By Ali Goulet
An Enduro Mountain bike trip to the Southern Hemisphere
A few short years ago, 2010 to be exact, I was invited to join some pro riders on a filming mission in Peru. We rallied the local trails of the Sacred Valley, generally recognized as the heart of the Inca Empire, located in the region of Cusco. We did some humanitarian work and took on the famed Inca Avalanche race. I fell in love with the culture and local trails. When given the chance, I will spew endless praise for the riding and culture of the area.
I had become fast friends with my adventure partners and KB, the Inca Avalanche race director. When my adventure in Peru ended I was sure i’d never return. Being a family-man the option to travel for selfish reasons is not often exercised.
When I produce the inaugural Wasatch Enduro, KB was in attendance, he appreciated my event tactics and asked me to partner with him on the Avalanche. I didn’t take much convincing, jumping at the chance to be involved. Each spring since 2012, I’ve returned to the Sacred Valley, generally spending a week riding and producing the event.
Fast-forward three years to 8 Utahns journeying to Peru, with the intent to kick off the inaugural Inca Avalanche Trail Festival and endurolize the Sacred Valley.
The plan was to rendezvous at the Cusco airport, build bikes and start a weeklong adventure of a lifetime. Months of planning will give you a false sense that this could be easy but easy doesn’t equal adventure and Peru almost guarantees adventure.
Upon arrival in Cusco things started to go sideways. Mitch and Ben showed up sans bikes, misplaced in transit. Sean was detained in Lima for having CO2 cartridges, no indication of when he would land in Cusco and Aaron’s pedal installed at a 5° angle during our bike building.