Thursday, 1 August 2013

Riding with Ross Methven: day 2

Ross Methven is riding a bicycle from Edinburgh, Scotland, to Cape Town, South Africa. He is currently cycling through Tanzania and I am accompanying him on part of the Tanzanian leg. My Mt. Kilimanjaro guide, Yahoo, says cycling is one of the best training options for climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro.
Tuesday, 30 July 2013
We walked to the old Bunda bus stand in the morning where, at a tea shop, Ross had two rice buns, known as vitumbua in Swahili, and I had three Chapatis, all flushed down by a cup of green tea. The hotel where we stayed did not provide breakfast.

We were pushed by a strong wind behind us as we rode downhill from Bunda in the direction of Lake Victoria. Ross said it was the first time he was riding on a rough road. We sought relief from the rough road by riding on the relatively softer foot paths running parallel to the road that were occasionally used by motorcyclists and small vehicles.

Our modest breakfast did not provide us enough energy to push on and we stopped along the way for lunch.

By midday we had decided that we would not be able to reach the ferry crossing with the existing road conditions and we aimed at reaching Kibara for an overnight stay. Ross' map indicated that Kibara was about halfway between Bunda and Kisorya. At Kibara he said we covered a distance of 32 miles. That is 44.8 kilometres. I wonder why he is on the metric system.
If you want to donate to Ross' cause please follow this link:
I keep struggling to keep up with Ross, who rode his bicycle all the way from Edinburgh, Scotland, is on his way to Cape Town and has already cycled through 16 countries. He rides effortlessly uphill although he says that the few weeks he has taken off to rest has reduced his cycling fitness. I find myself having to get off the bicycle and walk when the climb is too steep for my strength. During the instances that I walk uphill I manage quite well and I assume that hiking on Mt. Kilimanjaro has strengthened my "walking" muscles but the cycling muscles need some time to develop. In fact, I discovered some muscles that I sit on that I never knew existed.

I have changed my diet for this cycling trip and have been eating more ugali (hard porridge) than normal, having taken a cue from the guides and porters of Mt. Kilimanjaro who prefer ugali to other dishes because it provides a considerable energy boost compared to the dishes served to the climbers.

Next post: Ride to Kisorya

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