Tours and Activities:
A Ride AroundMarcelo SolaMarcelo Sola
On two wheels, we went around the district of Potrero de los Funes and its surroundings. Amidst slopes and ravines, we appreciated the beauty of the San Luis Mountain Range.
We had been more than satisfied with the hiking tour to the Moneda Falls. But, to tell the truth, we still had half a day to spend at Potrero de los Funes and we wanted to keep on visiting that tourist village. Therefore, it was Héctor's turn to show us around. He is another guide working for Pilpintus and in charge of taking visitors on mountain bike tours along an amusing circuit in the outskirts of the small district of San Luis.
Going on a mountain bike tour is a practical way of getting to know a place taking advantage of every second. Compared with hiking, more distance is traveled in a shorter time and, compared with driving, more attention may be paid to the surroundings. Besides, Héctor guaranteed that we would feel a good dose of adrenaline as we toured along the zigzagging trails.
In order to enjoy the ride without any risks, we were provided with a safety helmet, water bottle, gloves and a mountain bike, of course. Some brief technical instructions reminded us of the use of the derailleur gears so that we could succeed in our way uphill. Once everything was ready, we set out without haste.
Going on a mountain bike tour implies knowing how to combine skill and physical endurance in order to go across the most diverse kinds of terrain. Always attentive to our needs, Héctor was showing the way and making sure that we were in perfect condition to face the difficult circuit.
The charms of the landscape at Potrero de los Funes turned up before us at every bend. We felt the wind on our faces and the warmth of the sun above us. Little by little, we got deep into the spectacular slopes and the impressive ravines as we appreciated the beauty of the hills.
Our guide explained that he belonged to the Huarpe community, one of the native ethnic groups from Cuyo. As we toured around, he told us about his beliefs and rituals, about the conception his people has about nature and the balance that should exist between the spiritual and the natural world. Thanks to his comments, we learnt about the medicinal use of certain local herbs and, almost without realizing, we lost track of time.
We stopped at the top of the hill in order to watch the beauty of the Potrero de los Funes reservoir. On its border, we spotted the impressive Hotel Internacional, which offers excellent services to satisfy the most demanding guests.
Undoubtedly, we felt the dose of adrenaline in all its splendor when we rode along a stretch of the circuit used in a race on the second date of the Mountain Biking Argentinian Championship. A striking uneven slope down at over 40 kilometers per hour made us feel extreme speed and vertigo. It is very important to be concentrated on the circuit as any distraction may cause the riders to fall.
After the slope, we continued pedalling up to the district. We took the road circuit and began to border the artificial lake along 6 kilometers.
We made several stops to drink some water, stretch our legs and watch the surroundings from a closer distance. In that sense, the ride is very well planned and good moments are totally guaranteed.
After cycling for approximately three hours, we called it a day. Feeling totally grateful, we said goodbye to our friend who had invited us to ride along one of the quietest and most beautiful nooks in San Luis.