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MALUTI SKY NEWS - LESOTHO SKY DIARIES DAY 3: MALEALEA TO ROMA
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Today’s stage saw us ride 87 kilometres from Malealea Lodge to Roma with what ended up measuring around 1900 metres of vertical ascent. It is the longest stage of the race and took us into a very dark place.

The route starts with a gradual climb through the Gates of Paradise Pass before dropping down and following a meandering trail through the villages at the foot of the mountain range. There were one or two challenging bits to keep us on our toes, as well as a portage down a particularly rocky section filled with loose rocks the size of baby heads.

 

Shortly after this our team dynamic imploded spectacularly, after a communication breakdown over stopping to help a solo rider with a mechanical. This cost us a few minutes as well as a much needed spot in the peloton for the windy district roads ahead.

 

We filled up at the first water point and then entered what is known as the Valley of Desolation or Death Valley, depending who you talk to. These are both apt descriptions. The valley is remote, desolate, baking hot, and filled with incredibly taxing technical climbs which get the lungs and heart exploding. There are also a few portages which slow things down horribly.

Water point 2 was followed by a painful slog into a headwind on rolling district roads. This was a dark place for us. Things got even bleaker after water point 3 when we continued to climb into a raging headwind. A quick detour into one of the only wooded areas on the route kept things interesting, although our GPS navigation failed in the trees and we got a bit lost. After wrestling our way through a few flocks of sheep we continued the battle. After a fun, fast descent on concrete switchbacks we hit a welcome tar climb towards Roma.

 

The last eight kilometres featured some agonising kickers, as the vertical ascent on our Garmins shot way over that of the route description. Hot, dusty, and exhausted, we finally arrived at the welcoming cooler box at the finish line.

 

Now to recover for another monster stage tomorrow from Roma back to Ramabanta Trading Post.

 

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FLIGHT SPECIALS



NOTE WORTHY EVENTS

Annual Menkhoaneng to Thaa Bosiu Historical Walk
DATE: 31-Mar-2017
Participants are presented with the opportunity to experience the richness of our cultural heritage, by reliving some of the challenges that the founder of the Basotho Nation and his people faced whil...  READ MORE HERE
Moshoeshoe Walk 2017 - Return flight for only R2500!
DATE: 25-Jan-2017
The Moshoeshoe Walk commemorates the legacy of the founder King of Basotho, the man who fearlessly brought together people of different tribes to form one peaceful nation of Basotho.The primary object...  READ MORE HERE
Lesotho Tourism Festival
DATE: 24-Dec-2016
It is an annual festival to promote tourism and entertainment and to market Lesotho as a tourism destination.It is normally held during the festive season with world class artists mesmerizing the audi...  READ MORE HERE