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Karakoram Highway

After relaxing for a few days in Kashgar (and adjusting ourself to the madness of China), we set off on a mini-trip to ride part of the Karakoram Highway – turning around well before we got to the Pakistan border! The scenery was stunning, hopefully some of these photos do it justice!

And so the climbing begins!

And so the climbing begins!

It felt odd to be cycling the wrong way (away from Beijing), fortunatley we bumped into Nunu and Jo who we'd met at the hostel; riding as a 4 kept our spirits up!

It felt odd to be cycling the wrong way (away from Beijing), fortunately we bumped into Nuno and Jo who we’d previously met at the hostel; riding as a 4 kept our spirits up and stoped us from turning for home!

Unfortunatly the are is heavily mined quarried meaning lots of heavy trucks. Thankfully travelling uphill slowly and downhill even slower, although there was evidence of many accidents enroute.

Unfortunately the area is heavily mined and quarried, meaning lots of heavy trucks. Thankfully travelling uphill slowly and downhill even slower, although there was evidence of many accidents enroute.

Not all of the road is sealed!

Not all of the road is sealed! Prepare to be swamped by dust from other traffic!

At one of the many roadside markets. The children in this part of the world don't wear nappies - the crotch/bum seam is left 'open'. yuk!

At one of the many roadside markets. The children in this part of the world don’t wear nappies – the crotch/bum seam is left ‘open’…… yuk!

We rode up to 3700m - the daliy thermal tailwind pushing us most of the way (and hindering us on the way back!)

We rode up to 3600m – the daily thermal tailwind pushing us most of the way (and hindering us on the way back!)

The surreal scene of sand dunes edging up to a reservoir.

The surreal scene of sand dunes edging up to the Kangxiwa Reservoir.

What else did they bury underwater?

What else did they bury underwater?

At one of the many epic camping spots, Jo and Rebecca do the washing.

At one of the many epic camping spots, Jo and Rebecca do the washing.

And still more climbing to reach the Lake, 7546m Mustagata in the background.

And still more climbing to reach the Lake, 7546m Mustagata in the background.

Lake Kara Kol

Lake Kala Kule

Camels!

Camels! Camels! Camels!

Nunu and Jo's bikes poke at our camp spot.

Nuno and Jo’s bikes pose at our camp spot.

Time for a swim and a wash.. Tim was first in (again)

Time for a swim and a wash.. Tim was first in (again)

A lap of the lake and time to retrace our steps and head downhill.

A lap of the lake and it was time to retrace our steps and head downhill.

It didn't seem that steep coming up!

Long sweeping downhill ahead!

The urge to get home kicked in... instead of stoping at 100km we mounted the lights and did 200km to get back to Kashgar! Epic distance never to be repeated!

The urge to get home kicked in… instead of stopping at 100km we mounted the lights and did 200km to get back to Kashgar! Epic distance never to be repeated! 4 days uphill, 1 day back!

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