Nick Sanders tour escapes brush with rioters in Bolivia
The joys of being a paying Nick Sanders client, part II: The Bolivian riots
Touring & travel
21 April 2011 10:42
Nothing’s easy. Not on a Nick Sanders tour. Fresh from the inhospitable planes of the alto-plano, Sanders’ current crop of riders have just escaped a brush with rioters in La Paz.
Carole Nash Commercial Director Simon Jackson is blogging from Bolivia:
“As we filtered our way through La Paz, we started to notice groups of people scurrying around waving and gesturing to us. Some were waving us on, others pointing to turn back."
"We passed the first lorry which had been stopped by bricks, logs and burning tyres being placed across the road and weaved our way through making slow progress. It suddenly became evident this wasn’t right. We saw a burned out motorcycle and then what looked like dead bodies lying on the floor or hanging by the necks from stanchion poles. We also caught sight of the severed heads of horses/lama/donkeys lying on the floor."
"We had now reached a definite divide. Our way forward had been blocked and several hundred people surrounded us on high banks. Nick started dialogue to show we wanted to pass but was quickly gestured at to turn back; I was right behind him with two other riders. "
"Suddenly the crowd were shouting for us to go back and we saw a crazed looking man swinging a large rock in a sling a moving towards Nick. Rocks started being hurled in our direction and so we quickly signalled to show our retreat."
"The next half hour was just brilliant fun! We spotted a group of riot squad police, a lead armoured vehicle with a number of police on top being escorted by about 25 guards on trial bikes, each with gun toting guards riding pillion. Nick gestured them for directions to our hotel and in a move only he could pull off we ended up travelling at high speed with our own armoured escort…"
Read Simon’s blog on Facebook