2022/14: Molinos - Angastaco

  Etappe 2022/14 [SA014]

Molinos - Angastaco
(Ruta 40)

42 km / 26 mi
300 Hm (garmin edge 1000)    max. Altitude:  2080m








 cycling the Argentinian Andes following Ruta 40 from Molinos to Angastaco

Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.  On the section from Molinos to Angastaco, Ruta 40 is even more strenuous: the track varies from coarse gravel to fine gravel and sand. And the sections with sand are long. The landscape to the left and right is not particularly striking in its variety: the mountains match the color of the path and are reminiscent of coarse gravel, fine gravel and sand.         
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.  These signs along the road remind us that there is not always a cell phone network in Argentina's Andean region. There is practically no network outside of towns.       
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.  Even though we only have to climb about 330 meters / 1100 ft from Molinos to Angastaco today, it feels like we are constantly going uphill. The rather unfortunate nature of Ruta 40 for cyclists makes every climb a little more unpleasant than necessary.       
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.   Ruta 40 winds its way through the valley of the Rio Calchaqui, and we rarely get to see the river.        
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.   You can't say that the road is in a bad condition or not well maintained. In fact, the opposite is the case: a lot of effort is put into maintaining Ruta 40. Fine gravel is thrown onto the track at regular intervals and smoothed out with heavy machinery. This makes the road passable for cars, but it is more than unpleasant for cyclists: the wheels sink deep into the uncompacted ground and in places it is impossible to ride. In other areas, sand is used instead of gravel, but sand makes the situation even worse for bicycles.      
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.   Group photo with rocks formation. Since we have to keep pushing our bikes, every photo break is very much appreciated.         
Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.  The fact that we are following a river valley only becomes apparent at second glance. The green of the trees suggests that there must be water resources available, but otherwise there is not much to see of the Rio Calchaqui at the beginning of September.       

Cycling Ruta40 from Molinos to Angastaco.   And every time you don't need it, there's another climb. The climbs are short and not particularly steep, but in this terrain even gradients of 4% are a challenge. In the early afternoon we reach Angastaco, a small town with around 2000 inhabitants. In Angastaco there is limited infrastructure for travelers, a room is easy to find, but for dinner the choice is limited.