Day 22 -Puno to Cusco


It’s been a day since reporting and we are now in Cusco for two days without competition. All teams are weary after some extreme driving conditions so a rest and sight seeing is very much in order. 
We are staying in a very flash hotel that was built as a monastery in 1594 for training monks. It’s been refurbished to the highest standard so our stay here is just fantastic. We arrived at the hotel and were shuttled through the monastery as an entry and  registration. Fantastic!

On arrival at the monastery

Standard of the rooms

Back to the departure from Puno on the lake edge of Titicaca, we left on our required  time of 8:26 am retracing the entry route back to the main road and onto the town of Juliaca.

Leaving lake accommodation

There had been some route changes advised in the morning which directed us around the centre of the town as this was market day here. Sunday. 
Then there was a last minute change to the previous amendment. This read that we were to avoid the market area and to follow the arrows placed by ERA to direct us. 
All went well until we got to the first instruction in the township and as we got closer to the centre, the slower the traffic.
The market day was in full swing. Everyone was out in town. Cars, rickshaws, trucks, tuktuks, pedestrians the lot. Street sellers everywhere. 
It was slow going and due to the trucks there was no way to identify the signs that were to direct us. Denise was getting hot and the fear was boiling over. Hot and slow. 
As we crawled to the area that was a “round about”, remembering that the roads here are dirt and cobble in very poor condition, worse than some of the gravel roads on our travels, Denise was about to blow. We were at a standstill blocked by traffic coming in from five directions two lanes each with articulated trucks in all directions. 
It was bedlam!
Then I saw through this mess an ERA arrow on this “roundabout” stuck onto a power pole pointing left. 
I didn’t know where we were relative to the revised route book but asked Steve to take the left instruction through this quagmire. 
Hands and arms out of the windows and horn tooting away, bumper to bumper whilst moving over we found a hole in the traffic and scooted through with huge relief. 
Not knowing where to next, the navigator suggested moving forward on this road until we were out of this traffic mess and pulled to the side of the road for a breather and to reconsolidate our position. 
Turning to the GPS we noted we were not too distant from the next tulip in the revised route, so moving on this info we found the designated Passage Control where it was supposed to be. Whew! What relief after all the drama in this little township. 
So on to a 34 km leg to the first and only Regularity of the day. 
This consisted of a 19 km run on seal reaching an altitude of 4100 meters above sea level. However the road was windy and uphill with numerous hairpin bends that really didn’t suit Denise’s design but we went as fast as we could positioning over the finish 33 seconds late. Not bad really. Better than some days. 
Then on to our time control in Pucara. Checked out in time and a relatively free run to Feliphon. Again a time control that we managed in time.

 People and scenery along the way

The last leg of 128 kms into Cusco was almost incidence free with the exception of a fuel pump giving us some trouble. Easily fixed though, stop, switch one pump to the other, switch on button and away. Preplanned for such an event and we got in within the time schedule. 
The area to park the cars in Cusco was an old Mercedes Benz store garage some distance from the hotel and we packed the cars into this facility quite tightly.

We were loaded into shuttle buses to our hotel, a beautifully restored building not far from the square in Cusco. 
This accommodation is difficult to describe but the photos will give an idea. It’s magnificent!
Because of the vehicles being so tightly stacked it’s almost impossible to carry out serious maintenance. Denise doesn’t need much attention but Steve is out this morning to check out the fuel pumps.  
Yesterday, we visited Machiu Pichiu.
Bus rides, train rides, more bus rides. Big day. Started @ 5.30am back in hotel at 8.30pm.

Machu Picchu

Steve at his desk attending to postcards to his friends and loved ones surrounded by a 330 year old Andean Cedar tree

3 thoughts on “Day 22 -Puno to Cusco

  1. Wow you guys just keep getting better, well done. Fantastic that you got to see Machu Picchu that must be amazing. Keep going strong.



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