It has been dubbed’ the world’s most dangerous street ,’ with hairpin turns , no guardrails, and sheer brinks. Our fearless reporter set out to round it.”>
Im biking down Death Road, when a massive semi-truck sounds as I round a make. I have a split second to decide: I could try to slow down to see around with a high-risk of losing restraint of my bike and appearance certain injury or I could go for it and overtake it and face possible death and get hit by a automobile that could be coming around the bend.
I decide to risk it and speed around it. Theres no car and I develop unscathed. Not today, Death Road.
I make many of these life or injury or death quick decisions during my bicycle go down the Yungas Roadmore popularly referred to as Death Roadin La Paz, Bolivia. One blunder, and you go downpossibly over a 2,000 -foot cliff.
In 1995, The Inter-American Development Bank dubbed it the worlds most dangerous road.
With narrow aisles, hairpin turns , no guardrails, deep cliff drop-offs, thick-skulled fog, cascades and their runoff, rusted ditches, stone falls and junk, its no wonder it claims an estimated 200 -3 00 annual deaths.
So, of course, when I arrived in La Paz to live for the month, I knew I had to bike it. Locals and expats alike hindered tell people it was an activity not to be missed, that it was safe to do with a steer, and that I would be fine.
I belief I might not be in mortal perilbut knowing me, probable injurybut I couldnt make that stop me from doing the activity in La Paz. I felt myself in a van with 17 other apprehensive participates early on a Saturday morning my first weekend in town.
20 bikers have died since 1998, and I am super scared to do something this dangerous, responded my comrade inexperienced mountain biker Marina Lvova. What scares me “the worlds largest” is the possibility of detecting out of control, of getting hurt.
Its easy-going to think we would be safer in our cozy van, forgetting most of the deaths the road assertions each year are vehicle( and regrettably, alcohol) and not bike related; but, that didnt help to stop my nerves either.
I knew many experienced bikers had faced jeopardy. Three bikers, including a guide, have died since January 2014.
My guide, Hector Vargas of Madness Mountain Biking insures me Ill be fine. I try to trust him because he tells me hes been doing this for over 16 years with 250 goes each year.
There are injuries because you get excited and you get over your limit, he tells me as our van climbs up the Andean Mountains. Its important to have good motorcycles, someone with experience and clear instructions. You have to follow the rules. Beings in Bolivia dont ordinarily follow the rules, so they take the risk.
After some alpaca sightings and snow-capped mountain views, we reach the top and hop out. Hector and his assistants inaugurate unloading the bikes and drawing gear out. We suit up with helmets that gaze more for moto-crossing than mountain biking, shining orange vests, and gloves.
Were given a safety talkmake sure we go at our own speed and not worry about what anyone else is do, remain single file and at the least 5-10 meters apart, and bide to the left.
Wait, what? Stand to the left ? The surface of the road that is closer to the edge of the cliff with no guardrails?