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Sat Mar 08 2014: Greyed Out

Less than 10 kms east of the El Cusco (the red desert) lies Los Hoyos, the grey desert. For this trip, Nacho suggested we take our own bikes, which saved us a bit of money for the tour. There were two other French tourists staying at our farm, so Nacho took one of them on the back of his scooter, and another guide came and picked up the other one and off we went!

Our bikes looked like land yachts compared to Nacho's scooter and his friends motorcycle

The red rocks and sand slowly turned to grey as we rode further east

We made a pit stop at a point called Las Ventanas (The Windows)

Nacho explains more nature-y stuff to Neda while the bikes pose for a picture

Smiling for the camera in front of Las Ventanas

More bikes join us! It feels like a Tim Horton's parking lot now!

Still the fairest of them of all...

About 8kms into the desert, we stopped at a small pullout at the side of the road and hiked down a valley. The rocks here were slate grey and seemed a lot more dusty and powdery than the red rocks we saw yesterday at El Cusco.

Walking along a dry riverbed

"Los Fantasmos" (The Ghosts) of Los Hoyos

Neda captures some interesting details in the grey rock

All I need is a grey bedsheet and I could blend right in

We were staring at the walls like it was an art gallery

Closeup, we could see the area was formed over distinct time periods
Layers of pebbles separated the different periods that the rock was laid down

Most of the grey desert formed "recently" over the last 2.6 million years in the what's known as the Quaternary Period

These formations look like tall stone mushrooms. Very trippy!

"One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small..."

These two bikers joined us on our tour of Los Hoyos

As we walked back to our motorcycles, we found out that they were from Bogota and were on a two-week tour of their own country. They were very impressed with how much of Colombia that we had already seen and we felt very privileged and lucky as we described the rest of our trip. Their sporty street bikes modified for touring kind of reminded us of how we first started with our trips around Southern Ontario!

Come a long way since touring around Ontario on an old Suzuki GS500!

Group ride with our new motorcycle gang!

The grey desert of Los Hoyos was kind of interesting, but definitely anticlimactic after the red rocks of El Cusco. The best part of the trip was riding through the desert with our makeshift motorcycle (and scooter) gang. Unfortunately, our time in the dry and hot climate was coming to an end. I could sense the rest of rainy Colombia waiting to greet us just outside the park's boundaries... :(

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