Our ambassadors Jayne and Sam (@pedallingtheworld) set off on their world cycling tour in June and have just made it to Australia! They'll be spending the next few weeks cycling across the bottom of Australia from Perth to Sydney...but first...they have sent us a postcard from Pamir.
Over to Sam: 'We didn't actually plan to cycle the Pamir Highway. But when we found out the border we planned to take was only open to locals, we didn't have a choice.
Looking back we should have got a taxi to Khorog and started there, but since we didn't plan to cycle the route our one night of planning wasn't what you'd call ‘extensive’.
As a result, we sent a few days experiencing very rocky roads on steep climbs that resulted in countless punctures - no seriously we stopped counting - and realised that our road bikes might be just a little out of their depths.
About 200kms outside Dushanbe we decided to get multiple taxis and lifts to Khorog where we heard, from cyclists along the route, going in the other direction, the road would get ‘better’ and our bikes might be a little more at home.
After Khorog the roads improved and we actually did some cycling, but the main takeaway was the people. The locals and the other cycle tourists.
The locals would always offer tea and fruit by the side of the road, or provide a much needed meal. We even got welcomed to a honey farm, where we both went full Winnie the Pooh. One of the highlights of the trip so far.
We were there in July and August and the roads were busy...with cycle tourists. We rode, camped and shared food with a dozens of people along the route.
After about a 1000kms in China riding along their pristine tarmac I think our bikes have finally forgiven us for what we put them through, but we are so happy we did it.
We could have easily not cycled the Pamir Highway, but changing events resulted in a lot of fun and meant we met some truly fantastic people and had experiences that we'll remember for a lifetime.'