Day 151: Cañón del Pato

Days: 151  -   Date: 22JAN14  -   Itinerary: Huanchaco to Caraz, PE  -   Miles: 194

Today was another day that I had been looking forward to for a while.. riding through the famous Cañon del Pato in the Peruvian Andes. It consists of a narrow canyon road that goes through 35 hand carved one-lane tunnels.

We left Huanchaco early in antiquation of the possibly long day on mountain dirt roads.
Today was Fabian’s birthday. He had some chocolate cake for breakfast 😎

We crusied down the Pan-Am for about an hour towards the city of Chimbote where the turn-off was into the mountains. Along the way we passed a few trucks with HUGE payloads of crops. The things you see sometimes just driving down the roads here in Latin America..
PE_22Jan14_002 PE_22Jan14_003

Heading into the mountains.. all paved for the first ~50km..PE_22Jan14_005

We stopped for lunch in a tiny tiny town right before the dirt canyon road starts. Not much going on in this sleepy little pueblo. I wasn’t very hungry, so I only had some rice and Avocado. PE_22Jan14_006

Fabian and Sarah bought some local fruits/veggies to snack on. This thing below was a big green string bean looking kinda thing. You only eat the white stuff that surrounds the seeds. It tasted decent.. don’t remember the name.PE_22Jan14_015

Lunch with the very popular Peruvian soft drink, Inca Cola. It tastes like bubblegum soda and is found everywhere. Peruvians love it.PE_22Jan14_016

 Back on the road and into the canyons for a few hours of dirt riding.PE_22Jan14_007

Lots of crazy dogs around here that run out and bark at the motos
Lots of crazy dogs around here that run out and bark at the motos

PE_22Jan14_009 PE_22Jan14_010 PE_22Jan14_011 PE_22Jan14_012 PE_22Jan14_013 PE_22Jan14_014

All of the 35 tunnels in this canyon were supposedly hand carved. They are very narrow (only one lane) and you need to “Tocar bocina” (beep horn) before entering to warn other traffic from entering at the same time.

PE_22Jan14_020PE_22Jan14_018 PE_22Jan14_019

Along the canyon/river is a massive hydro-electric plant that powers a few cities and towns in the area.PE_22Jan14_021

Fabian got a flat tire just as we rolled into the tiny town of Huallanca. A quick tire plug and we were back on the road.PE_22Jan14_017

A few GoPro shots of the tunnels:

We rolled into the town of Caraz around 1730 and found a hotel before going out to eat. This place sits right at the base of the Cordillera Blanca mountain range. The scenery is kind bizarre because the town is down low and warmer with palm trees, yet the backdrop of the mountains has snow capped peaks.


Dinner: Lomo Saltado, a Peruvian favorite
Dinner: Lomo Saltado, another Peruvian favorite

Leave a Reply