After a cold night on 3550 m we continued our climb towards Khargush Pass. Even though we only have to climb 350 m net, the road and the up and down made our lives hard again. In the afternoon we reached Khargush, a military base and also a stop for shepherds migrating in spring to higher altitudes with their cattle. On 3900 m, this is our last night at the Afghan border and also the last stop before the pass.
Beautiful Night Sky
As announced in yesterday’s post, I expected the night sky to be great at this altitude. And I actually managed to get up at 3:00 in the morning. I picked up my tripod and the camera and left the tent. Outside the temperatures were quite chilly, but luckily not freezing.
It was worth leaving the warm sleeping bag. The view on the Milky Way was just amazing, and at dawn, the first high peaks of the Hindukush could be recognized with the stars and the Milky Way still visible.
Continuing the climb
After a short breakfast, we continued yesterday’s road. The surface was still very challenging, often there were big rocks or deep sand, so keeping control of the front wheel and the whole bike was difficult and reflected in the average speed of less than 10 km/h during the whole day. Especially when going uphill, but also on flat parts it was hard to proceed.
The scenery itself changed quite a bit today. The valley got much wider and the high peaks were much more distant from the road as they have been in the previous day. It was still beautiful cycling through this emptiness, but I preferred the panorama of the previous days.
Sleeping in Khargush
Having arrived in Khargush, which is basically a military base with some simple houses for shepherds, a strong and chilly wind blew in our face. We are now on 3900 m, so this is basically not really a surprise. Still, we wanted to spend the night as comfortably as possible. And luckily, one of the shepherds let us stay in his simple home consisting of four rooms. And even better, he also gave us some pasta with potatoes for dinner. There is no heating or electricity here, but for sure it is more pleasant than being outside with potentially minus temperatures and wind in a tent.
Max elevation: 3921 m
Min elevation: 3468 m
Total climbing: 823 m
Total descent: -437 m
Total time: 06:56:48