Sulawesi – Day 6 Pendolo to Tando Bone

2 ride incidents – Mike & Rayner.  No flat tyres.  Distance 87 km

Coolest start of our trip thus far.  Alex wore a blanket to breakfast and we managed to be on the road by 6.30 am after being woken up at 4 am dogs, 4.30 am Cyril, 4.45 am “call to arms” & 5.10 am Rayner’s alarm.  Love the quiet country.

Described as “one of the most challenging days”, we quickly gobbled up the kms past military units and moved away from the lake shore into the mountains surrounding.  The mountains appeared daunting in their own right, however none of us figured that not only were we going to the top but also dropping significantly lower than the lake level before climbing back up and doing it all again.  After spinning down at a great rate of knots, there was always a bridge then a “surprise” uphill in the lowest gear.

After numerous stops for drinks, halfway up the last of the “steps” Colin surprised us when we pulled over to a water filtration plant, disguised as a café, disguised as a shack for lunch.  Charlie Brown handed out hand santiser and the ladies were reluctant to use the toilet but we were so exhausted no one cared and Rayner could not wait to get off her bike and tried to plough through the building, or dismount, or both.  The food however was delicious – green coconut rice cakes, soup dejour & lavishings of fresh fruit & juices were just what the doctor ordered (yes we have one) and we soon built up enough courage to tackle the last hill.  Barely making it to the top, Mike demonstrated his ability to fly down the other side at amazing speeds, overtaking vehicles, motorcycles, and even Andrew, in his haste to catch up with Phil, & Rayner.  And that’s when he remembered Alan as he chose wisely to catapult into the trees & bushes on the side of the road instead of the oncoming bus which suddenly appeared, on the wrong side, coming around the blind corner.  A very lucky boy.

Arriving back into Tentena, once again we were herded onto the outrigger refugee boat for a longer trip to Tando Bone.  Annelise, the proud Dutch owner, met us as we slipped over the rocks and dragged our luggage into beautiful wooden houses – a perfect oasis setting.


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