What you should know before cycling the Bolivian Death Road

Declared one of the most dangerous roads on our planet, the “Death Road” is for sure one of the most beautiful. About 300 people vanished her every year before the tight mountain path was renewed a few years ago. Today the Yungas Road is safe(r) and THE spot for mountain bike and action lovers. Be prepared for an astonishing ride through nature. But be prepared!

Be aware of the danger

The North Yungas road connecting La Paz and Coroico is not for faint hearted. Before the modernization of the road thousands of people have lost their lives here. It is way safer nowadays, but don’t underestimate your ride.

Cliffs right beside you reach down more than 600 meters and nearly 2000 feet. Make sure to be fit and concentrated when you hit your pedals right beside the gaping chasm. Ride a velocity you feel comfortable with. Don’t try to chase anyone or even have a race. Safety goes first.

Decide wisely which tour company

Sometimes it is better to spend a bit more money and be safe. A tour is not like another tour. A guide that knows what he is doing is critical. So is a well maintained bike. But still, no matter what tour: Always check your bike and gear before starting, to prevent you from a nasty surprise.

It is a long ride

The track you will bike on is more than 60 kilometers or 40 miles long and super exhausting. Try to get a good night rest and better refrain from having another last drink at the bar the night before. Your legs, hands and your behind will ask you why you are doing this to them, you will sweat a lot. But you will have a high amount of adrenaline in your body and make your way through to the end. And you will have survived the Death Road.

What you should bring?

You will be riding your bike the whole day. Try to pack as light as possible or you will regret it. Additionally a backpack too heavy might put you out of balance. Have some snacks, water and power bars on you, as well as sunglasses and sunscreen. You will pass through different climate zones, from snow-glazed peaks to dense jungles. You will be hot and cold. So wear short, comfortable clothes, but bring some warm ones as well. And to not be the only sweaty one on the bus back, pack something to change. There is the possibility to zip-line through an incredible valley. So have some cash on you for some extra adventures.

Nature like you have never seen before

This mountain bike ride is one you will never forget. You are in the Andes mountains and the rainforest at the same time. You will make your way up to snow covered peaks and ride through valleys with dense, tropical vegetation. Next to you all the mystic sounds of the jungle and astonishing views will await you. All while you bike down insane paths. But don’t get too distracted. On the Death Road it is better to stay focused.

Be prepared to avoid obstructions

While riding downwards you always need to be aware of obstacles. Check before you go around a corner, never steer blind into a curve. Cars are very seldom, but you still might encounter a couple on your way. Other than usually, traffic here happens on the left, since passing on the right is safer. Still try to keep distance to the cliffs and to the ones before and behind you. Warn the biker ahead if you are planning to pass. And always be prepared to stop for unexpected rocks or landslides. Take care, then you will have an incredible time!

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