It’s just occurred to us that it is actually winter in the northen hemisphere, and in North Vietnam it gets pretty cold… Geoff’s bought a natty tracksuit that looks like a Star Trek uniform, while Mat and Paul are hauling out the thermals. With every item of clothing we have uinderneath our riding gear (sleeves attached, gloves on) we ride up into the mountains making for Sapa.
Reaching over 2,000m above sea level and frozen to the core we were very happy to reach our destination! The temperature is hovering around 3 degrees celcius… Once again the scenery was amazing, soaring mountain peaks shrouded in mist and fog, terraced valleys, spoilt by the huge scale of construction that’s going on everywhere.
The river we followed for most of the day is being dammed several hunder kilometres downstream, so the farms, towns and roads we saw will all disappear… Can’t stop progress, but can’t help think there must be a lower-impact way to get the same outcome. Just the new roads alone leave massive scars across the landscape – the place will never be the same again. Sapa is beautiful though – pity our visibility was down to about 20m as we rode in! Hopefully the fog will lift tomorrow.
These girls rode up to Mat and reeled of the standard questions – what’s your name, how old are you, where do you live…
The answers don’t matter, they’re just practising what they’ve heard at school! When they’d finished with him, they moved on to
Geoff – same questions.
The new bridge is visible in the background. Gives you some idea of the scale of construction, and the expected height of the new dam.