though, no pepper) – Sabaya to Uyuni

  1. Pingback: Salt n peppa (seriously though, no pepper) – Sabaya to Uyuni | Kite*Surf*Bike*Rambling

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