qmark-1280

10 October – 9 November 2014

Countries El Salvador, Guatemala & Mexico (both of us), plus Nicaragua & Honduras (just Ruth; total 16)
Distance 1,404.50km (total 19,103.84km)
Climb 14,647m (total 185,653m)
Longest day 152.92km, Chablé to Francisco Escárcega in Mexico (longest so far: 160.11km)
Top speed 64.6kmh (fastest so far: 67.4kmh)
Punctures 3 (total 28; Will leads 21-7)
Touring cyclists encountered 5 (total 76)
Mayan ruins visited 3, with a fair few more lined up along the road ahead
Road blockades encountered 3, all in the state of Chiapas; judging by the unsurprised expressions on the faces of the truckers whose working days had been brought to a standstill, such blockades are not a novel obstacle
Best breakfast Over the last fortnight, more or less all of them; after the largely dull food in Central America, words cannot convey what a joy it is to wake up in Mexico to the unhealthy but irresistible likes of huevos estrellados con mole poblado (needless to say, we’ll be writing more here about Mexican cooking in due course)
Worst hill Of the various brutes in Guatemala, not a country that builds its roads with cyclists in mind, none was more laughable than the absurd get-off-and-push slog into Chichicastenango
Ice cream of the month Ruth knew she was going to enjoy Mexico when she pulled into a gas station on the first afternoon and found a freezer full of Magnums
Jettisoned en route The usual clutter (a couple of books, more of Ruth’s clothes) plus a map of Central America and two extremely battered pairs of Keen sandals
Lost in transit Amazingly, nothing
Biggest mystery Where we’ll be celebrating Ruth’s birthday on Wednesday
Biggest surprise Mexico is living up to the high expectations we had for it

from Xpujil, Campeche, Mexico