Clara Descalar (Sant Cugat del Valles, 1998) has always been a very active person. Although he played tennis for many years, the racket took a back seat when Erasmus left for Maastricht (Netherlands) and began using his bicycle daily.
Later, he moved to Andorra, where he bought his first bike and began to become passionate about the world of cycling. Now, having toured through Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Nepal, Morocco and India, Descalar is one of the few women to achieve these feats on her own.
How did you decide where your first route would be?
Good question. It’s the question I asked myself at the beginning: “Where am I going?” There was a change in plans, where I was going to Nepal with a backpack, but then I didn’t see it clearly due to the monsoon and decided to rework the trip: I would go by bike, not by bike. Backpack and go to them Stan… No, I’m going to Nepal.
When I say StanI mean Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. They are three countries in Central Asia that few Western residents (myself included) know about. Yes, it is true that he heard, read and studied several methods com. bikepacking I had them in my head. I also had in mind that they are very remote places, and tourism rarely reaches them. But I had a friend a few years ago who charted a path for them StanI called out to him: “What if I dare to do these three countries? I am a woman, I will go alone. Do you think it is feasible, do you think it is possible?” He told me: “You will like it, go there, cheer up.” So I said, come on, let’s start with Kyrgyzstan.
You are a woman and you are going alone, how do you deal with all this?
What routes did you take?
I started in Kyrgyzstan, took a flight from Barcelona to the capital, Bishkek, and was very lucky that from Kyrgyzstan I was able to cross into Tajikistan via the land border. I say I was very lucky because when I started the trip those borders were closed, but then they opened them. And then came Uzbekistan. I would like to say that this is the Istanat blog. Then it expanded a little further and went to northern India, to Ladakh. I took a cheap flight from Uzbekistan to North India. And in my head there is another block. North India and Nepal, Block II.
How did it work in India?
I crossed Ladakh, which is an amazing region, which is a mixture of Himalayan Hinduism: it’s Tibetan, it’s Buddhist… It has nothing really to do with the image of India that we have. I went down to the border with Nepal. I arrived in Pokhara, where I rode my bike around the Annapurnis River. From there I went to the capital, Kathmandu, where I had to do it break The bike because I was mentally satiated, which is great. I listened and went for one Trips. Physically I didn’t stop, but mentally I did. From there I went to Morocco, Marrakesh and the Atlas, where I am now. That’s pretty much the way.
How do you plan routes?
Once you start taking calm. I read blogs, reviews, and ask questions all day long. It took a month or so to prepare for this trip. When I’m on the road, when I’m on the go, I need three or four days of workStopTo think, to plan. Because if there’s one thing I’ve noticed, it’s that traveling is very tiring, I promise you that.
Physically or mentally?
It’s very tiring physically and mentally: it’s constant planning and adapting. Sometimes I think: I just want that Netflix and chill, is that I don’t want anything else. I have to think about how to get here, where to set up camp, where to sleep, where there is water, where I can find food… And sometimes I think: I can’t. I don’t want to get up, I don’t want to roll over. But well, global Renta a lot.
Is recovery fast?
Oops… Physically, you recover quickly. If you don’t give the mind space to calm down, it’s dangerous out there. Because if you are mentally saturated, that is, you do not relieve pressure, then the meaning of the trip collapses: What am I doing here? what is the point? I don’t want to shoot anymore, you don’t enjoy the landscape, you don’t enjoy the new stimuli. You must think that I was receiving new stimuli every day for five months. A lot has happened to me locures Until the end of the day and many things can happen to you… but that’s it: the body recovers quickly, and within a couple of days you have stopped, eaten and slept. Mentally, if you don’t take care of it, if you don’t listen to it, it will be more difficult.
What is the most dangerous adventure?
Have some kind of motivational ritual To confront these methods?
I think self-esteem and ego, to do this kind of journey, you have to work on it. First, because you spend long hours with yourself, and therefore you must have good self-esteem and a good ego, because without this ego point you will not start. There was a point in the journey where I was more sluggish and procrastinated, because I hadn’t started and wasn’t motivated. Yes, it is true that I do not practice any kind of rituals.
What do you do?
I’m just structuring and planning and trying to eat and sleep as much as I can. In addition, I communicate where I will be and the route I will be taking via WhatsApp which I use with my family so that they can follow my point on the map, in case something happens to me. All I do is 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and I go, that’s it. This is my ritual.
And during the trip?
If I listen to music, I get drunk. This is the hypothesis. While on the road, when I’m… bikerI don’t usually listen to music. You mind your own business. People think I think a lot, but in reality when you enjoy it your mind goes blank. I start pedaling and so am I Outside. It is true that I was thinking about my own affairs, but simple things like yours, but it is clear that I am not bored. You also receive a lot of stimuli visually, so when I arrive in town, I’m paying attention, I stop, I eat, I talk to the local… everything is very dynamic.
Another thing is that I ask all my friends to send me audio files, which are actually voice memos about what they do, because when I’m offline, I download them and listen to them at night so I know more about their lives.
Always alone or ever accompanied?
When and why did you decide to start sharing everything you do on the networks?
I think networking is a complex, interesting and intense topic. The truth is that on my networks and profile, I always shared my hobbies and moments, but without going any further, it was a very ordinary profile. Networking gave me this space to think, to be able to express myself and show what I was doing. It all started because a friend of mine, who is sponsored by a mountain clothing brand, said to me: “Clara, not many people do what you do. And they do it on their own, being a girl, too. Why don’t you do it?” Are you trying to promote your trip and talk to some brands?”
And then you were encouraged?
Do you have a specific case where you personally recommended methods to someone who wrote to you?
Yes. I always say that this is a series of good deeds. When you start the journey this way, you realize that humility explodes in your face. We have to learn to help you without getting anything in return. There are quite a few people in the world com. bikepacker Who asks me Tracks. CAP problem, valid string. I help you and you will help another. I asked because they helped me TracksMaps, roads, etc. And I received them. I’m also trying to create track albums through the app Set of drawersAnd he is one program Then I will post it in case anyone needs it. I would also like to write an article after the trip.
What country, city or region did you like the most?
I have a ranking of the routes I liked the most. Countries depend on many things, but if I had to choose one, I would say North India. Then Tajikistan and Nepal. But in terms of roads I would put Zanskar Valley first, which is a very remote valley in northern India. As a top 2, I would say Bartang Valley, in Tajikistan. As the top 3, Spiti Valley, in central India. In the top four, the road to the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. I’ve put this together for an epic adventure, all folded up. And the top 5 is probably Morocco. Caravan route. I haven’t finished it yet, but it looks pretty good.
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