Children of Shara and the Cyclists

Now only 2 days from Leh, it seemed as if the Road Sign writers had really picked up pace and where getting a little philosophical and melancholic
Taking a break from the hot, dry and dusty conditions. While we were essentially still following the 'downstream' of the Indus, it didnt feel anything quite like it. An 84km ride we were all too keen to set up camp even if Leh was just another 70k or so down the river.
The end is nigh!
The soothing sight of green fields in Shara. All we needed now was to negotiate a camping spot. This proved not to be too difficult, 20 min of deciding of where, what and who, school closed and the children rushed out. They were followed by their teacher who conveniently told us the fields were those of her family and camping would be no problem. We thrived on this view (and many cups of chai) for the rest of the afternoon.
The children of Shara were clearly delighted. Tents, bicycles and 10 sweaty cyclists for entertainment.
No rest for the weary. Ant obliges.
Little Shara chap in his element.
The girls were just as keen.
Nick's turn.
Even James supported rides on his dearest Santa Cruz.
Young bike mechanics in action. For those too small to ride, bikes were just as much fun: spinning wheels.
Carlos the guide!
And when the girls got tired they moved onto singing songs and 'doing' our hair.
Meanwhile Keshu diligently continued with dinner prepartions.
The most idyllic campsite - nah, I say that about everyone!
Wiping tears. Sweet little boy.
Were visited by some yaks too. Love the white marking.
And the most humbling gesture of all, was a visit from one of the children's mothers with a gift of tsampa and yak curd for us all.
Our fabulous support team: from the left Keshu (sitting), Inder, Raju, Bhim (standing) Rajesh and Karma our fabulous cook.

Bridget Ringdahl

Pedaling has been natural to me since the tender age of three. Cycling is practical, fun, it gets you to the corner café, across countries, continents, keeps you fit and is by far the most efficient and environmentally friendly transport option around, being virtually carbon neutral.

I live in Howick, KwaZulu-Natal which is great cycling country, within 10 minutes I can be bouncing along some of the finest single tracks in the province.

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